Archive for January, 2011


Regional Science Olympiad Set for Feb. 5

 WCPSS students will join hundreds of central North Carolina high school and middle school students competing in the Raleigh Regional Science Olympiad Tournament Feb. 5 at Green Hope High School.

Olympiad officials are expecting 60 middle and high school teams each with 15 – 18 members from Wake, Durham, Franklin, Granville, Vance, and Warren counties.  Competing in 47 different events, the teams are vying for the opportunity to represent the region at the State Science Olympiad on April 30 in Raleigh. Winners there go on to the National Science Olympiad.

Popular events will include:

  • Battery Buggy: Teams will construct a vehicle that uses electrical energy as its sole means of propulsion, quickly travels a specified distance, and stops as close as possible to center of the finish line.
  •  Storm the Castle: Teams will design, construct, and calibrate a device capable of launching a projectile into a target area and collect data to develop a series of graphs relating launch-configuration to target distance and height.

 WCPSS teachers, local professionals and college students volunteer to design events that will produce scores that result in an overall point total to determine medal winners with trophies from state and national organizations going to the top finishers in each division.  Top finishers qualify to compete at the State Tournament held in Raleigh at NC State University.  The top two placing teams at the State Tournament will advance to the National Tournament.

 The North Carolina Science Olympiad (NCSO) is third in the country in student participation.  Currently, 250 middle and high schools representing over 6,000 students and 60 counties in NC are participating in the NCSO.  In 2009, NCSO had over 5,000 volunteers involved in reaching middle and high school students for science.  NCSO events align with the NC Standard Course of Study as well as the National Science Education Standards.  The events are designed to enhance and strengthen both science content and process skills.  

 The NCSO is a nonprofit organization with the mission to improve the quality of science and technology education in all North Carolina schools.  The NCSO accomplishes its mission through professional development workshops, summer institutes, after school programs, summer camps and intramural, regional, and state tournaments that are rigorous academic interscholastic competitions that consist of a series of individual and team events that are well-balanced between the various science disciplines of biology, earth science, chemistry, physics, and technology.

For more information on the NCSO, contact Co-Directors

WCPSS Teams Earn Honors in Future City Competition

WCPSS middle school students earned some of the top honors in the North Carolina Regional Future City Competition held at NC State University on Jan. 15

The Ligon GT Magnet Middle School team earned second place in the competition. The student presenters were Adam Johnson, Visrut Sudhakar and Anuj Thakkar. The team’s teacher was Beth Lengefeld and the mentors were Eric Misak and Parsons Brinckerhoff.

The Martin GT Magnet Middle School team earned third place. The student presenters were Logan Tavares, Jackson Brakebill and Kathryn Powers. The team’s teacher was Rebecca West and the mentor was Bryan Burnitt. The team will display its award winning model at the school’s open house on Feb. 10.

The school teams earned honors in several categories including:

  • Best Incorporation of Cultural, Arts, and Historic Resources –  Ligon Magnet Middle School
  • Best Incorporation of Healthcare Product – East Millbrook Magnet School
  • Best Use of Energy – Martin Magnet Middle School

Future City is an engineering competition that challenges over 33,000 students in sixth, seventh and eighth grades from more than 1,100 schools in 39 regions nationwide to consider how to revitalize America’s cities. Students design future cities with simulation software, build scale models, write essays and give oral reports on their city’s design. In NC, cash prizes amounting to more than $5,000 are awarded. The state’s winning team attends a week-long NC State Engineering summer camp and represents the state at the Future City National Finals in Washington, D.C. Sponsored by National Engineers Week, this national program introduces students to engineering with the popular SimCity 4 Deluxe™ software.

Thanks to Martin Magnet Program Coordinator Lisa Thompson for sharing this story. Continue Reading . . .

Sanderson Named Grand Champion in WCPSS Cheerleading Competition

Sanderson High Cheerleaders earned the Grand Champion title for Varsity High School and JV High Schools in the WCPSS Cheerleading Competition held at Southeast Raleigh High on Saturday, Jan. 29. Here are the full competition results:

Middle School Results (Winners)Zebulon – Non-Tumble DivisionSalem – Small Division

Leesville – Medium Division                

Durant – Large Division

Leesville – Grand Champion                

JV High School Results (Winners)

Sanderson – Small Division                  

Panther Creek – Large Division                  

Sanderson – Grand Champion               

Varsity High School Results (Winners)

Middle Creek – Small Division                  

Sanderson – Medium Division               

Millbrook – Large Division                  

Sanderson – Grand Champion               

Thanks to WCPSS Senior Administrator for Athletics/Driver Education Bobby Guthrie for sharing this news.

Dr. Hargens Visits Joyner Fourth-Grade Teachers

Interim Superintendent Donna Hargens spent some time in four fourth-grade classrooms at Joyner Magnet Elementary this week. For Hargens, it’s one of a series of visits she is making to schools with Tama Bouncer of Wake NCAE to connect with teachers and get a firsthand look into the classroom. In the coming weeks, she plans to visit classrooms from kindergarten through high school.

The Joyner fourth-grade team includes Adrianna Pardo, Katherine Johnson, Joanna Wallace and Charles Jones.

At Joyner, Dr. Hargens visited the classrooms of the fourth-grade teaching team located in the schools modular classroom building where students were working on long division.

Click to listen to Dr. Hargens Visits Joyner Fourth-Grade Teachers

This is a 17.5 minute mp3 file.

You can see photos of Joyner fourth graders working on math here.

Dr. Hargens observes students using playing cards to generate numbers as part of a division game in Katherine Johnson’s fourth grade class at Joyner Magnet Elementary.

WCPSS Cheerleading Competition Set for January 29

The 20th annual WCPSS Cheerleading Competition will be held at Southeast Raleigh High School this Saturday, January 29th.  The first WCPSS Cheerleading Competition was held at Garner High School in 1990.  This year’s competition will have 18 middle schools and 16 high schools (JV and Varsity).  The middle school competition begins at 9:00 a.m., the high school JV competition begins at 1:00 p.m., and the high school varsity competition begins at 2:30 p.m.  Admission is $5.00.

Thanks to Bobby Guthrie for sharing information about this event.

Heritage High School is Official SAT Testing Site

Heritage High School has been named an official SAT Testing Site. Information is available now on when students register. The test center code for Heritage High School is 34874. You may direct questions to Herb Nowak at

The deadline for the March SAT is February 11.

Thanks to Herb Nowak for sharing this information with GotNews.

Carpenter Elementary Year-Round Holds Parent Information Session

 Parents of prospective applicant students who wish to learn more about Carpenter Elementary are invited to information sessions on Tuesday, February 1 at 9:30 a.m. and 5:30 p.m.  The program and classroom visitation is designed for parents; please do not bring children if possible.  A student open house is scheduled prior to school beginning in July. 

Thanks to Principal Vickie Brown for sharing information about this event.

Rolesville Elementary School Holds Spelling Bee

Rolesville Elementary hosted its first annual School Spelling Bee on Thursday, January 20th. Pranav Chintalapudi, a 5th grader in Mrs. Hoover’s class, was selected the School Spelling Bee Champion. He will now head to NC State where he will compete on a regional level with all other elementary and middle school spelling bee champions. Ryan Gomes, a 5th grader in Mrs. DiGiovanni’s class, was the school spelling bee runner-up.

Thanks to Linda McCurdy for sharing her information with GotNews.

Teachers Honored for Earning National Board Certification

WCPSS teachers who earned certification and re-certification from the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards were honored at a recent reception hosted by the school system.

Dr. Stephen Gainey who leads WCPSS Human Resources offered his congratulations to the teachers who submitted a demanding one-year review of their instruction and then took certification testing in their area of expertise.

WCPSS had 319 teachers earn certification, first in the nation and the state in the total number of teachers who earned certification this year. And WCPSS now has more than 2,000 teachers who have earned certification.

Click to listen to Teachers Honored for Earning National Board Certification.

 This is a 6.5 minute mp3 file. Continue Reading . . .

West Lake Middle School to Host Open House for Prospective Students

West Lake Middle School will host an open house for prospective students and parents on Jan. 24 and 25 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. in the school auditorium. If West Lake is your base or year-round application option, this is an opportunity to tour the school and learn more about the year round program. More information is available at

Thanks to Dell Edwards for sharing this story with GotNews.