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Last Updated: 7/28/2022 1:20 AM

Welcome to Hickory Flat Elementary School, home of the Thunderbirds!

photo of Principal, Kerry EstepKerry Estep, Principal

Who has the best job in the world?  Mrs. Estep – She is honored and blessed to serve as the Principal of Hickory Flat for Year #3. She previously served as the Assistant Principal of Hickory Flat for four years so being named Principal was a dream come true.  Prior to leading at HFES, Mrs. Estep taught at Boston Elementary for 11 years in 3rd grade and Special Education. After leaving Boston, she was a Special Education Facilitator for 3 years in CCSD before coming to HFES. The 22-23 SY will be the start of her 21st year with Cherokee County.

Mrs. Estep lives in Cherokee County with her husband and two daughters.  Her oldest daughter will be a sophomore at Creekview High School and her youngest daughter will be in 7th grade at Creekland Middle School.  When she is not at school, she enjoys camping, playing tennis, and cheering on the Crimson Tide.

Mrs. Estep is excited to #TakeFlight in the 2022-2023 School Year with the Thunderbirds.  

Email for Mrs. Estep:


Photo of AP Ms. VanceDenna Vance, Assistant Principal

Mrs. Vance can’t wait to meet you! She prides herself on building relationships and having a positive outlook. She has previously served as Assistant Principal at R.M. Moore STEM Academy and played an active role in Clark Creek STEM Academy’s acquisition of State STEM Certification. Mrs. Vance also taught in a Science Magnet School and the private sector before joining Cherokee County. Throughout her career, she has had the pleasure and joy of teaching all elementary grade levels kindergarten through fifth. Along with enjoying school life, Mrs. Vance treasures family time with her wonderful husband and precious boys, and she’s looking forward to another great year with the HFES family.

Email for Mrs. Vance:


photo of AP Mr. ZomerNick Zomer, Assistant Principal

Mr. Zomer is beyond excited to be a part of the Thunderbird Family! Previous to Hickory Flat, Mr.  Zomer served as an Assistant Principal at Creekland Middle School, and before that was a  science teacher at Mill Creek Middle School, Dean Rusk Middle School, and at Liberty Middle School in Forsyth County. He has 3 children in Cherokee County schools. When he is not working to support students and teachers, he spends time with his family, loves to cook, and is a dedicated University of Michigan fan.

Email for Mr. Zomer: