Campus Community Health • HEERF I, II & III

Elinor Ross CDF Freedom School

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Program Leadership

Amber Spears, Executive Director | 931-372-6265


Dr. Spears is an associate professor of literacy methods in the College of Education at Tennessee Tech University. Dr. Spears has directed summer programming for children in Putnam County since 2017. She led Putnam County’s Ready to be Ready summer literacy camp, then began her service as the Elinor Ross CDF Freedom School project director in 2019. Dr. Spears has worked with children, families, and communities to provide high-quality experiences for children during the summer months when school is not in session.

Spears is a former elementary school teacher and is licensed in Tennessee in K–8 elementary education, PK–3 early childhood education, and PK–12 reading specialist. She holds a Ph.D. in exceptional learning, an Ed.S. in early childhood education, a master’s in curriculum and instruction, and a bachelor’s in elementary education. Dr. Spears serves on the Advisory Board for the Literacy Association of Tennessee and was the 2018 recipient of the Literacy Professor of the Year award. In 2021, she received the Hoyte Snow Literacy Leadership Award for the Literacy Association of Tennessee.

Khylah Burroughs, Project Director

K. BurroughsMs. Burroughs has worked for the Elinor Ross CDF Freedom School as a Servant Leader Intern (2021), Site Coordinator (2022), and happily joins us as the 2023 Project Director. She graduated from Tennessee Tech University with a major in Secondary Education (English) and a Minor in History. Khylah is a member of the Tennessee Tech College of Education Recruitment, Retention, and Diversity Committee. 

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