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Battle buffs up the Rose administration team

WED. | 10-11-22 | FEATURES

     During every class change at Rose this year, once students enter the commons, they expect a booming voice directing foot traffic. Standing at 6’4” and able to bench press and squat 385 pounds, assistant principal Cornelius Battle Jr. has established himself as a part of the administration at Rose in just his first month at the school. 

     However, Battle is much more than the assistant principal that most students only see standing in the hallway doing everything he can do to get kids to their classes. He is an avid swimmer, video gamer, traveler and breakfast connoisseur.



Photo by Anthien Nguyen

     “Outside of being the guy in the hallway directing traffic, despite my large stature, Mr. Battle is a normal guy,” Battle said. “I’m a big kid at heart.”

     Battle says his life outside of Rose consists of Fitness Connection, Playstation, Netflix, new restaurants, traveling and visiting his parents. While Battle does value his time outside of Rose, he also understands how impactful his role as assistant principal is on students.

     “[The students] should know Mr. Battle cares about students, he takes his job serious and he wants the very best for his students and his staff,” Battle said.

     Battle was born and raised in Winston-Salem, North Carolina until he was nine, when his family moved to Durham. Battle graduated from Hillside High School and then returned to his hometown of Winston-Salem to attend Winston-Salem State University (WSSU), where he graduated in 2012. Coming out of high school, Battle had intentions of becoming a lawyer, but once he got to college his path shifted. Battle first majored in education at WSSU, but had another change of heart while in college.

     “My sophomore year I switched to English because I didn’t think education was for me,” Battle said. “Then after I graduated, I said ‘let me give education another try,’ and I enrolled in the Teacher Education Program at North Carolina Central University (NCCU) in Durham.”

     After graduating from NCCU with a degree in middle grades education, Battle moved to Greenville, and began working at Farmville Middle School as an English teacher. He worked there for eight years, and enjoyed the connections he was able to make with students while being a teacher.

     “My favorite aspect of being an educator are those relationships and helping kids maximize their potential,” Battle said. “When kids come back to me and tell me how they are making all A’s or A’s and B’s, I love to hear that.”

     Then this summer, Battle got a call informing him he had been accepted into the masters program at East Carolina University, and he would be working as an assistant principal at Rose as part of his Principals Fellows Program coursework.

     In his first month at Rose, Battle has enjoyed the team of administrators and teachers he gets to work with everyday. Battle believes he is in a very new atmosphere personally and professionally. Not only is he in a role he has never been before, there is also a significant difference between Rose and Farmville Middle.

     “I taught for eight years in a classroom; on average I only taught 65 kids a year, now at Rose I am responsible for 1500 kids,” Battle said. “I have had to get used to not being in the classroom, now I am tasked with dealing with every kid in the entire school, and the teachers.”

     Battle said that there are lots of differences that he has had to get used to, but he has already been able to find the little things that make him realize why he wanted to go into administration.

      “[At Rose], my favorite thing is when I’m at busses and I get to greet the kids one by one off the bus, just getting that fresh air and being able to talk to kids, along with if they have problems being able to sit down and talk about it,” Battle said.

     Battle has already become engulfed in the Rose culture, and says he is proud to contribute to making Rose the greatest school in Greenville.

     “On my off days, when I pass by J.H. Rose High School, I look at that school and say ‘yeah I work there,’” Battle said. “I’m proud to say I work at this school.”

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