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Gwinnett County Public Schools

Kanoheda Elementary School

Kanoheda ES front

Fast Facts


Kanoheda Elementary was established in 1994. Kanoheda is a native American term meaning “truths passed through generations.” This name was chosen to honor the Native Americans that lived in the location area as our country was being founded.

The school opened under the administration of Gary Yetter with 795 students— all from local neighborhood homeowners. The staff was made up mostly of teachers from Bethesda and Minor— with one coming from Benefield. At the time, just a few apartments were located on nearby Club Drive and Sweetwater Road, and the school was the only structure located on Herrington Road. The rest all was wooded land. A Kroger supermarket was under construction when the school opened. New apartments started opening on Sweetwater, Boggs and Cruse roads. Herrington Woods on Herrington Road also was opening. Most of the apartments opening in the area were government subsidized.

In the 1999–2000 school year, Suzanne Dressel was named as the new principal, following Mr. Yetter who moved on to Harmony Elementary. At that time, a new addition providing 15 additional classrooms was being added to the building to alleviate growth. The addition was completed the following year. However, in 2002, continued growth resulted in 14 single and 5 double portable classrooms being added to the school campus.

In 2003, Mrs. Dressel retired and Terry Watlington came on board as the new principal for the 2003–04 school year. That same year, 400 of the 1,380 enrolled students were rezoned to the new Corley Elementary. Kanoheda also celebrated its academic improvement that year as it was removed from the “Needs Improvement” list under Georgia’s accountability model. The school’s commitment to high academic standards has resulted in Kanoheda being recognized by the Georgia Department of Education as a Distinguished Title I School for 2004–05, 2005–06, and 2006–07.

In December 2008, Debra Scott became the principal when Terry Watlington assumed a position outside of Gwinnett County Public Schools. As mentioned, Kanoheda was named a Title One Distinguished School in 2004 and held that designation for many years under Ms. Scott’s leadership. In 2013, Kanoheda also was named a Title One Reward School.

The school continues to thrive today under the leadership of Dr. Nicole White who became principal upon Ms. Scott’s retirement in 2016.

Kanoheda has an enrollment of approximately 900 students and is culturally, ethnically, and economically diverse. Demographic data shows the school is 32% African American, 57% Hispanic, 4.9% White, 4.2% Asian and Indian, and 1.7% multiracial. Kanoheda is a Title One school with 95% of its students qualifying for free or reduced price lunches. The mission of our school is to provide a quality learning experience for all members of our school community. We do that by offering a variety of learning opportunities for our students and familes. Our school has a very active STEAM initiative, that focuses on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts, and Mathematics. We also continue to partner with other schools in the cluster to focus on parental involvement through our Be There campaign.