January 30, 2020
Director of Equity and Innovation
Madison County Schools welcomes Dr. Rachel Ballard as Director of Equity and Innovation. Dr. Ballard has worked in the field of education and community development for nearly 20 years. She previously served as Executive Director for Huntsville’s Village of Promise.
Dr. Ballard holds an undergraduate degree from Liberty University, a Master’s degree in Education from Regent University and a PhD in Education Leadership and Administration from Capella University. She is a graduate of the Leadership Huntsville/Madison County program.
"I am thrilled to join the Madison County School System. It is a wonderful school system led by an exceptional leader who has great vision, passion, and integrity. I am honored to be a part of a team that genuinely makes decisions based upon what is best for our students. My goal is to ensure that all of our students have what they need in order to succeed as they develop into contributing members of our global community,” Ballard stated.
Madison County School Superintendent Allen Perkins said, “Having served in this role, I realize it’s imperative we find just the right person to be Director of Equity and Innovation. I’m confident we have found that person in Dr. Rachel Ballard. She is competent and qualified and brings the right skills to this position.”
She and her husband, Kent Ballard, have three young sons.
Principal, Riverton Elementary
Congratulations to Haley James, named principal at Riverton Elementary School at tonight's BOE meeting.
Ms. James is a former Madison County Schools employee and is returning home to take the top spot at Riverton Elementary. She’s currently the Principal at Elkmont Elementary School in Limestone County. She’s a graduate of UNA and holds a Master’s Degree from the University of Alabama. Mrs. James is a 20 year resident of Madison County where she resides with her husband and her two children. She is excited to join the Riverton Elementary family and return to the Madison County School System.
Principal, Riverton Intermediate
Congratulations to Jennifer West who was named principal at Riverton Intermediate School at tonight's BOE meeting.
Ms. West has been with the system since 2007 and is currently an assistant principal at Buckhorn High School. In December, she was named the Alabama Assistant Principal of the Year. She graduated from the University of Alabama and holds a Master’s Degree from Alabama A & M University. She will begin her duties as principal immediately.
School Board Appreciation
Shout out to one of our wonderful collaborative teachers Mrs. Hardy! She does so much for so many of our students. When asked her favorite thing about teaching she said “I love those moments where my students find joy and pride in accomplishing something that maybe they originally thought they weren’t capable of doing!”
A BIG shout out to one of our amazing 2nd grade teacher Mrs. Turner!! She said her favorite thing about teaching is “ working with children and helping them learn new things.”
Shout out tonight goes to our wonderful pre-k teacher Mrs. Anna Bell. When asked about her favorite thing about teaching she said “My favorite thing about teaching is watching the children when they grasp a concept we have been working hard on. They are so proud of themselves and I am too!”
Shout out to our wonderful Mrs. Vicky Davis that teaches first grade. She said her favorite thing about being a teacher is forming relationships with students and their families.
PLTW Simple Machines
Mrs. Reed's 3rd grade class enjoyed their project lead the way lesson learning how to do simple machines with the use of technology.
Instrument Sharing with Art Class
Jeremiah Swinger King, one of our 4th graders, brought his new instrument to share during Mrs. Balentine's art class. She is doing a unit on Australia. It's a wind instrument , called a didgeridoo, that was developed by indigenous peoples of northern Australia likely within the last 1,500 years and is now in use around the world. It is a wooden trumpet "drone pipe" classified by musicologists as a brass aerophone. It was great to see the kids involved in this project.
Harvest celebrated 100 days of school on January 24th. The students were involved in all kinds of activities such as counting cups, counting candy and goldfish, and many other things. They had fun building things and making graphs and forms using their knowledge of math. Harvest also won the contest for "Card My Yard"and received a beautiful sign to display in front of our school. Thank you Card My Yard for the contest and the sign.
Creek War of 1813-1814
Mrs. Lemley's 5th grade class has been doing a study on "Creek Life and the Creek War of 1813-1814. They have been "wattle and daubing" by creating villages, as well as, decorating their own spears (aka dowels) to play a traditional game of chunky using the chunky stone in the traveling trunk provided by the Alabama Department of Archives and History in Montgomery. They plan to finish this unit with an hour long deliberation using the guide provided by the David Matthews Center for Civic Life to discuss actions and trade-offs in civic engagement.
All Around Legacy- Learning In Progress!
- First graders practice the phonics macarena.
- Fourth graders explore the Civil Rights movement.
- Legacy teachers work to collaborate on how to problem solve a focus of practice.
- Pre-K learns all about the color green.
- Mr. Gels and Mrs. Morris team up to teach problem-solving to Kindergarten.
Design and Construction!
First Graders rotated from class to class to design and build dog houses and dog bowls. Students did counting activities up to 101 and a writing activity. Students also designed a Dalmatian using toothpicks and mini marshmallows.
After all the fun STEM activities using skills they’ve worked on this year, First Grade is ready for Day 102!
Partners In Education
MES hosted their annual Spelling Bee. Congratulations to the winners Lane Freiburger and Aaron Elledge for placing first and second place.
PTA Paint the Ceilings Fundraiser
MES PTA created this fantastic fundraiser in which parents purchased ceiling tiles and painted various creations of art and positive messages There were over 35 participants. The ceiling tiles will be displayed sporadically throughout the entire school year. This will be a kickoff to our 100 year celebration for the upcoming school year.
Monrovia History Walls- Preparing for 100th Year Celebration!
As we gear up to plan for our 100th year celebration, we have started Monrovia History Murals. The plan is to provide tidbits of Monrovia Elementary's history. So that we can know and learn how far our school has come. We are truly excited that artist Sonya Clemons has started the Monrovia History Murals in our hallways.
December Students of the Month
Congratulations to our December Students of the Month. These students had the highest overall semester average in a particular class. All classes (CP, Electives, and Regular) were included.
The middle school All-District/All-State Band auditions were held this last weekend and a school-record 22 of our MMS students were selected to the All-District Band. In addition, Esther Parker was selected to the All-State Band. Congratulations to all who auditioned and were selected!
Students of the Month
Congratulations to the Sparkman students that earned a position in the All-State Band!
GreenPower USA Workshop
Greenpower has been working in an unfinished workshop for over a year. During the break between races last semester and the next race in March, we have been working to finish out our building. The students, under the expert guidance of volunteers Neil Martin and Robert Caswell have been measuring and cutting wood for walls and wiring the building for power. After we pass inspection, the students are looking forward to getting power hooked up in the workshop!
Basketball County Tournament
Congratulations to our basketball teams on a fantastic season! Our 7th Grade Boys, coached by Eric McCants, finished with an overall record of 14-1 and made it to the semi-finals in the county tournament. The 8th grade girls, coached by Caleb Wright, finished with an overall record of 18-4 and ended their season in the semi-finals of the county tournament. Our 8th grade boys, also coached by Caleb Wright, finished with an overall record of 16-7.
In addition to team honors, seven of our students were selected for the All-County Team: Jemihya Carter (8), Joseph Moore (8), Sophia Sassan (8), Kahleel Green (7), Jayden Meecham(7), Jefferey Carter (7), and Tecoy Wilder (7).
We are proud of these student-athletes and their coaches for their hard work this season!
SMS STEAM Program Updates
The SMS STEAM program continues to grow! Next year, thanks to a grant from Boeing, we will add a FUSEStudio to our growing list of STEM opportunities. The FUSEStudio is a collection of STEM challenges that focus on engineering and creation, providing students with hands-on learning activities. The studio will join our successful GreenPower racing team and award-winning CyberPatriots team in providing learning through real world application opportunities.
The SMS Cyber Patriot teams competed in semi-finals on January 24th. As of the close of competition on Friday, they were ranked third in the world! With one more day of competition remaining, and other aspects to be considered before scores are finalized, we are hopeful that our ranking stands and our teams will proceed to nationals in Baltimore. Their coach, Ms. Kala Grice-Dobbins, was also recently selected to participate in the Fellowship Program in Northrop Grumman Foundation Teachers Academy. As one of only two teachers from Alabama selected for this program, Ms. Grice-Dobbins will be traveling to Boston and LA this summer for professional learning opportunities.
To help support these exciting changes, several grants have recently been awarded to Ms. Grice-Dobbins (8th) and Ms. Wildes (7th). Among these are the Alabama Robotics Grant (for LEGO robots), Optimist Club grants to fund math team team activities, a grant from Northop Grumman, and the TVA grant which will be used to purchase Sphero robots, a new 3D printer, and renewable STEM kits.
Wow!! Congratulations to the 43 BHS students who had PERFECT attendance last semester! Special thank you to all of our sponsors who donated prizes that were given away in a random drawing during a recent pep rally! #AttendanceMatters #Perfect #BuckPride
Congratulations to the 46 Band Students that participated in Madison County Honor Band on January 9th & 10th. These students joined other top middle school band students to rehearse and perform. All MCHB band Ss were outstanding, and we are proud of them!
Bow Tie Tuesday
Every Tuesday is Bow Tie Tuesday at BMS! Even our teachers participate!
Mrs. Arnold's first graders are PUBLISHED AUTHORS! They created a class book about what they want to be when they grow up. They went through the writing process and thanks to Student Treasures Publishing- they got their book published!
Library Update In Progress!
New Outdoor Area
GET HIM OUT OF THAT CHAIR!
Helping Students to Help Others
Our pre-k students had a special visit from Mr. Rodney Smith, Jr. Rodney is a young man who travels around the country encouraging kids to give back to their community. He is known for his idea of helping others with his lawn care. His organization, Raising Men, has touched many lives by receiving help as well as encouraging others to give help. He talked to our pre-k classes about helping others and all the different ways they could help other people. Mr. Rodney took the students outside to practice their grass-cutting skills. What great life lessons!
Spelling Bee Champ
Congratulations to Cole H from Ms. Thomas’ class for winning our School-Wide Spelling Bee! He will represent HGES t the Area-Wide Spelling Bee in February. Our runner-up was Aiden T. Both were outstanding spellers!
HGE recognized our third and fourth grade students for their hard work first semester. Those students recognized were the all A honor roll, A/B honor roll, perfect and good attendance, most improved, and good citizen. Congratulations to these students for a great first semester!
Mr. Nathan Curry
We are so proud to have Mr. Nathan Curry as our school board member for Hazel Green Elementary. Mr. Curry has done an outstanding job representing our school as well as the other schools in our family. He visits us often, helps make good decisions for our students and teachers, and gives a helping hand when needed. Thank you, Mr. Curry, for all you do for us!
Students of the Month for January
Congratulations to our Students of the Month! We are proud of these outstanding students!
9th Grade: Lilian Yohe and Wyatt Baldwin
10th Grade: Isaniris Cavo Ferrer and Kobe Reagan
11th Grade: Anna Guthrie and Jagger Thurman
12th Grade: Grace Worthington and Thomas Bowman
Lady Trojans Make School History & Finish Seventh in Alabama
We couldn't be prouder of our Girls Bowling Team! The Lady Trojans made school history by competing in the State Bowling Championships for the first time and having the best season since the program began at HGHS five years ago. The team finished seventh in the state. Congratulations!
Trojaneer Robotics Teams Win Top Awards at Competitions
The HGHS Trojaneer Robotics Teams competed at Meridianville and brought home top awards!
Congratulations to the Tournament Champions--the Trojaneers Team D and Team B, with Team D taking home the coveted Excellence Award.
Trojaneer Team Z won the Design Award, and Joseph Lay drove for Team Z, which was named Skills Champion.
Teams B, D, and Z have now earned bids to State. Congratulations!
Mrs. Douglas's Kindergarten class has been learning to make words with partners using Elkonin boxes.
LFES celebrated the 100th Day of School! Many students and teachers dressed up as 100 year olds and participated in activities involving the number 100.
What Would I Do?
Second graders celebrated the 100th Day of School by rotating to seven different stations where they did activities involving the number 100. In Mrs. Sims' room, students wrote about what they would do with $100!
Mrs. Beaman and her third grade classes designed their dream home while they learned about area. We may have some future architects!
Celebrating 💯 Days of Fun and Learning!
Robo Rangers at State Championship
We Love Deputy Petty!
We Appreciate Our Board Members!
Mrs. Misterka’s Sixth Grade class completed a TQE discussion. TQE stands for thoughts, lingering questions, and epiphanies. Groups have discussions that lead to a narrowing of their collected thoughts. They choose their top two, write them on the board, and move to a whole group discussion that allows the group to dive deeper into their thinking.
Ms. Storey’s class is celebrating the 100th day of school by being 100 years old! Is there anything cuter than a 100-year-old kindergarten student?
Middle school students enjoyed seeing Dr. Dolittle on the big screen!
MCHS Alum Honored
The MCHS Family was pleased to honor 2013 graduate, Jordan Chunn, by retiring his #38 jersey. Chunn was a standout at Troy University after graduation, and is now a member of the Dallas Cowboys. He was recognized with a reception and a plague, and his jersey is proudly displayed in our trophy case. Jordan exemplifies the MCHS motto: “Tradition, Honor, Excellence.”
Congratulations to senior, Megan Watkins, for winning second place and a cash award in The American Legion Oratorical Contest.
State Superintendent's Art Exhibit
These students will represent Madison County Schools in the State Superintendent's Art Exhibit in Montgomery. Their art will be on display beginning in February. Congratulations to Gracie T., Eli H., and Harley S.
Congratulations to our 8th grade basketball team on taking 2nd place in the County Championship game!
Thank you to all our fans, alumni, coaches, and players who attended tonight's games. It takes a Tribe! #Hoopcoming2020
Congratulations to Zach Pohl for placing 4th, Ricky Russel and Ronald Lemley for finishing 2nd and Evan Vieira and Thomas Miller for finishing as tournament champions.
MCVA Senior Puts In Hard Work for Sparkman Bowling Team
Congratulations to the SHS boys bowling team and MCVA Senior Brooks Raby for an amazing season! After winning the North Alabama Regional Tournament, Brooks and the SHS boys team went on to win Runner Up in the 2020 AHSAA State Bowling Tournament. On his last roll as a senior, Brooks rolled a strike! What a great way to finish the season! We are all proud of you and your hard work and dedication to your team!
MCVA Senior Selected for Teen Board
The MCVA would like to congratulate Katie for being selected by Modern Bride to professionally model formal wear this year. Katie competed with juniors and seniors from across North Alabama for this opportunity. Contestants had photo sessions and interviews before finding out if they would be selected. She is an amazing and beautiful young lady and it really shows! It is no wonder she was selected! We are so proud of you Katie! Congratulations!
Elementary MCVA Students go to Covanta!
The 3-6 MCVA students took a field trip to the Covanta Waste to Energy Facility here in Huntsville. Students learned how our garbage is turned into steam that travels through a silver pipe out to Redstone Arsenal to provide the Arsenal with heat and air conditioning. Students loved the observation deck where they saw the “World’s Best Claw Operator” at work! It is always interesting to see what all is in the 4 story deep pit of garbage and to learn how that waste is converted into energy. We learned that this facility is almost 100% pollution free and is a great alternative to landfills! Thank you to Covanta and Operation Green Team for having us.
After learning about our waste to energy facility here in Huntsville and how we still have to have landfills, 3-6 MCVA students learned about landfills and how they are built. First students looked at both sides of the argument of no one wanting a landfill near their home- “Not in my Backyard!” Then we constructed edible landfills as we went through what all goes into making landfills safe for our environment and the people who live around them. We all had fun making our edible landfill models! We want to extend a big thank you to Publix for helping with some of the supplies! The students really enjoyed this lesson!