Archive for the ‘District News’ Category

Spring test results show Knox Schools progressing; District meets over 90 percent of NCLB goals

Thursday, September 23rd, 2010

Educators in the Knox County Public Schools received a good report when reviewing last year’s results of the Kentucky Core Content Test.  Knox County is showing improvements in reading and math student proficiency according to test data.

Five Knox County schools met the federal No Child Left Behind (NCLB) accountability goals, with four others showing gains compared to the previous year.   The district met 12 of its 13 target goals, or 92.3%.  Schools meeting their goals were Central Elementary, Dewitt Elementary, GR Hampton Elementary, Girdler Elementary, and Lay Elementary.

“I am very proud of the effort of our students and teachers”, said Knox County Schools Superintendent Walter T. Hulett.  “Our students are learning at higher levels than ever before.  We will continue to hold everyone accountable to higher standards as we work on moving Knox County to the top.”

The greatest gains in test scores were made at Dewitt Elementary, which increased the number of proficient students in reading and math by over 30% based on the previous year.  Dewitt Elementary had an annual measurable objective/goal of 73.64 in reading for 2010 and exceeded that goal by scoring 79.63 (+32.78% gain).  The school also exceeded their annual measurable objective of 61.23 in math by raising the number of students proficient or better to 82.41 (+31.06% gain).  In addition, Dewitt had a novice rate of 4.14%, which was a reduction of 12.47% from 2008-2009.

Other notable gains in the school district include Central Elementary, whose reading increased by 10.14% and math by 7.8%; Flat Lick Elementary with increases of 11.83% in reading and 2.75% in math; Girdler Elementary with a gain of 1.33% in math; GR Hampton Elementary increased reading by 9.25% and math by 8.6%; Lay Elementary increased reading 7.04% and math 3.2%; Knox Middle whose reading increased 8.74% and math 4.73%; Knox Central gained 12.49% in math; and Lynn Camp increased reading proficiency by 1.17% at the elementary level and 1.09% at the middle/high school.  Lynn Camp also had a gain of 10.89% in math at the middle/high school.

NCLB data for the 2009-2010 school year shows the district and schools combined meeting a total of 108 of 122 target goals, or 89%.  In the previous school year, 2008-2009, there were 98 of 120 target goals met, or 82%.   Also, during 2008-2009, only four of the Knox County Schools met their NCLB goals.

Because of federal rules with No Child Left Behind, if a district or school receives “no” in any one category on their annual report, that district or school is considered not making annual yearly progress (AYP).   In the district report, Knox County scored a “no” in the “other” category.   This category measures high school graduation rates and gains in all subject areas tested at the elementary and middle levels, not just reading and math.  

“As a district we are taking steps to address our graduation rate”, said Superintendent Hulett.   “The district is planning on using school improvement grant funds to hire a parent liaison to assist with dropout prevention efforts.  Through the Knox Intervention System, we are identifying and assisting students who are at-risk of dropping out due to academic struggles.”

Gains in Reading

District reading scores for proficient and distinguished students rose 5.38% from the previous year.  At the same time, the percentage of students scoring novice decreased by 3.04%.   These gains along with an overall reduction of non-proficient students placed the school district in the “safe harbor” zone for their annual measurable objective in reading.   “Safe harbor” means that the district reduced the percentage of non-proficient students by 10% or more.

“The fidelity of our programs and staying on course has led to the gains in reading”, said Assistant Superintendent Marion Sowders.  “By integrating literacy across the curriculum and providing teachers with specific training, we are already on track to meet next year’s goals”.

Two major reading programs utilized in the Knox Schools are Success for All at the elementary level and Reading Edge at the middle school level.  The school district also utilizes tests from Discovery Education and common learning checks to continually monitor student progress.   Students seen needing assistance receive intervention instruction through the Knox Intervention System.

“This year we will be hiring a new literary coach through the school improvement grant”, said Sowders.  “This will help the district in making the transition to the new core standards and the challenge of new accountability in the future.  We want to be proactive instead of reactive to ensure our curriculum allows for continued gains in reading.” 

Gains in Mathematics

The Knox County School District exceeded the math target for 2010.   Proficiency rates for all students are at 61.38 for 2010; the annual measurable objective set for the district was 59.79.  

“Our elementary schools are making great progress utilizing the Everyday Math program”, said Federal Programs Coordinator Pamela Williams.  “Everyday Math is being used to motivate students as it targets their individual learning styles.  Elementary students are starting to see growth in math because it is tailored more to their needs.”

“The math programs at the middle and high school become more conceptual based which sometimes poses challenges for students”, stated Williams.  “We are working with teachers to help target the different learning styles and levels of learning at those grade levels.” 

The Everyday Math program is used in the district’s elementary schools while Connected Math is used at the middle school level.  Students in high school are beginning to use Carnegie Cognitive Math this year.

“I feel that our Math Blast celebration has also contributed to the growth in the number of proficient and distinguished students”, stated Williams.  “Each year the number of students we honor at the celebration increases.  Students are seeing the importance of math and that will carry on with them throughout school and life.”

Other improvements cited in the Knox County Schools

In addition to increases in reading and math on the Kentucky Core Content Test, high schools in the district experienced gains on the ACT which was administered to juniors last spring.

“The statewide average gain was four-tenths of a point”, stated Superintendent Hulett.  “Knox Central seen their ACT scores gain by an entire point and Lynn Camp experienced a two point increase.”

While the new statewide accountability system is still uncertain due to lack of funding by the General Assembly and failure to receive Race to the Top funds, Knox County staff is concentrating on the new push for college readiness.  

“Knox County is a forerunner in these changes.  We know that the ACT will play a huge role in future accountability, therefore we are making sure that college readiness is present throughout the curriculum”, said Hulett.

Hulett accredited the gains in ACT scores to changes made to the curriculum last year.  “Last year our staff started the process of embedding those skills into their instruction and as a result we seen one and two point gains in our ACT.”

The use of non-negotiables in Knox County is also cited as a reason for the increase in overall test results.  The district’s non-negotiables include review of previous content, known as “flashbacks”, preparation of quality lesson plans, formative and summative assessments, and participation in professional learning communities (PLCs).

“Our teachers know that they must have quality, authentic instruction planned each day”, said Assistant Superintendent Sowders.  “They must constantly review previous material and assess the current to make sure that students understand.  Teachers are also working collaboratively in their PLCs to identify where their students need additional instruction.”

“There has never been a better time to be a teacher in Knox County”, stated Superintendent Hulett.  “I am encouraged by what our staff is doing on a daily basis.  We will see the hard work pay off as test scores and student success continue to rise in Knox County.”


Knox Schools partner with Union on educator quality grant

Wednesday, September 22nd, 2010

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Union College President Ed de Rosset, Knox County Superintendent Walter T. Hulett, and Barbourville City Schools Superintendent Larry Warren recently signed letters of intent to collaborate on Kentucky’s Improving Educator Quality grant.

The official partnership agreement outlines each party’s responsibility to participate in the planning, development, and implementation of sustained, high-quality professional development activities for the faculty and/or administration of participant school systems. The grant, and the related professional development activities, will focus on integrating the new Common Core Standards for math.

The letter of intent signing was held on the Union College campus on Friday, September 10th.

School Safety Week set for September 20-24 in Knox Schools

Monday, September 13th, 2010

Click here to view proclamation
Click here to view video from proclamation signing

Students, staff, and community partners joined Supt. Hulett in proclaiming Sept 20-24 as "School Safety Week" in the Knox County Schools.

Students, staff, and community partners joined Supt. Hulett in proclaiming Sept 20-24 as "School Safety Week" in the Knox County Schools.

Educators in the Knox County School District are taking steps to ensure that their classrooms are a safe learning environment for students.

Knox Schools Superintendent Walter T. Hulett has proclaimed the week of September 20th as “School Safety Week” in the district.  Hulett was joined by several students, staff, and community partners at the proclamation signing held on Thursday, September 9th. 

“This proclamation, which has become an annual event in the Knox Schools’, reflects the seriousness with which we as a District and Board of Education give to the planning, preparing and training for emergencies”, Hulett said during the signing.

Activities conducted during school safety week are coordinated by the district’s emergency planning steering committee.  The committee meets throughout the year to review and revise emergency plans for each school.  The plans list the detailed steps staff and students should take during and after a variety of emergencies.  

“Our emergency committee is working hard at updating their school plans and preparing safety activities for students”, said Frank Shelton, Knox County School District emergency planning coordinator.  “The culminating activity will be our schools testing the various procedures that are part of their emergency plan.” 

The procedures that will be tested as a part of safety week include readiness for emergencies such as fires, tornados, earthquakes, bomb threats, and intruders in the building. 

The following chart lists the drills and the corresponding emergency procedures that will take place during school safety week:

Monday, September 20:         Fire Drill (Evacuation Procedure)

Tuesday, September 21:        Tornado Drill (Severe Weather Safe Area Procedure)

Wednesday, September 22:   Earthquake Drill (Drop, Cover, and Hold Procedure)

Thursday, September 23:       Lockdown Drill (Lockdown Procedure)

Friday, September 24:            Bomb Drill (Evacuation and Reverse Evacuation Procedure)

“We are encouraging our teachers to led discussions with their students about the seriousness of being prepared for emergencies”, said Shelton.  “Not only is it important at school, but students should also know what to do if an emergency happens at their home.”

Knox County Schools’ school safety week is a part of the nationwide observance of preparedness month that coincides with the national Ready.gov campaign.  For more information about preparing for emergencies at home and fun learning activities for kids, visit www.ready.gov.

Knox County students to benefit from science scholarships at Union

Thursday, August 12th, 2010

Click here for video from press conference

Union President Edward de Rosset announces a half-million dollar grant from the National Science Foundation. The grant provides scholarships for southeastern Kentucky students who want to major in math, biology or chemistry.  Superintendent Walter T. Hulett was present for the grant announcement.

Union President Edward de Rosset announces a half-million dollar grant from the National Science Foundation. The grant provides scholarships for southeastern Kentucky students who want to major in math, biology or chemistry. Superintendent Walter T. Hulett was present for the grant announcement.

Union College has received a half-million dollar grant to fund scholarships for students in southeastern Kentucky.

The grant was awarded by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The purpose of the grant is to support southeastern Kentucky students with academic promise and financial need who wish to study math, biology and chemistry at Union.

Union College officials say the grant supports students in a variety of ways.

“The grant not only helps students manage the cost of college, but provides other forms of financial support, such as funded internships and stipends,” said President de Rosset. “The goal is to offset their need for paid employment so they can focus on their studies, research, and planning for post-graduate study or employment.”

Dan Covington, Ph.D., one of the grant’s program directors, says support is also offered through mentoring, tutoring, advising, participation in a learning community, career and graduate school counseling and experiential learning. Covington is chair of Union’s Department of Natural Sciences and a professor of biology.

The grant provides each participating student with a scholarship in the range of $5,000 – $10,000 per year, based on financial need. The scholarship will be combined with other forms of state, federal and institutional aid. To be eligible, students must be residents of southeastern Kentucky, demonstrate financial need and academic promise, and plan to major in math, biology or chemistry. Transfer students from community colleges are also eligible.

Since the NSF scholarship is intended to increase the number of underrepresented populations who study and work in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, scholarship applicants must also belong to one of the demographic groups identified by NSF as underrepresented: the economically disadvantaged, first-generation college students, women and/or minorities.

Union College will begin the recruitment process this academic year. Admissions staff will work with regional high school and junior college teachers and counselors to make students aware of the scholarship program. The first scholarship students will enroll in the fall semester of 2011.

NSF is an independent federal agency that works to support the progress of science around the country. The agency receives approximately 40,000 proposals each year, of which about 11,000 are funded.

Article submitted by Union College Communications Department

Knox Schools’ Transportation Dept. given ‘pat on back’ by State at annual conference in Louisville

Tuesday, July 27th, 2010
The Knox County Schools’ Transportation Department received a special award for its improvement in recent years at the 2010 Annual Pupil Transportation Conference held in Louisville in July. Representing Knox County were, from left, Harlan Taylor, Bill Abner, Joe Goodin, Farrel Riley, Dallas Mills Jr., Knox Transportation Director Jeff Ketcham, Robert Carrier, Steve Jones, Harold Riley, and Supt. Walter T. Hulett.

The Knox County Schools’ Transportation Department received a special award for its improvement in recent years at the 2010 Annual Pupil Transportation Conference held in Louisville in July. Representing Knox County were, from left, Harlan Taylor, Bill Abner, Joe Goodin, Farrel Riley, Dallas Mills Jr., Knox Transportation Director Jeff Ketcham, Robert Carrier, Steve Jones, Harold Riley, and Supt. Walter T. Hulett.

The Kentucky Department of Education recently honored the Knox County School District’s Transportation Department for “dedication to the Knox County Schools and the Commonwealth of Kentucky.”

The special presentation was made during the K.D.E.’s 2010 Annual Pupil Transportation Conference held July 11-14 in Louisville. The award was presented by longtime state Transportation Program Manager Roy Prince, who spoke about Knox County’s “improvement” in recent years.

“I’ve been coming down to Knox County for the past 20 years,” Prince said, “but the transportation department has had a lot of challenges…and we were very concerned about their running an efficient program.”

However, things are “so much better” in recent years, Prince said. Among other observations, he noted that Knox’s maintenance technicians are “making sure that buses are ready” before they leave the garage and that “training of drivers is going on” in a consistent manner.

“It’s not perfect, but it’s so much better,” Prince said.

Representing Knox County at the conference were Transportation Director Jeff Ketcham and Supt. Walter T. Hulett, in addition to District Area Coordinator Dallas Mills Jr., new West Knox Area Coordinator Bill Abner, head mechanic Harold Riley, mechanics Joe Goodin, Farrel Riley and Steve Jones, and driver trainers Harlan Taylor and Robert Carrier.

In a recent interview, Superintendent Hulett commented, “It is my pleasure to work with our transportation department. This dedicated group does many additional jobs to see that our district is successful and all children are safely transported to and from school.”

Transportation Director Jeff Ketcham was also pleased. “I don’t think they give this award every year,” he said. “Mr. Prince told me they’ve been impressed the past couple of years, and he felt like he needed to bring to everyone’s attention the improvements made in Knox County.

“He was not saying we’re the best transportation department,” Ketcham noted, “but that we’ve shown great improvement, the way I took it, and it was wasn’t just me as director or the mechanics, it was Knox County’s entire transportation department.

“You hate to pat yourself on the back,” he said, “but it was a big honor. I felt it was something well deserved, not necessarily me, but these folks up here at the Garage and on the buses, they deserve it.”

The Knox County Schools’ Transportation Department was also to be recognized for the state award at the July 27th meeting of the Knox County Board of Education.

According to Transportation Department records, Knox County buses travel approximately 4,000 road miles each school day while transporting some 3,000 students. The buses travel on 74 regular bus routes.

The Department has 74 full-time drivers, five full-time relief drivers, 34 bus monitors, five mechanics, five driver trainers, five bus garage personnel, 15 substitute drivers, and nine substitute monitors.

Mechanics service buses every 20 working days in the six-bay and two-lift garage located on Old Pineville Road at Boone Height. There’s also a parts room and offices on the first floor and training room upstairs.

New Assistant Superintendent says Knox School District has ‘great momentum’ right now, is ‘building something great’

Friday, July 23rd, 2010

marion IMG_2335JULY 23, 2010 – The Knox County School District has employed a new assistant superintendent, effective July 1st.

Marion Sowders, who served the Knox County Schools as District School Improvement Coordinator for the past school year, joins the leadership team of Supt. Walter T. Hulett and Asst. Supt. Kim Merida.

“Mr. Sowders’s extensive experience in school reform makes him a natural fit for all the hard work that is taking place in Knox County,” said Superintendent Hulett. “He will complement Mr. Merida and me and be a valuable member of our leadership team. I look forward to working with Mr. Sowders as we move Knox County forward.”

Sowders was a Highly Skilled Educator (H.S.E.) for the Kentucky Department of Education for the four years prior to his return to the Knox County Schools. Earlier he worked in the Knox County Schools as a teacher at Girdler and principal at Boone Elementary. Altogether he has served as an educator for 18 years.

As assistant superintendent, Sowders assumes many duties and responsibilities, many of which he handled this past year. As assistant superintendent he will oversee the following:

• SBDM (School Based Decision Making) Councils

• KTIP (Kentucky Teacher Internship Program)

• Response-To-Intervention program, which involves three tiers of academic assistance to students at each school in the district

• All student achievement data, including that derived from the Common Assessments

• All district curriculum

• Board policies and procedures

• Certified employee evaluation plans

• School and district improvement plans

• Gifted and Talented program

Sowders, in a recent interview, acknowledges that his job is challenging, but said, “There’s a lot of work to be do, but I’ve never been afraid of hard work. That’s one thing my parents instilled in me – a strong work ethic.” Sowders’ parents are Louise Sowders of Barbourville, a former Head Start teacher, and the late Bill Sowders, a 46-year employee of Wiser Oil. “I’ve watched them work hard,” he said, “and anything they’ve had was from hard work, and I think hard work paid off.”

“This new job is exciting to me,” Sowders said. “It’s like a dream come true. You feel like you’re going to be part of building something great.

“We have great momentum right now. I think that we are focused and that we are increasing our accountability on all levels and are truly trying to put student learning first.”

The “momentum” that Sowders speaks about includes the recent restructuring of West Knox and Lynn Camp into a K-12 system, a move that he feels will reap great benefits for the students and the school family and entire district; the recent addition to the Central Office staff of a recipient of the Kentucky Teacher of the Year Award and Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching; the eagerly anticipated addition of four new district coaches for language arts and mathematics through a three-year School Improvement Grant (SIG); the hiring of a School Energy Manager through a two-year grant; the recent recognition of the district’s transportation department by the Kentucky Department of Education for improvement; the leadership exhibited by Superintendent Walter T. Hulett and staff; and more.

“The excitement is obvious just in the number of applicants we’ve had over the summer,” Sowders went on to say. “They’re literally in the hundreds.”

While many of these applicants are recent college graduates, “a lot are people under contract in other districts who were just hearing about the things going on in the Knox County schools,” Sowders said. “I’ve had teachers come to me who’ve said, ‘I want to grow professionally. I want to be in a place where I can grow, where there’s excitement.’

“We’ve interviewed a lot of people from other districts, and we’re looking for the best. Our students deserve it, and we’ve put in long hours interviewing these people and screening the applicants, but we feel like we will have a big pay-off. We have some quality people coming in joining our already strong staffs.”

A native Knox Countian, Sowders attended Flat Lick Elementary and graduated from Knox Central High School in 1989. He then earned his bachelors and masters degrees and Rank I certification from Union College. This education included certifications in middle school language arts and social studies, middle grades education, school principal-ship, and supervision of instruction. Sowders also added his superintendency certification through the University of Kentucky.

His first teaching position was at Girdler Elementary, where he taught 7th and 8th grade language arts for four years. He then served for eight years as principal at the former Boone Elementary School before taking on the job of Highly Skilled Educator with the Kentucky Department of Education.

In that job, he worked with Mary Todd Elementary and Winburn Middle in Fayette County and with Wayne County Middle School, where he achieved “probably my greatest success” and saw the school’s test scores improve from the 60’s to the 90’s. He also served on H.S.E. teams that worked in Bell County, Clay County, and Knox County, which he also served for a full semester while helping to plan for the Knox County Middle School.

During his H.S.E. tenure, Sowders teamed with another Highly Skilled Educator, Lori Hollen of Manchester, to establish a company called “BRITE Ideas,” which stands for “Bringing Relevant Information to Educators.” This company created its own professional learning community (PLC) model and has trained over 60 school districts in Kentucky, including Knox County, which uses BRITE’s four-week rotation model.

Sowders said he would like to acknowledge his family for the part they’ve played during his career. “My family has been a big part of my success and has been very supportive of me all the way through.” Besides his parents, this family includes his brothers Larry, Darrell and John and sister Debra Brock.

His “biggest constant supporter,” however, is his wife Lana, who is the curriculum coach at Knox Central High School and also the District’s first National Board Certified Teacher. Marion and Lana’s daughter, Delaney, is a rising third grade student at Central Elementary.

“I also appreciate all those in the past that invested in me, including previous district leadership,” Sowders said.

Knox County Schools hire energy manager, part of statewide push to cut costs

Thursday, July 8th, 2010

CTaylorJuly 7, 2010 – Growing from a pilot in a few buildings in 2007, Kentucky’s push to make its public schools more energy efficient – and return resulting savings to classroom instruction – now will impact more than 1,000 schools starting this month. And the Knox County School District is one of the districts leading the way in the cost-cutting initiative.

Superintendent Walter T. Hulett announced that Christopher A. Taylor has accepted the position as district energy manager. Taylor will work in schools locally as well as in the Bell County, Barbourville and Pineville school districts while collaborating in a regional partnership.

“At a time when budgets are tight for schools and households alike, I’m very excited that our school board has chosen to join this effort to reduce utility expenses,” said Hulett. “Two of the pilot districts – Bullitt County and Kenton County – have recorded hundreds of thousands of dollars in savings. Even a portion of such savings would be wonderful.”

Taylor has 11 years of experience in the electric utility industry, working in positions from energy advisor to design engineer for South Kentucky RECC in Somerset. He has worked extensively with automated facilities management or GIS (geographic information system) and implementing energy programs and policy, and electric facilities design within the electric utility industry.

“I’m really excited about being here and believe in what we’re trying to do,” Taylor said. “This is something that will be beneficial to the districts as far as saving money and being fiscally responsible and keeping more teachers working.”

Taylor is proficient in a variety of software programs used in the industry, including Ersi ArcGIS and extensions, ArcView, Arc pad, and AutoCAD and has assisted in compliance with OSHA, DOT, EPA and PSC regulations.

A 1993 graduate of Whitley County High School, Taylor attended Eastern Kentucky University where he majored in geography, whose curriculum included GIS, database management, project management, and other geotechnical procedures. He currently resides on Hwy. 511 in the Rockholds area of Whitley County.

Statewide, Taylor joins 34 other energy managers who have been hired to create and implement energy efficiency practices in 130 districts statewide. The jobs are funded in part through the School Energy Managers Project (SEMP), a partnership of the Kentucky School Boards Association and the Kentucky Department of Energy Development and Independence.

Energy managers are employed by a lead agency but work in all partnering districts. The 29 lead agencies (28 districts and the Green River Regional Education Cooperative in Bowling Green) share $2.5 million in federal stimulus grant funds over the next two years. The grant covers up to 77 percent of salary and benefits in the first year and approximately 50 percent in the second year. All 130 districts share the remaining costs, based on the number of schools per district.

Ron Willhite, SEMP director for the school boards association, said the training is heavily designed to educate the energy managers on resources they may call upon in their work.

“Expertise in facility energy practices exists from the National Energy Education Development Program, the Green and Healthy Schools initiative and the Kentucky Energy Efficiency Program for Schools at the University of Louisville,” Willhite said. “These programs, plus the districts in the pilots, have people with the skills to help the new energy managers hit the ground running.

“We want the impact of this program to go beyond school walls,” he said. “For example, schools in Kenton, Muhlenberg and Nelson counties and the educational co-op have energy curriculum coordinators. We want students and staff to take energy lessons home and help their families to make wise energy choices. We believe these cost savings can be realized all across the state.”

Important student dress code changes for 2010-2011

Friday, June 11th, 2010

At its June 7th meeting, the Knox County Board of Education unanimously approved a new student handbook that includes two new measures strengthening the student dress code and one measure giving more options to students and parents.

Beginning this August, when school resumes, students in the Knox County Schools will no longer be allowed to wear any clothing with holes or tears, a style of clothing that has become increasingly popular among teenagers.

Students had been allowed to have holes or tears in their clothes but not above the knee if they were “revealing.”

Also, when school re-opens in August, skirts, dresses, pants or shorts must all reach the knee or below for students in grades 5 and up, regardless of whether there are leggings involved.

Representatives of the student handbook committee, which recommended the above measures to the school board, said that students were wearing leggings with increasingly shorter skirts, dresses, pants or shorts. This met the terms of the regulation but not its intent, they said.

Finally, in a measure granting more options to students and parents, all references to backpacks were eliminated from the student handbook, except for students attending the Knox Learning Academy.

Previously, the regulation for the general student population was that all backpacks had to be mesh, clear or transparent. However, administrators, citing bags carried by athletic team members and others, requested doing away with the backpack regulation altogether.

Backpacks may now be of the students’ and parents’ choosing; however, administrators retain the authority to prohibit any clothing or article “warranting safety concerns.”

Literacy Council gears up for Reading Celebration on Thursday, May 6th

Monday, May 3rd, 2010
Micah Corey, a student at Barbourville High School, had the winning entry in the Knox County Literacy Council’s T-shirt artwork design contest. The contest is held in conjunction with the annual Reading Celebration.

Micah Corey, a student at Barbourville High School, had the winning entry in the Knox County Literacy Council’s T-shirt artwork design contest. The contest is held in conjunction with the annual Reading Celebration.

Finals plans for this Thursday’s (May 6th) 7th Annual Reading Celebration were released this week, including the names of all sponsors, community partners, and school theme rooms.

The annual celebration attracts hundreds of top student readers from Barbourville, Knox County and St. Camillus schools. The host site this year will be Lynn Camp Middle/High School. The event is sponsored by the Knox County Literacy Council.

The celebration, whose theme this year is “Hooked on Reading,” “kicks off” at 6 p.m. with a ceremony in the Lynn Camp Auditorium. Among those scheduled to be recognized are sponsors, visiting authors, this year’s theme art winner, and top student readers.

The names of the top student readers will be printed in the program, which will be distributed for the ceremony. Students present will be recognized on stage and presented an award.

This year’s theme art winner is Micah Corey, a student at Barbourville City School. Other finalists are LeAnthony Castill of Knox Central, Marcus Todd of Barbourville Middle School, Kristen Pedersen and Lauren Pedersen of St. Camillus Academy.

A main attraction of the annual celebration is the individual school reading theme rooms, all of which will be located in the high school or main wing section of Lynn Camp. Here’s the breakdown for each school:

Barbourville – Hooked on Reading – The Sport of Champions – Room 209

Central Elementary – The Three Little Fish and the Big Bad Shark by Ken Geist – Room 211

Dewitt – One Fish, Two Fish / Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss – Room 212

Flat Lick – How I Became A Pirate by Melinda Long – Room 215

Girdler - Hooked on Adventure Reading – Room 216

G.R. Hampton – Bright Stanley and the Cave Monster by Matt Buckingham – Room 218

Knox County Middle – Among the Hidden by Margaret Pedderson Haddix – Room 219

Jesse D. Lay – Peter Pan by J. M. Barrie – Room 220

West Knox – Barnyard Dane by Sandra Boynton – Room 221

Knox Central and Lynn Camp – Fishing by David Armentrout – Hallway

Visiting authors this year are Lynwood Montell and Nancy Allen Kelley, who will be available to discuss, sell, and autograph copies of their work.

Several community partners will provide displays. These include Knox County Community Education, Knox County Adult Education & Family Literacy, Knox County Extension Service, Knox County EMS, Forcht Bank, USDA District Conservation & Farm Service Agency, Knox County Health Department, Cash Express, and KCEOC.

The Knox County Literacy Council also released the names of the sponsors of the 7th Annual Reading Celebration. They are as follows: Truseal Technologies, GFWC/KFWC Barbourville Junior Woman’s Study Club, Chesapeake Gas, Forcht Bank, Knox Family Medicine, Job Shop/Finley’s of London, Books-A-Million, Flavorich, Lay Tree & Brush Company, Inc., Brother’s Car Wash, Charley Dixon Jr., Knox County Attorney, Commercial Bank, and Jack-n-Jill Day Care.

Marcus Todd, a 7th grader at Barbourville Middle School, was a finalist in the T-shirt artwork design contest.

Marcus Todd, a 7th grader at Barbourville Middle School, was a finalist in the T-shirt artwork design contest.

Please plan to attend the 7th Annual Reading Celebration at Lynn Camp Middle/High School on Thursday evening, May 6th, 2010. For more information, contact Knox County Literacy Council representative Claudia Greenwood at the Knox County Attorney’s Office (546-9515). Other co-chairmen are Pamela M. Williams of the Knox County Schools and Kay Dixon of Barbourville Independent.

 

 

LeAnthony Castill, a senior at Knox Central, was a finalist in the T-shirt artwork design contest for the Reading Celebration.

LeAnthony Castill, a senior at Knox Central, was a finalist in the T-shirt artwork design contest for the Reading Celebration.

 

Kristen Pedersen of St. Camillus Academy was a finalist in the T-shirt artwork design contest.

Kristen Pedersen of St. Camillus Academy was a finalist in the T-shirt artwork design contest.

Lauren Pedersen of St. Camillus Academy was a finalist in the T-shirt artwork design contest sponsored by the Knox County Literacy Council.

Lauren Pedersen of St. Camillus Academy was a finalist in the T-shirt artwork design contest sponsored by the Knox County Literacy Council.

 

Knox Board honors students and staff at April meeting

Thursday, April 29th, 2010

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Central Elementary’s preschool class of Jessica Penn led the Pledge of Allegiance at the April 27th meeting of the Knox County Board of Education.






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The Knox County School District’s Spotlight Reader for the month of April is Megan Patterson, a sixth grader from Central Elementary. Megan was introduced by her teacher, Marti Partin. She read Dr. Seuss’s Hurrah for “Diffen Doofer Day.”





  

 

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The Lynn Camp Lady Wildcats, led by Coach Richard Jones and Asst. Coach Michelle Lewallen, finished as runner-up in the 51st District Tournament and were honored by the Knox School Board on April 27th. In a recent comment, Coach Jones said, “Our season was a struggle, but I’m really proud of how the team came together at the end of the year and put everything behind them.”

 

 

IMG_1234Also honored were Regional Elementary Governor’s Cup Winners.
The Future Problem Solving Team at Lay Elementary School captured first place in the region. The team consisted of Coach Lisa Taylor and the students Madison Marsee, Anna Callihan, Chelsea Adams, Cassidy West, Meghan Mills, Ethan Strong, Brandon Oaks, Cara Mills, Hallea Rae Barnhill, Cassie Warren, and Haylee Vaughn.

 


IMG_1245Others honored for their high finish at the regional Govenor’s Cup were:
– Lay School – Tanner Wells tied for second in the language arts assessment, Brett Messer tied for fifth in mathematics. Logan Owens was fifth in social studies. Incidentally Lay Elementary recorded Knox’s best overall performance, earning 13 points to finish third out of 17 schools in competition. Lay’s total was just one point shy of Whitley Central Intermediate School, which finished second overall with 14 points.
– West Knox – Andrew Jones captured first place in math and was second in social studies.
– Girdler – Carrie Beth Bargo was second in composition, while teammate Joshua Hacker was third in science.
– G.R. Hampton – Abram Mills tied for fifth in mathematics
– Flat Lick – Kirstin Edwards tied for fifth in language arts.


IMG_1258T.J. Melton
,  a seventh grader at the Knox County Middle School, was honored for finishing third in the state in social studies. The only two students finishing ahead of him were a Pikeville student who answered 47 out of 50 questions correctly, and a Louisa Middle School student, who answered 44 questions correctly. T.J. also answered 44 questions correctly but answered one less question correctly in the second 10-question tiebreaker round.  T.J. Melton is the son Tammy and Randy Gray of Barbourville and Tim and Jennifer Melton of Barbourville.

 

IMG_1264The Knox County Board of Eduation also honored Odyssey of the Mind winners at the state level that now advance to the World Finals in late May in Lansing, Mich. Odyssey of the Mind is a creative problem-solving competition in which team members work together to solve a predefined problem (the Long Term problem); and present their solution to the problem. They must also generate spontaneous answers to a problem they have not seen before.

Knox County teams have long excelled in this kind of competition and annually win at the state level and send students to the World Finals. Locally, this program is coordinated by the district’s two gifted and talented teachers, Billie Ferguson and Mary Hammons.

Knox County had six teams to excel at the Kentucky State Odyssey of the Mind Competition held in late March on the campus of Eastern Kentucky University. These teams are as follows:

1) Knox Central’s Team, coached by Victoria Pope and Shairon Miller, won first place in Problem 1: Nature Trail’R. Team members are Jackie Dean, Jake Pope, Marissa Wagers, Paige Gibson, Kimber Gray, Justin Miller, and Tyler Adams.

2) Knox Central’s Team, coached by Melissa Buchanan, won first place in Problem 2: The Gift of Flight. Team members are Justin Miller, Jimmy Hall, Tyler Dunn, Amanda Stark, Natasha Buchanan, and Bethany Bargo. Natasha Buchanan won one of two National Scholarships presented at the competition, while Bethany Bargo won one of two State Scholarships presented.

3) Knox County Middle School’s Team, coached by Brenda Taylor and Sherri Hammons, won first place in Problem 1: Nature Trail’R at the middle grades level. Team members are Mollie Pope, Tyler Miles, Rachel Hudson, Cody Gray, Lauren Hammons, Taylor Logan, and Keatton Ferguson. This same team members and same coaches also won first place and defeated seven other top teams in Problem 3: Discovered Treasures.

4) Girdler Elementary’s Division I Team (elementary grades), coached by Kim Chesnut and Melody Lambo, finished in second place in Problem 5: Food Court. It also won the coveted Renatra Fusca award for creativity. Team members are Nicholas Gibson, Jathan Caldwell, Matthew Rose, Madison Gibson, Carrie Beth Bargo, Lucas Lambo, and Trey Chesnut.

5) Girdler’s Division II Team (middle grades), coached by Donna Welch and Sherri Hammons, finished in second place in Problem 5: Food Court. Team members are Hannah Riley, Hannah Owens, Ricki Griffith, Becky Welch, Landon Hammons, Madason Thomas, and Mikaela Rhodes.

IMG_1287The Knox School Board also honored a Knox County teacher – Dena Cole of Lay Elementary - who is known at high levels in the state for her knowledge about the writing process. This teacher was one of only 11 teachers selected statewide last year to participate in the Kentucky Department of Education’s Program Review for Writing. This review was implemented as part of a new assessment and accountability model being called for in Senate Bill 1 which was passed in March 2009.

The Program Review for Writing draft statement is now posted on the KDE’s website to assist schools and districts in improving their programs. It is also being piloted in several schools across the state.

Ms. Cole was honored by the board several years ago when she achieved the status of National Board Certified Teacher. Among other achievements, she has served as co-director of the Mountain Writing Project and as a State Middle School Writing Consultant for KDE for three years.

IMG_1294Also honored during the Board’s Math Moment was West Knox instructional assistant Debbie Earnest.  Knox School Improvement Coordinator Marion Sowders cited her valuable contributions to teaching mathematics in the lab and classroom, as well as her relationships with her students.

Knox Middle’s T.J. Melton wins 3rd at State Governor’s Cup

Friday, April 2nd, 2010
T.J. Melton and Governor Beshear

T.J. Melton and Governor Beshear

For what is thought to be the first time ever, a Knox County student has won a top honor in the annual Governor’s Cup State Finals.

T.J. Melton, a 7th grader at the Knox County Middle School, finished third in the written assessment for social studies at the 2010 Governor’s Cup State Finals for the Middle Grades held in Louisville March 13-15.

The only two students finishing ahead of him were Ammad Mansoor of Pikeville High School, who answered 47 out of 50 questions correctly, and Tanner Bowen of Louisa Middle School, who answered 44 questions correctly.

T.J. also answered 44 correctly, but answered one less question correctly in the second 10-question tiebreaker round with Tanner Bowen.

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear was present during the awards ceremony and posed for a photo with each individual winner, including T.J., in the Top Ten. For complete results in social studies testing for the middle grades at the state level visit this site:

http://www.kaac.com/asap/finalresults/state/event.asp?gl=1&id=1

About his finish, T.J. said, “I was surprised. There were 10 places and they named all 10 at once in no particular order and kept on calling names. I figured I hadn’t done well because my name was the very last one called. I was really nervous about it.”

One question that occurred in the regular assessment that T.J. wishes he could re-answer involved identifying Kentucky’s Commissioner of Agriculture.

T.J. MeltonT.J. wasn’t sure of the correct answer, and thinking it was a trick question, because of Richie Farmer’s last name, selected “Hal Rogers” instead.

The five other questions he answered incorrectly involved identifying details about small, lesser known countries.

Asked how he knows so much about history and geography, T.J. said he reads a lot. “I don’t know. It’s just a fun subject for me.” His second favorite subject is science.

Asked about future plans, T.J. said two careers that interest him are archaeology or being an architect.

At the Knox County Middle School, he is a straight “A” student and is a member of the Academic Team. He’s also in the process of joining the Beta Club.

T.J. Melton is the son Tammy and Randy Gray of Barbourville and Tim and Jennifer Melton of Barbourville.

Knox elementary students excel in regional Governor’s Cup

Monday, March 29th, 2010

Regional 26 Elementary

Students from five elementary schools in the Knox County School System won top honors at the Region 26 Elementary Governor’s Cup Competition held this past weekend in McCreary County.

Jesse D. Lay Elementary recorded Knox’s best overall performance, earning 13 points to finish third out of 17 schools in competition.  Lay’s total was  just one point shy of Whitley Central Intermediate School, which finished second overall with 14 points.

Eight of Lay’s points were earned through its first-place finish in Future Problem Solving. Team members are Madison Marsee, Cassie Warren, Haylee Vaughn, Hallae Rae Barnhill, and Meghan Mills. Lisa Taylor is coach.

Lay’s Tanner Wells tied for second in the language arts assessment, and Brett Messer tied for fifth in mathematics.

West Knox’s Andrew Jones captured first place in math and was second in social studies.

Girdler’s Carrie Beth Bargo was second in composition, while teammate Joshua Hacker was third in science.

Lay’s Logan Owens was fifth in social studies.

G.R. Hampton’s Abram Mills tied for fifth in mathematics, and Flat Lick’s Kirstin Edwards tied for fifth in language arts.

The regional Governor’s Cup is the highest level of competition for elementary students, unlike the regionals for middle grades and high school students, who can advance to the State.

The Knox County Board of Education will honor the District’s regional elementary winners at the upcoming board meeting later in April.

Board of Education honors students and staff at March meeting

Thursday, March 25th, 2010

IMG_0877westknoxpledge

 

West Knox preschool and kindergarten students led the Pledge of Allegiance at the March 23rd meeting of the Knox County Board of Education. Nickea Tye is West Knox’s preschool teacher, and Karen Brown, Lisa Brown, Ruby Elliott and Tracy Froelich are the kindergarten teachers.

 

 

IMG_0887spotlightreaderandteachers

 

The Knox County School District’s Spotlight Reader for March was Drew Tuttle from West Knox Elementary, who read “Bandages.” He’s shown with teachers Nikki Hammons (Title I coordinator) and Sarah Pietrowski (Reading Recovery teacher).

 

IMG_0890spotlightpresentation

 

Spotlight Reader Drew Tuttle of West Knox is shown being honored by School Board member Kenneth Crawford. Drew’s grandmother, Barbara Tuttle, is at right.

 

 

IMG_0895austinsprinkles

 

Austin Sprinkles, a freshman at Knox Central, was fifth in social studies at the regional Governor’s Cup. He’s shown with School Board member Carla Jordan. Austin now advances to state competition. Austin is the son of Kelly and Amy Sprinkles of Barbourville.

 

 

IMG_0899amandastark

 

Amanda Stark, a Knox Central junior, captured first place in composition at the regional Governor’s Cup Competition and now advances to the State. Board member Carla Jordan, left, does the honors at March 23rd meeting. Amanda is the daughter of Danny and Sherry Stark of Barbourville. Not pictured is K.C. sophomore Kimber Gray, who was fourth at the regional in composition.

 

IMG_0931teacherawardsgroup

 

Supt. Walter T. Hulett is shown with Knox County’s three recipients of the 2010 Excellence in Teaching Award presented annually at Campbellsville University. From left are Vickie Jackson of West Knox, Beth Hopper of Knox Middle School, and Terri Casey of Knox Central.

 

IMG_0905vickiejackson

 

West Knox reading teacher Vickie Jackson was honored as the 2010 recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award for elementary (P-5) teachers. At left is Supt. Walter T. Hulett. Asked earlier what makes a great teacher, she said, “First and foremost is the caring for the student, caring for their family and for their community, not just what goes on academically but what goes on in their lives.”

 

IMG_0915bethhopper

 

Knox Middle School science teacher Beth Hopper was honored as the 2010 recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award for the middle grades (6-8) teachers. At left is Supt. Walter T. Hulett. Asked earlier about her approach in teaching, she said, “I want the students to know that I care about them, that they are in a safe place, that if they make a mistake, it’s no big deal. If it’s wrong, okay, we’ll fix it, this is why it’s wrong.”

IMG_0926terricasey

 

Knox Central algebra teacher Terri Casey was honored as the 2010 recipient of the Excellence in Teaching Award for high school  (9-12) teachers. At left is Supt. Walter T. Hulett. Asked earlier what makes a good teacher, she said, “I don’t think the teacher is what makes a good teacher, as much as who and what they are surrounded by.” Mrs. Casey is from Missouri, where she was the Waynesville School District Teacher of the Year in 1987 and 1992.

IMG_0938mathmoment

 

Knox Central freshmen algebra teacher Terri Casey was honored during the Math Moment portion of the School Board meeting. At left is Marion Sowders, District School Improvement Coordinator. 

 

 

IMG_0949kcmiddleteam

 

Only a few members of the KCMS boys basketball team were able to be present at the Board meeting for special recognition due to a baseball game previously scheduled. The 7th grade team was regional winner and runner-up in the state. The 8th grade team was regional winner and reached the Sweet Sixteen in the state tournament.

 IMG_0954kcmiddlecoaches

 

KCMS coaches Jeremy Ledford, left, and Steve Abner, right, told the School Board about the success of the Knox County Middle School’s boys’ basketball program this year. The program is fast becoming the premier program in this part of the state.

 

IMG_0942kc team and banner

 

Members of the Knox Central Boys Basketball Team were recognized by the Knox County School Board for winning the 51st District Tournament.

 

 

IMG_0947kcballteam2

 

Members of the 2009-2010 K.C. Panthers display the banner that now denotes the 51st District championship in 2010.

 

 

IMG_0946kccoachevans

 

 

Knox Central boys basketball coach Brian Evans said he was proud of his team, which was playing its best ball at the end of the season when it won the 51st District Tournament.

Knox County Art Show winners announced

Tuesday, March 23rd, 2010
Winners in the Knox County Art Show contest were recognized on Monday, March 22, at First United Methodist Church in Barbourville.   Click on the photo to view additional photos from the award ceremony.

Winners in the Knox County Art Show contest were recognized on Monday, March 22, at First United Methodist Church in Barbourville. Click on the photo to view additional photos from the award ceremony.

The GFWC/KFWC Barbourville Junior Woman’s Study Club is proud to announce the winners of the 2010 Knox County Art Show held annually in the spring as part their celebration of Youth Art Month. 

The art show was held March 22 at the First United Methodist Church.  An awards ceremony was held at the church on Monday, March 22, to recognize the honorable mention thru first place winners.  Participants and parents were welcomed.  Certificates were presented to winners in each category preschool thru twelfth grade by the Junior Study Club officers.  A new category was added this year entitled “Guided Art” for those who are taking special art instructed classes.  All participants received a certificate and participation ribbon. 

There were 160 entries from schools in the community, including Knox County Schools, Barbourville City Schools and St. Camillus.  A reception was held immediately following the ceremony, hosted by the GFWC/KFWC Barbourville Woman’s Club.  The best of show winners will be on display in the main lobby of Commercial Bank all week. 

Sponsors of this year’s art show were the GFWC/KFWC Barbourville Junior Woman’s Study Club, the GFWC/KFWC Barbourville Woman’s Study Club, the First United Methodist Church, Commercial Bank and Knox County Community Education.

GUIDED ART WINNERS:

2nd Grade:
HM   Emma Ledington – Central
3rd     Lucy Robinson – Barbourville
2nd     Taylor Hampton – Barbourville
1st      Zachary Blevins– Lay       

 

3rd Grade:
2nd     Marlee Kate Miller – Barbourville
1st      Megan Poff – Barbourville

4th Grade:
1st      Dalton Elliott – Girdler

5th Grade:
3rd     Faith Hinkle – Barbourville
2nd     Jehan Abuzour – Barbourville
1st      Kayla Smith – Barbourville

6th Grade:
3rd     Haley Golden – Lay
2nd     Alex Childers – Lay
1st      Andalyn Brock – Lay 

7th Grade:
3rd     Haley Bowden – Knox County Middle School
2nd     Lauren Hammons – Knox County Middle School
1st      Sarah Miles – Knox County Middle School

CLASSROOM INSTRUCTED ART WINNERS:

Preschool: 

HM   Christian Prewitt – St. Camillus, Luke Devers – St. Camillus, Abby  Lunsford – St. Camillus
3rd     Olan Brown – Lay 
2nd     Madison Fuson – Lay 
1st      Matthew Wood – Lay

Kindergarten:
HM   Braxton Chadwell – Girdler
3rd     Garfield Cox – Girdler
2nd     Zachary Messer – Girdler
1st      Lauren McDonald – GR Hampton

First Grade:
HM   Lucy Jackson – GR Hampton, Merissa Cedillo – Girdler 
3rd     Charleston Dixon – St. Camillus
2nd     Sarah Pedersen – St. Camillus
1st      Lauren Haskins – St. Camillus 

Second Grade:
HM   Jada Mills – GR Hampton, Peyton Mayne – Girdler
3rd     Madison Logan – Barbourville
2nd     Camille Overley – St. Camillus
1st      Mason Logan – Barbourville

Third Grade:

HM   Braxton Chafin–B’ville, Selena Baker–Dewitt, Brandy Smith–Girdler
3rd     Whitney Brock – GR Hampton
2nd     Ethan Patterson – Dewitt
1st      Melina Durham – St. Camillus

Fourth Grade:
HM   William Perry – GR Hampton, Kenneth Turner – Central
3rd     Justin Mills – Dewitt
2nd     Shayla Hamlin – Barbourville
1st      Emily Morton – St. Camillus

Fifth Grade:
HM   Grace Moses – St. Camillus
3rd     Dustin Ray – Girdler
2nd     Tabitha Elliott – GR Hampton
1st      Chase Grim – St. Camillus

Sixth Grade:
HM   Enrica Jackson – Flat Lick, Cheyenne Kennedy – Flat Lick
3rd     Natalie Detherage – GR Hampton
2nd     Lauren Pedersen – St. Camillus
1st      Kristen Pedersen – St. Camillus

Seventh Grade:
HM   Emily Cobb – St. Camillus, James Collins – Knox County Middl
3rd     Marcus Todd – Barbourville
2nd     Tulio Canineu – St. Camillus
1st      Cody Wells – St. Camillus

Eighth Grade:
HM   Carley Jackson – St. Camillus, Chris Wagers – Knox County Middle
3rd     Aaron Jackson – Barbourville Middle School
2nd     Richard Lam – St Camillus
1st      Savannah Durham – St. Camillus

High School:  Drawing
2nd     Emily Partin – Knox Central High School
1st      Brittany Smith – Knox Central High School

BEST OF SHOW: 
Kristen Pedersen (St. Camillus) – PS THRU SIXTH
Brittany Smith (Knox Central) – SEVENTH THRU HIGH SCHOOL

“Mission Possible” Tech Showcase to be held March 29

Monday, March 22nd, 2010

Want to learn more about integrating technology into your classroom?   What about your life?   That’s the focus of Mission Possible 2010, the Knox County School District’s first-ever technology showcase. 

The event will be held on Monday, March 29, beginning at 5:30pm, at Knox Central High School.  The showcase will feature workshop sessions for the general public, teachers, and school administrators.    Workshops are free to the public and Knox County teachers.  Teachers from other school districts may request professional development credit, up to 3 hours, for $25.00.

The following is a listing of workshops planned for the event.   Advanced registration is required.  To register, or for more information about any session, please contact Pamela Williams at the Knox County Board of Education;  (606)546-3157 ext 2023 or pam.williams@knox.kyschools.us

Mission Possible Workshops -  March 29, 2010 

Sessions designed for Administrators are designated with an L in the identification course number. L 01.A

Sessions designed for teachers for Professional growth (and possible Professional development hours credit) are designated with a PD in the Identification Course number such as PD 01.A.

Sessions designed for the public are designated with a C in the identification course number such as C 01.B.

Sessions ending with an “A” will be offered from 6:00-6:50,
“B” will be sessions offered from 7:00-7:50 and
“C” will designate sessions from 8:00-8:50.

 5:30
Keynote –Kevin Parsons

Mission Possible: Using Technology to enhance Our lives as well as our instruction.

6:00 Sessions A

L01A
Microsoft Calendar and Effective Email
Presenter: Kevin Parsons

PD 02.A
Primary Homework Help Online
Presenters: Tiffany Jones, and Becky Mills

PD 03A
Secondary SMART Classroom: Reading
Presenters: Pam Hembree and Beth Hopper 

PD 04.A
7-12 SMART Classroom Math
Presenter: Keith Broughton

PD 05.A
K-6 Blogging in the Classroom
Presenter: Frank Shelton

PD 06.A
Utilizing the Knox Central Weather station in K-6
Presenter to be named

C07.A
Infinite Campus Parent Portal
Presenter: Renee Adams

C08.A
Social Networking
Presenter: April Corey, and Wiley Smith

 

7:00 Sessions B 

L 01.B
Excel Part I
Presenter: Kevin Parsons

 PD 02.B
4-8 Homework Help Online 
Presenters: April Jones, and Lloyd Smith

PD 03.B
7-12 SMART Classroom: Science
Presenters: Stephanie Pennington, Kim Smith

PD 04.B
7-12 Blogging in the Classroom
Presenter: Frank Shelton

PD 05.B
Utilizing the Knox Central Weather station in 7-12
Presenter to be named

C 06.B
Infinite Campus Parent Portal
Presenter: Renee Adams

C 07.B
Social Networking
Presenter: April Corey, Wiley Smith

C 08.B
How to… Technology Basics
Presenter: Tech Staff

 8:00 Sessions C

L 01.C
Excel Part II
Presenter: Kevin Parsons

PD 02.C
K-6 SMART Classroom: Math
Presenter: Dewayne Smith, Marci Messer, and Debbie Earnest

PD 03.C
7-12 SMART classroom: Social Studies
Presenter: Christina Trosper, Jason Jordan

PD 04.C
NASA
Presenter: Jenny Iley, and Kelly Elliot

PD 05.C
Discovery Ed
Presenter: Cher Smith, Denise Brock

PD 06.C
Students will FLIP:  Using Video to Promote Student Learning & Achievement 
Presenter: Frank Shelton 

C 07.C
Infinite Campus Parent Portal
Presenter: Renee Adams

C 08.C
Digital Camera Basics
Presenter: Jessica Elam, and Cyndi Early

K.C. student to compete in state poetry contest

Monday, March 15th, 2010

mirandatuckerA Knox Central freshman will be competing at the state finals of the Poetry Out Loud National Recitation Contest scheduled March 16th in Frankfort.

Miranda Tucker of Barbourville will represent Knox Central after winning a recent qualifying event at her school. Miranda is the daughter of Jeff and Regina Tucker of Girdler. She has a brother, Daniel Tucker, who is in 8th grade at KCMS.

“Miranda is a freshman, which makes her winning even more special as she beat a host of talented upperclassmen,” said Knox Central drama teacher Cathy Rhoden. “She is quite a young talent.”

When asked about why she entered the school competition, Miranda said, “I enjoy artistic areas and am better at the arts than math and science, and since lately I’ve been going through a lot of changes with moving from Michigan, I thought it would be nice to do something I really enjoy.”

About winning, Miranda said, “I thought I could do a good job with the poetry but wasn’t sure I could win, so I was surprised and definitely happy to win.”

miranda5551Miranda’s first poem recitation at the state finals will be “Time Does Not Bring Relief: You All Have Lied” by Edna St Vincent Millay, followed by “Invictus” by William Ernest Henley.

The state event is sponsored by the Kentucky Arts Council and brings the winners of each of 15 Kentucky high school competitions to vie for the state championship.

The competition, presented in partnership with the National Endowment for the Arts and the Poetry Foundation, is part of a national program that encourages high school students to learn about great poetry through memorization, performance and competition.

The state finals, which are open to the public, will be held Tuesday, March 16, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. EDT, at the Frankfort Convention Center, 405 Mero St., Frankfort, Ky.

The winner of the state finals will receive an all-expenses-paid trip to Washington, D.C. and advance to the National Finals, April 26-27, 2010, where students will compete for $50,000 in scholarships and school prizes.

Besides Knox Central, competing students at the state finals are from Frankfort High School, Paul Laurence Dunbar High School, Western Hills High School, Ballard High School, Mercer County Senior High School, Grant County High School, Hart County High School, Beechwood High School, Greenwood High School, Ohio County High School, Harlan County High School, Allen County-Scottsville High School, Jenkins Independent School, and Fulton Independent School.

Kentucky poets Frederick Smock, Bianca Spriggs and Lisa Williams will serve as judges for the Kentucky state finals, which will be emceed by educator, composer and pianist Harry Pickens.

Knox County Public Schools receive largest USF award in District history, plan major technology upgrades

Monday, March 1st, 2010

Knox County School District Superintendent Walter T. Hulett has announced that the school system will be receiving a $3.1 million award from the Universal Service Fund (USF) for major technology upgrades in the upcoming months.

This represents the largest award that the Knox School District has ever received from the School and Libraries Program of the USF since it began participating in the program in the 1990’s. All providers of telecommunication services in the U.S. contribute to the USF. This derives from charges on customers’ bills labeled as the “E-Rate.”

Knox County Schools’ Finance Director Gertrude Smith said the District will utilize the new award for expenses in three main areas: telecommunications, internal connections and maintenance.

Smith said the award actually is a percentage of the total funds requested – $3.5 million – by the Knox County Schools. This is because Knox receives a subsidy or discount rate of 88% from the USF based on free and reduced lunch data and the USF calculation. Thus, while the Knox School District will receive $3.1 million, it must contribute $420,330 or 12% of the project’s total cost.

“Our share will come from a combination of the General Fund and technology fund,” Smith said.

While the bulk ($2.78 million) of the overall $3.1 million award will go for upgrading “internal connections,” there’s also funding for telecommunications ($257,693) to pay the monthly phone bills, which includes Internet service, and for maintenance ($75,000) to pay for coverage on new equipment.

The internal connections improvements include the following:

 Upgrading the District’s phone system to the Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) telephony system

 Upgrading the current T-1 service to Dewitt Elementary and Girdler Elementary to a 10-gigabit fiber optic service

 Upgrading the technology cabling in all school buildings as well as between buildings on the same campus

 Providing wireless networks at each building in the District

 Providing video PBX systems, which can distribute video in each school

The Knox County School District is coordinating the project in conjunction with KEDC (Kentucky Education Development Corporation), of which Knox is a member. KEDC is a USF provider and provides various technology services, including installation of cabling, wireless networks, maintenance, etc.

About Knox’s $3.1 million award, the KEDC’s Steve Smith had this to say, “These are all system improvements that will carry you through the next 15-20 years.” Steve Smith is director of business services for KEDC.

The Knox County Schools’ technology director, Kevin Parsons, spoke about the importance of the Universal Service Fund in general and gave more specifics about project initiatives.

“These funds are a lifeline for a poor district,” Parsons said. “It’s making all the difference in the world for us. Without the USF, we would be in worse shape than most people at home with our internet access and with technology improvements in general.

“With this new award,” Parsons said, “the services that we will provide to the teachers and students through the new 10 gigabyte network will enable us to stream video over the network, utilize an amazing new, centralized phone system, and much more.”

Parsons went on to speak about each of the project’s initiatives. “The new phone system will allow us to transmit voice communications over our IP network. All calls within the District, even from West Knox to Dewitt, will be local calls, with everyone basically on an extension system.

“Basically, you look at it as if all our schools are in one big building, which has a phone system for that building. You just dial in an extension to reach another party,” Parsons said.

Upgrading the current T-1 lines to Dewitt and Girdler schools is another major initiative, Parsons said. Fiber optic lines are currently provided to all District sites except those two outlying schools. Installing new lines will exponentially improve the speed and quality of internet and other voice and data services for Dewitt and Girdler. The telecommunications provider, Windstream, has already started work on this project, Parsons said.

For the first time, initiatives such as video and voice conferencing will be available throughout the District, thus creating exciting new professional development and school-to-school or school-to-world opportunities. These could include students at one school, for example, taking classes at another. The possibilities are endless.

Upgrading the technology cabling in all school buildings as well as between buildings on the same campus, is yet another major initiative. This calls for installing Category 6, 10-gigabit copper cabling for all voice and data drops and includes installing Ethernet electronics in each school’s wiring closet. This will also significantly improve all forms of electronic communication within the network, both at the school level and district-wide.

The grant also will provide wireless networks at each building and on each campus in the District, thus impacting student and staff productivity and convenience. For example, a student or teacher with a laptop could do their assignment, research, or lesson plan from any point on the campus.

Finally, the new award will provide video PBX systems in each school. Currently only Girdler, Central Elementary, and Knox Central have the systems in place. The video PBX systems provide a video distribution network, enabling simultaneous transmissions of different video content to and from classrooms, streaming, etc. Battery backup systems will be installed in each wiring closet.

As indicated above, work on some initiatives of the project has already begun. Parsons said the scope of the project is so vast that work will definitely have to be carried over into the new school year. “We will continue until everything we’ve mapped out in the project is completed, however long that takes.”

All of the above projects are cited as the District’s top needs in technology, excluding training and P.D. for staff, in the current District Comprehensive Improvement Plan.

Lynn Camp’s Fred Slusher repeats as Knox Spelling Bee Champ

Monday, February 22nd, 2010
Fred Slusher, center, repeated as Knox County Spelling Bee Champ. He's flanked on front row by runner-up Clay Sprinkles, left, and third-place finisher Logan Disney, right.

Fred Slusher, center, repeated as Knox County Spelling Bee Champ. He's flanked on front row by runner-up Clay Sprinkles, left, and third-place finisher Logan Disney, right.

Lynn Camp eighth grader Fred Slusher has repeated as Knox County Spelling Bee champion for students in grades 8 and below.

Fred achieved the feat at the annual Knox County Spelling Bee held Thursday, Feb. 18th, at the Board of Education Annex in Barbourville.  As champion, he will now represent Knox County at the 2010 State Spelling Bee scheduled March 20th at the Frazier Internattional History Museum in Louisville.

This year’s contest was no push-over for the repeating champion. In the final rounds, he competed against two other talented spellers from the Knox County School District – Lay sixth grader Clay Sprinkles and Knox County Middle School eighth grader Logan Disney. These three students sparred for 10 rounds after the competition’s other 18 spellers had been eliminated.

The deciding round was the 14th. That’s when Fred spelled his given word, “acoustic,” correctly, while Clay missed “nuisance” and Logan missed “toboggan.” Fred was then declared the winner in accordance with the official rules, which read:  ”If only one of the contestants remaining in the bee at the start of a round spells a word correctly during that round, that contestant shall be declared the winner.”

Spellers engaged in a practice round before the real bee started. There were 21 contestants from 11 schools.

21 spellers competed.

Then, in order to determine a runner-up, a spelloff was held. The runner-up is the alternate to the state spelling bee should the winner be unable to attend.

This turned out to be a bonus for spelling bee enthusiasts. The 14th round’s two losers then dueled for an additional seven rounds before Clay spelled the word ”parachute” correctly, while Logan missed “turbulence.”

Clay Sprinkles is the son of Kelly and Amy Sprinkles of Barbourville. Logan Disney is the son of Kevin and Angela Disney of Gray. Fred Slusher is the son of Fred and Myrtle Slusher of KY 3436, Corbin.

Spellers, officials and sponsors are shown at the 2010 Knox County Spelling Bee held Feburary 18th in Barbourville.

Spellers, officials and sponsors are shown at the 2010 Knox County Spelling Bee held Feburary 18th in Barbourville.

Following the event, the winner and runner-up were presented plaques from the Knox County Board of Education, which was represented by Asst. Supt. Kim Merida. He  also presented a trophy to each of the 21 spellers that competed, while Knox County Farm Bureau Agent Scott Payne presented each student with a thesaurus.  Kentucky Farm Bureau is one of the primary sponsors of the Kentucky Spelling Bee, along with the Kentucky Derby Festival organization in Louisville.

Another major sponsor of the Knox County Spelling Bee is the GFWC/KFWC Barbourville Junior Woman’s Study Club, which annually provides refreshments .  The club’s Rita Wood was present to do the honors.

The spelling bee officials for Knox County were, left to right, Harrision Davis, Nancy Hampton, Sharon McDonald, and David Miller.

The spelling bee officials for Knox County were, left to right, Harrision Davis, Nancy Hampton, Sharon McDonald, and David Miller.

In addition, The Knox County Schools’ TV-4 and Director Frank Shelton videotaped the event, which is being aired over the Barbourville Cable TV System.

The 2010 Knox County Spelling Bee was coordinated by David Cole, Public Relations Director for the Knox County Schools. Officials were David Miller, campus minister of Union College, and educators Harrison Davis, Nancy Hampton and Sharon McDonald.

Also recognized at the event were former Knox County Spelling Bee champ Tabitha Strange, who was accompanied by her mother Pam. Tabitha is now a student at Knox Central High School. 

The following is a list of all spelling bee participants and the schools they represented:

  • Megan Warren, 6th grade, Barbourville
  • Frankie Robinson, 7th grade,Barbourville
  • DeShawn Matthews, 4th grade,Central Elementary
  • Toni McCombs, 3rd grade, Central Elementary
  • Jeremy Stewart, 6th grade, Dewitt
  • Dylan Roach, 6th grade, Dewitt
  • Lakin Dillingham, 6th grade,Flat Lick
  • Johnnie “Jake” Gray, 4th grade,Flat Lick
  • Blaine Wyatt, 6th grade,Girdler
  • Seth Duncan, 2nd grade,Girdler
  • Tate Carter, 6th grade, G.R. Hampton
  • Logan Disney, 8th grade, Knox Middle School
  • Michaela Patterson, 8th grade, Knox Middle School
  • Clay Sprinkles, 6th grade, Lay
  • Skylar Baker, 5th grade, Lay
  • Fred Slusher, 8th grade, Lynn Camp
  • Cassidy Smith, 8th grade, Lynn Camp
  • Allyson Hoskins, 7th grade, St. Camillus Academy
  • Holly Hudson, 7th grade, St. Camillus Academy
  • Jessica Miracle, 4th grade, West Knox
  • Tiana Simpson, 6th grade, West Knox

DAR announces county winners in Junior American Citizen Contest

Sunday, February 14th, 2010

     The Dr. Thomas Walker Chapter NSDAR and the Knox County Community Education Program have announced county winners in the 2009-2010 Junior American Citizens Contest.  The national theme was “America, Land of the Free and Home of the Brave.”

     The annual Junior American Citizens Contests are open to all students in grades preschool through 12th grade in Knox County.  However, preschool and kindergarten students may participate only in the banner group and community service project contests.

     Students were eligible to submit entries in three different contests:  the art contest, creative expression contest, and community service contest.  The art contest was divided into four categories of competition: stamp, poster, banner and photographic essay.  The creative expression contest was divided into poem and short story categories. 

     All county winners’ pieces of art or creative expression have been mailed to the state chairman.  State winners will be announced as soon as the local chapter is notified.

     The following is a list of county winners:

Stamp Winners

     Reaghan Faithe Jones, 1st grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Megan Cox, 1st grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Joey Bradshaw, 2nd grade, Jesse D. Lay Elementary

     Ryleigh Dallas Swafford, 2nd grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Abby Rose, 3rd grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Mitchell Buchanan, 3rd grade, Jesse D. Lay Elementary

     R.P. Gray, 3rd grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Jonah Stephen West, 4th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Drew Smith, 4th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Justin Davis, 4th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Addison Osborne, 5th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Kyron Disney, 5th, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Larry Hobbs, 5th grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Emily Hudson, 6th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Isaac Hubbard, 6th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     James Robert Collins, 7th grade, Knox County Middle School

     Tara Marie Garrison, 7th grade, Knox County Middle School

     Alexandria Morgan, 10th grade, Knox Central High School

Poster Winners

     John Drugger, 2nd grade, Central Elementary

     Jacob Liford, 2nd grade, Central Elementary

     Zachary Patterson, 3rd grade, Jesse D. Lay Elementary

     Kendall Gray, 3rd grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Ronald Fryman, 3rd Grade, Jesse D. Lay Elementary

     Cody Saylor, 5th grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Gabrielle Borgne, 5th grade, G. R. Hampton Elementary

     Karey Merida, 6th grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Jacob Gray, 6th grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Austin Baker, 6th grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Mary Elizabeth Merida, 8th grade, Knox County Middle School

      Krystyn Leann Turner, 8th grade, Knox County Middle School

     Ariel Nicole Hill, 10th grade, Knox Central High School

Banner Winners

     Tucker Holland, Corey Bright, and Jaylen Adams, 4th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     McKinlee Smith, Thomas Jackson, and Caleb Broughton, 4th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Ronnie Meeks, Jacob Davis, Josh Cole, and Jeffrey Grubb, 4th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

Poem Winners

     Hannah Daniels, 3rd grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Lydia Smith, 3rd grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Emily Carter, 3rd grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Libby Vaughn, 5th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Cherish Gray, 5th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Lahen Dillingham, 6th grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Kristen Combs, 6th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Brittany Marie Sowders, 11th grade, Lynn Camp High School

Short Story Winners

     Tawney Nelson, 4th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Trey Carter, 4th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Brandi Kaitlyn Mills, 5th grade, Dewitt Elementary

     Emily Mills, 5th grade, G.R. Hampton Elementary

     Hannah Middleton, 6th grade, Flat Lick Elementary

     Devon Todd Hurley, 8th grade, Knox County Middle School

Update: County Spelling Bee to be held February 18th in Barbourville

Monday, February 8th, 2010

BARBOURVILLE, KY – Twenty-two (22) students from 10 public K-8 schools and one private school in Knox County will soon be competing for the honor of best speller in the county. The winner will also represent the county at the annual state spelling bee. The runner-up will be an alternate.

The 2010 Knox County Spelling Bee will be held at 1:00 p.m. on Thursday, Feb. 18th, at the Knox County Board of Education Annex in Barbourville. Registration will be held from 12:30 to 1:00 p.m.

Students competing at the countywide spelling bee qualified at school spelling bees held these past few weeks. Qualifying spellers must not have passed beyond the eighth grade.

Those qualifying for this year’s county spelling bee, and the schools they represent, are listed below:

Name School Grade Finish in School
Spelling Bee
Megan Warren Barbourville 6th 1st            
Frankie Robinson Barbourville 7th 2nd
DeShawn Matthews Central Elementary 4th 1st
Toni McCombs Central Elementary 3rd 2nd
Jeremy Stewart Dewitt 6th 1st
Dylan Roach Dewitt 6th 2nd
Lakin Dillingham Flat Lick 6th 1st
Johnnie “Jake” Gray Flat Lick 4th 2nd
Blaine Wyatt Girdler 6th 1st
Seth Duncan Girdler 2nd 2nd
Margaret Tipper G.R. Hampton 4th 1st
Tate Carter G.R. Hampton 6th 2nd
Logan Disney Knox Middle School 8th 1st
Michaela Patterson Knox Middle School 8th 2nd
Clay Sprinkles Lay 6th 1st
Skylar Baker Lay 5th 2nd
Fred Slusher Lynn Camp 8th 1st
Cassidy Smith Lynn Camp 8th 2nd
Allyson Hoskins St. Camillus Academy 7th 1st
Carley Jackson St. Camillus Academy 8th 2nd
Jessica Miracle West Knox 4th 1st
Tiana Simpson West Knox 6th 2nd

The winner will advance to the Kentucky Derby Festival Spelling Bee in Louisville on Saturday, March 20th.

Judges for the Knox County Spelling Bee will be Harrison Davis, Nancy Hampton, and Sharon McDonald, all former educators in the Knox County School District. Union College Campus Minister David Miller will once again serve as pronouncer.  Knox Schools Public Relations Director David Cole is coordinator.

The Knox County Board of Education is the primary sponsor of the annual county spelling bee and will provide 1st and 2nd place plaques to the top two spellers and smaller trophies to all participants.

The GFWC/KFWC Barbourville Junior Woman’s Study Club will provide refreshments for all in attendance, and the Kentucky Farm Bureau, Knox County Office (Scott Payne), will provide a gift for each participant. Knox County Community Education and the Knox County Schools’ TV-4 also participate. TV-4 will videotape the event and air over the Barbourville Cable TV system at a later date.

For more information, contact Coordinator David Cole at 546-8911.