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Education

  • Dancing with the Stars

    Seven couples hit the stage at the sold-out Dancing With the Stars competition Saturday night, raising $14,500 for Andrew Jackson Middle School’s Art Focus program.
    The event was a big financial success, topping the fundraising total at last year’s inaugural Dancing With the Stars by more than 60 percent.
    Taking home the technical-skills championship trophy was David Platts, science and arts instructional specialist for Lancaster County School District, and Katrina Bernsdorff, AJ High drama teacher.

  • IL high school will cost more, hold more kids

    The Lancaster County school board on Saturday voted to accept a $90.4 million construction bid for the new Indian Land High School – $10 million more than originally expected.
    The board intends to award the bid to Cleveland Construction of Charlotte after a 15-day protest period for other bidders.
    School district officials had estimated in 2016 that the construction would cost $80.9 million. The Charlotte-area’s booming construction market contributed to the higher cost, as did the district’s decision to make the building larger than planned.

  • Young women explore STEM jobs with pros who have them

    Nearly 65 professionals and female students from Lancaster County high schools met at Lineberger Construction Inc. on Jan. 25 to encourage women not to be afraid to enter male-dominated career fields.

    Sponsored by Lineberger Construction Inc. and hosted by the N.C.-based Enterprising Women Foundation, the event gave female professionals in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) positions a chance to encourage the young women about their career paths.

  • Stifling nerves, 4th grader spells ‘rupture’ to win bee

    Buford Elementary fourth grader Bryce Bridges, drafted into the county spelling bee when his school’s winner got sick, won the championship Thursday and beamed at his good fortune.
    “Rupture” was the word that’s taking Bryce to the regional spelling bee in Charlotte on Feb. 19.
    Bryce, his school’s alternate, found out Monday that he would be competing in the bee in place of the school’s winner, who was sick.
    “I was nervous,” he said after the victory. “I just don’t know how I won.”

  • Gifted-and-talented program expanding

    Lancaster County School District’s gifted-and-talented program will expand over the next four years from a project based at Discovery School to one in each elementary school.

    The new structure will place a gifted-and-talented teacher at each elementary to teach students and train other teachers in strategies for advanced students.

    Tom McDuffie, gifted-and-talented coordinator, said it will make life simpler.

    “It’s going to be more economical in the long run, because we won’t have to pay for transportation,” McDuffie said.

  • Up against the wall

    As Kershaw Elementary students walked into the cafeteria Thursday, eyes widened, mouths fell open and laughter cascaded off the walls.
    First-year Principal Kelli Farmer was duct-taped to the wall, suspended in a gray cocoon for a good cause.
    “It’s hot,” said Farmer, who by the end of lunch period was covered in nine rolls of duct tape. “Your feet start going to sleep and then you just kind of hang on. We do whatever we can for our children.”

  • 300 suggest names, colors, mascot for new IL school

    More than 300 people have given the Lancaster County School District input on naming the new Panhandle elementary school and selecting colors and a mascot.
    In the online survey, which is now finished, popular names included Andrew Jackson Elementary, Catawba Elementary, Charles Duke Elementary, Creekside Elementary, Osceola Elementary, Pleasant Valley Elementary, Van Wyck Elementary and Walnut Creek Elementary.
    Dr. Jonathan Phipps, LCSD superintendent, said it’s important for a community to feel like it “owns” its schools.

  • New card lets senior citizens attend sports events for free

    If you’re 65 or older and enjoy Lancaster County sports, you’re in luck.

    Lancaster County School District is now offering a sporting event pass called a Gold Card that will allow all senior citizens to attend school athletic events for free.

    “We’re excited to begin this program this year,” said LCSD Superintendent Jonathan Phipps. “We believe it’s a great way to thank our seniors for all they do for our students and a great tool for increasing senior citizen support for our schools.”

  • Proposed Panhandle school attendance zones

    Building a new school in the Panhandle calls for attendance zones to be redrawn.

    That means some Harrisburg Elementary students will be moved to Indian Land Elementary and some ILE students will be going to the new Panhandle elementary to the south.

    Three proposed attendance lines for the Panhandle were presented to the school board Tuesday evening.

    Dr. Jonathan Phipps, Lancaster County School District superintendent, said switching students and teachers to different schools is a routine consequence of growth, but it’s sometimes difficult.

  • Exactly what schools get for $199M

    Eleven new playgrounds, 7,350 Chromebooks, at least 1,432 doors, and 12 parking lot and pick-up areas.
    That’s some of what the Lancaster County School District’s $199 million bond referendum is funding.
    And then there are the bigger projects – two new schools, three multipurpose buildings and three new artificial-turf athletic fields.
    About $121 million of the bond money will go to Indian Land, about $34 million to Lancaster, $33 million to Kershaw and $14 million to Buford.