Conway High School teacher Cheryl Daniels has been given the "Good Neighbor Award" by the Conway Chamber of Commerce for outstanding service to her community.
Daniels, a Special Education teacher for Conway Schools for 22 years, was presented with the award at the Chamber's Annual Meeting last night.
In 2005, Daniels established the "Caring Cats" club at Conway High School. The club started off with about a dozen members, and a desire to serve those less fortunate in their community.
Today, the "Caring Cats" boasts almost 300 student members. Each year they take on projects like "Angel Paws," where they ensure that no student in the Conway School District goes without presents at Christmas, and volunteer with Special Olympics. They frequently hold food and clothing drives to help the needy and perform other acts of kindness that bless the Conway community.
"The Chamber’s recognition of Cheryl’s work with Caring Cats and her special needs kids is a wonderful tribute to her and to all of our employees who work so very hard to make a difference in the life of a child," says Dr. Greg Murry, Superintendent of Conway Schools.
Daniels says she is humbled by the honor, and so thankful she has had the opportunity to work with so many amazing students over the years.
"Our Caring Cats club has bridged the gap between special needs and general education students in a way that has been a great experience for everyone," says Daniels. "To watch these young people put their servants' hearts into action is something very special."
Daniels has recently been asked to serve on the board of directors for "Deliver Hope," and also volunteers for the Conway Human Development Center and the Special Olympics.
"Seeing our special needs students bond with the general education students and form lifelong friendships is just phenomenal," Daniels says. "I'm thankful every single day that I get to be part of something like this."
Established in 1973, the Good Neighbor Award is presented annually to an individual who has given of his or her time and talents and is known for going beyond the call of duty to help others.
Mr. Brown's 3rd grade class at Julia Lee Moore Elementary has been keeping the United States Postal Service busy!
As a way of improving handwriting, his students have been writing letters to people whom they felt were important to them.
They've written letters to members of the United States Army, Navy, Air Force, and Marines. President Obama even received some correspondence!
Some of the military letters went to local recruiters who received invitations to visit the class in their letters.
"Mr. Brown has really helped his students learn to be thoughtful writers, in addition to practicing their letter writing skills, and handwriting," says Jennifer Epps, Third Grade Parent at Julia Lee Moore. "It has been fun hearing the kids' excitement when they receive a return letter or a visitor based on their requests."
Their teacher says this project has been great for everyone.
"This has helped them practice their handwriting, but has also made letter writing fun," says Dusty Brown.
Conway Public Schools will be well-represented in the Arch Ford School Cooperative Chess Tournament next month.
The annual Conway Public Schools' Chess Tournament was held last Friday to determine our delegates to the tournament.
Fifty-two students in grades 5 and under represented all 9 elementary schools and all 4 of the middle schools. In the 6th grade tournament, all 4 middle schools were represented. The winner of the 5th and under tournament was James from Woodrow Cummins Elementary. The 6th Grade winner was West B from Ruth Doyle Middle School.
Simon Middle School won 2nd, 3rd, and 4th place in the older tournament.
"Conway should have a formidable team at the Arch Ford tourney," says Lynn Duran, co-organizer of the Conway Chess Tournament.
The regional tournament will be held at Arch Ford on April 1st.
Conway High School's Future Health Professionals represented quite well at the HOSA State conference this month.
47 members of HOSA attended the two-day conference in Hot Springs. 16 students received 1st-3rd place and will represent the Conway Area Career Center at the National Leadership Conference in Nashville, Tennessee this summer.
"This competition is the highlight of being a member of HOSA future health professionals," says Melissa Castleberry, one of the group's sponsors. "They get to compete against hundreds of other students from around the state. If the students place first they receive a two year scholarship to a participating community college."
Castleberry, who co-sponsors the group with teachers Connie Friant and Shannon Busby, says they are very proud of these outstanding students.
"They really work hard studying and staying after school to learn their skills. It is a pleasure to work with such committed students. "
The competition features over 55 events ranging from health professional events, emergency preparedness, recognition, leadership and knowledge tests. Some events have two rounds: a knowledge test followed by a skills test.
If students place in the top three, they have the opportunity to represent the school at the National Leadership Conference.
The Carl Stuart Middle School Quiz Bowl team ends their season undefeated, winning first place in the Arch Ford Tournament.
They beat reigning champs Vilonia in the final match by over 100 points.
In fact, no other team came even came close.
"I was constantly amazed by this group of kids," says Elizabeth Corey, GT Teacher and Quiz Bowl Sponsor. "Not only are they extremely intelligent, but they are also kind. They have formed great friendships and have learned the valuable lesson of working together as a team. I am thankful to have been a small part of their great accomplishment."
Carl Stuart's team advanced to the finals from the regional quiz bowl tournament, along with other schools in the Arch Ford Coop.
They played 6 matches at the final tournament, where no other team came within 100 points of them.
Simon Middle School's team also placed third in this tournament. Congratulations!
Conway High School Lady Cats State Championship Send Off
Please join us to show support for the Conway High School Lady Cats as they leave for the State Championship!
“We Back the Cats” sendoff rally!
Friday Morning, March 11th, at 8:30 a.m. at Buzz Bolding Arena.
The public is invited to cheer the Lady Cats on to victory as they leave for Hot Springs.
Line up in front of the arena (inside if it’s raining!) to send them off with lots of support!
Lady Cats play North Little Rock Saturday at 7:45 for the state title. Let’s go Cats!
The first annual Conway Celebrity Basketball Jam is set for April 22nd at 6 p.m. at the Buzz Bolding Arena.
The event, a fundraiser for Woodrow Cummins Elementary School, will feature Conway Public Schools' employees facing off against local celebrities on the basketball court.
Woodrow Cummins' Assistant Principal Gary Logan says the basketball battle will definitely be something to see.
"This is going to be an awesome event that will bring the whole community together for some fun," says Logan.
Participants confirmed so far include Mayor Tab Townsell, as well as representatives from local churches, all of Conway's elementary schools, the Conway School Board, and more.
Proceeds from the event will help Woodrow Cummins fund a new running track at their school.
"The whole school is involved in putting on this event," says Logan. "Each class is putting together a themed basket for the silent auction. We will also have vendor booths and a concession stand with my famous BBQ and other great food items. This will be a night to remember!"
The Conway Lady Cats are headed to the State Championship Game this Saturday, but Coach Ashley Nance says this week won't look much different for her team.
"We are keeping our regular routine in practice. We will focus on getting a lot of game shots in during practice and focus on our scouting report against North Little Rock. We are really excited about Saturday’s game but we know it will be a battle."
The Lady Cats are heading into the championship game with a record of 30-1, their only loss coming from Plano West, TX.
Last week in the state tournament, they beat the Cabot Panthers in the first semi-final game; then won a come-from-behind battle against the Little Rock Central Tigers after Senior Hailey Estes hit a clutch 3-point shot that gave the Cats the lead for the first time, with just seconds left in the game.
Estes and fellow senior Alexis Tolefree will be playing for their third and final state championship.
"We spent a lot of time at the beginning of the season discussing how we wanted to prove people wrong because there were a lot of people that doubted us," says Coach Ashley Nance. "This has been the hardest working team I have coached and one of the most coachable teams. I have said many times they are just a blue-collar team, they come into practice and games and work hard, they don’t complain and they get the job done. We are not as talented as we have been the past few seasons but they are a true testament of a team."
Their final test will come in Saturday night's State Championship game at 7:45 in Hot Springs.
"What a great job Coach Nance has done this year," says Assistant Athletic Director Janet Taylor. "She always does an excellent job, but this year was a perfect example of great coaching. We are so excited for her, the coaching staff and the entire team."
Registration opens Monday April 4th for Summer School Driver's Ed.
Classes will begin Monday June 6th and will end on Thursday June 30th 2016.
Cost for the month-long session is $225 and must be paid in cash or money order ONLY.
Fees must be paid in full before Friday May 20th...and spots are limited to the first 70 paid participants.
Students will earn 1/2 credit for the course, which includes classroom instruction, practical observation, and actual driving training in a dual control vehicle under the supervision of a qualified instructor.
Students must be 14 years old before June 6th to enroll in the course, as well as have a valid Arkansas learner's permit.
More information is available at the Conway Junior High School Office.
Conway Public Schools News
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