The Bobcat Blaze

March 5, 2021

Big picture

Principal's Message

Happy Friday Bobcats!

It has been another great week here in Bobcat country. What a fun time we had celebrating Read Across America Week! This week also started Women's History Month. I look forward to all the projects and activities our students will participate in within their homerooms to celebrate. You should have received your child's interim grade reports this week. If you have any questions about those, please contact their homeroom teacher.

Starting Monday, March 8th all elementary students will return to school for 5 days of in-person learning. If your student is part of Richland One's Virtual School Program, they will remain virtual for the remainder of this school year. If your student chose the e-learning modality as we transitioned back to 4 days a week, they will remain an e-learner.

Yearbook order forms are due on Friday, March 12th! Please get those in as soon as possible.

We are in the process of working with Strawbridge Photography Studio to ensure our students take individual photos this school year. These photos may not be in the yearbook but will still be available for purchase by families. More information will follow as it is received!

The weather forecast calls for sun this weekend! Please take time to enjoy your friends and family safely. We look forward to having everyone back 5 days a week on Monday!

Principal's Message:

Important Dates and Upcoming Events


March 1st-31st
  • ..........................................Free Covid-19 (details below)
  • ..........................................National Nutrition Month (see details in the Wellness Watch section below)
  • ..........................................National Women's History Month

March 1st-15th
  • ..........................................Follett Book e-Fair

March 8th
  • ..........................................Elementary Students Report for 5 Days F2F Instruction
  • ..........................................International Women's Day

March 12th
  • ..........................................Yearbook order forms are due

March 13th
  • ...........................................Grupo de Juego en Linea de ThriveRichland

  • ...........................................Deadline for Dance and Theatre Audition Submissions (details below)

Follett Book e-Fair

Instead of an in-person Book Fair this year, we are hosting an online book fair that is OPEN NOW - Friday March 15th! Families can order books online and have them delivered to the school (no shipping cost). Kids can also create wish lists (here is a link to show you how to send out to other family members. Click the image above and use the code: 4E1L3 to access A.C. Moore's e-fair.

Grupo de Juego en Linea de ThriveRichland

Familias de Richland One con niños de 0-4 años, unase a nosotros para grupos de juego en linea. Cantaremos, bailaremos y leeremos un cuento!

Get Your Yearbook Ordered Now!

Click on the documents below to place an order for the 20-21 yearbook. The deadline to place an order is March 12th.

Fifth Grade Parents:

If you would like to place an ad in the yearbook for your fifth grader, please see the attached flyer for details.

Gifted & Talented Artistic Dance and Theatre Program Auditions

RICHLAND ONE is one of the few districts in our state that offers Gifted & Talented Artistic Dance and Theatre programs in all of our middle and high schools.

The purpose of the dance and theatre education process in Richland School District One is to provide students with a rigorous and balanced approach to learning through critical thinking and creative problem solving. This process involves a discipline based approach with experiences in the production, appreciation, and knowledge of dance and theatre. Experience is gained through an understanding of the developments in history and culture, the development of judgements about dance and theatre, and the practical applications of dance and theatre practices.

The process for audition for the different this year. Normally, Hand dance and theater teachers come here to audition the 5th graders; however, they are now asking the students to record themselves and submit the recordings electronically. Please see the attached documents for audition requirements.

Free COVID-19 Testing Sites for March

DHEC-RRT - Pardon and Parole (Old Building)

Dates and Times for February

Open Daily: 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM

Further Information:

  • Report to the intersection of Greene St. and Heidt St.
  • Appointment Needed: No
  • Referral Needed: No
  • Pediatric Testing Available: Yes
  • Saliva testing- Do not eat, drink, or smoke for 30 minutes prior to testing.

Address: 2204 Lee St, Columbia, SC 29205

Contact Details and Pre-Registration:

DHEC-Tour Health - DHEC Parking Lot

Dates and Times for March

Open weekdays: 9:00 AM to 6:00 PM

Saturdays and Sundays: 9:00 AM to 4:00 PM

Further Information

  • Appointment Needed: No
  • Referral Needed: No
  • Pediatric Testing Available: Yes

Address: 2600 Bull St, Columbia, SC 29201

Contact Details:

Customer Service Number: 866-416-6341

CVS Health - Benedict College

Dates and Times for March

Open Monday-Saturday: 8:30-5:00

Further Information

  • Appointment Needed: No
  • Referral Needed: No
  • Pediatric Testing Available: Yes - All ages

Address :1903 Two Notch Rd, Columbia, South Carolina 29204, United States

Big picture


A Bobcat Spotlight...Women's History Month and International Women's Day

Big picture

Women’s History Month had its origins as a national celebration in 1981 when Congress passed Pub. L. 97-28 which authorized and requested the President to proclaim the week beginning March 7, 1982 as “Women’s History Week.” National Women’s History Month was later established in 1987 after being petitioned by the National Women’s History Project. Congress passed Pub. L. 100-9, designating March as Women's History Month, establishing the proclamation as a way to commemorate and encourage the study, observance and celebration of the role women have in American history. Since 1995, presidents have issued a series of annual proclamations to celebrate the contributions women have made in a variety of fields.

Big picture

“I raise up my voice- not so I can shout, but so that those without a voice can be heard…we cannot succeed when half of us are held back.”

-Malala Yousafzai, Pakistani activist for female education and the youngest Nobel Prize laureate.

International Women's Day is a global day celebrating the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women. The day also marks a call to action for accelerating gender parity. Significant activity is witnessed worldwide as groups come together to celebrate women's achievements or rally for women's equality.

Marked annually on March 8th, International Women's Day (IWD) is one of the most important days of the year to:

  • celebrate women's achievements
  • raise awareness about women's equality
  • lobby for accelerated gender parity
  • fundraise for female-focused charities

The campaign theme for International Women's Day 2021 is 'Choose To Challenge'. A challenged world is an alert world. And from challenge comes change. So let's all #ChooseToChallenge.

Influential Women of the 21st Century

Women have always played an active role in history. Over the next 4 issues of the Blaze, we will explore some of the historical pioneers and contemporary newsmakers that continue to impact the world as we recognize the a few of the most influential women of the 21st Century.

Read Across America Week

Big picture

Thank you so much for joining us as we celebrated Read Across America Week this week! Check out the pictures of all the fun things we did this week!

Don't forget to complete the 9 tasks from the Reading Challenge Board. Students can complete as many challenges as they like. Every "three-in-a-row" they get (think tic-tac-toe) will be an entry to win a prize (completing the whole board = 8 entries). The deadline for submitting your student's challenge board is March 12.

Monday - Reading is a Superpower

Tuesday - Reading is EVERYWHERE - Read My Shirt

Wednesday - #OHSNAP Get Caught Reading (in your favorite spot at home)

Thursday - Reading makes us BRIGHT!

Friday - Reading Sparks Imagination: Favorite Storybook Character

Look for additional photos in next week's issue of the Blaze!

A bobcat spotlight...3rd Grade Book Reviews!

Ms. Kozeny's Class

In Ms. Kozeny's 3rd grade class students submitted reviews about book selections they completed. Below you will find book reviews by Charlotte Warren and Pippa Smith.

Big picture
Big picture

counselor's corner

A Message from Mrs. Balthazor

Dear Parents,

Seeing your precious children four days per week for the last two weeks has definitely put a bounce in my step! While I can’t see their smiles behind the necessary masks, the sparkle in their eyes lets me know that they are as excited as I am. We all have families at home, but A.C. Moore is our school family. We have been home-sick for one another and for the nurturing and learning that takes place in this building for far too long. It’s good to be home and to have everyone here!

It has been an honor to serve as a School Counselor for 22 years with the last 15 being at A.C. Moore. While the times and technology have certainly changed, my role in the school has not. I work closely with teachers, administration, and parents to support the development of students’ social/emotional growth, academic success, and career awareness. I visit each classroom bi-weekly to teach topics such as feelings management, friendship skills, personal safety, decision making skills, conflict resolution, communication skills, positive growth mindset, self-regulation skills, and career awareness. I am also available to all students for short-term individual counseling and small group counseling. I consult with teacher and parents on a regular basis, and am always available to be a listener and talk with you when you want to discuss your child’s needs. I am responsible for several school-wide special events such as Career Week, Kindness Week, and VIP Day. Lastly, I teach students the importance of being good citizens not only in our school community, but also in our larger community. Each year students participate in a service learning project to raise funds for the March of Dimes. This gives them the opportunity to experience the intrinsic rewards that come from giving back and helping others.

I am here to serve you and your children! Please contact me at if there are any questions that I can answer or if I can help you in any way.

Elizabeth Balthazor

**Be on the lookout for information regarding the March of Dimes’ Mother of a Movement and the ways that A.C. Moore Bobcats will work to help Moms and Babies! We can’t wait!

Big picture

Black History Trivia Answers for Week 4

What Richland One graduates were featured in the Notable African- Americans from South Carolina video?

Alex English

Alex English was born January 5, 1954, in Columbia, SC. A graduate of Dreher High School and the University of South Carolina, English went on to become the NBA's most prolific scorer during the 1980s and remains the seventh-leading scorer in league history. English dominated during the 1980s. During 10 full seasons in Denver, English played in eight straight All-Star Games, won a scoring title, averaged more than 23 points nine years in a row, and led the Nuggets to nine consecutive postseason appearances (although never to the finals). The sleek, 6'7.5" forward became the first player ever to string together eight straight 2,000-point seasons. And he led the Nuggets in scoring seven times en route to becoming the franchise’s all-time top scorer.

Brig. Gen. Charles F. Bolden Jr., USMC

Born August 19, 1946, in Columbia, SC, Bolden is a graduate of C.A. Johnson High School. After graduation from the US Naval Academy, where he earned a Bachelor's Degree in Electrical Science, he accepted a commission as second lieutenant in the US Marine Corps, underwent flight training and became a naval aviator. Following a tour of duty, Bolden returned earned a Master's Degree in Systems Management from the University of Southern California in 1977 and graduated from the US Naval Test Pilot School in 1979. Selected by NASA in 1980, Bolden became an astronaut in August 1981. A veteran of four space flights, logging more than 680 hours in space, Bolden helped deploy the SARCOM KU satellite, piloted the shuttle Discovery that launched the Hubble telescope, commanded the shuttle Atlantis and commanded the first joint US/Russian mission. In 1994, Bolden left NASA and returned to active duty in the US Marine Corps. Brig. General Bolden served as the assistant wing commander, HQ 3rd MAW Miramar, San Diego, CA. In 2009, President Barack Obama appointed Bolden as Administrator of NASA.

Attention Bobcat Families:

If any of your contact information has changed (phone number, address, email address, emergency contacts) since the start of the school year please contact database specialist Madolyn Thorpe at We need the most accurate information in Powerschool to ensure you receive school communication.

Big picture

Hello AC Moore Families!

1. Thank you to everyone who has returned the health forms sent home over the past 2 weeks. If you are still working on them, please get them completed and back to me ASAP. I appreciate your cooperation with this very important matter!

2. Thank you to those families who have already signed up for the Kinsa health FLUency program. If you already received your thermometer, please be sure to Activate it. If you missed the last deadline, no worries ...there will be one more shipment this year, but you MUST sign up by March 5th!

Don't hesitate to contact me if you need help registering for the program, linking your account to A.C. Moore, or activating your new thermometer. If you have not received confirmation that your thermometer was successfully ordered, it did not go through.

3. Please do not forget to notify me if your child becomes ill or is exposed to any communicable disease, including Covid-19. It is so important that we keep accurate records for contact tracing and parent notification.

Take care, Everyone!

Jennifer Hurt, School Nurse

803-929-3886 (phone)

803-929-2724 (fax)

News from the Nurse website

Wellness Watch

Alliance for a Healthier Generation +Kohl's Cares Presents: Kohl's Healthy at Home: Recipes

Healthy eating fuels healthy families! In recognition of National Nutrition Month we invite you to commit to focusing on preparing nutritional, family friendly meals with your Bobcat student. Click on the documents below to find simple and fun recipes to keep your family healthy and satisfied! Each recipe is designed to be affordable and made with as few widely-available ingredients as possible.

Take a picture with you and your Bobcat student highlighting your culinary creations! Send your photo to Mrs. Whetstone at

Summer Enrichment Scholarship Program

The Columbia (SC) Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority Inc., is offering scholarship opportunities for Summer Enrichment Programs. Any elementary, middle, or high school students planning to attend a summer enrichment program or camp is eligible to apply. Please see the attached documents below for details.

Big picture

Please return all library books so they can be exchanged.

School Improvement Council

Report to the Parents

This report is issued by the AC Moore Elementary School Improvement Council (SIC) in accordance with South Carolina law to share information on the school's progress in meeting various goals and objectives, the work of the SIC, and other accomplishments during the school year.

Information from your PTO

To stay up-to-date on PTO happenings, please click the link below to register for the Bobcat e-Blast! If you are currently receiving the Bobcat e-Blasts, you will still need to complete the form and provide your information.


Carrie Smith & Kim Pordes (PTO chairs)


Asi usted haya recibido el Bobcat e-Blast en el pasado, por favor complete esta informacion- estamos haciendo una nueva base de datos. Estamos planeando las reuniones del PTO los miercoles en la tarde, al comienzo virtualmente, por eso esten pendiente de los anuncios que haga la Directora Aldridge en el Bobcat Blaze (periodico de la escuela) para mas informacion de la primera reunion.

Gracias, y espero verlos pronto!

Carrie Smith & Kim Pordes ( representantes del PTO)

Tech Tips

For Parents and Teachers...

Richland One IT Help Desk

You can get remote assistance by calling the IT Help Desk Monday - Friday from 7:30 AM to 5:00 PM at 803-231-7436.

Mark Your Calendars for...

Funny, Random, & Weird Holidays

Did you participate in a wacky holiday last week? Don't forget to send a picture of your family's celebration to Mrs. Whetstone at Here are a few weird holidays for your family to think about this week.

March 5.....................................................Learn What Your Name Means Day

March 5.....................................................Cinco de Marcho

March 6.....................................................Dentist’s Day

March 7.....................................................Alexander Graham Bell Day

March 8.....................................................Proofreading Day

March 10....................................................Mario Day

March 11....................................................Oatmeal Nut Waffle Day

March 12....................................................Alfred Hitchcock Day

We Want to See Your Bobcat Student MAKING TRACKS!

We would love to share in your student's success by seeing them in action! Submit a photo of your Bobcat completing their asynchronous assignments and/or activities your student's picture can be featured in an upcoming issue of the Bobcat Blaze! Submit your photos to Mrs. Whetstone at

Big picture


Parents, students and staff can now get up-to-date information about COVID-19 cases in the district through Richland One’s new online tracking dashboard.

A link to the dashboard, which will be updated daily, is posted on the Restart Strong page on the district’s website In addition to listing the number of positive and quarantined COVID-19 cases among Richland One students and staff, the dashboard includes the number of cases at each district school and administrative building. It also shows daily, weekly and year-to-date summaries of the number of positive COVID-19 cases.

“Richland One’s goal in creating the COVID-19 dashboard is to provide the most accurate and current information possible to our community,” said Richland One Superintendent Dr. Craig Witherspoon. “Having the same data allows us all to work together to better protect our students and staff.”

COVID-19 data is compiled daily by the district’s Nursing Services office and Accountability, Assessment, Research and Evaluation department. The information shown on Richland One’s dashboard may differ from the reports from the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), which are updated on Tuesdays and Fridays.

Media inquiries should be directed to the Richland One Office of Communications.

Registration Information for Pre-Kindergarten Programs

Office of School Readiness & Pre-Kindergarten Programs

Additional information about Richland One's Pre-K Program can be found using the above link.

Parent Information for Pre-Kindergarten Registration

You MUST attend a virtual parent information session (live or recorded) before registering for Pre-K. Use the above link to sign up for a live parent information sessions listed, or watch the video and complete the survey to get credit for attending.

District Resources

Be in-the-know with information directly from Richland School District One with one click! Visit #restartstrong for the newest updates!


ThriveRichland is a birth to four initiative established by Richland County School District One with the overall goal of increasing the percentage of children entering kindergarten ready to learn. The three major focus areas of ThriveRichland are:

  • High quality professional development and support for early childhood professionals

  • Comprehensive family wellness and engagement

  • Development of a plan for an early learning lab school within Richland One

ThriveRichland is offering families with children from birth to four and opportunity to join an online play group. Click the link below for details on how to sign up your family.

ThriveRichland Online Play Groups