Image of counselors enjoying their appreciation celebrationNational School Counseling Week, sponsored by the American School Counselor Association (ASCA), was celebrated from February 6–10, 2017.   This week was a reminder of all of the hard work and dedication that Professional School Counselors provide to their students, faculty, and families.  It is important to understand that school counselors are there to help the growth of our students academically, personal/socially, and in their exploration of careers.  In order to create an environment where growth can occur, school counselors help advocate for the needs of the students as well as collaborate with key stakeholders such as parents and teachers.  School Counselors can be seen as the bridge that brings family and school together.  Cumberland County School’s School Counselors were recognized by their principals throughout the week and had a breakfast celebration on the morning of February 10.

The theme of this year’s School Counseling Celebration was: CCS School Counselors: Professionals Who Exemplify GRIT (Generating Relentless Inner Toughness).  This theme was determined because school counselors are an integral influence in helping our students build resilience and GRIT.  In addition, the role of the school counselor requires just what the words stands for Generating Relentless Inner Toughness.  Every school counselor experiences good and bad throughout their days, but no matter what they have to keep going and pushing through.  Whether it be a child who is depressed and hurting themselves to a student earning a scholarship and getting into college.  Overall, the school counselor is a constant solid that is there to help support and fight for each and every student. 

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Published by Laurie Pender on February 13, 2017

        


To raise awareness, Cumberland County Schools is observing Suicide Awareness Week, February 5 – 11, 2017.  CCS staff, students, parents, and stakeholders joined the efforts. They all showed their support by helping to spread the word! Check out the photos from the Cumberland Schools, Central Office staff and Community Agencies that want you to know…

It’s OK 2 Ask About Suicide 

 

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Published by Bobbi Jo Pova on February 13, 2017

        


Image of the facilitator speaking to a group parents.Cumberland Road Elementary recently held their first Parent Wellness Session. Parents gathered to receive resources, materials, and the facts on managing a child with Asthma. One of  the School Health Advisory Council members, Holly Lawing, Pediatric Asthma Coordinator of Cape Fear Valley Medical Center led the session. One goal of the sessions is to reduce absences related to chronic diseases. Parents learned the signs and symptoms of when rescue inhalers are not enough and controlled medication should be considered. All parents received a packet containing the proper school form for an asthma medication plan, an asthma tracker booklet, and a resource guide for living with asthma. They were also able to take home necessary equipment such as spacers and nebulizer kits. The proper use of the equipment was demonstrated by Ms. Lawing. Parents were encouraged to ask specific questions and express their concerns for their child. At the conclusion of the session Kenya Mathis, 4th and 5th grade parent stated, “I loved it.”

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Published by Laurie Pender on February 13, 2017

        


Image of a school bus surrounded by hearts with the words, Love the Bus!Districts and schools across the state and nation will show their love this week for their school bus drivers along with their valentines. Nationally, February is recognized as Love the Bus month; and in North Carolina, Feb. 13-17 is School Bus Driver Appreciation Week.

 

In North Carolina, more than 800,000 students board over 13,000 school buses each day. Their drivers must complete rigorous training and be certified to drive a bus.

Derek Graham, Transportation Services section chief for the N.C. Department of Public Instruction, said the state’s bus drivers earn the week of recognition every day of the school year. “Student safety is the top priority for our school bus drivers,” Graham said. “It’s good to have a week when we can express our appreciation for all they do to ensure that students arrive to and from school safely.”

Gov. Roy Cooper has proclaimed Feb. 13-17 as School Bus Driver Appreciation Week in North Carolina, and urges all school communities to take a moment to thank bus drivers for all they do.

The Love the Bus program, launched in 2007 and coordinated by the American School Bus Council, is not only a way to raise awareness and appreciation for the hundreds of thousands of school bus drivers nationwide, but it also provides an opportunity for parents and children to learn more about the safety and environmental benefits of school bus transportation. Nationwide, school buses represent 25 percent of the miles traveled by students, but they account for fewer than 4 percent of the injuries that occur during students’ commutes to and from school each day.

Parents, teachers and children are encouraged to visit the American School Bus Council’s website to share stories about their favorite bus drivers and make interactive valentines to email or print and give to their bus driver. Additional information on the American School Bus Council is available online.

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Published by Laurie Pender on February 13, 2017

        


Image of text reading it's ok 2 ask about suicide.According to the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services, suicide is the third leading cause of death for North Carolinians between the ages of 10 to 24.  Unfortunately, stigma, myths, and misinformation about suicide prevent both adults and young people from discussing this topic.  Recognizing the signs and symptoms of suicide and knowing who to call for help is one way to prevent suicide.
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Published by Laurie Pender on February 2, 2017

        


Image celebrating National School Counselors Appreciation WeekFayetteville – National School Counseling Week, sponsored by the American School Counselor Association (ASCA), will be celebrated from February 6–10, 2017, to focus public attention on the unique contribution of professional school counselors within U.S. school systems and how students are different as a result of what school counselors do. National School Counseling Week highlights the tremendous impact school counselors can have in helping students achieve school success and plan for a career.

“The special week honoring school counselors provides recognition to those who implement comprehensive school counseling programs, which are a vital part of the educational process for all students as they meet the challenges of the 21st Century,” said Cumberland County Schools’ Counseling Coordinator Kristy Curran.

In a proclamation signed by the Cumberland County Board of Education Chair, Curran cited school counselors for (1) being actively engaged in helping students examine their abilities, strengths, interests, and talents; (2) working in a partnership with parents as they encounter the challenges of rearing children in today’s world; (3) focusing on positive ways to enhance students’ social/personal, educational, and career development; and (4) working with teachers and other educators to provide an educational system where students can realize their potential and set healthy, realistic, and optimistic aspirations for themselves. Professional school counselors are certified, experienced educators with a master’s degree in guidance and counseling. The combination of their training and experience makes them an integral part of the total educational program.
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Published by Laurie Pender on January 30, 2017

        


Image of Chinese acrobat and dragon.Cumberland County Schools’ World Language Department presents its Chinese New Year Celebration. The event will be held on Thursday, February 23, 2017, from 6:00 – 7:30 p.m. at Seventy-First High School located at 6764 Raeford Road/Fayetteville, NC. 

  •  There will be informational booths, games, and interactive activities from 5:00 – 6:00 p.m. for everyone to enjoy!
  • The public is invited.
  • For more details, send an e-mail to carmenvillalobos@ccs.k12.nc.us.
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Published by Laurie Pender on January 24, 2017

        


Image of a gavel to be used during school board meeting.High school Student Government Presidents from Pine Forest, Westover, Seventy-First and, Cross Creek Early College High, recently served as ex-officio school board members. Joshua Jensen and Karrington Barnes served at the December 13th meeting, followed by Tatiana Onley and Mykayla Williams who served on January 10. Each student presented a speech on a topic of their choice. They also had a chance to answer questions and give input on issues.

 


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Published by Laurie Pender on January 12, 2017

        


Image of stakeholders in the Carbon Bank Initiative preparing to plant trees.The Cumberland County Schools (CCS) was the host site for a recent Carbon Tree Bank Planting, the first ever!

Local students and representatives from the Air Quality Stakeholders of Cumberland County, Sustainable Sandhills, Urban Offsets, and the Fayetteville Area Metropolitan Planning Organization gathered on the front lawn of the CCS’ Educational Resource Center for the tree planting kickoff. In the coming weeks, more trees will be placed at Gallberry Farm and Sunnyside elementary schools.

According to organizers of the project, this effort will help remove about 26K tons of CO2 from the atmosphere over the lifetime of the trees, which is roughly equivalent to taking 6,000 cars off the road for one year! 
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Published by Laurie Pender on January 12, 2017

        


Image of students who were recently recognized for displaying Amazing Acts of Character. (From Left to Right: Maggie Kane, Hailey Blair, Jayden Townsend, Miranda Draughon)The Amazing Acts of Character Recognition Program celebrates Cumberland County Schools’ students who meritoriously display an act of good character that goes above and beyond expected pleasant behavior.  Beginning January 2017, each month, all nominees receive a certificate recognizing their act by the Counselor Coordinator.  In addition, a multidisciplinary Central Services Committee may recommend an elementary, middle and/or high school winner to the School Board, and the students are invited to attend the Board of Education meeting. This month there were four students who were introduced to the board members and received a trophy.  

The November 2016 honoree is as follows:

Hailey Blair, a sixth grader at Gray’s Creek Middle School (GCMS) – According to Patricia Brewer, Hailey’s English/Language Arts teacher, the 111-year-old is a “great person who is a good example for her peers.” Recently, Hailey received a graded paper from one of her teachers. Upon reviewing the graded paper, she noticed that her teacher had incorrectly scored it. The circled grade on the front of the paper was slightly higher than what it should have been. “Hailey respectfully brought this error to the attention of her teacher,” said Brewer. “Because of Hailey’s honesty and integrity in this situation, the teacher rewarded her by letting her keep those few extra points.”

The December 2016 honorees are as follows:

Margaret “Maggie” Kane, a third grader at Long Hill Elementary School – During Maggie’s recent participation in a St. Baldrick’s Foundation event, Mary Katherine Mouton, Maggie’s third-grade teacher said the eight-year-old “demonstrated courage, compassion, and empathy that is remarkable for anyone, much less an eight-year-old” According to Mouton, Maggie, who has a close relative that is a cancer survivor, decided two years ago to grow her hair and donate it to a child who has lost their hair because of cancer. Through the St. Baldrick’s Foundation, an organization dedicated to raising money and awareness for childhood cancer research, Maggie and her family sponsored a fundraising event at a local pizza restaurant. More than $10,000 was raised through the effort and “true to her word,” Maggie had her head shaved and donated her hair to Wigs for Kids. “Maggie is an inspiration and model for all of us!” said Mouton. “Thank you, Maggie!”

Miranda Draughon, a fourth grader at Gray’s Creek Elementary School – According to Kelly Tucker, the media coordinator at Miranda’s school, the 10-year-old is “a child with exceptional character.” During the Cumberland County Schools’ annual Reading Rocks! Walk-A-Thon for literacy effort, Miranda decided to take action by helping to buy books for the school media center. Tucker said she didn’t ask her parents for money or raid her piggy bank. Instead, Miranda enlisted the help of two friends from her church to help make bookmarks to sell at church. “As a result of her leadership, caring, and sense of responsibility, Miranda raised $28 for our library,” said Tucker.

Jayden Townsend, a fifth grader at Morganton Road Elementary School – Courtney Sides, the school counselor at Jayden’s school, said that the 10-year-old demonstrated an incredible amount of bravery and caring when recently, she saved her brother who was being viciously attacked by a dog. According to Sides, in November, Jayden, her mother, and little brother were visiting the home of friends in South Carolina. Jayden went outside to check on her brother when she noticed a dog [Rottweiler] on top of her brother. “She ran over, picked up the dog, and threw him,” said Sides. “Jayden picked up her brother and tried to get him into the house, but the dog attacked again.” She put her brother down and told him to run into the house while she fended off the dog. According to Sides, Jayden’s brother was hospitalized but has since returned to school. “She thought of her brother before herself,” said Sides. “She put herself in harm’s way to rescue him. It is not every day that you see someone help others, much less put themselves at risk. Through her heroic acts, she saved her little brother. We feel as though she should be recognized for her bravery and heroism.”

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Published by Laurie Pender on January 11, 2017

        


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