Superintendent Weekly Update

from the desk of ..... Kathy Amos

January 22, 2021

Board Appreciation Month!

I want to take this opportunity to thank our dedicated school board members. I thank each of you for asking the hard questions, seeking input, wanting the best opportunities for our kids, and for really thinking about what is best for all of our school children across the county. We appreciate you!

The Hill We Climb

As a lifelong educator, the reading of 22 year old Amanda Gorman’s poem at the Presidential Inauguration was impressive.

Our young people today are very bright, preceptive, and striving to make a difference in this world. A few of my favorite lines, “But one thing is certain, If we merge mercy with might, and might with right, then love becomes our legacy”

12 Education Pod Casts to Explore!!

(1.18.21 Podcast listenership has grown steadily in the past decade, and this year proved no different. According to Podcast Insights, 55% of the U.S. population (155 million people) listened to a podcast in 2020, which is up from 51% in 2019. With new listeners comes new shows, and we’ve been doing our best to keep track of them. Below you’ll find the shows we’re following right now along with their self-described topic. Here are 12 education podcasts you should know about
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Did you know that SBA Paycheck Protection Program is once again offering forgivable loans? Round 2 of the program -- or PPP 2.0 --- was recently injected with $284 billion in funding and is accepting applications from first and second-time borrowers.

Working with Mountain BizWorks, we are working to meet the needs of nonprofits and businesses here, locally, in WNC. Mountain BizWorks is accepting applications now!

Apply today.

PPP was created to provide loans to organizations impacted by COVID-19 and are forgivable if they are used to cover payroll, including benefits, mortgage interest, rent, utilities, worker protection costs related to COVID-19, and certain supplier costs and expenses for operations. PPP 2.0 allows certain eligible borrowers that previously received a PPP loan to apply for a Second Draw PPP Loan, and is available for first-time borrowers as well.

A borrower is generally eligible for a Second Draw PPP Loan if the borrower previously received a First Draw PPP Loan and will or has used the full amount only for authorized uses, has no more than 300 employees; and can demonstrate at least a 25% reduction in gross receipts between comparable quarters in 2019 and 2020.

Watch this webinar to learn all you need to know about PPP 2.0

Important facts about YOUR North Carolina Retirement System!!

  • You are a part of the North Carolina Retirement Systems, the ninth-largest pension in the country and as of December 31, 2020 it was valued at more than $114 billion.
  • As of December 2020, the total number of state and local government retirees currently receiving pension benefits is 304,434.
  • The North Carolina Retirement Systems is widely regarded as one of the best funded in the nation. In fact, Moody’s Investors Service recently reported that North Carolina’s Retirement Systems, which includes state and local employees, is the best funded in the nation when looking at its Adjusted Net Pension Liability.
  • Additionally, a recent “stress test” by The Pew Charitable Trusts concluded that North Carolina’s state pension fund is well-positioned to maintain solvency during tough economic times.

Moment of Hope ...

Moment of Hope: Brought to us by the NC Public School Forum

"Children matter." Principal @MBristow_Smith discusses the importance of school support staff in this week's moment of hope. Listen here.
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Phase 1b

  • Frontline essential workers such as fire fighters, police officers, corrections officers, food and agricultural workers, United States Postal Service workers, manufacturing workers, grocery store workers, public transit workers, and those who work in the educational sector (teachers, support staff, and daycare workers.)
  • People aged 75 years and older because they are at high risk of hospitalization, illness, and death from COVID-19. People aged 75 years and older who are also residents of long-term care facilities should be offered vaccination in Phase 1a.
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