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McDowell County Board of Education Training Session 1/29

The McDowell County Board of Education will meet for a Board Training Session.

Monday, January 29, 2018, at 5:30 PM the Board Attorney will conduct a Board Training Session in the Board Room of the Central Office located at 334 South Main Street, Marion, NC. No action will be taken at the Training Session.
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The McDowell County Board of Education Work Session 1/22

The McDowell County Board of Education will meet for a Work Session.

Monday, January 22, 2018, at 5:30 PM at Old Fort Elementary School in the Media Center. The work session will be held to discuss the Old Fort Elementary Facility Plan. No action will be taken at the work session. There will also be a Closed Session to discuss property matters.
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McDowell County Schools will be closed for students Friday, January 19

McDowell County Schools will be closed for students Friday, January 19. It will be an optional workday for teachers. Despite today's thaw, there are just too many secondary roads containing large icy patches to have buses and teenage drivers commuting tomorrow morning. Tonight's forecasted lows will certainly cause black ice to form in lots of areas that have already melted, and temperatures are not expected to rise above freezing until late morning. As always, we appreciate your patience as we deal with this tricky winter weather.

Please be reminded that Monday, January 22 is now a regular student day.
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McDowell County Schools Closed for Students on 1/18/2018

McDowell County Schools will be closed for students Thursday, January 18. It will be an optional workday for teachers. Staff may report on a 2-hour delay if needed for safety.

Please note that the workday originally scheduled for January 22 will now be a regular student day in order to replace some of the instructional hours missed during this season's weather events. We are being proactive now in an attempt to preserve Spring Break and the Memorial Day holiday.
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Nebo Principal Desarae Kirkpatrick Named NW Region Principal of the Year

Desarae Kirkpatrick, principal of Nebo Elementary and current McDowell County Principal of the Year, has been named the 2018 Northwest Region Principal of the Year. Kirkpatrick was notified today during a school-wide Holiday celebration that included all students and staff at Nebo, Board Chair Terry Frank and Vice-Chair Terry English, Superintendent Mark Garrett and other district staff, and current NW Region Teacher of the Year Carrie Franklin. Kirkpatrick was overcome with tears by the news: “I am just in total shock at receiving this honor.”

Kirkpatrick began her career in education at McDowell Head Start just after graduating from McDowell High in the summer of 1998, and served with Head Start throughout her college years. In 2002 she was hired as a countywide teacher for Deaf and Hard of Hearing students, and also served students in Pre-K. Kirkpatrick left McDowell in 2003 for a teaching position in Madison County where she would serve for three years. She returned to McDowell in 2006 as an Assistant Principal at McDowell High. She served in that role for the next two years before being named Principal of North Cove Elementary in 2008. Kirkpatrick served the community of North Cove until 2012 when she was reassigned as Principal of West Marion Elementary. She would serve there for three years before returning to the helm at North Cove in 2015. Kirkpatrick was reassigned to her present post at Nebo Elementary this past summer.

Kirkpatrick attended McDowell Tech for two years and then earned her BA degree from Lenoir Rhyne University in 2002. She graduated with dual licensure in Elementary Education (grades K-6) and Deaf/Hard of Hearing Education (grades K-12). She earned her Master of Arts degree in Education Administration from East Tennessee State University in 2006.

Superintendent Mark Garrett had strong words of praise for Kirkpatrick: “we are not surprised that Desarae has been selected as the NW Region Principal of the Year. Her passion for her students and staff is obvious to anyone who has the opportunity to work with her. In each of her principal assignments, her students have demonstrated academic growth. We are very proud of her as our representative for McDowell County and now also for the NW Region.”

Kirkpatrick stated that she is “so thankful to have this opportunity to help others. This would not be possible without the love and support of my family, and the teamwork and effort of everyone at North Cove, West Marion, and now Nebo. I am so proud of McDowell County Schools and Nebo Elementary.” She will compete against principals from each of the 8 regions for the honor of State Principal of the Year later in the spring.
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Statement from Superintendent on Social Media Post

This is Mark Garrett, Superintendent of McDowell County Schools, with an important message for our school community. Earlier this evening, I was contacted about a potential threat making the rounds on social media that made reference to a school with the initials MHS. Even though it did not mention McDowell High School specifically, we began investigating in order to try to pinpoint the information. During our research, we found that there are no students in McDowell County Schools with the names related to the social media threat. We also reached out to the McDowell County Sheriff's Office to make them aware and to get their assistance. Further investigation determined there was a "MHS" in Virginia that was experiencing a potential social media threat. Information obtained by McDowell County Schools and the McDowell County Sheriff's Office indicate these specific threats are related to the community in Virginia and not McDowell County. Our local law enforcement officers have determined McDowell High School and McDowell County Schools are not the target of any known threat. Communication between the McDowell County Sheriff's Office and Virginia authorities confirm they are currently investigating this specific incident. You can Google the phrase "Monticello High School Virginia News" to see a photo of the social media post and to learn more.

Know that we take safety very seriously and encourage people to contact us with information regarding any potential dangers that may arise. We want to be proactive.
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