Four Decades Of Kindness

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MINT HILL, NC – Entering remote learning was a new experience for teachers, students, and school staff. As the school district switched gears and changed to a completely new format, the change came at a time that Mr. Joey Burch needed it most. As remote learning and staying at home became our “new normal,” Mr. Burch prepared for his retirement. Preparing for his “new normal” as a retired gentleman was an experience that remote learning helped gear his lifestyle towards. “Since March 13, I’ve only worn a suit and tie twice,” he said. “Spring and summer graduations. That’s been nice.”

Joey Burch head shot
Photo by Randi Davis

Over his 41 years of service with the district, Mr. Burch has served in any type of position.  In mid-December, he retired from the school district. He most recently served as the principal at Levine Middle College High. Levine had the pleasure of having him on board as their leader for the past six years. During his long career with CMS, he has served as a principal for more than 25 years at a handful of schools across the district. As a role model, Joey served his students the best way he knew how. He treated each of them with the respect that came from knowing that each child needs to be nurtured and supported no matter their age or where they are in their educational journey. Providing them with that nurture and support develops an understanding of why adults and teachers play the roles they do during their high school careers that benefit them later in life. Burch wants to ensure that each student looks back on their educational career as the building blocks of the person that they have become. Positive blocks have been built from positive, supportive, and well-nurtured pieces.

Joey Burch and his career at CMS, early years
Photo by Randi Davis


It comes as no surprise that Mr. Burch is one of our own. He is a Charlotte native that graduated right here in Mint Hill at Independence High. After high school, he followed his passion for education. First, his higher educational journey led him to Central Piedmont Community College where he was a student for two years. To finish out his education, Mr. Burch went to Appalachian State University. His first teaching job was at what was then known as Carmel Junior High where he taught physical and health education. He spent a long period of his career at Carmel Junior High and had some of the funniest years of his life during that time. His first principal position was at Carmel after he returned from teaching at South Charlotte Middle for three years. He served as the assistant principal then moved on to be the principal at Smith Academy of International Languages. During his career, he served as principal for a few more schools then lastly served as the principal at Levine Middle College High.

School leadership was not what Joey planned for his life, but his mentors knew that he was made for this career. During his career in education, the path and encouragement from everyone around him led him in that direction. His leadership style, understanding, and dedication to the students naturally made him an ideal candidate for school leadership. He made a name for himself in the field with the implementation of the “Brittany Brandon Alex Rule.” Every rule or plan that he developed was based on what he would want for his own children. Using this rule in his life helped ground his thoughts and allowed him peace to sleep at night knowing he was always doing his best.

Levine Middle College High School principal Joey Burch with his graduates

On December 21, 2020, Mr. Joey Burch officially retired from the district, but his legacy will live on forever. His career at CMS has impacted the lives of many students. It was truly his calling in life and he put everything he had into making every student, teacher, and parent’s life a better one.

The Mint Hill Times and the community thank Mr. Joey Burch for his service to the community and his dedication to the students of CMS.

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Jessica Mentzer is a mother, wife, and freelance writer that loves to travel and write. Whenever she is not traveling with her family or writing she enjoys hiking, canoeing, swimming, and spending time with her two children. She is a stay at home mom and enjoys watching her children grow and learn each day. Her passion for writing and her love for travel are two things that she loves to share with friends and family.