In the News

GaDOE officials tour local school, meet educators

Posted: Thursday, September 12, 2013 4:30 pm

Midway Elementary School Principal Antonio Ingram was proud to show off the hard work of his teachers and student’s successes Thursday to Georgia Department of Education (GaDOE) officials, including State Superintendent Dr. John Barge.

The visit to Midway Thursday morning was a stop along Barge’s three-day tour as he traveled to 15 school districts across the state, including Burke, Glascock, Hancock, Jenkins, Jefferson, Screven, Twiggs, Warren and Wilkinson counties. The state officials were greeted by Ingram, Baldwin County School Superintendent Geneva Braziel and Baldwin County Board of Education Chair John Jackson, District 4.

“I want to make sure I visit all 180 school districts in the state,” Barge said before touring the school. “I’ve been to some rural areas, and there’s some amazing things that are going on. They are getting some really good results, especially when it’s been a difficult time for schools and public education in general budget wise. I’m visiting to encourage and see what the particular issues and needs are.”

The group dropped in a few classrooms as teachers continued academic instruction, and spoke with individual youth about their studies.

“The tour was really good. We saw some really engaged teachers and engaged students. They have solid classroom procedures,” Barge said of Midway before heading to Hancock Central Middle School. “They should be proud in Baldwin; their elementary students are getting the emphasis in science and social studies they need.”

Along the tour, Ingram highlighted how teachers use various effective teaching styles to help students learn the content.

“I’m very thankful for their visit; I appreciate the time well spent. I truly see that Dr. Barge has a heart for education, these children and educational achievements,” Ingram said. “The main thing I wanted to show him was the differentiated instruction and the many ways we use differentiated instruction. Our teachers work hard with their children.”

Barge makes the three-day travel to various school districts every month. The current round of visits will conclude Friday after stopping by Greene, McDuffie, Morgan and Taliaferro counties.

“To hear students verbalize the level of vocabulary they’re at is amazing. I heard one kindergarten student say that if you take two trapezoids and put them together you get a hexagon; that’s not language I was using when I was in kindergarten. It’s evident teachers are teaching the Common Core standards,” Braziel said after Thursday’s tour. “We’re always excited to show off the great things in our classrooms. So often people don’t get to see the level of expertise teachers display. We’re appreciative of our teachers and students for the work they do on a daily basis.”

The Union Recorder
February 5, 2013

Weekend food program to give 40 students free meal

Vaishali Patel 
The Union-Recorder

MILLEDGEVILLE — Of the 560 Midway Elementary School students, 87 percent are economically disadvantaged, qualifying them for a free or reduced school lunch. Using a $1,500 grant awarded by Tri-County EMC in December, Baldwin County Family Connection hopes to keep the tummies of 40 youth a little full over the weekend from now through the end of the academic year.

“There are many children across our county who don’t have enough to eat on the weekends due to their family’s economic status. We made the application to Tri-County EMC asking for money to help fund a weekend food program. From discussions I was having with folks from the school system and the Department of Family & Children Services, there are children who are either going without adequate nutrition or sometimes nothing at all going into the weekend,” said Janet Cavin, coordinator of Baldwin County Family Connection. “Midway is a school where most of the children who attend are eligible for free or reduced lunch. We knew there was a need and this would be a great pilot program to benefit the children.”

Kicking off the food program just last Friday, 40 kindergartners were provided a brown bag filled with a can of ravioli, peanut butter crackers, applesauce, peaches, Pop-Tarts and a juice box.

“We try to include nonperishable foods with nutritional value like protein items, fruits and vegetables. The whole packet costs $2.50 each,” Cavin said. “We will give food to 40 children from one particular grade level, kindergarten through fifth grade, each Friday, and then rotate it until the end of the school year.”

Midway Elementary Principal Antonio Ingram is grateful to Tri-County EMC and the community health department for making the opportunity to help local school families possible.

“A lot of children eat candy and sugary products, but the food program provides free, healthy snacks or meals children can eat over the weekend. The children were very thankful for the program and very receptive last week,” he said. “The main goal is to promote healthy eating and healthy living for our student population.”

Cavin hopes to obtain additional grant funds and donations of nonperishable food items in order to expand and implement the weekend food program into the Baldwin County public school system by the next school year.

“Community organizations and churches can donate food or funds. It would be wonderful to have this program at every school in the county,” Cavin said. “If children have their nutritional needs met, then they do better in school and go through the day with enough energy. We’re hoping that by providing additional food over the weekend, students will have more security about having enough to eat and won’t come to school so hungry.”

February 20, 2013

Midway Elementary students learn how to be hygienic

MILLEDGEVILLE — Communities In Schools of Milledgeville-Baldwin County (CISMBC) hosted a health fair at Midway Elementary School Wednesday for students in grades three through five to encourage and promote good hygienic habits.

‘The theme is healthy kids are smart kids. The goal is to make sure they start taking ownership of their own health,’ CISMBC Midway Site Coordinator Joyce Denson said. ‘They need a hands-on approach to learn the various things they can do.’

Participating vendors included Dr. Gregory Graham giving insight about proper teeth care, a county extension agent from Fort Valley State University, Central Georgia Technical College nursing students checking weight, height and blood pressure, Judith Keim teaching pet therapy, the Baldwin County Children’s Study and Georgia College representatives discussing hand-washing techniques.

One student from each grade will be the winner of a bookbag filled with various items through a drawing. Bookbags were donated by Robins Federal Credit Union, Magnolia State Bank and Fowler Flemister Concrete.