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Roanoke Rapids Graded School District successfully completed the first quarter of the 2023-24 school year. 

We wound down these nine weeks with our traditional Halloween celebrations that included pumpkin-decorating contests as well as a parade through our schools to end Hispanic Heritage Month. 

In between first and second quarter, we have two teacher workdays to help our teachers finish first quarter grades and to provide time for staff to engage in professional development. 

Our staff is participating in a variety of sessions differentiated to meet their needs. 

Some of the sessions include LETRS (on the science of reading for K-5)

i-Ready (an online reading and math assessment and intervention program for K-8) 

Expressive literacy practices in arts education for music and art in K-12

Vertical professional learning communities for Spanish, PE, media coordinators, and school counselors in K-12 

Primary Education Thinking Skills data analysis and collaboration for AIG 

Site visits for CTE 

McKinney-Vento homeless training for community outreach liaisons and administrators

The Chaloner Lego Robotics teams went on location on Wednesday as they prepared their innovation projects for their upcoming Robotics competition in November. 

The innovation projects involve connecting to the community and engaging their peers in an innovative way. 

One team has a focus on the theater and toured Lakeland Cultural Arts Center. 

The other team has connected to the movement supporting the plan for a new skatepark at Emry Park. 

These teams immediately took their new knowledge and got to work preparing their project presentations.

On Tuesday, Visit Halifax arranged for Fishing University, a television show hosted by Charlie Ingram and Ben Ballou, to visit and inspire scholars at Roanoke Rapids Early College. 

The show has aired for 35 years to millions of viewers in all 50 states and in 51 other countries worldwide. 

Ingram and Ballou told us: “Remember if you do something you love, you will never work a day in your life!”

Our Roanoke Rapids High School students have been busy! 

Our Cross Country team competed in their regional meet at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, and our women’s team finished 5th overall. Kamdyn Jean, Sophie Wade, Kara Baird, and Emilee Campbell qualified individually for the state meet in Kernersville. 

Our men’s team finished 13th overall. 

Our varsity football team successfully defeated Bunn, and we celebrated Senior Night on Friday against Nash Central. 

RRHS DECA students Casey Neal and Avery Qualls organized a successful Fall Ball: Daddy/Daughter, Mommy/Son Dance as part of a Community Giving Project. 

With the help of DECA Chapter Members, community sponsors, and RRGSD staff, the event was a huge success.

Everyone looked wonderful and had so much fun. 

The proceeds will benefit RRGSD students in need.

I was honored to speak at the North Carolina Association of Federal Education Programs Administrators conference in Greensboro. 

NCFEPA is dedicated to fostering leadership and management of federal education programs in North Carolina and is the state affiliate of the National Association of Federal Education Program Administrators. 

Jason Griffin, executive director in Craven County Schools, and I led presentations on creating successful federal programs grant applications, preparing for ESSER (COVID funds) grant monitoring, and preparing for consolidated federal programs grant monitoring. 

I also led sessions for all of the new federal programs directors in the state. 

For the past year, I have served as NCFEPA’s president.

On Saturday night, our 2023 RRHS Athletic Hall of Fame members were inducted at the Hall of Fame banquet. 

A big “thank you” goes out to the RRHS Hall of Fame Committee for their hard work to make this night so special for everyone. 

Our inductees have been exceptional leaders on and off the playing field. 

They include John Daughtry, Sonny Pruette, Thomas Lancaster, Eddie Wright, Chester “Chuck” Allsbrook, Cristina Nelson Gielowski, Trase Jones, David McNair, 1961 Baseball Team, and 1962 Basketball Team. 

These athletes exemplified our district motto of “Together, We Succeed” as they demonstrated teamwork, integrity, and perseverance throughout their stellar careers -- and even more importantly throughout their lives during and after high school.