Hoke County Public Schools recently received the Green Ribbon School District Award from the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction (NCDPI) Safe and Healthy Schools Support Division and will now represent the state in national competition.
The U.S. Department of Education initiated the Green Ribbon Schools Award program in 2011 to honor schools and school districts that “exercise a comprehensive approach to creating ‘green’ environments through reducing environmental impact, promoting health, and ensuring a high-quality environmental and outdoor education to prepare students with the 21st century skills and sustainability concepts needed in the growing global economy.”
NCDPI Chief Financial Officer for Operations Ben Matthews congratulated district staff for being selected to represent North Carolina and wished them well in the national competition. “Hoke County schools’ staff and students are doing an exemplary job of reducing their environmental impact by providing green learning environments and showing students how to minimize their ecological footprints. These are lessons that will definitely pay forward,” he said.
The Green Ribbon Schools Award is the first comprehensive federal policy for schools related to environment, health and education. It describes a thoughtful vision for the nation’s schools, sets a high bar for success, and raises the profile of individual green schools and the states that encourage them.
National award recipients will be honored at a ceremony in Washington, D.C., in July. Visit the Green Ribbon Schools Award program website for more information.
School public relations professionals across the state were honored today for the products of their craft during the North Carolina School Public Relations Association’s (NCSPRA) annual Blue Ribbon Awards for Effective Communications celebration at the O. Henry Hotel in Greensboro. Included in the list of winners is Jodie Bryant, Director of Public Relations, for Hoke County Schools. Hoke County Schools received nine Blue Ribbon awards in six categories (digital media engagement, electronic media, photography, image/graphic design, publications, and special events/programs) for design, content and versatility. NCSPRA President Charlie Glazener, Executive Director of Community Relations & Communications for Asheville City Schools, said entries of the award winners rivaled the best work of public relations practitioners in any field. “Blue Ribbon Awards are the highest honor in our organization and they validate the superior work done by my colleagues this year,” Glazener said. “This roster of excellence is tangible evidence that NCSPRA's public relations professionals are among the Nation’s finest and that they are producing cutting edge communications and products that support their schools and school systems.”
To improve communication with parents and staff, Hoke County Schools will begin sending text messages using SchoolMessenger. SchoolMessenger will be used to communicate in emergency situations, provide inclement weather updates, as well as inform parents of day to day progress and school events. To begin receiving text message alerts, simply send the word Yes, via text message, to the number 67587.
Here Comes the Bus is an easy-to-use website and app that enables parents to see the location of their child’s school bus on a smartphone, tablet, or personal computer. This way, parents will know when the bus is near, so they can send their child out at just the right time. Here Comes the Bus uses global positioning system (GPS) technology to locate and track the school buses. It is powered by software from Synovia Solutions, which Hoke County Schools has been utilizing for the past two years. “Our top priority is ensuring that our students are transported to and from school safely,” said Tom Paris, Director of Transportation for Hoke County Schools. “We are constantly looking for innovative tools to improve how we serve students and communicate with parents. We are very excited to offer parents the ability to check
on the location of their child’s bus in real time.” Here Comes the Bus will allow parents to customize a map and see the location of their child’s bus at any time, as well as choose what alerts they would like to receive and how they’d like to receive them. For instance, parents can receive a push notification or email alert when their child's bus is within five minutes of the bus stop. This feature is sure to be helpful on those cold or rainy mornings. Here Comes the Bus can be accessed for free through the Here Comes the Bus website or Google Play app store. The app is secure, with the district providing parents a private ID that grants access to only their child's bus. To sign up, parents will need their student’s ID number and the school code (73721).
The Hoke County High School Symphonic Band has accepted an invitation to perform at the 2017 National Band and Orchestra Festival at Carnegie Hall in New York. Carnegie Hall is the world's largest and most prestigious Performing and Fine Arts venue. Our students have the opportunity to share the very same stage as Beyonce, The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, Duke Ellington, Michael Jackson and several other famous musical icons. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity that will take our students' musical careers to the next level. If you would like to support the band, you can go to this link to make a donation. https://www.gofundme.com/hoke-hs-band-to-carnegie-hall
The Hoke County Board of Education has approved the addition of a swim team at Hoke County High School, with future plans of adding diving and expanding the program to younger ages. The program will kick off this summer with the team participating in safety orientation, dry land conditioning, nutritional training and in-water training. Once the swim season begins, students will travel to the aquatic facilities at the University of North Carolina at Pembroke and St. Andrews University three times per week for practice.
Rhonda Blank has been hired as the coach for the swim team. Blank has worked with the UNCP swim program since 2001 and is certified in first id and CPR. She is also certified through he American Red Cross as a lifeguard and water safety instructor trainer.
The high school could also potentially offer swimming lessons for beginning to advanced swimmers, along with job training in lifeguarding, water safety and water aerobics instruction.
Hoke County High School will begin offering a barbering program to its students. Student will begin the program during their sophomore year and continue until they are eligible to sit for their certification exam after the completion of 1,528 training hours. For the first year of the program, 30 students have been accepted. Only 20 of those students will be able to continue into the more intensive second year of the program.
The high school converted a classroom near the sports’ fields into the new barbering training facility which includes barber chairs and has passed state inspections. Students will wear uniforms while in class. The program has hired instructor Christopher Parker from Miller-Motte College.
Hoke County Schools will return to regular schedule tomorrow, Tuesday, January 10. It will be slightly warmer than this morning, but still very cold. So that students may stay warm for as long as possible while waiting for the bus, our bus drivers will allow students extra time to make their way from their home or vehicle to the bus stop. This may cause some delays for our school buses.
PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that the Hoke County Board of Education will hold its monthly meeting at 12:00 PM on Wednesday, November 9, 2016 in the Board of Education Board Room, 310 Wooley Street, Raeford, North Carolina 28376.
“PLEASE NOTE the date and time change for this meeting is due to Election Day."
In the aftermath of Hurricane Matthew, many Hoke County residents continue to deal with personal loss and challenging conditions. To assist in the recovery process, the USDA and the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction are providing assistance to Hoke County Schools, as well as 33 additional North Carolina school systems impacted by a Major Disaster Declaration.
The benefits include offering meals to all students of Hoke County Schools at no charge from October 19 until November 11, 2016. During this time, each student regardless of his/her approved meal status will be allowed one breakfast and one lunch per day at no charge. Any student charged for breakfast and/or lunch between October 19 and October 28, will receive a credit for that amount on their cafeteria account. This does not include supplemental sales items. These items may continue to be purchased at the a la carte prices. All meals will continue to meet USDA guidelines. School meal menus can be found on the Hoke County Schools’ Child Nutrition Services’ website. https://sites.google.com/a/hcs.k12.nc.us/hcs-child-nutrition/breakfast-and-lunch-menuss
Starting November 14, 2016, students will return to the meal status they are currently approved for, free/reduced/full price. Parents/guardians who have not done so already, may submit an application for free or reduce priced meal benefits at any time throughout the school year. Only one application is needed per household.
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