Opening session: Approximately 800 Alexander County Schools faculty, staff and administrators gathered Aug. 18 for the 2014-15 opening session at Alexander Central High School auditorium.
Superintendent Jennifer Hefner welcomed employees, school board members, county administrators and county commissioners.
Alexander Central High School NJROTC cadets Caleb Holdsclaw, Austin Huntington, Jacob Livingston and Noah Queen presented the colors. Cadet Emily Parsons and Student Body Presidents Emily Killian and William Cheung led the Pledge of Allegiance. Musicians Jordan Dagenhart and Matt Cochran performed the national anthem. The Rev. Chris Meade led the invocation.
Other speakers included Associate Superintendent Jeff Peal, School Board Chairman Brigette Rhyne and County Commissioner Larry Yoder. First Year Teacher of the Year Heather Weygant also addressed staff members.
Matt Taylor, 2014-15 Alexander County Schools Teacher of the Year, was the keynote speaker and shared thoughts on the importance of being prepared, enthusiastic and accountable.
Summer reading program: The Rotary Club of Morganton sponsored a summer reading program at Mountain Crest Elementary School.
The club donated $2,000 to the program, which assisted English Language Learners. Club members also spent time with students working on their reading skills and keeping them on track through the summer.
The intensive reading program ran July 7-24. This was the fifth year the Rotary Club of Morganton has sponsored the reading project.
Superintendent Larry Putnam and Doug Setzer, director of Auxiliary Services for Burke County Public Schools, are members of the Rotary Club of Morganton.
FFA alumni meet: The Future Farmers of America Alumni chapter from East Burke High School will meet at 7 p.m. Sept. 15 in the school cafeteria.
East Burke is renewing its agriculture program and FFA club this year and building a new greenhouse on campus.
For information, contact agriculture teacher Jessie Schermerhorn at 828-397-5541, ext. 3147 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Knight Run 5K: Caldwell Career Center Middle College will sponsor the Knight Run 5K 6-10 p.m. Oct. 4 at Redwood Park in Hudson.
Registration is $25 for Caldwell County students and teachers, $30 individuals and $50 families. Fun run is $5. Register by Sept. 12 to guarantee a shirt size.
Proceeds will provide uniforms for Skills USA participants, school supplies and Christmas presents for students in need, teacher appreciation gifts, a low cost prom and scholarships for graduating seniors.
For information, call 828-759-4640.
Students earn scholarships: The Blue Ridge Electric Membership Corp. awarded college scholarships to six Caldwell County students.
Hannah Bryant, UNC Chapel Hill, $500
Cory Dillard, East Tennessee State University, $1,000
Lucas Dunn, UNC Chapel Hill, $1,000
Brittney Huskey, Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute, $400
Jason Puett, Caldwell Community College and Technical Institute, $400
Kelsey Toliver, Gardner-Webb University, $500
A total of 12 students from Caldwell, Alleghany, Ashe, Watauga and Wilkes counties received the scholarships. Selection was based on academics, community service and personal interviews.
Chorus Bash: The Hibriten High School Chorus Boosters will sponsor a Chorus Booster Bash at 6 p.m. Sept. 8 at College Avenue Baptist Church.
All chorus families are invited to attend. Free hotdogs and fixings will be served, and information on the Chorus Boosters will be shared.
Class of ’84 reunion: The Hibriten High School class of 1984 will hold its 30th reunion Oct. 3-4.
Classmates will gather at 6 p.m. Oct. 3 in the school courtyard prior for a meet and greet prior to watching the football game in a reserved section at Jeff Storie Memorial Stadium.
Family Fun Day will be held noon to 3 p.m. Oct. 4 at Oak Hill Park. Cotton candy, face painting, candy apples, hot dogs, popcorn and more are planned. Cost is $10 per family.
The reunion will conclude with “Carousels and Wishing Wells,” a reflection of the class of ’84 prom with a dinner buffet and evening of dancing. The event runs 7 p.m. to midnight Oct. 4 at the Lenoir Moose Lodge. Cost is $25 per person, with a cash bar. Payment is due by Sept. 15.
For information, visit the Hibriten High school Web page.
Ice bucket challenge: Blackburn Elementary principal Brian Hefner recently braved the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.
While most participants pay it forward by challenging three or four additional people to take the dare, Hefner challenged Superintendent Dan Brigman and all Catawba County Schools principals.
The ALS Challenge raises money for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, commonly referred to as Lou Gehrig’s Disease.
To see Hefner’s icy bucket bath, visit www.catawbaschools.net/schools/Blackburn/SitePages/default.aspx.
Quest program begins: Catawba County Schools recently started a new before- and after-school program called QUEST. Hours are 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. weekdays, and the program is available in each elementary school.
QUEST is open to kindergartners to sixth-graders and provides activities that are fun, safe and educationally enriching. Physical activity and quiet time for homework and reading are included.
For information, call 828-695-2684.
Parenting workshop offered: Catawba County Schools will hold a parenting workshop, “Love and Logic,” 6-8 p.m. Sept. 18 at Blackburn Elementary School.
The workshop is open to parents of children ages 3-12 and is free, along with child care, for parents of Catawba County Schools students and NC pre-K students. Cost for other parents is $10 for the workshop, $5 for child care.
Topics include raising children who are responsible and respectful, increasing self-confidence in children, ways to have fun as a parent and enjoying happier, healthier relationships with your kids.
Registration is required by calling the Catawba County Parenting Network at 828-465-8151.
Teachers can win gift cards: One teacher from Catawba County will be recognized each month this school year with the Hometown Hero Teacher Appreciation Award. The program is sponsored by Charlotte law firm Charles G. Monnett III & Associates and features a $250 gift card for classroom supplies.
Educators in Mecklenburg, Lincoln, Iredell, Cabarrus and Union counties also will be recognized for their hard work and dedication. Each winning teacher’s classroom also will receive a pizza party courtesy of Domino’s Pizza.
To make a nomination or vote, visit www.carolinalaw.com and click on vote. Nominations may be made each month.
Ice bucket challenge: Employees at Viewmont Elementary School recently took on the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge in honor of first grade teacher Stacey Stalvey’s father, Gary “Red” Robinson. Robinson was diagnosed with ALS on Dec. 31.
Viewmont principal Jeff Hodakowski led the ice-cold soaking on the grounds of the school. Participants contributed donations in honor of Gary Robinson. Hodakowski also challenged all nine schools in the Hickory Public Schools district to contribute to ALS through the ice bucket challenge.
To view a video of the Viewmont ice challenge, visit News at www.hickoryschools.net and click on media.
Dean of students named: Verna Breland, a former English teacher at Hickory High, was recently named the school’s new dean of students.
Breland will serve on the administrative leadership team at Hickory High in a position that replaces the vacant assistant principal job. She will work with student supervision, student discipline, dropout prevention, student mentoring and other management responsibilities.
Breland was named the Wilmer Jenkins Teacher of the Year by the Hickory Rotary Club last spring. She holds a bachelor’s degree in English from the University of Maryland and she completed her licensure requirements at Lenoir-Rhyne University. Prior to entering the teaching profession as a second career, Breland was in executive management with MetLife Insurance.
Back-to-school events: Hickory Public Schools will hold several open house and orientation events in the coming weeks. The back-to-school schedule is:
Jenkins Elementary: Open House, 6:30 p.m. Sept. 23
Viewmont Elementary: Open House, 6 p.m. Sept. 23
Northview Middle: Open House, 6 p.m. Sept. 16
Back-to-school blast: Newton-Conover City Schools recently held a Back-to-School Blast. More than 550 students and their families enjoyed rock climbing, inflatables, a petting zoo, cornhole competitions, a Fire House, pizza, popcorn, ice cream and snow cones.
Local churches and community sponsors contributed to the event, which also featured free back packs, school supplies, food and haircuts.
South Newton dedication: Newton-Conover City Schools students, parents, staff and administrators gathered Aug. 24 for a dedication of the new South Newton Elementary cafeteria/gymnasium/auditorium building.
The event included a dedication ceremony, refreshments and building tours.
Compiled by Leigh Pressley
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