Choice Bus visits Pender High School

posted Oct 4, 2017, 7:06 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Oct 4, 2017, 7:06 AM ]

Choice Bus visits Pender High School

“What happens in our lives, positive and negative, is the result of the choices we make.” - Anonymous

The Choice Bus rolled onto the Pender High School campus on Tuesday, Oct. 3, allowing students to visualize the impact a decision can have on their lives as well as the importance of education.

Created by the Mattie C. Stewart Foundation to help reduce the dropout rate, the Choice Bus features a prison cell and classroom space. 

“There are two sides of life, getting an education that will make them be successful in life and making a choice that will govern the path that their lives will take,” said Gail Davis, presenter with the Mattie C. Stewart Foundation. “Oftentimes when the wrong choice is make, people end up in prison. Seventy-five percent of prisoners are high school dropouts. The other 25 percent are people who have been successful but made crazy choices. Our bus is here to give them a hands-on demonstration of the power education and choices have over their lives.”

When leaving the bus, students had the opportunity to sign their name on a banner, pledging to make good choices, follow their dreams, graduate from high school and make the most of their education.

We thank Communities in Schools for bringing the Choice Bus to Pender High and providing this opportunity to our students.

Rocky Point Elementary students learn the Flamenco

posted Sep 28, 2017, 5:53 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Sep 28, 2017, 5:53 AM ]

Rocky Point Elementary students learn the Flamenco

Second and third grade students are learning the Flamenco this week at Rocky Point Elementary! This opportunity was made possible thanks to a Grassroots Grant from the North Carolina Arts Council.

West Pender Middle hosts "Book Tasting"

posted Sep 28, 2017, 5:50 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Sep 28, 2017, 5:51 AM ]

West Pender Middle hosts "Book Tasting"

Students at West Pender Middle School participated in a "Book Tasting" this week in the school's media center. Part of a school-wide initiative to increase interest in reading, students explored a different book genre at each table, including fantasy, historical fiction, mystery, and adventure. Before choosing a book, students noted their impressions of the cover, then had five minutes to delve into each story before switching to a new table and a new book. Mrs. Butler, Media Specialist, gave each student a bookmark to keep track of the titles that interested them throughout the "tasting," and every student left with a list of must-reads!

Bus Driver Training Course Scheduled for October 2017

posted Sep 19, 2017, 10:09 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Sep 19, 2017, 10:09 AM ]

Bus Driver Training Course Scheduled for October 2017

PENDER COUNTY – Pender County Schools will hold its next bus driver training class Oct. 23-27.

The starting salary for a beginning, regular route bus driver is $12.78 per hour and $11.39 per hour for substitute drivers.

In order to participate in the course, you must complete an online application, which can be found at Click “Employment,” “PCS Job Board,” “Generic Bus Driver,” and apply and sign up.

If you have questions or are in need of further information, please contact Missy Daniel at 910-259-0141 or

Pender County Schools appoints Superintendent

posted Sep 8, 2017, 7:16 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Sep 8, 2017, 7:16 AM ]

Pender County Schools appoints Superintendent

PENDER COUNTY – The Pender County Board of Education announced the appointment of Dr. Steven Hill as district superintendent during a special meeting on Friday, Sept. 1, following a national search and rigorous interview process.

“Throughout this process the board has thoughtfully considered input from staff and community,” said Board Chair Kenneth Lanier. “We feel that Dr. Hill possesses the qualifications, experience, and characteristics that our staff, parents, and community members value and know that under his leadership Pender County Schools will continue to flourish.”

Dr. Hill will begin his duties as superintendent of Pender County Schools effective Oct. 1, 2017. Dr. Hill replaces Dr. Terri Cobb, who announced her retirement in April following more than 38 years of active service in the North Carolina public school system.

Dr. Hill currently serves as superintendent of Bertie County Schools. His vast experience includes service as emergency services officer, teacher, principal and secondary education director, as well as serving as executive director of STEM East in Greenville. 

Dr. Hill holds a bachelor’s degree in business administration from the University of Mount Olive. He has also earned an educational specialist degree, master’s degree and doctorate degree in educational leadership and administration, all from East Carolina University.

“I am both excited and grateful to be accepted into the Pender community,” Dr. Hill said.  “I look forward to getting engaged and building on the progressive foundation laid by the current Board of Education and district staff.”

Pender County Schools earns high marks in READY Accountability Report

posted Sep 7, 2017, 11:41 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Sep 7, 2017, 11:42 AM ]

Pender County Schools earns high marks in READY Accountability Report

PENDER COUNTY — Pender County Schools continues to outpace the state in most indicators according to the READY Accountability report, approved by the State Board of Education on Thursday, Sept. 7.

According to the report, Pender County Schools exceeded the state average in the percentage of students in grades 3-8 who scored grade-level proficient in the areas of reading, math, and science. The district also performed higher than the state average on the ACT, ACT WorkKeys, Math I, and Biology indicators.

The district made impressive gains in ACT proficiency, which increased 4.9 percentage points to 67 percent; and reading proficiency in grade levels 3-8 increased at every grade level.

Fourteen of the district’s 16 schools met or exceeded growth expectations in 2016-17. The growth measure is used in factoring School Performance Grades, which are calculated based 20 percent on student growth and 80 percent on student achievement.

Pender Early College received an “A” School Performance Grade, six schools received a “B,” eight schools received a “C,” and only one school received a “D” while meeting the growth expectations set by the state. Burgaw Middle and Cape Fear Middle both earned higher school performance grades, removing the schools from low-performing status.

The district’s five-year high school graduation rate increased to 91.1 percent. The district’s four-year graduation rate dipped one percentage point to 89.3 percent, outpacing the state average of 86.5 percent.

“While as a district our four-year graduation rate slightly declined, we are proud of the results many of our high schools obtained,” said Superintendent Dr. Terri Cobb. “Pender High School and Topsail High School both increased graduation rates and Pender Early College maintained a graduation rate greater than 95 percent. However, we believe that ‘ALL means ALL’ and know that there is still work to do in order to ensure all of our students graduate college and career ready. We will increase our efforts and continue implementing support measures so all students earn a high school diploma.”

“I’m very pleased with the successes we have made in student achievement,” Dr. Cobb continued. “Over the past several years, the district has been able to sustain and increase results. Congratulations to our students, teachers and administrators for a job well done.”

Pender Early College views Solar Eclipse

posted Aug 22, 2017, 10:10 AM by Miranda Ferguson

Pender Early College views Solar Eclipse

Pender Early College students learned all about the solar eclipse on Monday, Aug. 21 prior to donning NASA-approved Solar Eclipse Glasses and watching as the moon moved between the sun and the Earth, partially blocking the sun.

When they weren’t looking up at the sun to watch the progression of the eclipse, students participated in a variety of activities and lessons. Students monitored the temperature drop during the eclipse and listened to see how crickets reacted to the rare astronomical event.

Students also made their own versions of Tibetan peace flags with pinholes through which the sun could pass, competed in eclipse “fact” or “fiction,” traced the shadows of toys throughout the eclipse, among other activities.

Bus Driver Training

posted Jul 14, 2017, 6:42 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Jul 14, 2017, 6:43 AM ]

PCS graduates 610 students in Class of 2017

posted Jul 12, 2017, 10:41 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Jul 12, 2017, 10:42 AM ]

Pender County Schools celebrates the 610 graduates making up the Class of 2017. Graduates from Heide Trask High, Pender High, Pender Early College, and Topsail High schools earned a combined total of more than $6 million in scholarships this year. While many will continue their education at a university or community college, others plan to join the military or enter the workforce.

Below is a list of our 2017 valedictorians and salutatorians, as well as their future plans.

Heide Trask High School
Valedictorian: Allison Rae Harris, NC State University
Salutatorian: Samantha Jo Long, NC State University

Pender High School
Valedictorian: Jordan Savage, UNC Chapel Hill
Salutatorian: Kitty Zheng, UNC Chapel Hill

Pender Early College High School
Valedictorian: Kevin Montoya, U.S. Army
Valedictorian: Kelly Rivenbark, King University
Salutatorian: Vanessa Meza, Cape Fear Community College

Topsail High School
Valedictorian: Madison DeVries, UNC Chapel Hill
Salutatorian: Alan Smith, UNC Chapel Hill

We wish all of our graduates the best in their future endeavors!

Pender County Board of Education names principal of Cape Fear Middle School

posted Jul 7, 2017, 9:31 AM by Miranda Ferguson   [ updated Jul 7, 2017, 9:31 AM ]

Pender County Board of Education names principal of Cape Fear Middle School

PENDER COUNTY — The Pender County Board of Education has appointed Christie Brown Principal of Cape Fear Middle School.

Christie Brown holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina Wilmington, master’s degree in school administration from the University of North Carolina Pembroke, and is currently pursuing a doctorate in educational leadership at Gardner Webb University. She brings much experience to Cape Fear Middle School, having served in neighboring Bladen and Columbus counties as a teacher, assistant principal, and principal.

Brown said she values relationships and looks forward to building relationships with students, staff, and the community.

“I look forward to working in collaboration with the staff and community as Cape Fear Middle School moves to the next level,” Brown said.

Brown lives in Bladen County with her husband of 23 years, Cecil. The couple have a 16-year-old son, Branden, and 20-year-old daughter, Kayla, who is a junior at Methodist University.

“Mrs. Brown will be an asset to Cape Fear Middle School,” said Dr. Terri Cobb, Superintendent of Pender County Schools. “Her experience and expertise at the middle school level will positively impact student achievement.”

A meet-and-greet event will be scheduled for students, staff, parents and community members to get to know Mrs. Brown at a later date.

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