GOOD NEWS from GASTON COUNTY SCHOOLS
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Good News from our Schools

Gardner Park Elementary wins Are You Smarter Than a Gaston County Fifth Grader?  
Gardner Park wins “Are You Smarter...” competition
Gardner Park Elementary (partnered with Tindol Ford-Subaru) won the “Are You Smarter Than a Gaston County Fifth Grader?” competition. Woodhill Elementary earned second place and Lowell Elementary took third place. Sponsored by the Gaston County Education Foundation, “Are You Smarter” is a popular annual event that pairs businesses and organizations with elementary schools in a fun game show format. Proceeds go toward the Ron L. Ensley grants for teachers to fund innovative classroom lessons and projects.  Click here for more pictures.
 
Superintendent W. Jeffrey Booker - Paul Harris Fellowship Recipient   
Superintendent Booker receives prestigious Rotary award
Superintendent of Schools W. Jeffrey Booker was awarded the Paul Harris Fellow by the Gastonia East Rotary Club. It is a tradition for local clubs to support the Rotary International Foundation by giving contributions in honor of community and business leaders and other esteemed citizens like Superintendent Booker who demonstrate outstanding leadership and service.  Mr. Booker is pictured with Rotary Club representative Joel Long, who presented the award.
 
Brookside Elementary principal Logan McGuire takes a pie in the face from a fellow student as part of a fundraiser.   
Taking a pie in the face for Relay for Life 
Students at Brookside Elementary collected $252 for the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life. Principal Logan McGuire and assistant principal Matt Rikard each received pies in the face during the school’s fundraising celebration. Click here for more pictures.
 
Pinnacle Smackdown   
"Pinnacle Smackdown" showcases technology in the classroom 
Gaston County Schools held its “Pinnacle Smackdown,” an event that showcases how teachers use technology in the classroom, at the Rader Staff Development Center. More than 70 educators involved in the Pinnacle Leaders technology program shared helpful tips and information about how to enhance the classroom experience and engage students in learning through the use of computers and other digital devices. Click here for more pictures.
 
Webb Street School received a $1,500 grant from N.C. Beautiful  
Grant provides more opportunities for students at Webb Street
Webb Street School received a Window of Opportunity grant in the amount of $1,500 from the NC Beautiful organization to support the school’s greenhouse and aquaponics program. Additionally, the school collected more than $3,700 through its SeedMoney.org online fundraising campaign. The funds will help to provide more hands-on education for students.

Shout-Outs

Matthew Hipps of Ashbrook High School, Elizabeth Leonard of North Gaston High School, and Kristy Newton of Brookside Elementary earned National Board Certification, which is the highest standard for the teaching profession.
 
Board of Education member Dot Guthrie received the 2017 Unity Award during the Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Day celebration in downtown Gastonia. The award is presented annually to citizens for their outstanding community service to promote unity, cooperation, and understanding across Gaston County. 
 
The “Do the Right Thing” award winners for January were Jeremiah Perez, Pleasant Ridge Elementary; Rocio Lopez, Mount Holly Middle School; and Chandler Thrift and Sarah Simmons, East Gaston High School. The awards program recognizes students for outstanding leadership, service, and character. 
 
Gaston County Schools hosted its annual Mentor Appreciation Luncheon at First A.R.P. Church in Gastonia. More than 100 mentors and school mentor coordinators attended the program, which was intended to recognize and honor the adults who take the time to mentor a child. There are more than 260 people who are actively involved in the mentoring program. First A.R.P. Church, AIS Advanced Imaging Systems (Matt Solomon), and Furlong Financial (Bob Furlong) sponsored the luncheon. 
 
As part of the Keep Gastonia Beautiful program, the Hunter Huss High School “Green Team” adopted Edgefield Avenue in front of the school and pledged to keep the area “clean and green.” The students involved with the “Green Team” take pride in keeping the school grounds and surrounding areas free of litter and debris. 
 
Hawks Nest STEAM Academy received a $5,000 Toolbox for Education grant from Lowe’s for the “Covered Outdoor Classroom and Interactive Elements for our School Community” project. 
 
McAdenville, Rankin, and Robinson elementary schools participated in the N.C. First Lego League regional robotics competition and qualified to represent Gaston County Schools in the state competition. Bessemer City Central and Pinewood also participated in the regional competition. 
 
The Mount Holly Middle, Cramerton Middle, and North Gaston High School cafeteria staffs earned a 100 percent sanitation grade. 
 
The following middle school teams won county championships for the fall season: Belmont (football, boys’ soccer, and volleyball); Mount Holly (softball); Cramerton (golf); and W.C. Friday (wrestling). 
 
Cherryville High School conducted a ceremony to dedicate the tennis courts in honor of long-time teacher and coach Donna Lavery
 
Students at Southwest Middle School collected more than 2,000 jars of peanut butter and jelly for the Guardian Ad Litem program and Crisis Assistance Ministry. Students at Kiser Elementary and Pleasant Ridge Elementary also participated in the collection effort. 
 
Students at Belmont Middle School participated in a Kindness Challenge and conducted various activities that “put a smile on your face.” They wrote “thank you” notes to teachers, custodians, bus drivers, office staff, and others and decorated the hallways with posters that featured quotes about kindness and encouragement. 
 
Carr Elementary conducted the “Great Kindness Challenge.” The fourth and fifth grade classes researched and compiled quotes about kindness and shared them during the morning announcements. The students were asked to wear something yellow on January 25 to remind each other about the importance of being kind. Additionally, all students gathered outside on the playground and stood in the shape of a heart. With help from the Dallas Fire Department and teacher Becky Perkins, a picture with a bird’s-eye view was taken of the students. 
 
Students in Rebecca O’Bryon’s fourth grade class at Pinewood Elementary read the book, “Crenshaw,” by Katherine Applegate, which led to their involvement in a community service project. The students collected non-food items for the Mount Holly Community Relief Organization to help people in need.
 
Lingerfeldt Elementary has established community/business partnerships with Union Presbyterian Church and Chemtura. Through the partnerships, the school has received new items for the playground and other equipment.
 
Webb Street School held its annual basketball game with the Gaston County Sheriff’s Office. The event provided fun, laughter, and excitement and focused on teamwork and sportsmanship. 
 
York Chester Middle School honored local veterans during a citizenship character education assembly. The Ashbrook High School JROTC presented the colors during the program.

Students in the LEAP (Leading, Educating, and Preparing) program at Pleasant Ridge Elementary presented a drum performance during halftime of a recent basketball game at Hunter Huss High School.
"Good News" is compiled by the Gaston County Schools Communications/Public Information Department.
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