Bus Driver honored: Lorie Carswell was recently named the Alexander County Schools Bus Driver of the Year.
Carswell drives children to and from school at Ellendale Elementary in Taylorsville. Students and faculty recently helped her celebrate with a cake.
Student reader honored: Shelby Corriher, an eighth grader at West Alexander Middle School, was recognized at half time of the Appalachian State University football game on Oct. 20.
A member of the Bobcats Team, Shelby was honored as the countywide middle school winner of the Appalachian State University Summer Reading Program.
Science show: Students at Liberty Middle School enjoyed a presentation by The Energized Guys on Oct. 18. The program focused on resource conservation and the production of electricity.
Eric Hurley and students from Western Piedmont Community College also made a presentation at Liberty Middle.
Pumpkin lessons: Second-graders at Mull Elementary recently studied math and science concepts with a tie in to fall pumpkins.
Children measured and cooked pumpkin butter and explored examples of matter that change from a solid to a liquid by heating and cooling. The youngsters also made predictions about the weight, texture, appearance and number or ribs, along with predicting if their pumpkin would sink or float.
To gain information skills, students made jack-o’-lanterns in the computer lab.
Choral festival: Several students from the Draughn High School and Patton High School choral programs attended the 30th annual Gardner-Webb Choral Music Festival on Oct. 11.
Kevin Fenton, a music professor at Florida State University, directed the choir.
Dream Awards: CCC&TI recently presented Dream Awards to several local seventh-graders, ensuring free tuition to attend the community college upon their graduation from high school.
Dream Scholars are nominated as sixth-grade students in Caldwell or Watauga counties. They must be first-generation college students who have demonstrated academic achievement and civic involvement. To date, 65 percent of Dream Award recipients old enough to attend college have enrolled at CCC&TI.
As each Dream Award recipient was presented with a certificate, the scholars introduced themselves and shared their future career goals. A reception followed the ceremony.
Blake Greene of William Lenoir Middle was named the Tony Deal Dream Award recipient. Bryson Kirby and Kevin Lopez of Granite Falls Middle received the Dot and Jim Moore Dream Award and the Debbie Yount Dream Award, respectively.
Honored students were:
Collettsville School: Kristy Blevins, Kameron Graham, Hunter Shew
Gamewell Middle: Destiny Coffey, Caitlin Moody, Jennifer Ortega
Granite Falls Middle: Kelly Gomez, Bryson Kirby, Kevin Lopez, Jasmine Terry, Jose Yax
Happy Valley School: Nevada McClellan, Hunter Pope
Hudson Middle: Kendal Benfield, Bailey Ellis, Randall Fleming Jr., Tony Lopez, Katana Lowman, Alexandria Rudisill
Oak Hill School: Steven Spears
William Lenoir Middle: Prairie Dalton, Blake Greene, Walter Schronce
Wig fundraiser: Students at South Caldwell High School recently held a fundraiser for the Caldwell County Wig Bank in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month.
Staff, students and parents purchased luminarias that were displayed at the Oct. 19 football game, as well as pink bracelets, T-shirts and other items to raise awareness.
Blood drive: William Lenoir Middle will sponsor a Blood Drive 2-6:30 p.m. Oct. 29 at the Martin Luther King Jr. Center. Donors will be entered into a drawing for a $1,000 gift card.
Star gazing: The Catawba Valley Astronomy Club will sponsor an Evening of Star and Planet Gazing on Nov. 30 at Caldwell Career Center Middle College. Details will be announced soon.
Rachel’s Challenge: Catawba County Schools recently launched a district-wide anti-bullying initiative called Rachel’s Challenge. The program honors the memory of Rachel Scott, the first victim of the 1999 Columbine High School shootings.
The campaign addresses concerns about harassment, discrimination and student isolation and encourages acts of respect, kindness and compassion.
Administrators and teachers will be introduced to the program, along with age-appropriate sessions for elementary, middle and high school students. Parents, community leaders, churches and civic organizations also are invited to participate.
Several community sessions also will be held. Due to the depth of information regarding the Columbine shootings, community events may not be appropriate for elementary students.
The schedule includes:
Maiden Feeder Area: 7 p.m. Oct. 29, Maiden High auditorium
St. Stephens Feeder Area: 7 p.m. Oct. 30, Arndt Middle gymnasium
Halloween fun: The Hickory High School Orchestra will present a Halloween Fun Concert at 3 p.m. Oct. 28 at the SALT Block Auditorium. Short, spooky musical treats, a string instrument petting zoo and trick or treating are included.
Patrons are invited to wear festive costumes, and the community is welcome. Donations will be accepted for the Orchestra Travel Fund.
For more information, contact Sally Ross at Hickory High at 828-322-5860.
Recipe contest winner: Two local students recently won recipe contests as part of Hickory Public Schools’ celebration of National School Lunch Week.
Kayla Hamill, a sixth-grade student at Grandview Middle, won the middle school division with Black Bean Salad.
Vanessa Ramirez-Soto, a first grader at Longview Elementary School, recently won a recipe contest sponsored by the Hickory Public Schools Child Nutrition Department.
Vanessa’s Vegetable Soup recipe was served in the cafeteria, with more than 150 bowls requested. All five Hickory elementary schools served the soup.
Superintendent Walter Hart, Chief Academic Officer Denise Patterson, Longview Elementary principal Judy Jolly and cafeteria manager Sandy James visited with Vanessa to congratulate her on the winning recipe.
Disabilities awareness: Lorane Rohr, exceptional children’s program director for Hickory Public Schools, and Rebecca Tuttle, EC teacher at Hickory High, recently joined First Talk Radio host Hal Row on the air at WHKY.
Rohr shared information about serving the needs of children with special needs. Tuttle also spoke about events happening in the Occupational Course of Study (OCS) program at Hickory High.
Essay contest: Students at Northview Middle and Grandview Middle are invited to participate in the Elks Lodge Annual Americanism Essay Contest.
The theme this year is “What Does the National Anthem Mean to Me.” All essays are due by Dec. 14. Students should ask their teachers for guidelines and directions.
A formal recognition ceremony for essay contest winners will be held in February at the Hickory Elks Lodge.
Hall of Fame: Nominations are now being accepted for the Newton-Conover High School Hall of Fame.
Athletes, coaches and major contributors to Newton-Conover athletics are eligible for the honor. Deadline is Dec. 31.
For more information, visit www.nccs.k12.nc.us or contact Shawn Sigmon at email@example.com.
Compiled by Leigh Pressley