Pre-School Teachers


Jessie Cutshaw

Pre-School Instructor

Grade you teach or position held: Preschool

Degrees/Certifications: University of Tennessee-BA in Psychology with a minor in Geography and Elementary Education Degree

Hometown: South Lyon,MI and Maryville, TN

Tell us about yourself/experience in three sentences or less: I have enjoyed diverse opportunities during my teaching career. I was a 5th grade teacher for Knox County Schools, a substitute teacher for Blount County Schools and Webb Schools, and a kindergarten readiness teacher for Dotson Memorial Church’s PDO program.

Fun fact: I like to drink pickle juice.

Favorite thing about CBA: The children

Alexis McMahan


Alexis McMahan

Pre-School Instructor

Grade you teach or position held: Preschool Coordinator/Instructor

Degrees/Certifications: University of Tennessee, B.S. Child and Family Studies, 2014; University of Tennessee, M.S. Early Childhood Education PreK-3, 2015; Tennessee Teaching License

Hometown: Maryville, Tennessee

Tell us about yourself/experience in three sentences or less:  I have a wide range of experiences with children and teaching in a variety of settings including early intervention, private childcare, public school (first grade and kindergarten), and church childcare. I am experienced in providing
opportunities for children to construct their own knowledge of how the world works, providing open-ended materials and experiences to encourage exploration and investigation, and providing rich learning opportunities through play, as it is a valued context of learning for young children. When I’m not teaching or lesson planning, I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, baking, and watching Tennessee football!

Fun fact: I am a Disney fanatic- Little Mermaid is my favorite!

Favorite thing about CBA: The relationships with colleagues, students, and parents.


Candy Griffin

Pre-School Instructional Assistant

Candy Griffin is the assistant in Mrs. Cutshaw’s preschool class. She graduated from Tennessee Tech University with a BS in Mechanical Engineering. She worked for UT Agriculture Extension Agency in Erwin, TN where she developed nutritional programs for pre-K and elementary students. She has actively been teaching a preschool Sunday school class at Greenback Church of Christ since 2010. She served as a substitute teacher for CBA before coming on staff in 2016.


Rene Gifford

Pre-School Instructional Assistant

Rene’ Gifford is the assistant in Mrs. McMahan’s preschool classroom. She started the Parent’s Day Out program at Dotson Memorial Baptist Church and was the director for almost six years. She taught the 4-years-olds in Sunday School there for 14 years. She started the TumbleBear gymnastics program in 1996 with 4 children and grew the program to over 250 when she left in 2005. She now teaches gymnastics with her husband Carl at Parks and Rec, Blount County Friends Programs, and in area day cares and preschools.

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