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News Education

MMS students take advantage of afterschool program.

The Bascom in Highlands has partnered with Macon County Schools to provide free art classes after school at Macon Middle School (MMS).

The program, which was made possible through an endowment fund set up by Franklin resident Barbara McRae in memory of her late husband Jim, is called Art Adventure, and is taught in sixweek sessions throughout the school year.

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With nearly 15 years of service under her belt, Diane Brendle has made a lasting impact on education in Macon County. Last month, the Macon County Board of Education recognized Brendle for her efforts as a teacher assistant by naming her the 2013 Support Person of the Year.

“Being named Support Person of the Year is a great honor and I am very humbled that my peers think so much of me,” said Brendle. “I love children and working with them – it is my passion. You get to watch children bloom and grow throughout the school year and the years beyond. If you have a child that is really struggling and then they finally start making progress you are so excited and proud of them. They give so much unconditional love each and every day. I really enjoy coming to work each morning and seeing their smiling faces. If you are having a bad day they always have a hug or a smile to cheer you up. I thank God every day for giving me the opportunity to change the lives of children.”

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On Monday, the Macon County Schools' central office was full of teachers concerned with the possibility that the school board could deny the district's educators a two percent supplement provided by the county.

Faced with the potential gaping budget shortfall for the 2013-2014 school year, the Macon County Board of Education (BOE) went to county commissioners asking for permission to grant the local two percent salary bonus that the county has awarded teachers over the last few years.

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Franklin business owner addresses WCU conference.

Western North Carolina’s educational institutions must re-emphasize the importance of mathematical skills at all levels – from basic addition and subtraction to advanced statistics, analysis and predictive modeling – if mountain students are to succeed in the modern workforce.

That was the message hammered home Thursday, Sept. 19, by panelists during a discussion titled “Mathematics and the WNC Workforce: Voices of Business Leaders” at the opening of a two-day conference of WNC educators ranging from pre-kindergarten through the university level.

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