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Compiled by Gina Smith
Cabarrus County Schools
National high school ranking: Two Cabarrus County high schools are included in the U.S. News & World Report Best High Schools in North Carolina annual listing for this year. Central Cabarrus High School was ranked No. 38 and Early College High School received honorable mention and a bronze medal. The magazine reviewed 542 public high schools in North Carolina. For details, visit www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/north-carolina.
Redistricting plan: The Cabarrus County Board of Education approved a redistricting plan for the Odell area at its business meeting May 11. The plan includes changes to boundary lines for three elementary schools in the Odell area. The board also approved a measure to allow rising fifth-grade students to remain at their current schools if their parents could provide transportation. The Odell area redistricting plan is needed to allow for growth in that area of the county. Cabarrus County Schools will open a new W.R. Odell Elementary School campus for students in grades three to five in 2016.
Teacher of the Year: The Cabarrus County Rotary Club recently honored Cabarrus County Schools Teacher of the Year Allison Hahn along with Kannapolis City Schools Teacher of the Year Lindsay Cooney. Both teachers received recognition from Hilbish Ford and Ben Mynatt Chevrolet. They were presented with a gift certificate for a spa package at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville as part of the Greater Charlotte Automobile Dealers Association’s support of the Teacher of the Year program.
A.T. Allen Elementary
Surprise donation: A.T. Allen Elementary School recently surprised a family with three children attending the school with a $1,000 donation. The Monaco family’s youngest son, age 3, is battling a rare combination of two diseases, neuro-Fibromatosis type 1 and Juvenile Xenthro-granuloma. Jesse Sachnin, an Exceptional Children’s teacher at A.T. Allen, organized a fundraiser to help raise awareness and money for the Monaco family.
Hickory Ridge Middle
Mini-grants for at-risk youth: The Cabarrus County Education Foundation recently awarded a mini-grant to Hickory Ridge Middle School to help at-risk students. The STARS (Successful Transition For At-Risk Students) program serves 50-80 middle school students. Guidance counselors at Hickory Ridge High and Middle schools choose eighth-graders for the program based on their academic, attendance or discipline issues. Participating students meet monthly with a junior or senior student mentor from the high school or a mentor from the community. The program also includes a summer transition camp where rising ninth-graders become familiar with high school procedures and policies. The Classroom Mini-Grant Program was launched in 2012. During the fall term, teachers in Cabarrus County Schools can submit ideas for projects they want to implement within the classroom. Applications are reviewed by a committee and grants are awarded each November. The project expanded by 29 percent during the 2014-15 school year to serve more than 13,000 students. For details about the mini-grant program or how to become a mentor, visit http://www.cabarruscountyeducationfoundation.org or contact Rachel Wilkes at 704-262-6246 or Rachel.firstname.lastname@example.org.
Mount Pleasant Middle
Test proctors: Volunteers are needed to help with county- and state-required end-of-year testing 8:40 a.m.-12:30 p.m. May 28-29, June 1-5 and June 8-10. Proctors must be at least 18 years old and out of school. Grandparents, aunts, uncles, other family members and friends are welcome to volunteer. For details, contact Melinda Helmintoller or Jennifer Lumley at 704-436-9302 or by email at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Principal of the Year: The N.C. High School Athletic Association recently named Concord High principal Carla Black as the Bob Deaton Principal of the Year for 2015. Black is serving a four-year term as a member of the board of directors of the N.C. High School Athletic Association. She received her undergraduate degree in middle school education from Winston-Salem State University and her master’s degree in administration from UNC Charlotte. She was previously named the Cabarrus County Educator of the Decade by the local chapter of the NAACP and was the winner this year of the Charlie Adams Distinguished Service Award for Region 6.
Kannapolis City Schools
Wee Wonders: The Wee Wonders preschool program is now accepting applications for children who will be 3 or 4 years old by Aug. 31. Families who apply must meet eligibility requirements in order to be accepted. Kannapolis City Schools' prekindergarten classes are held 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.
Teacher of the Year: Kannapolis City Schools Teacher of the Year Lindsay Cooney was honored at the Cabarrus Rotary Club along with Cabarrus County Schools Teacher of the Year Allison Hahn. The two received recognition from Hilbish Ford and Ben Mynatt Chevrolet. Tim Vaughn of Hilbish Ford and Betsy Stanley of Ben Mynatt Chevrolet presented each teacher with a gift certificate for a spa package at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville. The prize is part of the Greater Charlotte Automobile Dealers Association’s support of the Teacher of the Year program. Cooney was named Kannapolis City Schools Teacher of the Year in September. She is a health and physical education teacher at Kannapolis Intermediate School.
Teacher of the Month: Alison Craft, a first-grade teacher at Jackson Park Elementary School, received the Kannapolis City Schools Hilbish Ford Teacher of the Month Award for May. Craft grew up in Kannapolis City Schools and attended Jackson Park as a student. Each month, Hilbish Ford gives $300 to a selected teacher in Kannapolis City Schools who has been nominated by parents or students. To nominate a teacher for the award, visit https://docs.google.com/forms/d/1eAcFxz3V4-Z5e0xDIbE4rIq0b6VTcT406rfIYrXjNrw/viewform.
Stadium field naming: Cannon School will name their stadium field the Randy Marion Field in honor of Randy Marion, who gave a gift of $250,000 to help fund the new turf field project that will install this summer. Betty and Randy Marion have six grandchildren who attend Cannon School. The announcement follows a September dedication ceremony in which Cannon School unveiled the new Randy Marion Family Field House. The Randy Marion Family Field House serves as a permanent welcome center with a press box, restrooms and concession stand for sports fans and visitors to Cannon’s 65-acre campus on Poplar Tent Road. The Marions gave a gift of $500,000 to name the Field House as part of Cannon’s $7.4 million Building Bright Futures Capital Campaign. The turf field will complete Cannon’s athletic complex. In addition to the field house, over the past eight years, the school has installed new stadium lights, seating, a track and a strength training center.