Recent News

Cheryl M. Shuffler
Public Relations Officer
cmshuffler@burke.k12.nc.us
828-438-2989

UNC-TV Partners with NCDPI to support At-Home Learning
04/06/2020
In its continued response to the COVID-19 pandemic, UNC-TV Public Media North Carolina announced today that it is working with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction to assist with stay-at-home solutions for students and their families or caregivers. For more than 65 years, UNC-TV has served as a trusted partner alongside parents and educators to provide quality educational content that is both free and accessible to North Carolina’s children.
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BCPS receives grant from Duke Energy
04/01/2020
Burke County Public Schools recently received a grant from the Duke Energy Foundation to help provide sanitation products to our daycares and food distribution sites. The $3,000 grant will help BCPS to purchase hand sanitizer for our daycare sites and the schools that are providing meals to students.
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Changes coming to meal distribution program
03/26/2020
BCPS would like to announce a few changes in our meal distribution program. The eight (8) school sites will not be open this weekend for meals to be picked up. Instead, on Friday, students will receive six (6) meals:
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BCPS to receive meal donation
03/25/2020
The Good Kitchen is donating more than 25,000 kids meals to Burke County Public Schools. The school system will give out the meals starting on Friday as part of the food distribution program taking place while schools are closed due to coronavirus (COVID-19). The donation came about as a result of a partnership between The Good Kitchen, based in Charlotte, and American Food Service, based in Morganton, and owned and operated by Charlie and Chasity Rice.
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Families to receive free thermometers with meals
03/23/2020
The Burke County Medical Society and Carolinas HealthCare System Blue Ridge have teamed up to offer free thermometers to families receiving free meals through Burke County Public Schools. The thermometers will be delivered starting Tuesday, March 24, at the eight BCPS school food distribution sites. The thermometers are intended for any community member who does not currently have a working thermometer in their home.
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Eight feeding sites open Saturday and Sunday 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. for meals
03/21/2020
Eight (8) BCPS school parking lots will be open Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. to distribute food to children ages 18 and under. Pull through the car rider lanes to pick up the meals, which will include a lunch for today and a breakfast for tomorrow. The sites are Table Rock Middle, Liberty Middle, East Burke Middle, Mountain View Elementary, Hillcrest Elementary, Valdese Elementary, Ray Childers Elementary and George Hildebrand Elementary.
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BCPS closes buildings to the public
03/20/2020
Effective today, Friday, March 20, 2020, after 5 p.m., Burke County Public Schools will close all facilities, including Central Office and school buildings, to the public to help mitigate the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). All school facilities will be closed to the public until further notice. This is being done in conjunction with the City of Morganton and the County of Burke, who also are closing all government buildings to the public in response to the recent declarations by Gov. Roy Cooper and the federal government. This does not include our childcare facilities as that is considered an essential service.
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Feeding numbers grow as school closure continues, more bus routes added
03/19/2020
Burke County Public Schools has continued to feed thousands of students as the statewide school closure continues due to the coronavirus situation. On Wednesday alone, a total of 4,630 meals were handed out through the various car rider loops and school bus food distribution sites. And the school district wants to expand past the county lines.
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BCPS to provide community service through child care sites
03/18/2020
Burke County Public Schools will open five sites for temporary, emergency, out-of-school child care purposes on Thursday, March 19, to meet day care needs of families with parents who must continue to work through the coronavirus (COVID-19) crisis while schools are closed for instructional purposes. Childcare services will be provided between 6 a.m. and 6 p.m. on week days for children ages 5 to 12. The cost will be $15 a day and is due by cash or check each morning. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS feeds students during school closure
03/17/2020
To ensure students continue to have access to meals while schools are closed, Burke County Public Schools has opened seven grab-and-go feeding locations. Children will receive a lunch for that day and a breakfast for the next. The lunch will include a hot or cold sandwich, milk, cold vegetable and a whole fruit. Breakfast for the next day will include milk, whole or dried fruit and a grain-based breakfast option (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Governor Roy Cooper announced today in a press conference that all NC Public Schools are closed for at least two weeks.
03/14/2020
Click "Read More" for the NC State Board of Education's resolution in support of school closures and emergency actions to prepare and respond to the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)
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State championship game postponed, spring sports suspended
03/12/2020
Burke County Public Schools has received word from the North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA) that due to the threat from COVID-19, they have decided to postpone the 2020 Men’s and Women’s Basketball State Championships indefinitely. Burke County Public Schools is in full support of this decision. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS cancels all field trips
03/12/2020
Burke County Public Schools has canceled all field trips effective today, Thursday, March 12, 2020, until further notice as a proactive measure concerning coronavirus (COVID-19). This applies to all school sponsored in-county, out-of-county, out-of-state and out-of-country field trips for students and staff as well as all professional development travel in and out of county for staff. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS hosts first county-wide archery tournament
03/11/2020
Burke County Public Schools recently held its first county-wide archery tournament involving elementary schools. Archers from all over the county descended on George Hildebrand Elementary School and competed against each other in multiple different flights. This was the first time Burke County elementary schools and individual archers competed against each other in a county-wide competition. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS targeted in cyber threat
03/09/2020
On the evening of Sunday, March 8, 2020, Burke County Public Schools learned that it was the subject of a ransomware cyber attack. The school district’s technology team immediately started assessing damages and executing safeguards to contain the attack and prevent further incidents. The technology department also contacted the proper authorities, who are investigating the attack. Due to the nature of the investigation, (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS stays current on Coronavirus
03/04/2020
At Burke County Public Schools, we are staying informed about the Coronavirus via regular updates from local, state and national health officials, including the Burke County Health Department, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services and the Center for Disease Control, as well as education associations, including the School Superintendents Association. As we make plans and review procedures to be prepared, we encourage you to listen to facts and not respond to fears. We are committed to communicating with families, educating about prevention measures and providing a safe and healthy learning environment. Coronavirus symptoms can mimic those of a cold or flu and similar steps can be taken to prevent all three. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS archers place in state tournament
02/25/2020
Students from 12 schools within the Burke County Public Schools system competed in the 2020 North Carolina National Archery in Schools Program state tournament. Schools that participated were East Burke Middle School, Drexel Elementary, Forest Hill Elementary, George Hildeband Elementary, Glen Alpine Elementary, Hillcrest Elementary, Icard Elementary, Oak Hill Elementary, Ray Childers Elementary, Salem Elementary, Valdese Elementary and W.A. Young Elementary. Schools placing in the top 10 were: (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Burke County Public Schools wins 11 state awards for effective school communication and public relations
02/21/2020
The North Carolina School Public Relations Association (NCSPRA) recognized 36 school districts and handed out 258 awards during the annual Blue Ribbon Awards brunch and ceremony on Jan. 31, 2020. Burke County Public Schools received a total of 11 Blue Ribbon Awards. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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EBHS revives Quill & Scroll
02/17/2020
East Burke High School has reignited its local chapter of Quill & Scroll. Originally chartered in 1987 the chapter has remained dormant for over 20 years. The school's newspaper and yearbook clubs organized and re-established the Honor Society this year. Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society for High School Journalists was organized on April 10, 1926, at the University of Iowa by renowned pollster George H. Gallup and a group of high school advisers for the purpose of encouraging and recognizing individual student achievement in journalism and scholastic publication. Since its founding, school charters have been granted to more than 11,300 high schools in all 50 states, the District of Columbia and 29 foreign countries. Media advisers in chartered schools are eligible to recommend outstanding high school journalism students for membership in Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Teacher Academy helps students discover passions
02/14/2020
A small group of students at Patton High School are getting a glimpse into what being a teacher is like through a new academy started this school year. The Teacher Academy at Patton High School was created to help generate more interest in teaching as a profession and to give those students a way to explore the career in more depth. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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East Burke names Derrick Minor as football coach
02/04/2020
East Burke High School Principal Katie Moore announces Derrick Minor as the Cavaliers new head football coach. Minor started his teaching career in 2005 and head football coaching career in 2012. Most recently he was the head football coach at Fred T. Foard High School in Newton, where he took the team to its first back-to-back winning regular seasons and playoff win since 1982. He comes to East Burke after spending this school year at Oak Hill Elementary School. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Global Immersion Academy -- Kindergarten Application
02/04/2020
Mountain View Elementary School offers students entering kindergarten a voluntary, dual language immersion experience called the Global Immersion Academy. Through the program, students learn the standard course of study in both English and Spanish and learn content while learning the two languages. The students spend half of their day learning in English and the other half learning in Spanish from highly qualified teachers. The goals of the dual language program are biliteracy, bilingualism, grade level academic achievement and cross cultural competence. Students who enter the language immersion program in kindergarten are eligible to continue in the academy through the fifth grade. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Students help lead seminar on vaping
01/29/2020
Cadence and Gillian started the Burke Youth Health Coalition when they were students at Heritage Middle School. Now juniors at Draughn High School, they continue to bring awareness to health issues facing teens, including most recently vaping. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS searches out the ‘next new’ for students
01/27/2020
Burke County Public Schools constantly seeks to keep curriculum and programs relevant to the needs and interests of students, aligned with the skills business and industry desire, and a step ahead of the latest demands of technology. To achieve this, district leaders are always looking for the “next new,” a term coined by Burke County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Larry Putnam, which is an innovative discipline to introduce to students. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS offers employee assistant program and work-life services
01/14/2020
The new year brings a new employee assistance program to Burke County Public Schools. Effective Jan. 1, 2020, district employees have access to free, confidential, 24/7 help from McLaughlin Young. Based in North Carolina, McLaughlin Young offers employees short-term counseling and consultation for a broad range of life events an employee may experience, including family and relationship issues, depression and anxiety, resiliency and coping skills, work-relation issues, grief and loss, alcohol or drug use, stress and legal and financial issues. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Student, teacher duo start adult ESL class
01/13/2020
Chelsey Taylor, an ESL teacher at Hillcrest Elementary School, and Luke Elliot, a junior at East Burke High School, have started teaching an English-as-a-second-language class for those wanting to learn the English language. On Tuesday and Thursday mornings, approximately a dozen parents of Hillcrest Elementary School students drop off their children for school and become students themselves. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Patton arts students win at the Scholastic Art Award contest
01/10/2020
Burke County art students will be honored at the Asheville Museum of Art’s 2020 WNC Regional Scholastic Art Awards. Patton High School’s Hannah S. won an honorable mention for a contour line drawing, Nelson M. won a Silver Key for a handmade book, and Ellie H. won an honorable mention for a portrait drawing. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Schools Earn Healthy Together Awards
01/06/2020
Two Burke County schools received recognition from the 5210 Healthy Together program sponsored by Carolinas HealthCare System Blue Ridge. Salem Elementary School earned a Silver award and George Hildebrand Elementary School earned a Bronze and have banners proclaiming the award. “5-2-1-0 encourages kids to eat 5 handfuls of fruits and vegetables per day, limit recreational screen time to 2 hours or less, get 1 hour of exercise or play each day, and drink 0 sugary drinks,” (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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BCPS kicks off annual food drive
01/03/2020
Burke County Public Schools is launching its seventh annual Souperintendent’s Souper Bowl Canned-Food Drive. Burke County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Larry Putnam, who first initiated the drive in 2014, said, “It is always exciting to flip the calendar to not only a new year but also a new decade. It also is exciting to continue familiar traditions, such as our annual food drive.” (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Students give back to community, schools during holiday season
12/20/2019
Burke County Public Schools students are setting aside their own wish lists to spread holiday cheer to others in the community by volunteering, committing random acts of kindness and organizing fundraisers for those in need.
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Brian Hamilton visits EBHS to highlight entrepreneurship
12/19/2019
Brian Hamilton, founder of the Brian Hamilton Foundation, spoke recently to East Burke High School Career and Technical Education students about entrepreneurship and how it can help students succeed. Hamilton told his story of growing up on food stamps, his parents not being able to pay medical bills and having their power cut off multiple times. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Students participate, receive awards during speech contest
12/17/2019
The Burke County 2019-20 Middle and Elementary speech contests were held at the Old Rock School on Dec. 11 and 12. First-, second- and third-place winners were recognized in five categories for each contest. All total, 66 students advanced to the county-wide middle school competition after winning their school level speech contests. The winners were: (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Students gifted desktop computers for home
12/13/2019
In partnership with Kramden Institute and STEM West, Burke County Public Schools was able to donate 150 desktop computers to students at nine elementary schools and two middle schools. The computers went home with families just in time for a holiday surprise. Parents have been picking up the computers from their child’s school over the last few weeks. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Students awarded at science fair, competing at regionals
12/03/2019
Several Burke County Public Schools students were awarded at this year’s Continental Science Fair at Liberty Middle School on Nov. 21. The following students’ projects were selected to advance to the regional science fair at Appalachian State University on Dec. 17. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Freedom senior wins Heisman High School Scholarship
11/14/2019
Freedom High School senior Riley C. is a state winner in the 2019 Heisman High School Scholarship program and recipient of a $500 college scholarship. The Heisman High School Scholarship extends the prestige of the Heisman Memorial Trophy, which is awarded annually to the most outstanding college football player in the nation, to the nation’s most esteemed high school seniors. The high school scholarship recognizes and rewards outstanding scholar-athletes who understand that the most important victories not only happen on the field, but in their schools and communities. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Industry partnerships help students relate to workforce
10/29/2019
Leviton Manufacturing Company Inc., Geiger International and many other local industries have been visiting middle and high school students to show the connection between what students learn in school and how each industry operates. The visit was a result of teachers, including Liberty science teacher Monique St. Louis, within Burke County Public Schools attending a STEM West professional development... (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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School board celebrates deed presentation
10/28/2019
The Burke County Board of Education celebrated a gift of land from the state on Friday during a special called meeting at Liberty Middle School. The North Carolina Department of Agriculture signed over to Burke County Public Schools the nearly 50 acres of land that Liberty Middle and North Liberty School sit on, as well as an additional 28 acres of land near the Liberty property and behind Patton High School. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Appalachian guarantees admission to qualifying seniors at Burke County high schools
10/24/2019
BOONE, N.C. — Current seniors at Burke County high schools who meet specific academic requirements and submit an application by Friday, Nov. 1, are guaranteed admission to Appalachian State University through a newly announced program called GEAR UP Guarantee. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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East Burke teacher starts beekeeping club
10/24/2019
Once Foreign Language Teacher Drew Laningham finishes up his fourth period class at East Burke High School, he doesn’t pack up and call it a day. Instead he takes a group of students outside to tend to more than a dozen beehives. Laningham recently started the East Burke High School Beekeeping Club to help students learn about honeybees and how they have a very important job in our society. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Sara LeCroy named BCPS Principal of the Year
10/21/2019
Patton High School Principal Sara LeCroy is the 2019 Burke County Public Schools Principal of the year. LeCroy’s fellow Burke County Public Schools principals nominated her for the honor and she was chosen following an interview panel. LeCroy said, “I am humbled and honored to be chosen as this year's Burke County Public Schools Principal of the Year. There are so many amazing administrators in our county who also are deserving of this award. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Freedom, East Burke outdoor tracks being revamped
10/21/2019
The outdoor, athletic tracks at Freedom and East Burke high schools will soon be revamped to have rubberized surfaces by the end of the school year. The track at Freedom High School is currently being worked on and is set to be finished by the end of football season. The renovation of the track at East Burke High School is set to start after the end of football season and be complete before spring. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Burke Education Foundation holds annual golf tournament, awards first gift
10/15/2019
The Burke Education Foundation Inc. held its fourth annual golf tournament on Friday, Oct. 11 at Mimosa Hills Golf Club. Twenty-seven teams participated and the players and sponsors helped make the event a success. The Burke Education Foundation was formed in July of 2016 by a group of Burke County Public Schools stakeholders who wanted to find a way to further support the students and staff of the school system. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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High school receives grant to create wetland educational site
10/14/2019
Patton High School was selected as one of 22 organizations to receive a grant to help further the building of special project within their school. The Duke Energy Foundation awarded the high school a $40,000 grant that will help to restore the Enola Trail Wetlands Area and eliminate erosion and treat runoff. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Schools system recognized as National Board Accomplished District
10/10/2019
Burke County Public Schools was recently recognized as a National Board Accomplished District by The National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. The district was recognized along with 80 other school districts in ten different states due to having greater than 20% of teachers who have achieved National Board certification.
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Student to host walk for neurological disorder
09/20/2019
Freedom High School senior Molly McRacken is helping to raise awareness for a special cause by hosting a Conquer Chiari Walk Across America event Sept. 28 at Catawba Meadows Park with registration starting at 9 a.m. and the walk to follow from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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'Twas the Night Before FAFSA - Scholarship Night 2019
09/19/2019
Parents and high school seniors - join us at the Old Rock School on September 30th, from 5:00 pm - 7:30 pm, to learn how to pay for college. College Foundation of North Carolina Rep. Skip Watts will be giving a presentation on college admission and financial aid. You'll also get to meet with local organizations that have scholarships to offer, whether you're headed to a four-year university or want to attend college locally. (VIDEO)
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MADE Competition
09/11/2019
Several middle and high schools within Burke County Public Schools were awarded and recognized during the MADE (Morganton Art Design and Engineering) Competition at the Historic Morganton Festival. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section)
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Food, medical camps pique students’ interest in careers
08/22/2019
Students interested in working in the medical and culinary fields had opportunities this summer to explore those careers. Carolinas HealthCare System Blue Ridge sponsored Camp Med and GEAR-UP sponsored the Foodie Adventure Camp. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section.)
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Local industries recognized for partnerships
08/21/2019
Burke County Public Schools recently honored local business and industry partners with a luncheon at the Community House in Morganton and gave them a small token of appreciation for their support of the school system through work-based learning opportunities, including industry tours, internships, apprenticeships, career fairs and job fairs. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section.)
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History comes alive for BCPS principals
08/19/2019
Burke County Public Schools principals recently took a break from preparing their schools for the return of students to immerse themselves in local and national history. The school administrators visited the History Museum of Burke County in downtown Morganton and the Charters of Freedom monument on the square of the old Burke County courthouse. While at the museum, the principals toured the many exhibits on display that tell the rich history of the county...(For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section.)
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Middle school students in a Burke County Public School’s summer engineering camp construct a tiny house. Burke County Public Schools ranks high on a recent list of best school districts in the state.
BCPS ranks No. 22 on list of best districts in state
08/16/2019
A national website that researches schools ranks Burke County Public Schools 22nd overall and tied for third compared to districts its size on a list of the best school districts in North Carolina. The site, Niche.com, released its new 2020 Best Schools rankings earlier this month. On its list, Burke County Public Schools is the 13th best district for teachers, the 14th best place to teach and the 15th safest district in North Carolina out of 115 school districts. (For those using the BCPS app - see the full story in the Recent News Section.)
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School system, college focus on student success
08/14/2019
Leaders from Burke County Public Schools and Western Piedmont Community College recently gathered for a special called meeting led by Burke County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Larry Putnam to discuss workforce development. Burke County Public Schools plays an integral part in Western Piedmont Community College’s enrollment and together the two teams discussed ways to get more students involved in workforce programs and earn college credits while still in high school.
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New insurance deal covers BCPS students
08/12/2019
All Burke County Public Schools students are now covered under a Pre-K-12 accident insurance program should they become injured during a school-sponsored event. The Burke County Board of Education recently approved the district-paid coverage policy as a secondary insurance policy for students and student athletes. The policy covers students during school time activities and athletes during sports activities and kicks in after any other insurance policies have been paid. The plan was purchased through QBE and cost $28,475.
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Williams named Engineer Girl Ambassador
07/31/2019
The National Academy of Engineering has named Lillie Williams an Engineer Girl Ambassador and invited her to attend the Women’s Engineers Conference in Anaheim, California in November. Williams, a rising senior at Draughn High School and dual enrolled at the NC School of Science and Math (NCSSM), applied for the ambassador position and is one of 16 high school female students from across the country to be chosen. Her proposal included creating an outreach project to help get elementary school girls interested in engineering. In addition to attending the three-day conference, Williams will receive a $250 grant to carry out her project back home.
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Principals focus on future workers
07/30/2019
Burke County Public Schools administrators got schooled in workforce development opportunities at their annual retreat Monday and Tuesday. In addition to hearing updates from directors for the upcoming academic year and participating in team building activities, principals visited Western Piedmont Community College, Catawba Valley Community College and the N.C. Center for Engineering Technologies.
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Free Engineering Camps and Free Lunch
07/11/2019
Duke Energy and BCPS have partnered to offer FREE Engineering Camps this summer for Middle and High School Students!!! There is a limited number of slots available, sign up NOW! Free lunch is included everyday!
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The 14th annual Burke County Youth Band Camp starts July 29
07/10/2019
The 14th annual Burke County Youth Band Camp will be held Monday, July 29 through Friday, Aug. 2, 2019 at Patton High School for rising sixth- through ninth-grade band students. This is a wonderful, fun enrichment for band students. The registration fee is $40 before July 22 and $50 afterward.
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Freedom FFA Chapter receives state recognition at annual convention
07/03/2019
Raleigh, North Carolina – The Freedom FFA Chapter recently competed in several categories at the 91st North Carolina FFA State Convention held at the Raleigh Convention Center, June 18 – 20.
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