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Hello and welcome to the new website for McDowell County Schools.  The goal for our new site was to simplify things.  Most Navigation and links will be found at the top of the site.  As we are rebuilding the entire site we know bugs will appear.
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News & Announcements

Literacy Cafe Rolls July 18th

McDowell County Schools will provide mobile library services for students Pre-K - 12th grade. The Literacy Cafe (formerly known as the Literacy Bus) will stop at various community locations, giving students the opportunity to check-out books free of charge, in both English and Spanish, throughout the months of July and the first week of August. Students may checkout two books weekly.

Did you notice the word “cafe” in Literacy Cafe? This year we are adding an additional feature to our services. If the Literacy Cafe stops in your area after 10:00 AM each day, any person 18 years of age and under, may receive lunch free of charge aboard the Literacy Cafe. Lunch service will begin the week of July 18th through August 4th.. Yes, that’s right! The Literacy Cafe has a mobile food service coming to a location near you (food service locations are bold).

The Literacy Cafe will be on the road four days a week. Lunch will be served beginning the week of July 18th - August 4th.

McDowell County Schools is looking forward to “Serving bodies and minds” of the children this summer.

Please click the title for the Literacy Cafe Flyer that includes the schedule.

For more information concerning the McDowell County Schools Literacy Cafe, please contact Crystal Hamby at 652-4535 ext. 104 or email

Pictures from the Literacy Cafe:

Operation Backpack

Operation Backpack is geared up and ready to meet the school supply needs of our students for the 18th year, but we need your help!

Last summer, Operation Backpack helped 740 students with back to school supplies in 8 days of distribution. This assistance was only possible because of our giving and caring community!

Originally organized in 1998 and administrated by the Endowment Fund of the Public Schools of McDowell County, the goal of Operation Backpack is to provide all underprivileged children in McDowell County Public Schools with a new backpack and school supplies. Through the gracious giving of our community and others, school supply assistance has been provided directly to over 600 McDowell County School students each year. It is our wish that no child returns to school without the necessary supplies. Although the majority of the supplies are distributed during the a few weeks prior to school starting, Operation Backpack is a year-round project and will supply students all year when needs arise. Supplies that are given to students include, but are not limited to; Backpacks, 3 ring binders, notebook paper, spiral notebooks, pocket folders, erasers, ballpoint pens, pencils: #2 & colored, 24 count crayons, glue: bottles & sticks, safety scissors, markers, and pencil boxes/pouches.

Supplies and monetary donations are very much appreciated!

Monetary donations may be written to The Endowment Fund, marked for Operation Backpack, and mailed or brought to McDowell County Schools, 334 South Main Street, PO Box 130, Marion, NC 28752. Supply donations may be brought to this same location. Donations are accepted year round.

If you have questions or need further information, please contact Melanie Dunham at 828-652-4535 x106 or

New Attendance Policy

Recently the Attendance Policy Review Committee made three major revisions to Policy 4400. The Board of Education approved the revisions at their June 13th meeting. Please click the title for the complete press release.

Free Summer Meals for Youth

McDowell County School Nutrition Services is excited to once again announce that they will be providing free lunch meals to all kids all summer long.  There is absolutely no cost for anyone ages 2-18 to eat.  Just like last year there will be two main school locations where kids can get free meals:  East McDowell Middle and West Marion Elementary.  These sites will be serving lunch from 11:00 until 1:00 Mondays thru Fridays until August 19.

To better serve the youth of the county, this year we have increased the sites where food is available.  Through numerous partnerships and great community volunteers, we will be expanding our efforts to incorporate up to 12 additional locations like local parks, recreation centers, and our public libraries.  More information on specific meal location sites close to your neighborhood is available by contacting our School Nutrition Offices at 828-652-5633.

Please click the title for more information.

Board Approves Laura Davis as Chief Academic Officer

Superintendent Mark Garrett is pleased to announce that the Board of Education has approved Laura Davis to serve as the Chief Academic Officer for McDowell County Schools. Ms. Davis is a career educator in North Carolina and is currently the Executive Director of Human Resources and High Schools for Asheville City Schools. Ms. Davis was approved during last week’s regularly scheduled Board of Education meeting for March. Davis was happy with the news and shared the following: “My husband and I are very excited to become a part of the McDowell community, which already feels like home to us. I hope to bring my 28 years of experience to the team in a way that truly supports the great work already being done here. I am truly thankful for this opportunity.”

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Events Photo
No School-Teacher Workday
Date: 8/22/2016
No School-Professional Development Day
Date: 8/23/2016
No School-Professional Development Day
Date: 8/24/2016
No School-Teacher Workday
Date: 8/25/2016
No School-Teacher Workday
Date: 8/26/2016