HCS Index

February 1, 2023

Happy Black History Month!

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Happy Black History Month!

Black History Month is a unique opportunity to highlight, celebrate, and become more knowledgeable about Black heritage and experiences, and to honor our nation’s notable Black leaders. In doing so, we can strengthen our students’ knowledge and insight regarding the issues of civil and human rights.

While Black History Month entails 28 days devoted solely to Black history, the Hoover City Schools District (HCS) is proud of the educational equity, diversity, and inclusion demonstrated year-round for all of our students.


  • 23.5% of HCS student population is Black

  • 25% of HCS principals are Black

  • 41.4% of HCS assistant principals are Black

  • 44.4% of HCS District administrators are Black

  • HCS celebrates the highest number of Black principals, teachers, and District administrators in the school district’s history.

  • Since the summer of 2019, HCS has had a contractual partnership with the Elam Leadership Institute (ELI), a national organization for educational institutions working with diverse populations to address the achievement and connectedness of all stakeholders. ELI provides equity and inclusion training for HCS administrators and teachers to implement equitable practices in our classrooms and throughout the District.

  • Since winter of 2019, HCS has had active District Equity and Parent Equity Committees and also Student Diversity Councils.

Read more about the District’s previous equity and educational initiatives here. HCS engages in diversity and equity practices which are in action in our schools, but there’s still progress to be made. The district remains committed to supporting our diverse population of students, improving the diversity of teachers in the classroom, and providing resources to our teachers and staff to ensure all students learn and achieve academic success.

Hoover High School held a Black History Month kick-off program on Wednesday, February 1. The event included Miles College and University of Alabama at Birmingham sororities and fraternities and a Q & A session with former University of Alabama Basketball player Tarik London and Hoover Board of Education member Kermit Kendrick. Please visit your school’s website for a list of activities planned for Black History Month and other exciting events happening throughout the year.

What are HCS students looking forward to this month? Watch the video below to hear elementary, middle, and high school students talking about the importance of celebrating Black History Month at their schools!

Hoover City Schools Celebrate Black History Month 2023

R. F. Bumpus Middle School Student Wins 2023 District Spelling Bee

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The Hoover City Schools District (HCS) held its 2023 District Spelling Bee on Tuesday, January 17, at Spain Park High School, where R. F. Bumpus Middle School 8th-grader Serena Agrawal won first place. The soft-spoken yet confident and bright 13-year-old maintained her competitive lead throughout the District Spelling Bee, which lasted 26 rounds and about 90 minutes. Jay Jacob, a 7th grader at Berry Middle School, was the runner-up.

Agrawal said, “I’m excited and worked really hard, so I’m very happy. I want to thank my mom and dad for helping me so much to prepare for the Spelling Bee.”

Profundity: That was the championship word that Agrawal spelled correctly. The definition of profundity is "deep insight; great depth of knowledge or thought."

“It wasn’t too bad because it’s spelled how it’s pronounced,” said Agrawal. “The words themselves were not so hard for the Bee. The hard part is preparing for it and participating in the actual competition because I was so nervous.”

Bumpus Middle School Principal Donna Burke said, “We are so proud of Serena. She works so hard at school, and it did not surprise us at all that she won. We also look forward to cheering her on at the next level.”

Read the District’s full story here

The Finley Committee Honors Teachers in the Trenches

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During its annual Teacher in the Trenches Character Awareness Breakfast, the Finley Committee recognized three teachers for leading with character and going beyond the call of duty to serve students in the District. The event honoring the award winners was held on Tuesday, January 24, in the Community Room at Hoover City Hall.

The Teacher in the Trenches award honors educators whose dedication and kindness impact students beyond the classroom. The award highlights the teacher’s positive impact on the overall climate and culture of the school and for being a steadfast "champion" for the students. The Finley Committee selects one elementary, middle, and high school teacher to receive this annual award.

In December 2022, 50 teachers were nominated by their fellow teachers throughout the District. From those nominations, the following teachers were selected by a group of educators to receive the award for 2023:

Monica Horne, Deer Valley Elementary School

Allison Winterberger, Simmons Middle School

Jordan Sherrell, Hoover High School

During the Teacher in the Trenches Breakfast, HCS Chief Learning Officer and Finley Committee member Dr. Chris Robbins said, “We see our teachers every day spending their time and energy, and their mornings, days, and nights seeking to make an impact on kids in the city of Hoover and their families. The Teacher in the Trenches award was created to recognize the efforts of these teachers.”

Read the District’s full story here

Spotlight: Elementary and Secondary Teachers of the Year

HCS 2023 Elementary and Secondary Teachers of the Year

Dr. Alice Turney Selected as a Top Three Finalist for Alabama's National Distinguished Principal Award

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Riverchase Elementary School Principal Dr. Alice Turney was selected as a top three finalist for the state of Alabama representative for the National Distinguished Principal award. Dr. Turney is representing the Hoover City Schools District and District IV. She moves on to the next level with site visits this month. Congratulations and we wish her the best of luck! Here are the top three finalists:

*District I - Mrs. Karissa Lang Crestline Elementary Hartselle City

*District IV- Dr. Alice Turney Riverchase Elementary Hoover City

*District VI- Dr. Margaret Jones Edgewood Elementary Selma City

Riverchase Elementary School Earns Recognition as a 2023 Blue Ribbon School of Excellence

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Riverchase Elementary School was selected as a Blue Ribbon School of Excellence for a second time! Riverchase Elementary met the required criteria in nine performance areas of high-performing schools required for this prestigious award.

· Student Focus and Support

· School Organization and Culture

· Challenging Standard and Curriculum

· Active Teaching and Learning

· Technology and Integration

· Professional Community

· Leadership and Education Vitality

· School, Family, and Community Partnerships

· Indicators of Success

In addition to the comprehensive review process for the nine performance areas, stakeholder surveys, interviews, and school visits were also completed.

Dr. Judy Warden Fields, CEO of Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence, applauds Riverchase Elementary School for its courage, collaborative spirit, and commitment to excellence in ensuring all students get the education they deserve.

Principal Dr. Alice Turney said, "This recognition confirms our commitment to excellence. The Riverchase community works hard to meet the needs of students. I am exceptionally proud of all the hard work and dedication over the years to make this happen by all the stakeholders. Accomplishments like this cannot be achieved by a few people, it truly takes a village working together for success!"

This award will be presented to Riverchase Elementary School during the Blue Ribbon Schools of Excellence Conference in Orlando, Florida at Disney's Contemporary Convention Center at the Awards Luncheon on Friday, December 1, 2023. Over 40 states are represented at this national event each year.

Timothy Alexander Visits R.F. Bumpus Middle School

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Timothy Alexander, a writer and motivational speaker visited R.F. Bumpus Middle School to speak to the entire student body. Alexander is a native of Birmingham and had the opportunity to play football for any college in the country. He had a terrible car accident in 2006, leaving him paralyzed from the neck down. Alexander uses this quote, “We don’t need it to be easy, we just need it to be possible,” and personal experience as a catalyst to inspire change.

He shared a message of encouragement and triumph with the entire student body and left students feeling inspired. Alexander spoke about having good character, self-love, overcoming adversity, resiliency, and demonstrating kindness.

7th grader Chase Austin said, “I feel more empowered. He talked about being positive and working hard. I think I know more about overcoming my problems and challenges now.”

Bumpus Middle School Principal Donna Burke says Alexander has a way of connecting with all of the students and makes the speaking engagement interactive. He has the students repeat his message at different times, keeping them focused on the message.

“We wanted to start off 2023 in a positive way,” said Burke. “In discussions with our counselors, we talked about finding a speaker we thought would make an impact on our students. Based on our previous experiences hearing Mr. Alexander, we knew he was the one to do that. There is so much negative in the world that distracts our students, so we wanted to start 2023 with a powerful message.”

Zaneta Heard, a 7th-grade school counselor, said, “When I asked for some takeaways, one student stated, ‘He proved to us that even if you go through some terrible things, you can still find a silver lining, and it will all turn out okay in the end.’ We truly believe that Mr. Alexander changed so many of our students’ outlooks on life, as well as the staff here at Bumpus.”

Watch the video below from Alexander’s visit.

Timothy Alexander Visits Bumpus Middle School

Samford Leadership Day at Trace Crossings Elementary School

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During Samford Leadership Day this month, local and state leaders visited Trace Crossings Elementary School (TCES) to learn about a longstanding “Alliance for Learning” partnership between the Samford University Orlean Beeson School of Education and TCES.

This partnership, called a learning lab experience, allows Samford junior-level education students to earn practicum hours while observing and working alongside classroom teachers and staff.

This unique experience allows prospective teacher candidates to better understand what to expect in an educational setting before getting their first job.

Anna Kate Beaudry and other Samford education students were part of Samford Leadership Day to share their experiences on a panel.

Beaudry, an Early Childhood Special Education, Elementary, and Collaborative Education (ESEC) program major, said, “Trace Crossings trusts us enough to be able to take charge, and I felt like I was actually the teacher. I love seeing when the light comes on, and they understand what you’re teaching them. We’ve been able to teach lessons too, which was my first time teaching a lesson. Learning how to write a lesson, teach it to students, see them understand it, and get what you’re teaching is rewarding.”

Beaudry says the experience at TCES makes her even more excited about graduating and getting her first job as a teacher. She says that she and other students have completed classroom observations before, but this program enables her to do hands-on, real-life work in the classroom.

The partnership began in 2011 when faculty, staff, and administrators at Samford and TCES wanted to change the way future teachers are prepared for the classroom. Over the years the partnership has continued to redefine quality clinical preparation for students who have a passion to become teachers.

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Strategic Plan Community Survey

Hoover City Schools District (HCS) leaders value your input and ideas as we begin developing our new five-year Strategic Plan. Parents should take the survey once for each child in the system.

Employees who are parents of HCS students are asked to take the survey both as an employee and as a parent. Everyone is invited to take the Community Survey, which is open to all members of the community and anyone interested in being involved in planning the future of the Hoover schools. The survey will close on February 10, 2023.

Click here for the Parent/Employee/Community Survey.

Hoover City Schools

Our award-winning, nationally-ranked school district features highly-motivated students, skilled and caring educators, and engaged parents.

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