School news, March 20: Haley Miller makes Duke dean’s list

Bulldog teams A and B took home the N.C. VEX Robotics State Champion title and secured one of the five qualifying slots to compete at the VEX World Championship
Bulldog teams A and B took home the N.C. VEX Robotics State Champion title and secured one of the five qualifying slots to compete at the VEX World Championship CABARRUS COUNTY SCHOOLS

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Compiled by Gina Smith

Colleges and universities

Dean’s list: Haley Marie Miller was named to the Fall Dean’s List With Distinction at Duke University. To make the dean’s list with distinction, students must rank in the top 10th of their academic class.

Miller is a junior majoring in decision analysis (using math, stats and quantitative data to make decisions). She also has been selected for a community project in Washington, D.C., and helped students in Costa Rica through her participation in a language immersion program. She also is a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority.

Hickory Ridge High

Scholarship awards: Hickory Ridge senior Kruti Patel was recently awarded East Carolina University’s Scholars and Honors scholarships, which combined will give her a full scholarship to the university.

Patel was also named an alternate for the Early Assurance Scholars program for Medicine. Patel is one of 20 to receive the Scholars scholarship, one of 110 to receive the Honors scholarship and one of eight to be named an Early Assurance scholarship for Medicine. Additionally, Patel was chosen as an alternate for the Park Scholarship to N.C. State University.

Cabarrus County Schools

Personnel changes: Cabarrus County Schools Superintendent Barry Shepherd announced his retirement to the Cabarrus County Board of Education before the start of the board’s business meeting on March 9.

Shepherd has served as the district’s superintendent since February 2008. He was previously superintendent of Elkin City Schools and had served as an assistant superintendent in Mooresville Graded School District. He also has held administrative positions in Iredell-Statesville Schools, Lexington City Schools and Thomasville City Schools. His retirement will be effective beginning April 1. Cabarrus County Schools has started seeking a replacement for his position. For details, visit

The board of education also approved the following personnel changes at the meeting:

▪ Kristy Bullock, principal of C.C. Griffin Middle School, will become the new principal of J.N. Fries Magnet School, effective July 1. Bullock has been a part of the leadership team at C.C. Griffin since 2006 and was promoted to principal of the school in 2008. She replaces Kecia Coln, who was named director of human resources for the district last fall.

▪ Jim Williams, principal of the Performance Learning Center, will continue to serve as interim principal at J.N. Fries through the end of the school year.

▪ Robert Kirk, managing director for the superintendent’s office, has been promoted to chief of staff, effective immediately. Kirk joined the district’s leadership team in 2010.

▪ Chris Lowder, assistant superintendent, has been promoted to deputy superintendent, effective immediately. Lowder has been a member of the district’s leadership team since 2011.

Boger Elementary

Family Math Night: February’s Family Math Night was rescheduled and will now take place 6:30-7:30 p.m. March 26 at the Afton Super Target, 6150 Bayfield Parkway, Concord.

Mount Pleasant Middle

Fundraiser results: The Mount Pleasant Middle School Beta Club sponsored its annual Pennies for Patients service project to raise money for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society in February. The club raised more than $2,700 for the organization.

Cox Mill High

Fundraiser: The Cox Mill High School Bible Teaching Association will hold a yard sale fundraiser 7 a.m.-12:30 p.m. April 18, at Cox Mill High, 6841 Poplar Tent Road, Concord. Rental for a space and 6-foot table is $20. Proceeds will support the Bible Teaching Association’s goal to pay for a Bible history teacher and class at Cox Mill High School. To reserve a space or donate items to sell, contact Carla Barber at 980-297-0166 or

Kannapolis City Schools

Preschool program: The Wee Wonders preschool program is accepting applications for children who will be 4 years old by Aug. 31. Families who apply must meet eligibility requirements in order to be accepted. Kannapolis City Schools’ prekindergarten classes are at the McKnight Child Development Center, Fred L. Wilson Elementary School and Woodrow Wilson Elementary School. For details or to schedule an application appointment, call the McKnight Child Development Center at 704-932-7433.

Forest Park Elementary

Teacher of the Month: Fourth-grade teacher Michael Jones is the most recent winner of the Hilbish Ford Teacher of the Month Award for Kannapolis City Schools. Jones received his award at the recent Kannapolis City Schools Board of Education meeting. In addition to teaching at Forest Park, Jones serves as a volunteer coach for the boys running club at the school. To nominate a teacher for the Hilbish Ford Teacher of the Month Award, visit

Jackson Park Elementary

Notables: At its March meeting, the Kannapolis City Schools Board of Education honored fourth-grade students Yasmine Jordan and Leonardo Perez, reading volunteer Quinten Beaver, one-on-one student assistant Cathy Ervin and fourth-grade teacher Barbara Hoover as outstanding representatives from Jackson Park Elementary School. Hoover plans to retire after this school year.

Woodrow Wilson Elementary

Duke Energy Science Night: Woodrow Wilson Elementary School was one of 125 schools in North Carolina selected to host a Duke Energy Science Night. The event took place on March 11 and was an official event of the North Carolina Science Festival. Woodrow Wilson’s Science Night featured hands-on activities that focused on science, technology, engineering and mathematics. The activities were designed to engage children and families in science exploration. More than a dozen A.L. Brown High School students volunteered at the event to help students with the science activities. Duke Energy Science Nights are an initiative of the N.C. Science Festival. Support from the Duke Energy Foundation allows the festival to provide all materials for the activities to the selected schools. The 2015 N.C. Science Festival will be held in April and will include hundreds of events throughout the state.

Kannapolis City Schools will participate in the with multiple science activities taking place April 10-26. For details, visit

Cannon School

Webcast series: Cannon School’s Jazz Program is hosting a new monthly jazz webcast concert series in its Performing Arts Center at 5801 Poplar Tent Road, Concord. Performances will be streamed live from the stages of Lincoln Center in New York City to be experienced on the school’s giant screen and through its new sound system. The performances will each center on a theme and feature a different group of internationally known jazz musicians. Each show will be preceded by a 30-minute primer from Cannon School’s director of jazz, Brad Davis, providing history and context for the music. All concerts begin 7:30 p.m. Admission is free and all events are open to the public. The concerts are suitable for all ages.

Concerts are scheduled as follows:

▪ March 27. Clarinetist/saxophonist Paquito D’Rivera presents “Around the Americas.” An exploration of South America and composers such as Ernesto Lecuona, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Raphael Hernandez and Chucho Valdes.

▪ April 24. John Scofield and Taj Mahal celebrate Muddy Waters.

▪ May 15. Saxophone master Wayne Shorter with Wynton Marsalis and the Lincoln Center Jazz Orchestra celebrating Shorter’s contributions to jazz.