School news

Send your news releases and photos to and

Compiled by Gina Smith

Cabarrus County Schools

Cabarrus County Schools College Fair: 6-7:30 p.m. Sept. 23, Cabarrus Arena and Events Center, 4751 N.C. 49 N., Concord. The event is open only to high school juniors and seniors.

Accountability data: According to data released Sept. 4 by the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, the graduation rate for students in Cabarrus County Schools continues to climb. The four-year cohort graduation rate for the 2013-14 school year is 88.1 percent, compared with 86.5 percent in 2012-13.

The report also says Cabarrus students outperformed the state as a whole in end-of-grade and end-of-course tests for the 2013-14 school year. Nearly 60 percent of Cabarrus County Schools students received proficient scores on the EOGs, and more than 60 percent of students received proficient scores on the EOCs.

Additionally, results show that 60 percent, or 23 schools, in the Cabarrus County Schools system either met or exceeded academic growth targets for students. For full results, visit

Hometown Hero: Marla Guerity, a second-grade teacher at W.R. Odell Elementary School, was recently named the first Hometown Hero for Cabarrus County Schools. Hometown Hero is a teacher recognition program sponsored by Charles G. Monnett III & Associates. Each month, the law firm honors the top vote-getter at schools throughout the Charlotte-metro region. The winner receives a $350 Visa gift card to buy supplies for the classroom, and Domino’s will cater a pizza party for the teacher’s classroom. Bob Dill, marketing director for Monnett & Associates, and Taylor Patterson, field marketing leader for Domino’s, presented Guerity with her award on Sept. 5.

To nominate a Cabarrus County Schools teacher, visit and select the “Hero” button. Nominations are open. Voting closes at the end of each month. The presentation ceremony takes place at the winning teacher’s school during the first week of the following month.

Patriots STEM Elementary

Green Apple Day of Service: Volunteers are needed 9-11 a.m. Sept. 27 to work on improvements to the courtyard vegetable garden. Plans are to install benches, rain barrels, a compost bin, birdfeeders and possibly a flower garden, with the goal of creating an outdoor reading and learning area. To volunteer or donate items, contact the school at 704-455-1882.

Rocky River Elementary

Curriculum Night: 6 p.m. Sept. 25. A pizza dinner will be served at 6 p.m. Tours of the classrooms available 6:30-7:30 p.m.

Concord High

Childhood Cancer Awareness projects: Concord High and Concord Middle schools are working to raise awareness and money to benefit the Cabarrus County Schools children with cancer during Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Donations are being collected and gold ribbons are being issued throughout the month at the school. Everyone is encouraged to wear their ribbons throughout September, but especially the week of Sept. 22-26.

T-shirts promoting Childhood Cancer Awareness are being sold as a fundraiser through local screen-printing company Da Vin Tees. Supporters are encouraged to wear the T-shirts during the Concord vs. East Rowan home football game on Sept. 26 as a show of support for children battling cancer. To order T-shirts, visit

Hickory Ridge High

Yard sale and silent auction: The Hickory Ridge High Athletic Department is hosting a yard sale and silent auction fundraiser 8 a.m.-noon Sept. 27 at the school. Donations of items for the silent auction are being accepted through Sept. 19. Items should be brought to the front office to the attention of Ricky Patton.

Cost for yard sale spots is $20 for the first space and $10 for additional spaces. Yard sale sellers need to send a completed application form with a check made out to “HRHS Athletics” before the event to Hickory Ridge High School, Attention: Ricky Patton, 7321 Raging Ridge Road, Harrisburg NC 28075. Phone number should be included on the check.

Setup for the yard sale begins at 7 a.m. Hot dogs, popcorn and drinks will be for sale 10:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. Details and forms:

Kannapolis City Schools

Accountability data: According to data released Sept. 4 by the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, Kannapolis City Schools surpassed state averages in meeting accountability targets for the 2013-14 school year. Kannapolis City Schools achieved 72.5 percent of its Annual Measurable Objectives, compared to 55.2 percent reached by the state. AMOs are academic performance targets that states, school districts and schools must achieve to meet federal testing guidelines. The report included AMO data for end-of-grade and end-of-course tests, the ACT college entrance exam, ACT WorkKeys test, four- and five-year cohort graduation rates, and the percentage of 2014 graduates who passed higher-level math courses. In nearly all categories, Kannapolis City Schools exceeded the state average. Details: and

Teacher of the Year: Lindsay Cooney, health teacher at Kannapolis Intermediate School, was recently named Kannapolis City Schools Teacher of the Year. Cooney partners with the Cabarrus Health Alliance to offer the Smart Girls Know program, which works with sixth-grade females who are at high risk of becoming teen mothers. She also started a running club at the school for students.

Cooney has a Master of Arts degree in teaching from UNC Charlotte and a bachelor of arts degree in communication from Appalachian State University, with a double minor in photography and family and consumer science. She is a member of the Greater Cabarrus Reading Association and the N.C. Association of Educators. Cooney will now be considered for regional Teacher of the Year honors. As the district Teacher of the Year, Cooney received $1,000 from Wellington Benefit.

Cory Stirewalt of A.L. Brown High School was named the system’s runner-up Teacher of the Year. He received $500 from Wellington Benefits. The remaining nominees received $100 each from Wellington Benefits: Leah Grasty, Forest Park Elementary; Jerold Griggs, Kannapolis Middle; Lisa Gurley, Fred L. Wilson Elementary; Bethany Maycroft, Jackson Park Elementary; Amanda Overcash, Woodrow Wilson Elementary; and Judith Wherritt, Shady Brook Elementary.

Covenant Classical School

Apologetics conference: Covenant Classical School and the Southern Evangelical Seminary will host their second annual Apologetics Conference 4-9 p.m. Sept. 19 at Covenant Classical. The event will offer three breakout sessions and one plenary session featuring Bobby Conway, founder of the YouTube video “The One Minute Apologist.” Conway will speak on “The Fifth Gospel.” The event is free and open to the public. Details:

Fall festival: Covenant Classical’s annual fall festival will be 5-8 p.m. Oct. 3. The event will feature food from Afton Tavern, a fun house, a rock climbing wall, inflatables, a dunk tank, a bake sale, a business showcase and more. Opportunities are still available to take part in the business showcase. Details: