Featured Stories

  • Meet Nelson Janke, Exchange Student from France

    Nelson Janke is one of several exchange students attending Piedmont this year, where he is experiencing America by living and attending school in a rural community. Nelson is half French and half German and lives in a city called Mulhouse in France. Mulhouse is a 20-minute drive from the German and Swiss borders, so he has spent a lot of time in the three counties where he takes advantage of everything each country has to offer. For example, while he lives in France, he attends school in Germany and goes to sporting events in Switzerland! A fun fact about Nelson is that he enjoys training for and participating in triathalons. Nelson describes his experiences in America thus far as amazing. Together with fellow exchange student Marcel, they have visited many different places and attended events throughout North Carolina. For example, they recently went to the Blue Ridge Parkway, attended American football games, and even watched pig racing at the State Fair in Raleigh. Nelson appreciates how friendly people in the Piedmont community are and his fellow students have also been really nice. As for the rural lifestyle, Nelson comments that it is awesome and very interesting to be "in the middle of nowhere!"

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  • World Language Classes Celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month

    Hispanic Heritage Month is September 15 - October 15, and students in Laura Nicholson's Spanish I classes have been learning about prominent Hispanic people who have had an impact in sports, entertainment, politics, and art. In addition, Mrs. Nicholson teaches her students about the generations of Hispanics who have had positive influences and enriched our nation and society. Examples of prominent Hispanics who have had an impact on our culture include singer/actress Selena Gomez, commedian Grabriel Iglesias, artist Pablo Picasso, and Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor. Likewise, Hispanice heritage is important for its contributions to dance with styles such us Salsa, Tango, and Merengue.

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  • AFJROTC Gets Official Patch

    For the first time since its founding in 1995, Piedmont AFJROTC has a unit patch. A unit patch is worn on military uniforms to represent pride and esprit de corps or spirit of the corps in a military organization. Cadet Jesse Bowers recently designed the new patch and Major Richardson felt it fitting to present her with the very first one off the press. The Piedmont NC-955 unit patch is a Pirate Panther, showing the connection between the Piedmont Panthers and the Porter Ridge Pirates, given that Porter Ridge students have been participating in the JROTC program here for many years. The colors also recognize both schools with blue and purple incorporated. In the background above the pirate panther are two fighter jets symbolizing the Air Force's contribution to the program and the unit's motto, "SIMPLY THE BEST" is emblazoned across the bottom. The legacy of JROTC here at Piedmont runs deep and this new patch will play a role in continuing that legacy for today's cadets and those to follow in years to come.

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  • Kelly Barbee Participates in the 2021 World Dairy Expo

    On September 29th, 2021, Kelly Barbee participated in the 2021 World Dairy Expo in Madison, Wisconsin. Throughout Mr. Barbee’s professional career, he has bred, owned, and showed various Jersey Cattle. Jersey Cattle are a breed of dairy cattle which produce high quality milk and are known for their high butterfat content, which is best for dairy by-products. World Dairy Expo is home to one of the best-known dairy cattle shows in the world and our very own Mr. Barbee achieved two overall rankings: Best Overall & Best Udder of the two year-old cow class. Kelly Barbee serves as one of the agricultural teachers at Piedmont High School, and the coach for the Piedmont FFA Dairy Evaluation Team. This team will also be competing at the National FFA Convention in late October to represent North Carolina at the national level in Indianapolis.

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  • Meet Charlee the Therapy Dog

    Meet Charlee! Charlee is a one and half year old, female, Golden Retriever and Piedmont High School’s new Therapy Dog. She was born in March of 2020 during the middle of the Pandemic in Statesville, NC. Charlee lives will her handler, Ms. Ellis, who is one of the school counselors. Charlee loves meeting new people, is well-mannered, and could spend all day being scratched behind the ears! Ms. Ellis and Charlee spent the past year in training working with a trainer to get certified through Alliance of Therapy Dogs to be here on Piedmont High School’s campus to work with students. The benefits of working with a Therapy Dog are numerous. Research has shown that interaction with a therapy dog can improve a student's academics by increasing focus and self-confidence. They can also help improve a student’s physical and mental health.

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  • Piedmont Welcomes Two Student Teachers

    Piedmont would like to welcome two students teachers for the fall semester. Zoe Plummer is joining the Science Department from Appalachian State University, where she is majoring in Geology Secondary Education. Plummer will be working with Annette Harris and teaching Earth and Environmental Science. At Appalachian, Plummer was involved with community outreach through Appalachian Educators, the Resident Hall Association, and the National Residence Hall Honorary, while also playing recreational rugby. Plummer is looking forward to working with students at Piedmont where she hopes to instill her love of learning through science. Kaitlyn Waters will join the Social Studies Department, where she will be working with Vicki Braswell and Tiphany Speck. She is a History and Education major at Wingate University, and she plans to graduate in December 2021. Waters is looking forward to making history come alive in their classrooms as she considers it a dream come true to return to her alma mater to student teach.

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  • Kodikara Attends North Carolina Association of Student Council Summer Leadership Workshop

    Shea Kodikara attended the 61st Annual North Carolina Association of Student Council (NCASC) Summer Leadership Workshop at Mars Hill University. Shea is a rising senior at Piedmont High and represented PHS Student Government at the leadership development event. Shea was able to work with other student leaders from North Carolina to polish leadership skills. Shea is already putting his skills to work this summer as a senior member of band and men’s soccer. Shea is a four year member of Student Government. Shea shared, “it could be the best week of my life so far” as he reflected on his experience. Rising freshmen who are interested in becoming a member of PHS Student Government should follow PHS homepage Quick Links where an online form to get on the official ballot will be available from August 20-August 30. The Class of 2025 will vote and elect new members September 2-3. Reach out to Annette Harris or Britney Forbis with questions.

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  • Dairy Evaluation Team Wins NC FFA State Competition

    The Piedmont FFA Chapter’s Dairy Evaluation team won the NC FFA State Competition in May 2021, and are advancing to the National FFA Convention. The National FFA Convention is being held in Indianapolis, IN. the last week of October 2021. The team members were Hayley Christenberry, Sallie Parker, Ruth Valerio, and Haley Hardin. The State Dairy Evaluation competition is a series of events where students have to evaluate dairy cattle on their physical appearance, while also stating why they placed cattle in a particular sequence through Oral Reasons. There is also a knowledge portion of the dairy industry, processes, and products, as well as the team activity where team members evaluate reproduction data and make recommendations on what reproduction practices to utilize. Best of Luck to this team as they advance to Nationals and represent Piedmont High School, Union County, and NC FFA Association.

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  • AFJROTC Graduate from Blue Ridge Challenge Leadership Course

    On June 18th, 19 cadets from Piedmont AFJROTC (comprised of students from Piedmont and Porter Ridge) graduated from Blue Ridge Challenge Leadership Course at the YMCA Assembly facility at Black Mountain NC. This culminated a challenging week of 5:00am wakeups, miles of marching, sports competitions, survival & land navigation training, high-ropes courses, and bear sightings! With many cadets going home early, and despite taking the most cadets from any of the nine participating schools from South Carolina, North Carolina, and Tennessee, Piedmont was one of the few in which every single cadet taken graduated! The camp lived up to its name, it was a true challenge, but the cadets were up for it and all of them returned home better leaders.

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  • UCPS Graduate Spotlight - Jacob Starnes

    Senior Jacob Starnes was recently featured on the UCPS website as a Senior Spotlight: Adopted from China at the age of seven, Piedmont High senior Jacob Starnes works hard at everything he does. While in high school he was a member of the BETA Club and National Honor Society. With a heart for community service, he volunteers at food banks and has become involved with raising funds for St. Jude’s Children’s Research Hospital after his sister Lily battled an illness. With a 4.28 GPA, Jacob still finds the time to hold down a job at a fast-food restaurant. Jacob is interested in pursuing a career in the medical field, as a radiologist or physician assistant. On his plans for the future: I plan to go to Appalachian State University and major in cellular biology. I also plan to participate in the Army ROTC at App State and join the military as an officer after graduating from college.

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  • Savanna Beane is a UCVirtual Student of the Six Weeks

    UCVirtual is proud to announce that Savanna Beane is one of their #VirtuallyAwesome Students of the Six Weeks! In order to be a #VirtuallyAwesome Student of the Six Weeks, students have to be nominated by their teacher. Savanna is a Junior and is taking Earth and Environmental Science taught by Mrs. Donna Irvin. Mrs. Irvin had this to say about Savanna, “Savanna is excellent at advocating for her own education. She attends all class meetings, never shy to ask a question. When she emails with questions or the need for clarification she is always polite and thankful. When an issue arises, she lets me know immediately. She occasionally asks for me to open assignments early so she can be free for a weekend competition. With so many students struggling to manage virtual learning, she has mastered the all-important skill of effective communication.” Congratulations Savanna!

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  • Homecoming 2021

    Piedmont held their Homecoming 2021 festivities on Friday, April 9th in Panther Stadium against Sun Valley. A big shout-out to the Panther football team for the victory over Sun Valley as Coach Mauro introduced the inaugural victory bell. Mauro wanted our football team to start the tradition of ringing the "Victory Bell" after a win, therefore, a bell was purchased and Senior Ty Nicholas painted it. A special thank you to Payton Baucom and Baucom Welding, Fab & Steel for spearheading and building the movable stand so the bell can be easily transported. Coach Mauro stated, "I am so happy for our Seniors that they got the opportunity to ring it on Friday night for Homecoming." As part of the festivities, the Homecoming court was introduced during half-time. Congratulations to Senior Emma Tomberlin, who was crowned Homecoming Queen, and Senior Laikyn Tyson, who was runner-up. In addition, Tripp Collins was crowned Homecoming King. Piedmont would like to thank all the Panther fans who came out to support Homecoming and our football team in their final game of the season.

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  • Students Spread The Kindness Rock Project

    Mrs. Annette Harris' earth & environmental science classes, Transition to Adulthood (TTA), Occupational Course of Study (OCS), Student Government, and FFA have teamed up to spread the Kindness Rocks Project around the Piedmont campus and community. Students in honors earth/environmental science began by partnering with TTA students from Mrs. Blumer and Mrs. Cox's classes to paint kindness rocks. Then, students planted them in the Anna York Memorial Garden in front of the band room. The purpose of the rocks is to provide a pick-me-up to students and staff at any time they have a need. Therefore, if anyone needs a pick-me-up, just take a rock. but bring a rock back when you can to share some kindness yourself. As a continuation of the project, FFA painted rocks during National FFA Week. Student Government then spread the project in downtown Monroe. Likewise, OCS students, under the leadership of Ms. Sizemore and Ms. Starnes, painted rocks, and they were placed in Unionville. Many thanks to Ms. Tripp and Ms. Handsel for assisting Mrs. Harris' students as they made friends with the TTA students. For more information about the Kindness Rock Project, visit the following website: https://www.thekindnessrocksproject.com/

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  • Student Government Receives Awards at NCASC State Convention

    At the first Virtual North Carolina Association of Student Councils State (NCASC) Convention held at Piedmont on March 12-13, several Student Government members received honors and awards. State elections were held, and sophomore Reagan McManus was elected as 2021-2022 Communications Officer. Among awards received, Luke Noonan earned the Dale Hawley Leadership Award for outstanding contributions made to NCASC, and Annette Harris received the Cardinal Service Award for 10+ years of service to the organization. Piedmont's Student Government was further awarded the Louise G. Hunter Honor Council for the 10th concurrent year. Finally, 16 Piedmont Seniors were inducted into the NCASC Hall of Fame for their service to Student Government.

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  • Piedmont Hosts Virtual Student Government State Convention

    On March 12-13, 2021, Piedmont High School hosted the first Virtual North Carolina Association of Student Councils State (NCASC)Convention. The event was the two-year culmination of Luke Noonan and Piedmont High School service as the president of NCASC. Noonan and PHS Student Government organized the two-day event with 47 middle and high schools representing 300 students from across North Carolina in attendance. Keynote speakers included Mr. Union County, Michael Wayne O’Neill; Mike Smith, a Nebraska native who has created the non-profit organization Skate for Change; and Sarah Nilles, executive director of Work2BWell in Oregon. Skillshops for participants included student council presidents from across the United States who shared much about student advocacy, equity, leading through trying times, and financial literacy, which was presented by our own Truist banker and UCPS Board of Education member, Todd Price. Student Government seniors served as Zoom room hosts and facilitated the skillshop technical aspects. PHS alum Evan Martino also served as a student adviser.

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  • Hudson Shank Selected as Morehead-Cain Scholar

    Congratulations to Hudson Shank, who was selected as a Morehead-Cain Scholar! Fewer than 4 percent of the Morehead candidates this year will become members of the Class of 2025, which places Hudson among a strong and select group. The purpose of the Morehead-Cain Foundation is to identify and invest in promising leaders, challenging them to have a profound impact on the people and pursuits that define their lives. According to the Foundation, "We are confident that Hudson will leave an enduring legacy at Carolina and beyond; we are thrilled to offer him this unique opportunity."

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  • SOAR Club Helps Local Elementary Students

    SOAR stands for Students Overcoming Academic Roadblocks and is a new student-initiated club at Piedmont this year! Ally Nielsen, 11th grader, generated this idea in order to help elementary students in our community overcome academic roadblocks given the challenges related to the pandemic our world is experiencing. This year, many elementary students are missing out on the opportunity to work with high school students. Through the SOAR club, an elementary school class has the opportunity to meet virtually with high school students each week. Activities have included getting-to-know-you activities, read-alouds, and other virtual activities.

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  • Course Registration for 2021-2022 in Progress

    Students in grades 9-11 are in the process of registering for classes for the 2021-2022 school year. The Counseling Office has prepared helpful resources to guide students and parents in selecting courses, which can be found under Quick Links. Teachers have recommended core classes for next year in Social Studies, Math, English, and Science, therefore, students must login to PowerSchool to select seven electives that will be used to determine first-choice and alternates later in the registration process. Directions for accessing the registration portal of PowerSchool are located on the registration website under Quick Links. Beginning March 1st, school counselors will meet either in-person or virtually with all students to prioritize electives and finalize their course requests. Students can choose to finalize their requests either by email, meeting face-to-face on their in-person day, or virtually. Students should check their email with links to these methods, but they only need to choose one method to communicate with a counselor to complete the registration process.

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  • Summer Coble is UC Virtual Student of the Six Weeks

    Union County Virtual is proud to announce that one of their #VirtuallyAwesome Students for the first six weeks grading period is Piedmont's Summer Coble! Summer is a 10th grader at Piedmont High School, who was nominated by her UCVirtual Business Law teacher, Ms. Kelley Gates. Ms. Gates had this to say about Summer, “Summer is an absolutely amazing student. As a 10th grader, Summer was my only student to earn 100% during the first grading period in Business Law. She never had a late or missing assignment and her work was far superior to most of her peers. I have only had a handful of students maintain a grade of 100% in Business Law over the past 4 years, and they have been seniors. As a sophomore, I'm blown away by her maturity and ability to grasp intellectual legal concepts. She is deserving of this award!” Summer was excited to hear she was receiving this honor and wanted everyone to know that, “The class is very enjoyable, interesting, and full of information that is useful in the real world. Ms. Gates is outstanding and the feedback she provides is extremely helpful in the understanding of the class.”

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  • Walker Uses Bright Ideas Grant to Study DNA

    Each year, North Carolina’s Electric Cooperatives sponsor a grant program titled “Bright Ideas”. Teachers from all over North Carolina can compete in the grant application process to fund various projects in their classroom. This year, Piedmont’s own Beth Walker was awarded a grant in the amount $1975 for her project titled, “Exploring the Language of Life”. With the funds from the award, Mrs. Walker was able to purchase five BlueGel electrophoresis chambers and eight micropipettes, allowing students to load and visualize DNA, creating a DNA fingerprint for analysis. Last week, students in her AP Biology class visualized DNA fingerprints, where they determined the inheritance of a genetically transmitted disease, sickle-cell anemia, in a family. Students were able to use high-tech equipment and replicate the same work performed in labs across the country.

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