The Mariner Message


It's the shortest, longest month of the year! With all of the cold and rainy weather we've been having these last couple of weeks, it's hard not to wish for Spring to come early this year. Our faculty and staff have been hard at work planning & teaching all of the different groups of students they see and I think most everyone has gotten into a groove. We've also had the opportunity to be involved in some really great professional development opportunities that have inspired us to try some new and innovative things with our students (more on this below). Our PTA has been incredible this year by helping us pay for additional professional development, bringing goodies and treats to lift our spirits and making sure our campus looks beautiful. Thank you, everyone, for your continued support of our faculty and staff.

Upcoming Events

February 17th-Jumprope for Heart celebration! At 10:00am our special area teachers will be turning Ms. Bowling into a HUMAN ICE CREAM SUNDAE for all to see over Zoom (see details below)!

February 18th- Early Release-School will end for students at 11:30.

February 19th-Optional Teacher Workday for teachers-No school for students.

February 22nd- Progress reports go home.

Mariner Spotlight

My name is Leann Munoz and I am the school counselor. I enjoy working with all students, their families, teachers and our school community in order to help our students become successful in different ways. I love my family - my husband Lee and I just celebrated our 22nd Anniversary. My children Zoe (18) and Anthony (16) are students at Northwood High School. Zoe is getting ready to attend UNCW in the fall and Anthony is keeping me busy by working towards his driver's license. Perhaps I am now qualified to work as a driving instructor? I am a true Florida Gators football fan (Go Gators!) and try to attend as many games as possible every season. Watching movies with my family, traveling, reading and relaxing at the beach are all things that make me happy. Coffee and chocolate make me pretty happy, too! :)
Big picture

Black History Month

In honor of Black History Month, Dr. Heath & Ms. Tokae Washington have put together a list of remarkable Black Americans of Chatham County.

Margaret Bryant Pollard (1932-2009) served as a member of the Chatham County Board of Commissioners from 1994 to 2004, serving as chair from 1996 to 1998, the first African-American woman to do so. She attended what was then Horton High School, where she was class valedictorian, and later earned a bachelor's degree in biology and a masters degree in public health from what is now North Carolina Central University. She is the namesake of Margaret B. Pollard Middle School, which opened in 2011. The Pollard school community remembers her many civic and humanitarian contributions to the Chatham County community and beyond each year on her birthday, May 3.

Mildred Cotton Council (1929-2018) was born on her family’s farm off Hamlet’s Chapel Road, graduating from Horton High School in 1948. After working with her mother-in-law at a take out restaurant and at Carolina Coffee Shop, she opened Mama Dip’s Kitchen on Rosemary Street in Chapel Hill in 1976. She authored two cookbooks, Mama Dip’s Kitchen and Mama Dip’s Family Cookbook, both of which include memories about growing up in Chatham County. She was known for her warm hospitality and generous support of the community. She and her family attended Hamlet’s Chapel CME Church, next door to the Harrison campus.

George Moses Horton (c. 1798-1883) lived on a plantation between present day Fearrington Village and Jordan Lake and sold poetry at the Chapel Hill farmer’s market and to UNC students. He published a book of poetry, The Hope of Liberty, in 1829, becoming the first published African-American author and poet in the South, and is believed to be the only African-American to do so while enslaved. He published two more collections of his poetry prior to 1865. After the Civil War, he moved to Philadelphia and traveled to Liberia. He is the namesake of what is now Horton Middle School as well as Horton Residence Hall on the UNC campus, completed in 2002.

Jumprope for Heart-Ms. Bowling

PHS Families, WE DID IT!! We surpassed our school goal and have raised over $8,000 for the American Heart Association and children with sick hearts!! I’m so proud of each student and family that has reached out to help us accomplish this lofty goal! Every single dollar you raised will help kids and families build healthier lives!

REWARD TIME for the whole school!! This Wednesday, February 17th at 10:00am our special area teachers will be turning Ms. Bowling into a HUMAN ICE CREAM SUNDAE for all to see over Zoom!!

Please look for the Zoom Link from your classroom teachers and tune in THIS WEDNESDAY at 10am for all the fun!!

Book Clubs-Melanie Spell

PHE is currently holding its first round of virtual grade level book clubs. Each club meets once a week to discuss a book that they are reading as a group. Students and staff are enjoying this time together learning about and discussing the books. The book clubs are not only promoting a love of literature, but providing a positive, nurturing community and creating new friendships. Below are just a few of the selections that were chosen by our book club participants to read this time. We hope to offer a second round of book clubs this school year. Information will be sent out about this at the end of March.

Professional Development

On January 20th, the district required all K-8 teachers to attend professional development sessions. These sessions were all geared toward providing teachers with additional technologies resources to use with their students in the hybrid setting (Plan B).


Renaissance myON® Reader is a student-centered, personalized literacy environment that gives students access to more than 6,000 enhanced digital books. Titles are dynamically matched to each individual student’s interests, grade and Lexile® reading level. Combined with a suite of close reading tools and embedded supports, myON Reader fosters student engagement and achievement.

Lyrics 2 Learn:

Lyrics2Learn is a proven K-5th grade reading tool that combines educational stories with music to make reading practice fun and drive achievement.

Voice Thread:

An interactive tool for educators to use to present material, collaborate with students and provide innovative lessons in a hybrid model.

On February 2nd, during a faculty meeting, the teachers had the opportunity to attend more professional development, but this time around differentiation. These sessions provided teachers with strategies and activities they can use in their classrooms to meet the needs of students who need more challenge and those who need more support.

PTA Update-Julie Ricker

New PTA Thrift Shop Work Group Sessions Available! We earned a big chunk of volunteer hours through our virtual fashion show, but we'd love to keep the momentum up through the remainder of the year. How can you help earn Thrift Shop hours in the months to come?

February/March Work Group Sessions

Wednesday, February 17 from 6:30-8:30pm

Sunday, February 21 from 11am-1pm

Sunday, March 7 from 2-4pm

Wednesday, March 17 from 6:30-8:30pm

Sign up here today!

Want to help but can't make these dates?

Contact to set up another time to volunteer.

Every hour you work earns money for PHS!

Snag some great deals after you work your shift, as volunteers get 50% off!

No time to volunteer at a work session?

You can still earn volunteer hours by donating much needed supplies to the thrift shop!

Purchase needed items from the Amazon Wishlist or grab some of these things when you are out and notify to arrange for pickup: 30-gallon Trash Bags, Masking Tape, Hand Soap, Mopping Liquid, Lysol Spray, and Paper Towels

Please save your receipts to include with your donations because that's how hours are credited!

One volunteer hour is earned for every $7.50 in supplies donated.

Thank you for your contributions!

The Online Spirit Wear Store is back!

Grab some PHS gear to show your school pride! Quantities are limited, so get these items while supplies last. Every purchase benefits the PTA and our school! Orders will be delivered to your child's classroom, or you can arrange for pickup at the school if you have a VA student.

Click here to enter the online store!

Thank you to our PTA for the Valentine's treats! They were delicious and enjoyed by all!
Big picture

Superintendent Search

The deadline is approaching to submit surveys gathering input that will help the Chatham County Board of Education with its search for the next superintendent of Chatham County Schools. The survey is available on our school’s website. Paper copies of the survey are available at the school. Board members really would like to hear from you. The survey closes February 19.

Bus Driver Appreciation Week-Dr. Heath

This past week we participated in the national observance of Bus Driver Appreciation Week. The PTA provided breakfast and treats for both Pollard Middle and Harrison Elementary. On Thursday, lunch was provided from Allen & Sons and on Friday we got a beautiful cake from Phoenix Bakery. Thank you to all of our bus drivers for all that do you! Here is an insightful article about the history of the yellow school bus:

Big picture


CCS is now accepting applications for 2021-2022 school year. Please contact the school office and pick up an application if you are interested, or download and return the application to the site where you are interested in applying.

Below is a list of our sites where we currently have Pre-K classes. Children must be 4 years old by Aug. 31st, 2021 to be eligible:

  • Virginia Cross Elementary
  • Siler City Elementary
  • North Chatham
  • Perry Harrison
  • Pittsboro Elementary
  • Chatham Grove Elementary (pending licensure approvals and have enough interest)