Review Category : School News

School Notes

BATTERY CREEK HIGH

• Operation Ball Gown: The BCHS SADD Club is collecting formal gowns for the Marine Corps Family Team Building project “Operation Ball Gown”. This program offers gowns free to the wives of active duty Marines for use during the military ball season. Gowns of all sizes, plus accessories are needed. Gowns may be dropped off with Mrs. Grooms in the front office through September 4.

• The Battery Creek High School Athletics Department is selling 2014-15 Athletics season passes at half price. The tickets will be on sale through August 29 at the half price rate. See Coach Drafts or Ms. Ballenger in the front office.

• Battery Creek is proud to announce the annual BC Community Night will be held on Friday, August 29 as the varsity football team opens its 2014 home schedule with a 7:30 p.m. kickoff against the Estill Gators. Battery Creek wants to see as many community members as possible come out and help celebrate the start of the school and athletic year. For more information, contact athletic director John Drafts at 843-322-5574 or john.drafts@beaufort.k12.sc.us.

• Battery Creek High Parent Teacher Student Organization will be recognizing all members of the Beaufort Police Department, Beaufort Fire Department, Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office, Burton Fire Department and EMT on Sept. 11 at 6 p.m. at the McVey Performing Arts Center. Contact Diane Grooms, 322-5582.

 

BEAUFORT ACADEMY

• Monday, 9/1 – No school in observance of Labor Day

• Tuesday, 9/2: Presentation of the first Emerging Leader Scholarship, 2:45 pm.

• Wednesday, 9/3: Back to School Bingo for all students, 6:30 pm.

LADY’S ISLAND MIDDLE

• Join Lady’s Island Middle School in celebrating one of the most spirited days in America. On Friday, August 29, the school will participate in National College Colors Day.  Students may wear a shirt or jersey with the colors or logo that represent their favorite college team.

 Beaufort Academy’s 2nd grade teacher, Mrs. Abby Mitchell, took the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge.... with a twist for SMA (spinal muscular atrophy) which affects Mrs. Mitchell’s friend, Leo. Mrs. Mitchell challenged each of her 2nd graders to raise money for the opportunity to douse her with water and flour bomb her — and they rose to the challenge! This group raised $350, which will be donated to Leo’s Pride, and Mrs. Mitchell wore 13 buckets of water and a bucket of flour.  Great job 2nd grade, the school is so proud and inspired by you and your teacher.

Beaufort Academy’s 2nd grade teacher, Mrs. Abby Mitchell, took the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge…. with a twist for SMA (spinal muscular atrophy) which affects Mrs. Mitchell’s friend, Leo. Mrs. Mitchell challenged each of her 2nd graders to raise money for the opportunity to douse her with water and flour bomb her — and they rose to the challenge! This group raised $350, which will be donated to Leo’s Pride, and Mrs. Mitchell wore 13 buckets of water and a bucket of flour. Great job 2nd grade, the school is so proud and inspired by you and your teacher.

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District selects lead counselor for Beaufort County schools

A veteran school counselor and retired U.S. Marine has been selected as the lead counselor for Beaufort County’s schools and alternative education programs.

Geri Henderson has served for the past four years as the lead counselor at Whale Branch Early College High School, where she worked with Principal Priscilla Drake to introduce an early college program.  Students can graduate from the program with South Carolina high school diplomas and also with associate’s degrees from the Technical College of

New school district lead Counselor Geri Henderson speaks to counselors from each school in the district before the start of the 2014-15 school year.

New school district lead Counselor Geri Henderson speaks to counselors from each school in the district before the start of the 2014-15 school year.

the Lowcountry.

“Geri Henderson has a strong counseling background and a strong record of successful work,” said Superintendent Jeff Moss. “She combines a no-nonsense approach with a genuine affection for students, and I’m confident that she will do a terrific job in her new position.”

In her new district-wide role, Henderson will:

• Work with school administrators, counselors, teachers, students and parents in developing individual growth plans for students.

• Assist high schools in creating a systematic process to increase college scholarships and help parents with the meeting the financial challenges of attending two- and four-year colleges.

• Develop more real-world business internships and job-shadowing opportunities for students.

• Lead district counselors in partnering with colleges to increase dual-enrollment opportunities for students.

• Work with schools to determine the best instructional approaches for each student.

• Coordinate effective training for counselors across the district.

During her 20-year career in the Marine Corps, Henderson served as a drill instructor and marksmanship instructor before transitioning into positions focusing on counseling.  She was stationed in locations ranging from Parris Island to California to Japan and earned two Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medals, three Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medals and other citations for exemplary performance.  In 1990, she was honored as Parris Island’s Counselor of the Year.

After leaving the Marine Corps, she served for eight years as school-to-career counselor at the Beaufort-Jasper Academy of Career Excellence.

While serving as the lead counselor at Whale Branch Early College High School, Henderson was selected as the 2012 State Educator of the Year by the South Carolina School Resource Officer’s Organization.

“She’s much more than a counselor, almost like a mom to our kids,” Whale Branch Principal Drake said when Henderson’s statewide recognition was announced in 2012.  “She makes sure that students – and their parents, too – know what it’s going to take to graduate from high school and make plans to succeed after high school.”

Henderson has a bachelor’s degree in Interdisciplinary Studies from the University of South Carolina and a master’s degree in education from Cambridge College in Augusta, Ga.  She holds certifications as a school guidance counselor, family preservation counselor and military career and education counselor.

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Volunteers needed for Beaufort High stadium cleanup

Beaufort High’s fall sports teams, coaches, school staff and community volunteers will join Saturday morning to clean up and beautify Eagle Stadium — and more help is needed.

Organized by the Big Green Booster Club and its affiliated “Friends of the Program” led by Mike Ingram, the annual cleanup will start at 8 a.m. and end no later than noon. More people, more hands and more volunteers will mean less time is required, Ingram said.

“This is a great way for everyone to show their support for Beaufort High School and its student athletes,” Ingram said. “We have all sorts of chores and tasks to suit everyone’s ability, from picking up trash to trimming bushes to repainting the goal posts.”

Anyone interested in helping should arrive at the stadium Saturday morning, the earlier the better, Ingram said.

Wade Deaton of Sea Island Tree and Ronnie Reiselt of Southern Tree Services are providing mulch to beautify the landscaped areas around the field and stadium. Volunteers should bring rakes to help spread the mulch.

Edward Marchetti, owner of Buds & Blooms Landscaping in Beaufort, and Joe McDermott,  who owns Greengoods Nursery in Ridgeland, donated shrubs to plant around the stadium — and for that, volunteers should bring shovels, Ingram said.

“We appreciate the Booster Club organizing this and making it happen,” Beaufort High Athletics Director Jerry Linn said. “The school district helps with the big things, but having all these people come together for a stadium cleanup is part of what makes the Beaufort High family so tight. As (football) Coach (Mark) Clifford says, ‘one team, one family, one community.’”

The first home varsity football game will be held Friday, Sept. 12 against Whale Branch Early College High School.

For Saturday’s stadium cleanup, volunteers should bring, if possible, any of the following:

• Rakes to scatter mulch areas

• Blowers

• Pruning shears

• Ladders for hanging banners

• Wheel barrows

• Pitch forks

• Trash Bags

• Bow saws to cut “suckers” from oak trees

• Shovels to dig holes for new bushes

• Ties for banners and ladders

• Pickup trucks for removing trash and debris to the dump.

Plan to arrive as close to 8 a.m. as possible. Volunteers should bring their own bottled water.

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Early grade reading program successful again

According to results released in July, students in six Beaufort County schools and two Jasper County schools participating in the United Way of the Lowcountry’s Early Grade Reading Program saw increases in the reading portion of their MAP test scores.

A full 98% of Beaufort County students and 95% of Jasper County students participating in the tutoring program raised their test scores by the end of the year, with 80% of those increasing their scores by double digits.

“The scores are indicative of the success of this program in its second full year,” said Tina Gentry, United Way of the Lowcountry President and CEO. “We’re obviously thrilled with the hard work of our volunteers and the students themselves.”

A total of 309 students in St. Helena Elementary, Joseph Shanklin Elementary, Hilton Head Early Childhood Center, Hilton Head School for the Creative Arts, Red Cedar Elementary, Pritchardville Elementary, Hardeeville Elementary, and Ridgeland Elementary participated in the Early Grade Reading Program during the course of the 2013-2014 school year. Both Beaufort and Jasper County schools use MAP testing as way to assess core reading knowledge in elementary students.

The Early Grade Reading program was started in 2012 by United Way of the Lowcountry as an education initiative that aligned with a United Way Worldwide emphasis on becoming a community impact organization.  The specific goals of the program are to reduce by 50% the number of students dropping out of high school in Beaufort County (currently at 3.8%) and Jasper County (5.6%), increase to 80% the number of students reading on grade level upon entering 4th grade in both counties, and enlist 600 volunteer tutors, mentors and readers for the program.

The United Way of the Lowcountry’s Early Grade Reading Program employs curriculum approved by the South Carolina Department of Education and used approximately 200 volunteer tutors last year as well as over 20 AmeriCorps members who serve as part of an organizational grant. To increase capacity to serve, the need for more tutors for the 2014-2015 school year is ongoing.

For more information or to volunteer, contact Bethany Marcinkowski, Director of Education Impact in the United Way of the Lowcountry’s Bluffton office at 843-837-2000 or visit www.uwlowcountry.org

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RINGING IN 50 YEARS: Beaufort Academy marks its 50th anniversary at the start of this school year

By Bob Sofaly

Beaufort Academy celebrated its 50th anniversary and first day of school on Monday, Aug. 18, with an assembly of

Beaufort Academy Headmaster Stephen Schools, center, rings the school bell to officially begin the first day of school on Monday, Aug. 18. At right is former BA Headmaster Lee Bollman. Photos by Bob Sofaly.

Beaufort Academy Headmaster Stephen Schools, center, rings the school bell to officially begin the first day of school on Monday, Aug. 18. At right is former BA Headmaster Lee Bollman. Photos by Bob Sofaly.

students, faculty, parents and alumni in the school’s gym.

BA opened in the fall of 1965 under the direction of Cmdr. Charles E. Owens, Jr.

Former Headmaster Lee Bollman was the keynote speaker during Monday’s event. He described what  it was like when he came to BA as a teacher and soccer coach in 1969. A year later, Bollman was also made school’s top administrator.

He also described the school’s first computer system and how different it was compared to today’s technology.

The first day of school began with the traditional ringing of the school bell by current Headmaster Stephen Schools.

Bradi Dinkins, a first grade teacher, makes sure her students have snacks on the first day of school.

Bradi Dinkins, a first grade teacher, makes sure her students have snacks on the first day of school.

Former BA Headmaster Lee Bollman, who led from 1970 to 1990, describes  to the audience what it was like when he came to the school in the early ’70s

Former BA Headmaster Lee Bollman, who led from 1970 to 1990, describes to the audience what it was like when he came to the school in the early ’70s

 

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Local child pianist finds success with online school

At age 4, Beaufort’s Wennie Rodriguez started playing the piano, learning it so quickly that her first teacher referred to her as a “piano prodigy.” Between events, master classes and competitions, attending a brick-and-mortar elementary school like her peers proved difficult.

Wennie Rodriguez, 10, of Beaufort, studies through her online school, South Carolina Connections Academy.

Wennie Rodriguez, 10, of Beaufort, studies through her online school, South Carolina Connections Academy.

Now at 10 years old, Wennie will be entering the eighth grade this 2014-15 school year, working three grade levels above other students her age. With a thirst for knowledge and a knack for memorizing facts, Wennie needed a different kind of education to truly challenge her, said her mother, Welneliza.

Wennie is enrolled at South Carolina Connections Academy, a tuition-free virtual public school option for students in grades K-12 throughout South Carolina. She joined the online school when her mother decided to look into school options that would work with Wennie’s piano practice schedule and advanced learning abilities.

“When we were looking for schooling options for Wennie, South Carolina Connections Academy offered the flexibility we wanted, but also the support from individual teachers that we needed,” said Welneliza Rodriguez. “The flexibility is key for us. Wennie can practice piano three times a day, and still stay on top of her lessons. We also don’t have to worry about traveling because Wennie can bring the classroom with her.”

Wennie interacts with her classmates and receives instruction from her teachers in LiveLesson® sessions — a virtual classroom setting that encourages the same lively interactions of a traditional classroom, but online. Students can chat amongst themselves and even virtually raise their hands. Welneliza Rodriguez said in addition to the technology that allows Wennie to connect to her teachers and peers, she is grateful that the curriculum is challenging and tailored to Wennie’s needs.

The Rodriguez family has also found that extracurricular activities have enriched their daughter’s socialization experience. Wennie is able to connect with other students in South Carolina and across the U.S. through participation in extracurricular activities like the Math Club, Movie Club and the National Junior Honor Society.

South Carolina Connections Academy, which is authorized under state law by the South Carolina Public Charter School District, expects to serve more than 3,800 students throughout the state during the 2014-15 school year. South Carolina-certified teachers work with students and learning coaches, the student’s parent or guardian, to develop customized learning programs that address each student’s personal education needs while maintaining a curriculum that meets rigorous state education standards.

Virtual schooling is proving to be the right fit for Wennie as well as for many other students, including those who benefit from a flexible schedule, those who learn at a different pace from their peers or those who need more individualized attention. The diverse student body includes competitive athletes with rigorous schedules, previously homeschooled students, and students seeking expanded course offerings, among others.

For more about South Carolina Connections Academy, visit www.southcarolinaconnectionsacademy.com.

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School Notes

BATTERY CREEK HIGH

• Operation Ball Gown: The BCHS SADD Club is collecting formal gowns for the Marine Corps Family Team Building project “Operation Ball Gown”. This program offers gowns free to the wives of active duty Marines for use during the military ball season. Gowns of all sizes, plus accessories are needed. Gowns may be dropped off with Mrs. Grooms in the front office through September 4.

• Little Dolphin Cheer Camp: August 23, from noon to 3 p.m., check-in at 11:30 a.m. $20 per cheerleader. Contact Lydia Williams at 322-5632. Ages 5 to 12.

• The Battery Creek High School Athletics Department is selling 2014-15 Athletics season passes at half price. The tickets will be on sale through August 29 at the half price rate. See Coach Drafts or Ms. Ballenger in the front office.

• Battery Creek is proud to announce the annual BC Community Night will be held on Friday, August 29 as the varsity football team opens its 2014 home schedule with a 7:30 p.m. kickoff against the Estill Gators. Battery Creek wants to see as many community members as possible come out and help celebrate the start of the school and athletic year. Vendors may sell approved items and set up free of charge. For more information, contact athletic director John Drafts at 843-322-5574 or john.drafts@beaufort.k12.sc.us.

• Battery Creek High Parent Teacher Student Organization will be recognizing all members of the Beaufort Police Department, Beaufort Fire Department, Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office, Burton Fire Department and EMT on Sept. 11 at 6 p.m. at the McVey Performing Arts Center. All first responders and their families are invited. Contact Diane Grooms, 322-5582.

LADY’S ISLAND MIDDLE

• Last week, Lady’s Island Middle School held “Cougar Institute”.  This was an opportunity for teachers and staff to get geared up on topics like establishing positive work groups in the class room;  PBIS (Positive

LIMS teachers attend “Cougar Institute” before school started.

LIMS teachers attend “Cougar Institute” before school started.

Behavior and Intervention and Support) and how to use technology more effectively in the classroom and what technology resources are available.  Mr. Guy, eighth grade math, said of the training, “The summer institute session I was in about grammar further helped me have a better understanding to help my students write better when they are explaining. Finally, when I self-reflect on my data, I have much work to do and need to set personal goals for myself.” Mr. Hall, assistant principal said, “Cougar Institute provides a unique opportunity for our staff to participate in professional development that is specific and targeted to the needs of LIMS students.”

• All volunteers must re-register with the school district. The process is very simple, but an absolute must. The registration can be done by going on to the district website under “Parents and Students” and in the lower left hand corner is a link to “Volunteers.” You will see a button to become a volunteer and there is also a link for the Volunteer Handbook.  The district has partnered with Background Investigation Bureau (BIB) to handle the background investigations. Please contact Mr. Roberts at 843-322-3118 or barry.roberts@beaufort.k12.sc.us if you have any questions.

PARK UNIVERSITY

The Park University Beaufort Campus Center has donated 12 computer stations to the Love House Ministries.  Co-Pastor Theresa Roberts stated, “These computers will be of great benefit to Love House Ministries at-risk student tutoring and mentoring programs in Beaufort.”  For more on Park University college degree programs call 228-7052 (www.park.edu/beau) and for more on Love House Ministries programs call 525-1043.

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Apply now for spring entry into TCL nursing program

The Technical College of the Lowcountry is accepting applications until September 2 for spring 2015 entry into its associate degree in nursing (ADN) program. Classes start in January.

“Prospective students don’t have to wait until next fall to start pursuing their dreams of becoming a nurse,” health sciences dean Marge Sapp said. “The sooner students start the program, the sooner they’ll finish and be able to enter a

May 2014 associate degree nursing graduates pose before their pinning and recognition ceremony.

May 2014 associate degree nursing graduates pose before their pinning and recognition ceremony.

high-paying nursing career.”

TCL’s two-year ADN program prepares graduates to practice as registered nurses. Students experience on-campus learning using high-tech simulation equipment and receive additional hands-on practice at clinical sites located throughout Beaufort, Jasper, Hampton and Colleton counties.

“The TCL nursing program in particular is rigorous but produces extremely qualified and successful graduates, giving them the confidence they need to walk proudly into the nursing field,” nursing program director Sharon Beasley said.

TCL has campuses in Beaufort, Bluffton and Hampton. And with S.C. Lottery Tuition Assistance, South Carolina residents can pay around $850 a semester for full-time tuition, regardless of need or income.

In addition, TCL offers in-state tuition to military members and their spouses who are stationed in Beaufort and to residents of Chatham and Effingham counties in Georgia.

For more information, please call 843-525-8267 or visit www.tcl.edu/health.

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A message from School Board Chairman Bill Evans: What to expect this new school year

By Bill Evans

The summer break is coming to a close too quickly for many of our students and teachers. Here are some reminders about the start of school and some things to look for during the upcoming year.

We have a new principal at Coosa Elementary, Mr. Charles Del Forge. He comes to us with a good bit of experience from North Carolina, where he served as principal in several elementary schools. Although he has no previous experience with “The Leader in Me Program”, he has already been working with it and sees its strengths. He is personable and knowledgeable and is looking forward to meeting staff, parents and students.

Please pay close attention to the new attendance zones, they become official this year. There were changes that impacted both Coosa Elementary and Lady’s Island Elementary. Bus routes may also be changing, so please watch for information in the media or mailings from school. If you are new to the area, please get your child registered as quickly as possible, and don’t forget your immunizations!

For high school students, this is the time to pick up schedules, get books, reserve a parking space (if you qualify) and get other valuable information for the start of the school year.

During the upcoming school year, the school board will be focusing on several key new initiatives:

• The School Choice Program: During the last year, each school spent considerable time identifying a theme or instructional approach that it will be using now or in the future. Staffs have been involved with professional development throughout the summer and will continue into the fall. In January or February of 2015, the school district will host a series of community showcases around the county, giving parents and students the opportunity to view and learn more about each school’s option of choice. In February and March, parents and students will have the opportunity to make choices outside their traditional attendance zone. Please pay special attention to the dates and process for this significant change coming to our district. We are continuing to work on transportation options to support this new program of choice.

• Expanding Early Childhood: This will be the first of a three year initiative to expand early childhood opportunities for 4-year-old students. It will be a gradual expansion of our existing programs so that we might involve more students in pre-kindergarten experiences and instruction. The district will start by getting all existing programs to a full day, and then over the next two years open additional classroom space to accommodate more students.

• New Career and Technology Education (CATE) Programs: The district will begin this year improving and expanding the offerings in our CATE program. These are programs specifically designed to develop technical skills in our middle and high school students that could lead to additional training through TCL or immediate job placement through internships and cooperatives. Eventually, every high school will have several CATE focused offerings, with specific centers developed at Battery Creek High and the new high school to be built in Bluffton. These programs will be open to transfer opportunities for students from other schools within the district.

The beginning of a new school year is always exciting for students and parents. While there is still time for a trip to the beach or the mountains or a visit to relatives, please begin to prepare for the start of school. Parents, I strongly encourage you, where possible, to get involved with your child’s schooling; join the PTO or Booster Club, become a member of the School Improvement Council (SIC), or at least attend meetings to find out more about what is going on at school. All evidence clearly points to stronger student performance when parents are part of their education. Make sure you set aside a place and time at home to do school work; have your child, if they are struggling with any of their work, take advantage of the tutors at school.

Now, more than ever before, a strong education is an essential foundation to later success and a satisfying lifestyle. Make sure your high school student is looking beyond graduation to at least two years of instruction. The district’s new Building a Better Beaufort B3 Program,  developed in conjunction with the Technical College of the Lowcountry, opens the possibility for any Beaufort County graduate to attend two years at TCL tuition free.

Please enjoy the rest of your summer and I wish the very best to you all for the new school year.

Editor’s Note: Mr. Bill Evans is the School Board Representative for District 2 and Chair of the Beaufort County School Board of Education. He can be reached at 843-301-6858 or by email at bill.evans@beaufort.k12.sc.us. This article was sent courtesy of the Lady’s Island Business Professionals Association.

 

School Board Chairman Bill Evans

School Board Chairman Bill Evans

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How to be safe, stay informed this school year

It’s that time of year again that parents love but kids hate: It’s Back-To-School Time.

The First Day of School will be Monday, August 18. Everyone needs to be more cautious during their commutes in the morning and afternoon as children and buses will be navigating our streets and neighborhoods once again.

Back to School BCSOThe Beaufort County Sheriff’s Office would like to share the below listed links from the Beaufort County School District’s website, which provides a variety of Back-to-School resources for parents:

• Online student registration

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Departments/Student_Services/Online_Student_Registration_20

• Calendar for the 2014-15 school year

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/About_Us/Calendars

• School supply lists

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/files/_ocAfU_/5ab264fafc446ddb3745a49013852ec4/BCSD_Supply_list_PK-MS_2013_eng-span.pdf

• Find your school by map

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Rezoning_Information/Google_Earth_Maps

• School bus transportation

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Our_Schools/Transportation

• School uniforms

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Parents___Students/Uniform_Information

• Student Code of Conduct

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Departments/Student_Services/Student_Code_of_Conduct

• Anti-bullying app

http://saysomethingbcsd.com

• Athletics

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Departments/Student_Services/Athletics

• PTAs, PTOs and booster clubs

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Parents___Students/PTAs__PTOs____Booster_Clubs 

• Looking for volunteers!

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Parents___Students/Volunteers

• Public Information

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Departments/School_and_Community_Services/Public_Information

• Report a concern

http://www.beaufort.k12.sc.us/pages/BCSD/Community/Report_a_Concern

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