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Granville County Schools names Principal of the Year

On the morning of Thursday, September 14, Superintendent Alisa McLean and senior staff made a surprise visit to Granville Early College High School.  It was a secret visit of sorts, except for the fact that all of the students and staff knew about the occasion, except one.  An unwitting participant, Principal Jackie Harris had been summoned to her office to have a meeting with Dr. McLean.  Meanwhile, students and staff gathered in the hallway, preparing to surprise their school’s leader.  With an abrupt knock at the door, Ms. Harris was told to quickly respond to an important incident.  Her administrative instincts flung her into action, where she was then promptly startled and surprised by a throng of her students and teachers – all congratulating her for being named the Granville County Public Schools 2017 Principal of the Year!

Ms. Harris is a veteran educator with more than 26 years of experience, having worked as a teacher, assistant principal, and principal.  She received her undergraduate degree from NCCU and her Master’s degree from NC State University.  During her tenure as principal of Granville Early College, the school has consistently set the bar high on state testing criteria.  Currently student performance ranks the school letter grade as an “A”, with more than 95% of the students graduating on time.

School districts from across the state choose a Principal of the Year.  Principals nominate their colleagues for the honor, and a committee then makes the final decision.  District POYs then go on to compete at the regional level, where the winner progresses on to the state level, and eventually the national competition.

When asked why colleagues nominated her for this honor, Principal Harris responded, “Probably because they know how much I love my students and staff.  We truly are a team.  Nothing makes me prouder to see our students walk across the stage at graduation.  It’s a journey that we travel together, and one that I absolutely love.”

GCPS Continues Significant Proficiency Gains and Academic Growth

At their regularly scheduled meeting on Monday, September 11, the Granville County Board of Education received a special report on the student achievement results from the 2016-2017 school year.  During this presentation, Assistant Superintendent Dr. Michael Myrick presented a series of graphs and charts providing comprehensive data on how the students performed on state tests.  The presentation focused on GCPS test score averages over the past three years compared to state and surrounding district averages.  Dr. Myrick also shared information about academic growth measures for each school, and school letter grades as assigned by the state.

Data from his presentation revealed an increase in proficiency in 14 of 18 tested areas, with 18 of 19 schools having met or exceeded academic growth.  These significant gains in growth and proficiency across grade levels and content areas contribute to a multi-year positive trend for student achievement.

The scores for our district were generally higher than those of Vance, Warren and Person counties, and slightly lower or comparable to those for Franklin County.  All five districts in our region were at or below the overall state average in all areas.

In the second set of data, Dr. Myrick displayed the following chart showing how GCPS schools letter grades compared to those of local charter schools:

Letter grades for schools in our district improved compared to the previous year, with no schools reporting an F, fewer schools reporting as a D, and more schools reporting as a B.

School Board Chairman Dr. Thomas Houlihan commented on this set of data, saying, “Three year trends sho tremendous growth over time.  It’s very exciting to see this type of progress.  We do want to celebrate, but we don’t want to forget the work that remains.  We also don’t want to forget the hard work and dedication of all of our talented teachers.”

School letter grades are determined by a state-mandated formula that uses proficiency and growth on a variety of test scores to assign a letter grade.  More information about how school letter grades are calculated can be found here:

http://www.ncpublicschools.org/docs/accountability/reporting/spgbckgrndpack15.pdf

Vice Chairman Leonard Peace, Sr. offered his remarks, saying “We are definitely headed in the right direction.  The teachers certainly deserve all of the credit for their hard work.”

Superintendent Dr. McLean thanked Dr. Myrick for his work in this area, and summarized the presentation with these remarks, “While I can take no credit for these remarkable gains, I am excited that there is established, consistent momentum for our district.  If we are to achieve our goals of double digit improvements and 90 percent across the board, then we must use these fine results to help launch us forward. ”

Granville County to hold Business & Industry Appreciation Day

The Granville County Economic Development department, in partnership with the Vance-Granville Community College Small Business Center and the Granville County Chamber of Commerce, is planning this year’s “Business & Industry Appreciation Day.” The annual event is scheduled for Tuesday, Sept. 19, from 4-6 p.m. at the Granville County Expo & Convention Center, located at 4185 Highway 15 South in Oxford.

For local businesses and industries, the event is not only a networking opportunity but also a chance to learn more about services and resources that are available to assist them. Organizations, agencies and businesses that provide services to a business (such as lending or education/training) are invited to set up a table to share information with those in attendance. For information on reserving a table, which is free of charge, contact Lynn Cooper at the Granville County Economic Development department at (919) 693-5911 or [email protected].

The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided. A brief program, including remarks to recognize the important contributions made by local employers, will take place at 5 p.m.

–VGCC–

Health Concerns at Creedmoor Elementary

Granville County Public Schools administrative staff are currently addressing concerns with the facilities on the Creedmoor Elementary School campus.  On Wednesday, August 16, we received reports from staff about some possible spore growths in two classrooms.  On Thursday morning, August 17, we investigated the reports and widened our inspection to other areas of the school.  On Friday, August 18, we arranged for a professional laboratory to collect both air and surface samples throughout the school to be tested.  We received the preliminary results of these tests on Tuesday, August 22, which indicated the presence of mold.  On this same day, we contracted with a professional cleaning company to clean the affected areas in the school building.  They began preparations and staging of equipment on Wednesday, August 23.  We estimate that their work will be completed by the afternoon of Saturday, August 26.  We will conduct additional testing after cleaning is complete to determine if we can safely open the school to staff and students.  The safety of our students and staff is an absolute priority to Granville County Public Schools.  Our rapid response and immediate action are precautionary measures to protect everyone.

As a result of this intervention, the location of Open House on Thursday, August 24 was moved to the First Baptist Church located in downtown Creedmoor.  Also, depending on the pace of the cleaning work, we may find it appropriate to delay the opening of school a day or two.  Unfortunately, we will not know for certain until we have the official report late Saturday evening, August 26.  We will communicate additional updates no later than Sunday, August 27.

Please direct all inquiries on this matter to Dr. Stan Winborne, Executive Director of Operations, Human Resources, Communications and Safety.  [email protected]  (919) 693-4613

Breaking and Entering, Laceny and Vandalism reported in Granville County

Sometime between Thursday, June 18th, 2017 late evening and Friday, June 19th, 2017 early morning hours an unknown person or persons unlawfully went upon private property off Gantt Farm Road, Stem, NC and criminally damaged mailboxes.

Sometime between Saturday, July 1st, 2017 noon and Sunday, July 9th, 2017 late evening hours an unknown person or persons unlawfully went upon private property off George Sherman Road, Rougemont, NC and criminally forced entry into a shed and removed one 2600 PSI pressure washer, one DeWalt table chop saw and one Stihl MS290 chainsaw.

On Wednesday, August 2nd, 2017 between early morning and late evening hours an unknown person or persons unlawfully went upon private property off Tar Hill Road, Oxford, NC and criminally removed from a trailer- one 16 inch Stihl HT 101 pole saw, one Stihl BT 130 Auger with 6 inch bit, one Stihl 170 with a 16 inch bar chainsaw, one Stihl HS81 T 24 inch hedge trimmer and one Stihl FS110R straight shaft weed eater.

Sometime between Saturday, July 15th, 2017 and Monday, July 31st, 2017 during mid-morning hours an unknown person or persons unlawfully went upon private property off Graham Hobgood Road, Oxford, NC and criminally removed one ES 25 NAPA booster jumper, one back pack Solo sprayer, and one Lowes push mower from a storage shed.

Sometime between Friday, April 14th and Saturday, August 12th, 2017 during mid-afternoon hours an unknown person or persons unlawfully went upon private property off Hayes Road, Creedmoor, NC and forced entry into a shed and criminally removed a 2008 Honda CR dirt bike red in color.

Sometime between Sunday, August 13th late evening and Monday, August 14th, 2017 mid-morning hours an unknown person or persons unlawfully went upon inter-state 85 northbound at mile marker 185 and vandalized a disabled 4 door 2000 Honda Accord by breaking the windshield and criminally removed a radio from the vehicle.

If you have information concerning these incidents, please contact the Granville County Sheriff’s Office at 919-693-3213 or call Crime Stoppers 919-693-3100.

THE GRANVILLE COUNTY CRIME STOPPERS BOARD OF DIRECTORS HAS AUTHORIZED THE PAYMENT OF A REWARD OF UP TO $1,000 FOR INFORMATION LEADING TO THE ARREST/INDICTMENT(S) OF PERSON(S) RESPONSIBLE FOR THESE CRIMES.  IF YOU HAVE INFORMATION CONCERNING THESE CRIMES OR ANY OTHER SERIOUS CRIME(S) IN GRANVILLE COUNTY.  YOU ARE ASKED TO CALL THE GRANVILLE COUNTY CRIME STOPPERS IN OXFORD AT 919-693-3100.

Granville County sees 3% Boost in Tourism Spending

Visit North Carolina announced that domestic visitors to and within Granville spent $47.08 million in 2016, a 3% increase from 2015.

“We are excited to hear that Granville has made a 3% increase in the last two years due to collaborations with area hotels, retail shops, restaurants, farms, parks and recreation, and events to promote our area as a destination for many travelers.” said Angela Allen, Granville TDA Director.

Tourism impact highlights for 2016:

  • Total payroll generated by the tourism industry in Granville was $6.02 million.
  • State tax revenue generated in Granville totaled $2.81 million through state sales and excise taxes, and taxes on personal and corporate income. About $1.33 million in local taxes were generated from sales and property tax revenue from travel-generated and travel-supported businesses.

Gov. Roy Cooper announced in May that visitors to North Carolina set a record for spending in 2016. The $22.9 billion in total spending represented an increase of 4.4 percent from 2015.

These statistics are from the “Economic Impact of Travel on North Carolina Counties 2016,” which can be accessed at partners.visitnc.com/economic-impact-studies. The study was prepared for Visit North Carolina by the U.S. Travel Association.

“All eight economic development regions of the state had spending growth of 3 percent or more, and 96 percent of the state’s counties saw direct tourism employment growth from 2015 to 2016,” said Wit Tuttell, executive director of Visit North Carolina. “Tourism continues to be major driver of economic development across North Carolina, which is the sixth most-visited state in the country.”

Statewide highlights include:

  • State tax receipts as a result of visitor spending rose 5.1 percent to nearly $1.2 billion in 2016.

 

  • Visitors spend more than $62 million per day in North Carolina. That spending adds more than $5.1 million per day to state and local tax revenues (about $3.2 million in state taxes and $1.9 million in local taxes).

 

  • The travel and tourism industry directly employees more than 219,000 North Carolinians.

 

  • Each North Carolina household saves $497 in state and local taxes as a direct result of visitor spending in the state.

Granville County to host Business and Industry Appreciation Day

Come join the Granville County Economic Development Department in partnership with the Granville County Chamber of Commerce and the Vance-Granville Community College Small Business Center for the annual “Business and Industry Appreciation Day” on Tuesday, September 19, 2017 from 4-6 p.m. at the Granville County Expo and Convention Center, located at 4185 Highway 15 South in Oxford.

For local businesses and industries, the event is not only a networking opportunity, but also a chance to learn more about services and resources that are available to assist them. Organizations, agencies and businesses that provide services to a business (such as lending or education/training) are invited to set up a table to share information with those in attendance.

For information on reserving a table, contact Lynn Cooper at the GCEDD at 919-693-5911 or [email protected]

The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided. A brief program including remarks will take place at 5 p.m.

Granville County Swears in New Superintendent

At the beginning of their regularly scheduled meeting on Monday, August 7, 2017, the Granville County Board of Education held a special ceremony for the official swearing in of Dr. Alisa R. McLean as Superintendent of Granville County Public Schools.  On hand to observe her taking the oath of office were Dr. McLean’s family, friends and former coworkers.  Her husband, Frank McLean, daughter, Amari McLean, and her parents,  Dr. and Mrs. A.C. Robinson, participated in the ceremony which was presided by The Honorable Carolyn J. Thompson, District Court Judge of the 9th Judicial District.

Following a brief break in the agenda, the Board resumed its regular meeting, and covered a variety of topics related to the upcoming opening of school.  During one portion of the meeting, Dr. McLean provided an update on her role thus far, sharing thoughts on how her first two and a half weeks had been, “I have met with so many wonderful people from the community, and received such a generous outpouring of support and hospitality.  I feel so fortunate to have the opportunity to come to this district, and I truly feel like we are poised for great things.  I want everyone to join me in being committed to excellence and achievement for all.”

The Board also provided copies and information about Dr. McLean’s contract, as well as information about superintendent contracts from across the state in order to provide context and comparison.   Her compensation includes a base salary of $124,128, and a doctoral supplement of $3,036, both of which are paid for by the state.  In addition, Dr. McLean will receive a local supplement of $30,000, for a total salary of $157,164.  The only additional benefits include a retirement/annuity supplement of $19,000, contributions to state retirement of $9,430, and dental and health insurance valued at $678.  Public Information Officer Stan Winborne noted that the contract was more noteworthy perhaps for what it did not contain.  “This is a pretty simple contract.  There are no special perks or expenses added to the base salary like you might see in other contracts across the state.  The Board was rather conservative in negotiating this compensation package, and the taxpayers should be pleased with how it stacks up against other districts.”

Dr. McLean offered her perspective on the arrangement, saying, “Again, I am just so honored and excited to come to Granville County Public Schools.  I chose to come here because I see great potential here.  It is evident that real progress has been made in recent years.  Student achievement is on the rise, and I fully intend to help lift this district up to a world-class level.  I think not only can we be the best in the state, but nationally recognized as well.  Excellence is my standard.”

The next regularly scheduled Board of Education will take place on Monday, September 4 at 6:00 pm.

Scammers Targeting Local Businesses

Please help us spread the word about a scam targeting our community.

Someone using the number (919) 277-0344 is calling Oxford residents claiming to represent the Oxford Fire Department and claiming they are raising money for our schools.

This is a scam.

Do not provide them with any personal or financial information. If you received such a call and did provide them with any information you should contact your financial institution immediately and report the incident.

As always, please feel free to contact us if you have any questions about the legitimacy of a fundraiser or event.

Thanks.

Cynthia Bowen

City Clerk

City of Oxford

300 Williamsboro Street

Oxford, NC 27565

Granville County Installs Cigarette Litter Receptacles

Oxford, NC, July 21, 2017- Granville County has completed installation of cigarette litter receptacles that were funded by a $5000 grant from the Keep America Beautiful Cigarette Litter Prevention Program (CLPP). The CLPP stipulates that a portion of the grant funds were to be spent on the receptacles and a portion of the funds were to be spent on messaging. The receptacles include messaging that encourages passersby to “Keep Granville County Beautiful” and thanks users for “being a part of the solution.” Each receptacle should hold approximately 700 cigarette ends.

Receptacles were placed in problem areas and transition areas with a focus on government buildings, downtown areas, and parks. The receptacles can be found by the Bullock Post Office, the Stem Town Hall, Lake Rogers in Creedmoor, the Granville Athletic Park, Wilton Slopes, the Granville County Animal Shelter, the Granville County Courthouse, the Granville County Administrative Complex and Detention Center, and other areas in downtown Oxford. Over 2100 cigarette ends were counted and collected in the immediate area around the placement of the receptacles during an initial scan. The grant also provided pocket ash trays and cup holder ashtrays which were given out at the Granville County Administrative Building.

Granville County Government is one of 37 organizations to receive grant funding for 2017, totaling $297,500, through the 2017 Cigarette Litter Prevention Program. The Cigarette Litter Prevention Program, now in its 15th year, is the nation’s largest program aimed at reducing cigarette litter. Communities that implemented the Cigarette Litter Prevention Program in 2016 realized an average 60 percent reduction in cigarette litter, an 8 percent increase over the 2015 results.

Tobacco products, consisting mainly of cigarette butts, are the most littered item in America, representing nearly 38 percent of all items littered, according to “Litter in America,” Keep America Beautiful’s landmark study of litter and littering behavior. Research has shown that even self-reported “non-litterers” often don’t consider tossing cigarette butts on the ground to be “littering.”  Keep America Beautiful has found that cigarette butt litter occurs most often at transition points—areas where a person must stop smoking before proceeding into another area.  These include bus stops, entrances to stores and public buildings, and the sidewalk areas outside of bars and restaurants, among others.

Granville County Grants Coordinator, Charla Duncan, and Granville County Environmental Services Director, Jason Falls, would like to thank David Cottrell and the City of Oxford for their cooperation in this effort, as well as officials in Bullock, Creedmoor, and Stem. Also involved in the effort was the Granville County General Services Department, who fabricated and installed special posts for receptacles, as well as the Granville County Addressing Department who installed “no littering” signage at county parks to accompany the new receptacles.