Do you excel in math and love to work with kids? Join #TeamUCPS today as a part-time math tutor for fourth- and seventh-grade students.
Three hundred UCPS principals, assistant principals and curriculum staff flooded Cuthbertson High School this week for the Summer Instructional Leadership Institute, the school district’s annual three-day professional development conference.
Every summer, schools across the country grapple with ways to deal with the "summer slide" – the months-long span during the summer when many children forget some of what they’ve learned during the academic year. But Rocky River Elementary School staff thinks they may have found a solution.
UCPS recently celebrated its retirees at a luncheon held on June 14. Check out this story about a Poplin Elementary teacher who will retire with 34 years of state service, and click on the link in the story to view pictures from the retiree celebration.
Thanks to years of focus, determination and hard work, Songia Wynn will attend Duke University this fall on a full scholarship. After she receives her bachelor's degree, she plans to attend Duke University School of Medicine and then pursue a residency while specializing in thoracic surgery.
Many schools boast of a family-like atmosphere where the teachers feel so close to their students that, at times, they can feel like their children. But at Piedmont High School (PHS), several teachers know that the family-like atmosphere doesn’t end as soon as the seniors graduate from high school.
Graduation season is in full swing. We've captured highlights from several graduation ceremonies. Please feel free to tag us on social media with your graduation photos using the hashtag #UCPSGrads.
June 9 marked the last day of school for UCPS students. Check out the photo gallery to see how the students celebrated the end of another great school year!
Monroe High School senior Alex Bridges has used his life’s challenges to inspire his classmates. Through confidence and a will to succeed, he will leave Monroe High School ready to take his education to the next level.
This fall, Porter Ridge High School senior Samantha Rankin will attend the United States Military Academy at West Point, an opportunity that allows her to combine her goals of pursuing a college degree and military career.
Onstage, Justin Rivers is a captivating and award-winning actor and singer. Offstage, he is a humble and gracious person who has earned the respect of his teachers and peers, and will attend Point Park University this fall.
Summer is almost here. Have you registered your student for a Union County Public Schools (UCPS) summer camp? Some UCPS summer camps, which are offered at various locations throughout Union County, are still available for rising eighth or ninth-grade students.
On May 25, Monroe High School held a Financial Literacy Day featuring workshops about topics that included Taxes 101, Job Applications and Resumes, Investing and more.
ExploreLearning, the parent company of the interactive math and science simulator Gizmos, recognized Sun Valley Middle School for being the top UCPS middle school to integrate Gizmos into their curriculum during the school year.
Kensington Elementary School first-grader Jaxon Glover recently published the book, The Nice Monster Under My Bed, and donated 30 copies to UCPS media centers.
Union County Public Schools is celebrating the academic achievements of its high school seniors by hosting the school district’s inaugural Academic Signing Week from May 15-19.
Nearly 70 high school seniors graduated from Union County Early College (UCEC) on Wednesday, May 10, marking the beginning of the Union County Public Schools high school graduation season.
An elite group of Sun Valley High School graduating seniors will be walking across the stage as gold medal winners. These gold medallions will be given to graduating seniors who are part of a new initiative called Advanced Placement Academy of Leadership and Success (APALS.)
A new building is making a major impact on learning at Walter Bickett Elementary. Third through fifth graders are now occupying a new wing that includes 15 classrooms, six resource rooms and a new curved-style auditorium.
At the May 2 Board of Education meeting, Dr. Andrew Houlihan submitted the 2017-18 superintendent’s budget to the Union County Board of Education. Dr. Houlihan’s budget is aligned with the five trends that emerged from his Listening and Learning Tour.
Union County Public Schools (UCPS) and Carolinas HealthCare System (CHS) have announced a partnership to implement a healthcare and science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) pathway for Monroe Middle School students.
Union County Public Schools is revamping its Literacy Framework for elementary schools. The elementary instructional team presented “Literacy for U” at the May 2 Board of Education meeting to explain new strategies, goals and professional development opportunities for staff.
Two orphaned brothers in Haiti will soon be able to sleep in their own beds thanks to the generosity of staff and students at Porter Ridge Middle School. The middle school students in Theryne Medlin’s language arts class raised $3,000, enough to help rebuild the home of Gary and Jude Pierre, whose home was destroyed by Hurricane Matthew in October 2016.
Porter Ridge High School students came out in droves to show their support for protecting the Earth during the school’s second annual Earth Day Fair. The event, coordinated by Regina Snelson, the school’s media coordinator, showcases the hard work of Jill Keller’s Earth/Environmental Science classes.
When you meet a student from Rocky River Elementary School, don’t be surprised if he extends his hand in greeting, introduces himself with a big smile and confidence in his eyes. Simply put, Rocky River Elementary School is shaping its approximately 750 students to be leaders of tomorrow through the implementation of the Leader in Me program.
Dual language, which is instruction taught in both English and a second language, is thriving at Unionville Elementary School. It’s been so successful, it’s gotten the attention of legislators and the state superintendent. State Rep. Craig Horn and State Superintendent Mark Johnson visited the school after hearing about the success of its dual language program. They both toured the classrooms seeing first-hand the success of the program.
This year’s Union County Public Schools teacher of the year is known for her passion for teaching, her love of her students and considered by her colleagues to be the embodiment of a great teacher. Western Union Elementary teacher Amanda Stinchcomb was chosen as the 2017-18 UCPS Teacher of the Year during Thursday's (April 20, 2017) annual banquet.
An eighth grader from Porter Ridge Middle School, Dylan Beckham, walked away with the district championship title during the annual Union County Middle School Math 24 competition held at Piedmont Middle School on April 5.
Union County Public Schools will name its 2017 Teacher of the Year Thursday in an annual event that has honored the top educators in the district for the past two decades. Twenty-three years ago, the newly formed Union County Public Schools crowned its very first Teacher of the Year – Barbara Coleman, a third-grade teacher at Wingate Elementary School. This is her story.
Four days before her 18th birthday, Piedmont High School senior Kayley Elizabeth Carpenter anxiously awaited news that would change her life forever. “I knew this was either going to be a really sad birthday or a really happy birthday,” she said.
“Valor: having the strength of mind, spirit or attitude to face any obstacle or challenge with confidence.” These powerful words are proudly displayed on the backs of T-shirts worn by Men of Valor, comprised of UCPS students who participate in a six-week mentoring program.
The 2017-18 Union County Public Schools Teacher of the Year will be named April 20. The winner will be chosen from the top 10 finalists who are listed in alphabetical order. (See inside)
Don’t look for School Resource Officer (Monroe Police) Lt. David Evatt in the office at his school. He is much more likely to be interacting with students at Central Academy of Technology and Arts. Evatt was named this year’s SRO of the Year Monday (April 3).
The Union County Public Schools’ April Employee of the Month, Marisol Uribe, not only does her job of assisting students in the Monroe High School’s ESL program, but she also contributes her talents in other areas of the school, as well.
It’s not unusual to walk into Cuddy Arena at Wingate University and hear the roaring cheers of excitement filling the air, but Friday (March 31, 2017) that high energy came from 800 Union County Public Schools third graders.
Union Elementary students were crowned the champions of the first annual Books and Brackets Reading Challenge after having read the most minutes. About 800 UCPS third graders, their teachers, administrators, sponsors, Board of Education members and Wingate athletes celebrated the approximately 26 million minutes read by the system’s approximately 3,000 third graders since the literacy challenge began Feb. 27.
A group of Porter Ridge High School students in a Pharmacy Tech Class, part of the Career and Technical Education’s Health Science Program, are a prime example of UCPS graduates being better prepared for college and careers.
Parkwood Middle School’s Science Olympiad team continued to define excellence this past weekend (March 25) by taking home the first-place trophy at their regional Science Olympiad competition. Pictured at left, are our assistant coaches Rebekah Westneat, at left, and Sylvia Wendling.
In the third round of the Books and Brackets Reading Challenge, four Union County Public Schools are headed to the finish line. The Final 4 schools are (in no particular order) Union, Indian Trail, Kensington and Rocky River elementary schools.
“I like to read,” said Union Elementary third-grader Gabriel Williams (not pictured). “Sometimes when I read, I learn new stuff about things I didn’t even know about. If you don’t read, you probably won’t find out stuff, and you wouldn’t know things when somebody asks you something. So you should read to learn new things.”
More than 200 job seekers turned out for the UCPS Spring Career Fair at Weddington High School Saturday, March 18. Principals and assistant principals were on hand from 38 UCPS elementary, middle and high schools, as well as nine UCPS departments.
In the second round of the Books and Brackets Reading Challenge, eight Union County Public Schools continue to run toward the finish line.
Young Union County Public Schools artists gathered at Central Services Tuesday (March 14) for the Superintendent's Student Art Showcase. Student artwork will hang through the halls of Central Office, serving as a showcase for the talented elementary, middle and high school students throughout the county.
A very clever Porter Ridge Middle School teacher used an apple pie to help her students calculate PI in math class, in honor of the annual March 14 PI Day. Using delicious foods as part of math equations definitely wasn’t a problem for Tamala Vote’s seventh-grade students.
“Preparing all students to succeed” isn’t just Union County Public Schools’ motto; it’s a rally call for educators. One example of meeting all students’ needs: providing students with significant disabilities the training and skills necessary to enter the workforce after high school graduation. Pictured at left is Alex Rotar.
The minutes are in! Sixteen Union County Public Schools have taken the lead in the first annual Books and Brackets Reading Challenge.
Shirley Bess’ 43 years of distinguished service with the public school system in Union County has not only given her the opportunity to serve under seven superintendents, but it has brought her state recognition.
Robert Nichols’ name is synonymous with the words team, family and selfless service. Nichols, who was chosen as the March recipient of the UCPS Employee of the Month, works as a Desktop Engineer at Central Academy of Technology and Art.
Teachers, bus drivers and administrators are just a few of the career opportunities available within Union County Public Schools. These opportunities can be explored during the Saturday, March 18, UCPS Spring Career Fair, to be held at Weddington High School, located at 4901 Monroe Weddington Road in Matthews. Doors will open at 10 am. The fair will continue until 2 pm.
Union County Public Schools joined the nationwide effort to get every elementary school student to celebrate reading during a March 2 event called Read Across America, which coincided with the 113th birthday of Dr. Seuss.
About 400 Piedmont High School students sat in awed silence as Holocaust survivor Simon Berger described the day the Nazis took him, his mother, young brother and three sisters to work camps. It was the last time he ever saw them.
The first annual Books and Brackets Reading Challenge kickoff was held at Sun Valley Elementary Thursday, Feb. 23, a chance for about 120 third graders to get a first-hand look at the competition.
Shiloh Elementary School held a centennial celebration Saturday, Feb. 18, to commemorate its 100th birthday. Students, staff and the community turned out in droves to enjoy games, good food and show their support of this momentous anniversary.
Shiloh Elementary School will be hitting a milestone that sets them apart from many other schools across America. The school is celebrating its 100th birthday. This award-winning school has been providing a quality education for a century to thousands of Union County children.
In recognition of Love the Bus Month (February), messages of school bus safety will resonate across America. This week (Feb. 13-17) is School Bus Drivers Appreciation Week. Schools, students, parents and the community at large will take this opportunity to show their gratitude to the bus drivers in their community.
Teach by example. It’s a philosophy that’s as old as time itself. A group of about 60 UCPS middle and high school students learned some valuable lessons, courtesy of the big screen, by watching the examples set by three courageous African American women who worked for NASA in the 1960s.
The Union County Public Schools’ February Employee of the Month, Mary Mical, continuously seeks ways to improve her customer service.
Congratulations to 27 educators who have either received or renewed their National Board Certification, bringing the total of number of NBCT in UCPS to 286. One teacher, Catherine Hebert from Monroe High School, (pictured at left) received her national certification.
Thousands of Union County Public Schools third graders are gearing up for March Madness with “Books and Brackets.” All 30 elementary schools will participate in a reading challenge Feb. 27 – March 31. For five weeks, students will record the number of minutes read while at school and at home.
Piedmont High School is doing its part to change the world, one student at a time through its school wide participation in the global project Inside Out. The message: self-acceptance and unity are important.
Walter Bickett and East elementary schools are expanding academic options for students. Rising kindergarteners who attend Walter Bickett and East elementary schools for the 2017-18 school year will have the option to enroll in a Spanish Language Immersion Program.
After attending classes at Marvin Ridge High School for several days and living with Union County host families, a group of visiting Chinese students have gained, not only a lot of memories and new friends, but some new customs to take home as well.
“Can we just call it a tie?” asked Antioch Elementary fourth grader Daniel Wei after successfully completing 31 of the 34 total rounds of the 2017 UCPS Spelling Bee championship Tuesday, (Jan. 31).
The Union County Public Schools Communications Team won 15 Blue Ribbon Awards at Friday’s (Jan. 27) North Carolina School Public Relations Association’s annual recognition ceremony in Greensboro.
About 100 fourth-grade Fairview Elementary students breathed life into famous historical characters of the Civil War era during the school’s Wax Museum held Tuesday, Jan. 24.
“Being a mentor is about walking beside someone, not standing over them and telling them what to do. A mentor has to listen,” said Ginger Walle of Heart For Monroe. “Being that person a student can talk to, call during school, after school or at night, is extremely valuable to students. Everyone needs to know that there is someone that has their back.”
Problem-solving, communication skills, independence, decision-making and socialization are just a few of the areas that kindergarten can strengthen in young students. Parents of kindergarten-age children can register their children between Feb. 6 - Feb. 10.
Whether organizing a 5-K color run, holding a food drive or raising money to buy books, students in one Forest Hills High School class are making a difference in Union County. Pictured, from left, are Berenice Galarza, Aniyah Blakeney, and Laura Jordan. Andrei Torres is standing.
A small group of Sun Valley Middle school students received a standing ovation Friday, Jan. 13 following a touching performance about the life of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. “I’m so proud of them,” said their teacher, Amelia Polk. “They gave it all they had, and they learned a lot about Dr. King, things they didn’t know.”
Fifty high school students from across the county met with Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan Wednesday, Jan. 11, 2017, sharing their ideas on ways to address the five trends that came from Dr. Houlihan’s Listening and Learning tour.
The Union County Public Schools’ January Employee of the Month was recognized for her ability to step up and get the job done. Retta Threatt was honored at the Jan. 5 Board of Education meeting.
Four North Carolina lawmakers heard first-hand some of the concerns facing Union County Public Schools during a legislative breakfast hosted by the Union County Board of Education Friday, Jan. 6.
Good communication with parents is essential, and students are never too young to think about their futures: two philosophies that resulted in Walter Bickett Elementary principal Dr. Jamie Benfield, Porter Ridge High principal Dr. Bashawn Harris and Sun Valley Middle principal Vicki Merritt being recognized by Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan for their leadership.
A winter storm warning that threatens to bring at least three inches of snow to Union County this weekend has resulted in the cancellation of all weekend school and district activities.
No one would think that a tree with no ornaments would be celebrated, but at Poplin Elementary School, that’s exactly what happened. The tree had been filled with paper snowflakes, each containing a holiday wish from a Poplin family member in need.
Western Union Elementary School second graders have brought smiles and a little bit of home to American soldiers over the holiday season. Men and women in uniform received a very special holiday greeting from students, complete with a self-portrait and a brightly colored holiday letter.
It may look like any other fun holiday photo booth, but for students at Marvin Ridge High School, the activity has global impact. More than 150 high school students “said cheese” to help raise money for Walking for Water, a school club that hopes to bring awareness of water shortages around the world.
It was hard to tell who was more excited, the middle school students who brought the presents or the elementary school students who received them. About 200 new coats were purchased on a voluntary basis by individual Cuthbertson Middle School students, wrapped and then brought to the school Thursday, Dec. 15. This is the second year CMS has partnered with Wingate for this project.
The annual Sun Valley Middle School Gingerbread House contest had 10 students vying for the first-place title this year. The winners were announced in the school’s media center on Friday, Dec. 16.
The holidays are a time for traditions, but those traditions differ greatly depending on the culture and the country. Maria Ilona Darrigrande, a kindergarten Spanish immersion teacher at Poplin Elementary, wants her students to understand there are many holiday traditions around the world.
Once a teacher, always a teacher, even when you wear a superintendent’s hat. Union County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan had an opportunity to dust off his classroom teacher skills and offer professional development to a group of about 60 educators during a staff meeting at Sun Valley Elementary School Wednesday, Dec. 14.
Thousands of Union County Public Schools students joined millions across the world learning and manipulating blocks of computer code during last week’s Hour of Code, the largest learning event in history.
Union County Public Schools prides itself on hiring top-notch employees to fill job vacancies in and outside of the classroom. To help meet the growing need for educators and other school staff, UCPS held its first mid year career fair Friday, Dec. 9. At left are Forest Hills High School Principal Dr. Kevin Plue and assistant principal Kelly Blakney talking with a job candidate.
Thanks to the generosity of First Presbyterian Church in Monroe and JCPenney, about 100 students from Walter Bickett and East elementary schools will be stepping out in style over the holidays.
Wolfe School staff and students enjoyed the sights and sounds of the holiday season Friday, Dec. 9, at school's annual celebration given courtesy of the Union County Public Schools Facilities Department. Money is raised for this event each year through the annual Ed Sweeney Memorial Golf tournament.
The second recipient of the Union County Public Schools Employee of the Month award is known for coming to the rescue at his school. Randy Hayes, lead custodian at Kensington Elementary School, was recognized at Tuesday’s, Dec. 6, Board of Education meeting with the December Employee of the Month (EOM) award.
Six Union County Public Schools board members were sworn in during the Dec. 6, 2016, board meeting held at Marvin Ridge High School. Newly elected members Candice Sturdivant (District 1), Matt Helms (District 2), Joseph Morreale (District 5), Kathy Heintel (District 6), Dennis Rape (At Large) and returning board member Christina Helms (At Large) were sworn in by Clerk of Court J.R. Rowell.
Malaysia is a Southeast Asian country known for its beaches and rainforests. Home to about 30 million people, it is ruled by a constitutional monarchy, much like Britain. These facts may not hold much significance to the average Union County resident, but to Tyler Lee, a world history teacher at Monroe High School, they are important.
The district will hold a Career Fair on Friday, December 9, from 4 – 7 p.m. at Central Academy of Technology and Arts (600 Brewer Drive) in Monroe, NC. School administrators and support staff directors will be available to talk to prospective employees about positions in instructional and non-instructional areas.
The clenched fist raised high in the air has historically been a symbol of solidarity, strength and resistance. For a group of theater students at Central Academy of Technology and Arts, it has become a symbol of unity to fight oppression.
Business and education leaders joined forces over the past few days for the fifth annual BizEd Week, an opportunity that allows the community to go inside schools and witness first-hand the exciting things happening in Union County Public Schools.
About 80 parents, grandparents and other family members spent the morning reliving the high school experience at Forest Hills High School Tuesday, Nov. 15 during Bring Your Parent to School Day.
When a soldier is deployed, he is armed with the weapons necessary to fight the battles at hand. Soldiers like United States Air Force SSgt. William Harris are armed with musical instruments because they are fighting for troop morale.
The first day of November was unforgettable for two UCPS high schools. It marked the first annual Union County Public Schools staff powderpuff game, which was held to raise money for the Shriners Hospital for Children. This exciting competition was between Weddington and Marvin Ridge high schools.
Union County voters approved a $54 million bond referendum for classroom additions, safety repairs, renovations and a new transportation facility. The school bond referendum passed with 70.69 percent of votes. This number is based on voting data (88 percent of precincts reporting) posted on the Union County Board of Elections website as of 9:10 p.m.
Students across Union County are learning about the importance of citizens casting their votes to fulfill their civic responsibility. Sun Valley Middle School eighth grade social studies teacher Jenny Kanagy, held a mock election in her classroom Monday (Nov. 7), a lesson that she hopes students will take with them for the future.
As 700 bright red balloons ascended slowly into the afternoon sky at East Elementary on Friday, Oct. 28, cheers and applause rose from more than 500 very exuberant elementary school students and their equally excited teachers. East Elementary Principal Denny Ferguson addressed the students just prior to the Hopes and Dreams balloon launch, explaining that it was a symbol of the commitment it would take to accomplish academic goals for this school year.
When Forest Hills High School senior Xavier Huntley decided to forgo baseball practice because he wasn’t feeling well, he couldn’t have known that his decision would be one of the most important choices of his young life.
UCPS Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan recognized three outstanding principals during the general principals meeting Thursday, Nov. 3, for their extraordinary leadership skills at their schools. This month’s recognitions honored Denny Ferguson of East Elementary School, Jennifer Deaton of Union Elementary School and Dr. Kim Andrews of Weddington High School, with a certificate of appreciation and a ball cap embossed with the Team UCPS.
Fifty high school students met with Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan to talk about what’s working and where we can improve during the school year’s first Superintendent’s Student Advisory Council meeting.
The first recipient of the Union County Public Schools Employee of the Month award is credited with helping to make her school an inviting place to visit. Fatima Feliz, who has served as a custodian at Shiloh Elementary School since February, was recognized at Tuesday’s, Nov. 1, Board of Education meeting with the first EOM award.
At its Nov. 1 meeting, the Board of Education voted to award one-time merit based bonuses to eligible employees in December 2016. The merit-based bonus is pursuant to North Carolina Session Law 2016-94, section 36.1A and in accordance with the district’s outlined plan.
Over the past 18 years, Union County voters have stepped up six times to meet the needs of its students. Union County Public Schools, the sixth largest school district in North Carolina, has witnessed enormous growth over the past two decades. To meet that growth, citizens passed six bond referendums totaling $501.7 million.
The auditorium at Porter Ridge High School resonated with the sound of about 100 young male voices Wednesday, Oct. 26. The students, who came from 10 UCPS middle and high schools, were participating in a daylong workshop in an annual event called Real Men Can Sing.
Union Elementary has been named a 2016-17 National Title I Distinguished School. The school received the award at the North Carolina Association of Compensatory Educators Conference (NCACE) on Thursday, Oct. 27.
What is the difference between money that comes from a bond referendum and capital improvement funds? And what determines how projects are funded? The difference is often based on the frequency and size of the project. Piedmont High School, at left, is one of six UCPS schools slated for renovations and additions if the $54 million school bond referendum passes on Nov. 8.
A product of Union County Public Schools, Dr. Tyson was chosen as this year’s top principal during Thursday’s (Oct. 13) Principal of the Year Luncheon held at the Professional Development Center on Brewer Drive. Vera Woolard of Marvin Ridge Middle School, was chosen as the 2016-17 Assistant Principal of the Year.
Each month, Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan recognizes principals for extraordinary leadership skills. Four Union County Public Schools principals were honored at the October General Principals’ Meeting held Thursday, October 13, 2016. Dr. Kim Fisenne of Central Academy of Technology and Arts was recognized for CATA being name a National Blue Ribbon School. The school was one of 329 schools nationally to receive the prestigious award.
Union County Education Foundation (UCEF) has brought smiles to 22 Union County Public Schools teachers by surprising them with LIFT grants. Teachers can apply for the yearly LIFT (Leadership and Innovation Funding for Teachers) Grants, which award from $100 to $500 for technological advancements, classroom enhancements and educational programs.
If the $54 million bond referendum passes on Nov. 8, it will add 49 new classrooms to six Union County Public Schools, increasing student capacity in brick and mortar buildings, thus reducing the number of students who have classes in mobile units.
Sandra Martin doesn’t vote on Election Day, but she never misses an opportunity to vote. Shorter lines and the convenience of voting on Saturdays have led Martin, a Union County Public Schools administrative assistant, and her husband, Scott, to vote early each year.
Union County Public Schools students, teachers and administrators were given a first-hand look at the employment opportunities available in Union County during the 2016 Union County Manufacturing Awareness Week.
Students at Stallings Elementary School have a little better understanding of the importance of fitness thanks to the Carolina Panthers. The entire student body benefited from a Fuel Up to Play 60 camp held at the school Tuesday (Oct. 4). It’s sponsored by the Carolina Panthers in partnership with the Southeast Dairy Association.
Eric Miller, a math teacher at Porter Ridge High, is a “floater.” He spends a good bit of his time each day pushing a cart, loaded with his teaching materials, from one classroom to another. Miller is one of a number of Union County Public School teachers who “float” from one classroom to another throughout their day as there are not enough classrooms at their school. Pictured at left, Lynn Mitchell, a Sun Valley High School chorus teacher, who is also a "floater."
CATA is one of 329 schools recognized nationally for the 2016 award. Now in its 34th year, the U.S. Department of Education has recognized more than 8,000 schools nationally with this coveted award. Pictured, at left, are students in Sarah Henry's English class after they hear the news.
Dee Hasty, an exceptional children’s teacher at Shiloh Elementary, has been named a 2016 Exceptional Children’s Teacher of Excellence. She was informed by EC Director Janie Webb during a staff meeting at her school Wednesday (Sept. 21).
Few things can stir the soul like the rousing tunes of a marching band. Whether it’s the inspiration of patriotic music or the exhilaration of a contemporary song, when it’s performed by the synchronized precision of a high school marching band, magic happens. Pictured, at left, is Todd Ebert, the band director at Cuthbertson High School.
Who runs toward danger while the rest of us run away? Firefighters, law enforcement officers and paramedics. Shiloh Elementary students took time Friday, Sept. 9, to thank these brave men and women for their service by providing lunch during an event called “Heroes Day.” At left, Monroe Fire Battalion Chief Andy Ross talks with a student.
Business and community leaders welcomed Union County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan during a “Meet and Greet” held Wednesday, Sept. 14.
The year is 1980. Jimmy Carter is the 39th president of the United States. Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back is released in theaters, while Pink Floyd, David Bowie and KC and The Sunshine Band are all the rage. In Union County, there are five high schools, five middle schools and 10 elementary schools, totaling about 12,000 students. This is also the year the then Union County Schools built the transportation garage.
Starting school without the necessary tools to succeed in the classroom can be a stumbling block for children. Thanks to the efforts of School Tools, a partnership between WSOC-TV, Classroom Central and Communities In Schools, hundreds of Union County Public Schools students, as well as students across 22 counties in North and South Carolina, will have the needed tools to be successful.
As part of his 90-day entry plan, Dr. Houlihan is launching a Listening and Learning Tour. Beginning Sept. 21, the Superintendent will hold a series of meetings throughout Union County to meet with employees and community members.
The problem of chronic absences from school has become a national epidemic, affecting one in 10 children in America.
Two Union County Public Schools principals were recognized for their leadership during the first general principals meeting of the new school year, held Thursday (Sept. 8). Pictured, at left, are, Monroe High School Principal Dr. Mike Harvey, New Town Elementary School Principal Catherine Perry and UCPS Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan.
Entering elementary, middle and high schools are milestones in a student’s life. Moving up into higher grades and a different school, however, can cause anxiety for students and parents.
The state of North Carolina and Union County Public Schools released several accountability measures for the 2015-16 school year. Union County Public Schools continues to make gains and outperform the state average in reading and math. In 2016, the district earned its second highest four-year graduation cohort rate of 92.8%. The state’s four-year graduation rate is 85.8 percent.
Piedmont Middle School sixth grader Karsyn Callahan sat quietly in her math class, happy that the first day of school had, thus far, gone very smoothly. When the new UCPS Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan, walked into her classroom to introduce himself, however, she admits that at first she was a little anxious about meeting him. Piedmont Middle was one of 10 schools Dr. Houlihan visited on the first day of school.
Today marks the first day of school for students on the traditional calendar. We are excited to welcome staff and students back to school for the 2016-2017 academic year. A photo gallery has been created to capture the first day back in session. Have a great year!
First-year teachers and seasoned educators alike have been working steadily this week making final preparations in their classrooms for the return of students Monday, Aug 29.
There are no dragons or castle walls at East Elementary, but there are four “houses” where students are assigned, very much like the students in Harry Potter’s school, Hogwarts. If you’re a fifth grader at East Elementary, you now belong to one of four “houses:” Team Beneficium (Latin for kindness); Team Cognitio (knowledge); Team Fortitudo (courage); or Team Gloria (ambition).
While students were enjoying those long summer days, hundreds of Union County Public Schools employees were hard at work preparing for the 2016-2017 school year. Pictured, at left, is maintenance grounds employee Justin Boyd cutting grass at a UCPS high school.
Luis Agudelo and his wife, Monica Naranjo, both teachers in Colombia, South America, decided to take their love of teaching to the United States. Thanks to the Visiting International Faculty (VIF) program, they both arrived in Union County Friday (Aug. 5) with 15 other VIF teachers, all of whom have been assigned to one of 10 UCPS elementary schools.
About 250 UCPS teachers attended the new hire orientation Wednesday, Aug. 10, hosted by the Human Resources Department. The event was held at CATA and the Professional Development Center, and featured a variety of breakout sessions, including the Beginning Teacher Support Program; Licensure Information; HR/ER Policies and Procedures; and Legal Updates.
Teamwork: the combined action of a group of people, especially when effective and efficient. UCPS Superintendent Dr. Andrew Houlihan is a firm believer in the concept.
Parents, students and educators came in droves to the Marvin Ridge campus early Saturday morning, armed with rakes, shovels and hedge trimmers, to continue a five-year tradition of giving back to the middle and high schools.
When Union County Early College opened its doors for students Thursday, Aug. 4, the school hit a milestone—10 years serving Union County Public Schools students.
Dylan Hatley, a rising eighth grader at Piedmont Middle School, is designing software that will save the world – at least in the video game he’s creating. Dylan and about 17 other UCPS students from middle schools across the county spent the week (July 25-July 28) in a summer camp at Central Academy of Technology and Arts, learning software development and game design.
The Board of Education appointed Dr. Andrew Houlihan as superintendent of Union County Public Schools at a board meeting on July 26. UCPS administrators, elected officials, community members and staff attended the meeting and welcomed our new leader. We have provided a photo gallery of pictures from the board meeting and reception.
The Union County Board of Education is pleased to announce the selection and appointment of Dr. Andrew Houlihan as the next Superintendent of Union County Public Schools. Dr. Houlihan was named at a special-called meeting July 26. His first official day will be Wednesday, Aug. 24.
You don’t have to convince Monroe Middle School rising eighth grader Robert Smith that the Salvation Army’s Boys and Girls Club is a great place to grow and learn. He’s been coming for three years. He says the benefit of the club is the impact it can have on students who may be choosing the wrong path. “They teach smart moves and how to make the right choices.”
The first day of year-round school began Thursday, July 21, an exciting time for educators, parents and the approximately 3,500 students who attend school on the year-round calendar. Teachers and staff at Benton Heights, East, Shiloh, Walter Bickett elementary schools, Walter Bickett Education Center, and Wolfe School, which all operate on the year-round calendar, welcomed students to the 2016-17 school year.
Rocky River Elementary third-graders Garrett Stack and Angelle Alsobrooks, (pictured at left) both say they see the value of attending the Union County Public Schools summer reading camp, and it doesn’t hurt that it’s fun, too.
Walter Bickett Elementary third-grade teacher Madison Gray works two jobs to pay the bills. With the pending 4.7 percent pay increase for teachers signed into law today (July 14, 2016) by Gov. Pat McCrory, that may change. North Carolina Gov. Pat McCrory came to Shiloh Elementary School in Union County to sign the state’s $22.3 billion budget, which brings the average teacher pay in North Carolina to about $50,000, and beginning teacher salary to $35,000.
Marlon Watson has been named Director of Transportation for Union County Public Schools. He was appointed by the Board of Education in June.
The Union County Board of Education approved two personnel appointments and two transfers at its July 6 meeting. Jonathan Bowers, principal at Weddington High School, has been named Director of Student Services and Accountability. Tom Childers, principal at Walter Bickett Elementary, has been named principal at Antioch Elementary. Dr. Jamie Benfield, principal at Antioch Elementary, has been named principal at Walter Bickett Elementary.
How do you compete and win on a national stage on Broadway all the while, keeping stage fright from taking control? Amina Faye, a 2016 gradate of Central Academy of Technology and the Arts, feels her attitude helped keep her nerves at bay, allowing her to give an award-winning performance.
The Board of County Commissioners approved a request from the Board of Education to place a bond referendum on the November ballot for Union County Public Schools. The BOCC agreed to a $53 million bond referendum for seven projects.
Ask anyone at Monroe High School and they’ll tell you 2016 graduate Micah Blake is an extraordinary young woman, a leader among her peers, with her sights set on making a career in the United States Marines. What makes this young woman even more remarkable is her ability to overcome life’s twists and turns that for the majority of her senior year, left her living on the kindness of friends.
Coming to a new high school can be difficult for any teenager. When you add to the equation that most of the students in that school don’t speak your language, “difficult” is bumped up a notch. Six Monroe High School students faced these challenges head-on after moving to Union County from other countries, and graduated with the Class of 2016. Pictured at left, at right, is Sade Castillo from the Dominican Republic.
Retirement is a milestone, something to look forward to after years of service in one’s chosen career. To celebrate the 121 employees retiring this year from Union County Public Schools, the district held its annual retiree luncheon at South Piedmont Community College. These employees take with them a combined 2,512 years of service, with an average of 20.8 years per employee. Joseph Heath, a math and PE teacher at Piedmont High School, is pictured with his principal, Dr. Jonathan Tyson.
If you had a twin, would you want to be identical or fraternal? Four Parkwood High School graduates, two identical twins and two fraternal twins, walked across the stage Saturday, ending their high school careers and beginning life on a collegiate level. Just prior to graduation, Kendall and Kolin Plyler, 19, (fraternal twins), and Galen and Nick Beaver, 18, (identical twins) discussed the advantages and disadvantages of going through high school as a twin.
Tai Huynh, a first-generation American, has very clear goals for his future. At 19, he’s already designing campaign materials for his bid for the presidency in 2036. He will turn 35 that year, which is the minimum age to be a US president.
The Union County Board of Education approved two personnel appointments and one transfer at its June 7 meeting. Sarah Starr, (top left) assistant principal at Hemby Bridge Elementary, has been named Principal at Marvin Elementary. Lynn Cole, (top right) principal at Marvin Elementary, was appointed to the position of Early Learning and Intervention Specialist in May. Carole Alley, (bottom left) assistant principal at Monroe High School, has been named principal at Parkwood High School. Dr. Stephanie McManus, (bottom right) principal at Parkwood High School, has been named Principal at the Union County Early College. Joe Delaney will serve as a consultant to the Instructional Technology and Operations departments.
The Union County Board of Education elected new officers at its June 7 meeting. Leslie Boyd was named chair and Michael Guzman was named vice chair of the Board of Education. John Collins, former chair of the Board of Education, resigned in May, creating a vacancy for the position.
Michele Morris, Union County Public School general counsel, was sworn in as interim superintendent during the Board of Education’s regular Tuesday (June 7, 2016) meeting.
Caleb Garner, a fifth-grader from Poplin Elementary, might be signing autographs when school starts next year, after staring in an episode on Nickelodeon with Panther quarterback Cam Newton.
Voter apathy continues to be a problem in the United States, an issue that the League of Women Voters hopes to eliminate among students in the Union County Public Schools.
Graduation season is here! We are capturing moments from various ceremonies across the district. The photo gallery will be updated as graduations take place.
This has been an outstanding year so far for Jodi Robinson, a third-grade teacher at Unionville Elementary School. She is one of only five educators in the world to win the 2016 VIF Global Educator Award. She was also named the 2016 UCPS Teacher of the Year in May.
The value of teacher assistants in the classroom was a key focus during the 24th annual banquet of the Union County Chapter of the North Carolina Association of Teacher Assistants (NCATA), held May 19 at SPCC. The chapter also awarded Cuthbertson High School 2015 graduates Megan Pounds (Appalachian University) and Kenneth Winslow (NC State) each a $800 scholarship.
The sounds of hundreds of elementary and middle school students cheering and applauding brought smiles and some tears to many of Monroe High School’s 2016 graduating seniors Monday. After they donned their caps and gowns, they walked proudly through the halls where, for many, it all began.
Moments after the fire alarm sounded at Indian Trail Elementary, about 700 children exited the building calmly and orderly walking onto the front lawn, a result of years of fire drills. Once they walked outside, however, students saw something that made them realize that this wasn’t just a run-of-the mill fire drill.
More than 300 job seekers poured into the Union County Public Schools Career Fair Wednesday, resumé in hand, hoping to match their skills to a job opening within the school system.
Dr. Laurel Healy has been selected by the North Carolina Middle School Association for the state Central Office Administrator to Watch Award.
Cathy NeSmith, an administrative assistant in Auxiliary Services, has been named Union County Educational Office Professional of the Year, while Dr. Anne Radke, the principal at East Union Middle, has been chosen as the Union County EOP Administrator of the Year.
“Leaders aren’t born; they’re made, just like anything else, through hard work.” Deputy Superintendent Dr. David Clarke relayed these words, spoken by famous football coach Vince Lombardi, to the graduates of the Union County Public Schools inaugural Supervisory Management Academy. Clarke, pictured at left, presents a certificate of completion to UCPS Facilities Manager Maurice Brown.
Congratulations to Kristine Barberio, a fourth-grade teacher at Rea View Elementary, who has been named the Union County Public Schools Hometown Hero for May. Principal Jennifer Hoover, Assistant Principal Emily Culberson and Chris Blettenberg from Charles G. Monnett and Associates surprised Barberio in her classroom on May 6.
Fairview Elementary School fifth-grader Spencer Thomas didn’t understand why she had such difficulty reading. When she looked at the pages of her book, the words simply made no sense. Spencer didn’t want people to know about her problem, but she couldn’t keep the problem from her teacher, Donna Thomas (no relation).
Two Marvin Ridge High School coaches have recognized by the National Federation of State High School Associations as the 2015 coaches of the year. Coaches Melissa King-Pierce and Cameron Starr were presented with their awards at a recent North Carolina High School Athletic Association’s Spring Board of Directors meetings in Chapel Hill.
When Parkwood Middle’s Science Olympiad Team went to its first regional competition, team members thought of it as a learning experience. What it turned out to be, however, was an amazing victory and a chance to move up to the state competition.
With the total giving dollars reaching close to $200,000, the United Way recognized Union County Public Schools Thursday (May 5) as the organization with the highest employee donations.
Maureen Stuka, a fifth-grade teacher at Waxhaw Elementary, is a ball of energy wrapped in a small, but powerful package. Her high expectations for herself spill over to her students who seem to love her as much as she loves them. She teaches from the heart and soul.
“It takes a whole village to raise a child.” This African proverb could have been used to describe the scene at East Elementary School Thursday (April 28) as members of the community came forward to help kindergarteners read.
Did you know that honey is the only food that never expires? This interesting fact was part of some hands-on learning at Sardis Elementary School last week, part of Bee Care Educational Outreach offered by Bayer Crop Science in Raleigh.
Jodi Robinson, a third-grade teacher at Unionville Elementary, was chosen as the 2016-17 UCPS Teacher of the Year during Thursday's (April 21, 2016) Teacher of the Year Banquet. In addition, she will receive a one-year lease of a car, courtesy of Union County KIA, a Keffer Automotive Company.
The air sizzled with excitement as students at Union Elementary clapped and cheered while their teachers danced with Charlotte Hornets arena host Fly-Ty and Hornet’s mascot Hugo. The excitement came when Charlotte Hornets Book Bus rolled up to the school Thursday (April 21).
As Jennie Yearick moved through a math lesson on April 12, her classroom door opened and Principal Dr. Bashawn Harris entered the room with three guests. With a puzzled look on her face, she soon learned that she had been named the Union County Public Schools Hometown Hero for April.
UC Virtual, Union County Public Schools’ online learning program, has just completed its largest enrollment since it began in 2013. The program, with seven full-time teachers and three adjuncts, currently offers 35 courses, which includes everything from honors and advanced placement courses, to Spanish and art appreciation.
The 2016-17 Union County Public Schools Teacher of the Year will be named April 21. A five-person district committee individually reviewed and scored portfolios from the 53 school-level teachers of the year, choosing the top 20 candidates as semi-finalists. A different committee then performed individual interviews of those 20 semi-finalists, further narrowing the search to 10 finalists.
Visibility, involvement and building a rapport with students seem to be the secrets to being a great school resource officer. It’s these characteristics that helped Union County Sheriff’s Deputy Yohance Prince become the 2016 UCPS School Resource Officer of the Year. Prince is the SRO at Forest Hills High School.
Dalton Mangum, a 15-year-old sophomore at Parkwood High School, has been interested in the field of alternative energy for as long as he can remember. Dalton and his team are almost finished with their solar panel, a project in his Clean Energy Systems class, the first in a series of classes offered in the school’s Clean Energy Technology Academy.
Congratulations to the 21 Union County Public Schools educators who have either received or renewed their National Board Certification. The Union County Board of Education recognized these outstanding individuals during its April 5 meeting at Porter Ridge Middle.
Weddington Middle School seventh-grade teacher Scott Bass has only one problem with the students in his robotics classes. At the end of the day, they don’t want to leave when the bell rings.
Alissa Hammersmith of Cuthbertson High is the Union County Public Schools Hometown Hero for March. Principal Dr. Kim Schroeder, school administrators and Mr. Hammersmith surprised the science teacher with the award March 16.
Getting a call on her cell phone from a Washington, DC, area code sent Porter Ridge High School senior Alyssa Stoltz’ heart racing. She had been waiting for weeks to find out if she would receive the coveted appointment to the United States Merchant Marine Academy at Kings Point.
The Union County Board of Education met this morning to discuss the Superintendent Search process. The Board voted on a number of items including naming an interim superintendent and interim deputy superintendent.
Elizabeth Sanchez wants a career in the military. Danial McAfee wants to work outdoors, possibly in landscaping. Katie Orzehowski hopes to work in some form of counseling. These UCPS seniors came one step closer to those careers yesterday at the Union County Job Fair held this year at the Union County Agriculture Center.
Hemby Bridge Elementary fourth graders took a step back in time recently, when they brought historical figures back to life in a grade-level Wax Museum. Rachel Varda, a fourth-grade teacher, said students' only criterion was to choose someone who had positively impacted the world.
Fourth graders at Porter Ridge Elementary are doing more than just studying about poverty and homelessness; they’re lending a hand to those in need.
Caroline Hauder of Marvin Ridge High is the February Student Athlete of the Month. Through a program sponsored by the Bank of North Carolina, Caroline earned $250 for her school’s athletic department.
Want to sail down a three-story water slide, go to a planetarium and see a laser show, touch a live shark or pet a giraffe? These are a few of the activities that Union County Public Schools students might enjoy this summer when they attend the UCPS 2016 summer camp.
Students at Kensington Elementary School became the teachers recently when four student teachers from China came to observe how American students learn. The student teachers were from Zhijiang College within Zhejiang University of Science and Technology in Shaoxing/Hangzhou, China.
The halls at Marvin Elementary School were filled with brightly colored lanterns, large paper dragons and beautiful costumes during a recent school-wide global teach-in day that focused on the school’s Mandarin Immersion Program.
Union County Public Schools participated in the National Education Association's Read Across America Day, an annual motivation and awareness program that asks children to celebrate reading on March 2, which coincides with the birthday of Dr. Seuss. The following photos are from activities at Sun Valley and Antioch Elementary Schools, and Parkwood Middle School. Students from Sun Valley Middle and High School traveled to SVES to read to students.
After nearly 38 years of service to public education and Union County Public Schools, Superintendent Dr. Mary B. Ellis has announced plans to retire June 1, 2016. Ellis has served as UCPS superintendent since 2012. “It has been an honor to serve as Superintendent of Union County Public Schools,” Ellis said. “This is an outstanding school system and I am proud to say that I was educated in Union County and have worked as a teacher and administrative leader in this district.”
Teaching school bus safety isn’t a new concept in public school education, but when a talking mini school bus named Buster rolled into the media center Thursday (Feb. 25) at Indian Trail Elementary School, students sat up and took notice.
The Union County Board of Education is hosting a Teacher for a Day Program for North Carolina legislators and candidates. Special guests are visiting schools February 15 – 26, to witness what it is like to be a North Carolina educator. The North Carolina School Boards Association encouraged school districts to invite legislators and those running for office to tour schools and experience life as a teacher.
“It doesn’t matter about our skin color. It just matters that we're human beings. … Never judge anybody from the outside.” Kaleb Jones, (pictured at left) an 11-year-old student at Shiloh Elementary School, was one of about 550 elementary school students who were treated to special guest readers in the school’s annual African American Read-in. Obviously, the lessons learned during Black History Month aren’t forgotten.
Scissors in hand, second-grader Allen Padgett carefully trims the red paper heart for the very special card he’s making. This isn’t just any Valentine’s Day card. It has to be perfect because it’s going to his big sister in Korea.
Fanonola Sturdivant, a six-year-veteran bus driver in the Monroe cluster, holds her hand up, palm facing the students waiting at their bus stop, warning them to wait before crossing the street.
Have you hugged your bus driver lately? If you’re an elementary student, chances are you have, especially this week, which is designated Love the Bus Week.
Ms. Michele Rigney had a puzzled look on her face when her principal and assistant principal walked into her classroom unexpectedly the morning of February 1. She had no idea that she was about to be named the Union County Public Schools Hometown Hero for January.
The Union County Public Schools Communications Office took home the gold recently when it received 15 North Carolina School Public Relations Association (NCSPRA) awards of excellence.
Royce Joseph, a seventh grader from Weddington Middle School, credits the days off from school over winter break, the snow day and the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday in helping him prepare for the 2016 Spelling Bee competition. Apparently it paid off as he took home the winning trophy Thursday, (Jan. 28).
In mid December, the Monroe High School Redhawks brought home a lot more than just a 2AA state football championship. They showed the world that they could “leave no doubt.”
Kindergarten registration for Union County Public Schools will run Feb. 8-12. Parents should register their child at the elementary school located in their attendance area. To enroll in kindergarten in North Carolina, eligible children must have reached their fifth birthday on or before Aug. 31 (of the year of entrance).
Ask Forest Hills Principal Dr. Kevin Plue or his civics and world history teacher Jennifer Whitley, what makes Ecuador unique and be prepared for a global lesson.
A group of elementary school students can boast that they’ve starred in a music video that won their school $5,000. It all began when Girl Scout leader Natasha Patel heard that Michael and Son, a company that specializes in plumbing repair and plumbing appliance installation, held a jingle contest to advertise their company, and they opened the contest to area schools.
Three Union County Public Schools educators were recognized recently for outstanding work in their respective classrooms. Those educators were Todd Ebert (Cuthbertson High Band Program); Larry Robinson (Theatre Academy at Central Academy of Technology and Arts; and Lisa Schilling (UCPS AIG Teacher of the Year).
The College Board honored UCPS for its achievements in Advanced Placement (AP) course work. UCPS was recognized at the State Board of Education meeting for increasing access to AP course work while simultaneously maintaining or increasing the percentage of students earning scores of 3 or higher on AP exams. UCPS was one of two North Carolina school districts to earn a place on the AP District Honor Roll.
The Bank of North Carolina Student Athlete of the Month is Meredith Little of Parkwood High. During a presentation in December, Meredith was presented with a $250 check for her school’s athletic department. Meredith is a senior with a passion for tennis. She has been a star on the Parkwood tennis team for four years. She has lettered each year as a varsity player in both 3A and 2A conferences.
The Union County Board of Education approved a personnel appointment at its January 5 meeting. Sam Basden was named interim Assistant Superintendent of Auxiliary Services effective January 6. Basden has worked in Union County Public Schools since 2007 and has served as Director of Secondary Support Services since 2014.
For as long as school counselor Juliene Cook can remember, Weddington Middle School has held a “loose-change drive” to collect money to give to those less fortunate.
Building dollhouses for deserving children is a work of heart for Piedmont High School Resource Officer David Ludlow. When tragic circumstances brought two young children to Union County, he knew who the next recipients would be.
It was hard to tell who was having more fun, the students opening the presents or the approximately 100 men and women from the UCPS Maintenance Department who bought the gifts.
Thanks to the generosity of parents at Wesley Chapel Elementary, hundreds of East Elementary students will have warm hands and ears at the bus stop on cold winter mornings.
Santa hat pulled snugly atop her head, a warm smile on her face, Charlotte Reccardi, a sixth grader from Cuthbertson Middle School, picks up the matching blue gloves that go with the blue winter jacket she has given Noah, a kindergarten student at Wingate Elementary School.
After dragging and dropping the last block of code into the line of instructions on her ThinkPad, Caroline Souza, a third grader at Wesley Chapel Elementary School, sat holding her breath. Caroline threw her hands above her head in triumph, jumped up from her seat, and announced, “I did it!” when that code made her animated character do exactly as she asked. This scene was repeated through out the morning in Kim Mayfield’s third-grade class at Wesley Chapel Elementary during the Hour of Coding.
Belk announced the winners of its 2015 Belk Bowl Innovation Lab contest, which gives local schools the opportunity to remodel their current media center to create a welcoming, innovative learning space and improve reading efforts.
Timothy Leckrone, a junior at Parkwood High, has been named the Bank of North Carolina athlete of the month for November. In honor of Timothy’s recognition, the school received a $250 check for the its athletic department during a short presentation on Nov. 24.
Inspiration comes in many different forms, shapes and sizes. For students at South Providence, inspiration came from two retired professional wrestlers who shared their personal stories of tragedy and success. Both Lex Luger (wrestler 1986–2001) and Nikita Koloff (wrestler 1984-1993) faced life-altering challenges, yet overcame them and successfully moved forward in their lives.
The Musical Theatre Department at Porter Ridge Middle School will present Disney’s The Lion King Jr. in the Porter Ridge High School auditorium at 9:30 a.m. and at noon on Dec. 2nd for students at Poplin, Stallings, Hemby Bridge and Porter Ridge Elementary schools. The musical will then be performed for the general public on Dec. 3rd and Dec. 4th at 7:00 p.m. Admission at these evening performances will be $3 for students and $5 for adults.
The third week of November was abuzz with activities for the Union County Education Foundation, the culmination of a yearlong effort that not only set the stage for the coming year, but also showcased the foundation’s mission of promoting educators.
With today’s technology, students can take a virtual field trip, visiting just about anyone they wish. Third-graders at Hemby Bridge Elementary School visited elected officials in Stallings recently, an opportunity for teachers to bring social studies alive.
Nicole Schroedel, a math teacher at Weddington Middle has been named the November Hometown Hero for Union County Public Schools. During a surprise presentation with Principal Marcus Leake and administrators on Nov. 9, Schroedel was awarded a certificate and a $250 check for classroom supplies from Charles G. Monett III and Associates.
When students walk into the media center at Sardis Elementary, they have the opportunity to let their creative juices flow thanks to a special section of the library called “makerspaces.” Blaire Austin, the first recipient of a LIFT grant, said the funding would enhance her school’s media center, and help accomplish her goal of providing more science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) experiences at her school.
Five Union County Public Schools educators have risen to the top as being the best of the best in their respective fields. The following synopses highlight the accomplishments of Lauren Baucom, a math teacher at Forest Hills High; Rebekah Fuerst, an eighth-grade science teacher from Parkwood Middle; Donna Podgorny, the UCPS World Language Instructional Content Facilitator; Larry Robinson, drama teacher at Central Academy of Technology & Arts; and Sherry Robinson (no relation), a school nurse at Weddington High School.
Many little girls dream about wearing a crown and being chosen as the fairest in the land. That fantasy became a reality for Allie Dunn, a 2013 Porter Ridge High School graduate when she was named Miss North Carolina-USA.
The concept is simple: talk to people you don’t normally talk to. The impact of this simple act, however, can be profound. Approximately 1,400 students at Porter Ridge Middle School participated in a national anti-bullying effort called Mix It Up at Lunch Day Tuesday (Oct. 27).
Weddington senior Keith Duncan has been named the Bank of North Carolina athlete of the month for October. In honor of Keith’s recognition, the school received a $250 check for the its athletic department during a short presentation on Oct. 23.
Sarah Rynne, an Exceptional Children’s (EC) teacher at Union Elementary, has earned the 2015 Teacher of Excellence award from the Union County Public School’s Exceptional Children’s Department. Rynne serves students with disabilities in a behavior-focused, specialized setting at Union Elementary.
CHS has been chosen as one of six schools nationwide by the National Association of Music Merchants (NAMM) to win in the second annual “What Makes Music Education Great in My School” video contest. Winning got students a two-day residency with the NAMM Foundation and the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus.
The look on Terri Brown’s face was priceless when her principal and 9 of her colleagues made an unexpected visit to her classroom on Oct.16. Brown, a second-grade teacher at Shiloh Elementary, was named the October Hometown Hero for Union County Public Schools.
Thanks to a $50 gift card from the Teacher Rewards program, fifth-grade Union Elementary teacher M’lissa Cianes can see an idea come to life – Flashlight Friday. To help offset the estimated $1,000 a year teachers spend out of their own pockets for classroom supplies, Wal-Mart and Sam’s Club representatives surprised 20 teachers at Union Elementary with a total of $1,000 in gift cards Wednesday, (Oct, 7).
Union County Public Schools is pleased to announce the launch of its newly redesigned website. The school system developed its website with parents, staff, students and community members in mind. UCPS recognizes that communication is a key component to its operation. The district and all school websites have been updated with a modern design and technology to improve communication.
Union County Public Schools is considered a leader throughout North Carolina for its focus on global education. For the past six years, the UCPS Global Schools Program has encouraged educators to bring global education into the classroom.
Piedmont Middle seventh graders decided to show local law enforcement officers that they care and appreciate their hard work. With the help and direction of their teacher, Lesa Goodman, a seventh-grade communication skills teacher at Piedmont Middle, about 325 letters were sent out, written by the entire Piedmont Middle seventh-grade class.
Shiloh Elementary Principal Scott Spencer and Parkwood Middle Assistant Principal Brian Davis have been chosen as UCPS' top administrators.
Bank of North Carolina awarded its first student athlete award to Sarah Welch of Porter Ridge High on Friday, Sept. 25. In honor of Sarah’s recognition, the school received a $250 check for its athletic department.
A handful of Union County Public Schools guidance counselors and career development coordinators (CDC) spent Thursday touring local manufacturers in an attempt to be better informed and better able to advise students about manufacturing jobs in Union County.
A sea of yellow shirts, bandanas and face-painted 10th graders and their teachers flooded the sidewalks and entrance at Piedmont High School on Sept. 15, as shouts and cheers greeted the arrival of Greg Floyd, a sophomore battling Leukemia. Greg was brought to school by Union County Sheriff Eddie Cathey, accompanied by a convoy motorcycles driven by volunteers and area law enforcement. This unprecedented and memorable event was made possible by the non-profit organization Hometown Heroes.
Benton Heights Elementary School of the Arts kindergarten students got a unique perspective on commemorating the victims of the 9-11 terrorist attack on America today by planting three butterfly bushes in their honor. The commemoration ceremony was organized by Benton Heights kindergarten teachers Beverly Garcia, Brittany Ackerman, Dawn McCourt, Jonica Wortha, Kristen Weaver and Megan McCarver.
Most of the students at Sun Valley Middle School weren’t even born on Sept. 11, 2001. There were 2,996 people who lost their lives during the attacks when two planes were flown into the twin towers of the World Trade Center, one plane hit the Pentagon, and a fourth plane crashed in a field in Pennsylvania.
Tammy Rollins of Kensington Elementary was named the September Hometown Hero for Union County Public Schools. She is the first winner for the 2015-16 school year. Rollins, a third-grade teacher, was recognized during a surprise presentation on Sept. 15 in her classroom. She received a $250 check for classroom supplies from Charles G. Monett III and Associates. Her class will also receive a pizza party.