Latest News

2017-2018 Student transfer forms now available

posted Jan 31, 2017, 7:30 PM by Greg Shull

Transfer applications for the 2017-2018 school year are now available online and at individual schools. Applications must be submitted to CCS Central Services, 400 West Marion Street of Shelby, on or before April 3, 2016.

Important points to remember about student transfers:
  • In-county transfers are good for the grade span of the school to which the transfer was given. A new transfer application is required for a student entering into a new school. Example: a new transfer is required if a student is out-of-district and moving from middle school to high school.
  • All out-of-county transfer students must complete a new transfer request every year. Also included for out-of-county transfers is the requirement to pay tuition. The out-of-county tuition fee is $1,414.
  • Student transfers may be revoked for violations of attendance or discipline policies. 
  • The parent of any incoming Kindergarten student who desires a transfer will need to complete a transfer form. Kindergarten students are encouraged to attend Kindergarten Orientation at their home school.
  • Schools and/or grade levels within schools may be closed to transfers to avoid classroom overcrowding.
  • If a high school student’s transfer request is approved, the student may be ineligible for athletic participation for a period of 365 days.
For additional information concerning transfers, please contact Ronny Funderburke or Mary Richards at (704) 476-8000.

Register Now for the 12th Annual CCS Elementary Fun Run

posted Jan 23, 2017, 2:30 PM by Greg Shull

The Cleveland County Schools 12th Annual Elementary Fun Run will be held at Shelby High School on Saturday, April 8th.

Cleveland County Schools elementary students (grades K-5) may now register to participate through their Physical Education teacher until February 17th.

The registration form is attached at the bottom of this article for download.

Two from Cleveland County Performed in Elite High School Chorus

posted Jan 21, 2017, 4:10 PM by Greg Shull

Rachel Harris of Crest High and Skylar Smith of Kings Mountain High were selected for and performed with the North Carolina Music Educators Association (NCMEA) High School Honors Chorus. Along with about 1,300 other students from across the state, the two were selected by experienced university choral conductors based on their individual superior performance of the “Song to the Moon” by Z. Randall Stroope of Oklahoma State University.

Both students united with 174 other top vocalists from across the state to rehearse and perform at the state conference held in Winston-Salem.

“It was really fun,” said Harris, a junior at Crest High. “I met new friends from all over the state, and we practiced together for an entire day preparing for our concert.”

The purpose of the honors chorus is to honor outstanding singers from high school choral music programs in our state by giving them the opportunity to perform at the highest level of achievement.

“It was an amazing experience being able to come together with people who have the same passion as you,” said Smith, a junior at Kings Mountain High. “There were over a hundred people who came together and made one amazing sound.”

“Being seated in the North Carolina High School Honors Chorus is the most prestigious honor a high school choral student can achieve,” said Sarah Fulton, choral director at Kings Mountain High. “These two ladies have worked hard and have proved they are dedicated to their craft. We are so fortunate to have stellar arts programs in Cleveland County that are supported and celebrated.”

Facebook updates technology access at Springmore

posted Jan 19, 2017, 12:38 PM by Greg Shull   [ updated Jan 19, 2017, 12:40 PM ]

Springmore Elementary of Boiling Springs, North Carolina received a Facebook Community Action Grant to fund the addition of 20 Smart TVs and 20 Apple TVs for classroom use, equivalent to nearly $10,000 in new technologies.

“We are all grateful for this community partnership with the Forest City Facebook Data Center, said Laura McGill, principal at Springmore. “These technologies will be used to engage our students, allowing them to share products of their learning with classmates.”

According to, “Facebook is committed to playing a positive role in the communities in which we operate. While we work globally, nothing changes the fact that we live locally and want to harness our success to help strengthen our own communities.”

Facebook did just that as they provided funds for devices that will be purposed for interactive use for and by students at Springmore.

“The activities provided through this technology will help to improve students' speaking and listening skills, enabling them to be better prepared for college and careers,” added McGill.

For any remaining classrooms that need such devices, the schools’ PTO (Parent-Teacher Organization) has pledged their support.

“This is something I absolutely had to ‘Comment’ on,” said Dr. Stephen Fisher, superintendent of Cleveland County Schools. “A very special thanks goes to Facebook’s Forest City Data Center in sincere appreciation for their ‘Sharing’ of love and support for our children. They deserve many ‘Likes’ for this."

Friday night greats begin as Friday morning mentors

posted Jan 19, 2017, 12:04 PM by Greg Shull

Shelby High Football is known for hardnosed football and electrifying plays. What you may not know is that the team attributes much of their character growth to the students at Jefferson Elementary, where they invest Friday mornings as mentors.

The “Football Buddies” mentor program brings both the high school and elementary students together for a win-win experience according to Laura Rucker, a speech language pathologist and Football Buddies program advocate at Jefferson Elementary

“Every Friday something magical happens, said Rucker. “The [elementary] students see these boys as stars, as big as any pro-bowl player. The players learn that the responsibility of being a Shelby High Golden Lion extends way beyond the hash marks on the field.”

Football Buddies travel across town to connect with students in the classroom by assisting with math homework, reading with and listening to young readers. They accompany the elementary students to lunch, and intercepting a variety of other tasks that are thrown their way throughout the visits.

Third Grader Rowan said, “they encourage me to better on multiplication and reading.” 
As every class has a Football Buddy, the impact of this program is experienced throughout the entire school. 

“It creates a different energy in our building,” said Katie Barbee, principal at Jefferson Elementary. “It creates a different atmosphere, and you can feel it throughout the school.”

Strategic on-field coaching and elite athleticism have led the team to back-to-back-to-back-to-back state football championships, but character coaching combined with heartfelt mentorships have created a prideful bond between students of all ages in Shelby, North Carolina. According to Mrs. Rucker, respect, honesty, and integrity are modeled by the team as traits of good sportsmanship, allowing the team to flex their role model muscles.

“In the eyes of young students, winning and losing are less important than the time spent showing these eager minds how to play the game of life,” added Rucker.

Aaron Jolly, a defensive back at Shelby High explained, “It makes me happy to see that I make the kids better and make an impact on them by making sure they are working and have a better future.”

Coach Lance Ware visits with the elementary students often providing an additional layer of support as the head football coach of the Shelby Golden Lions.

“I think our kids benefit from it as much as their kids,” said Ware. “For our guys to see the impact they have on young people and hopefully encourage them to do well, this sense of community and giving back is what we’re all about.”

“I like supporting this program, inspiring the kids, and giving them something positive to look up to,” said C.J. Ross a defensive back with Shelby High.”

As we are certain the lights will continue to burn bright at Shelby High on Friday nights during football season, it is important to remember that their lights are even brighter in the early morning as the team passes their winning ways to future Golden Lions.

YouTube Video

Shelby strengthens strings programs through grant, performances, and early start

posted Jan 6, 2017, 3:46 PM by Greg Shull

Many students in Shelby, North Carolina now have the opportunity to learn and enjoy strings instruments, starting as early as kindergarten. Thanks to the work of Jennie Quinn, orchestra director at Shelby Middle and Shelby Intermediate, the foresight of Morgen Champney, music teacher at Graham Elementary, and the sustained program excellence and performance opportunities provided at the direction of John Champney, orchestra director at Shelby High, students can orchestrate a “string” of opportunities. Yes, all pun intended.

Morgen Champney began teaching this year at Graham Elementary where she has assembled a strings program for kindergarten through fourth-grade students. There, students begin on percussion instruments learning timing and note placement and transition to violins to begin their strings training.

“Since we know that many pathways in the brain are set by age nine, my goal is to catch these children early and help them develop and cultivate additional musical skills,” said Morgen Champney. “Learning violin, along with other aspects of basic music competence, will help these students in so many aspects of their learning career - focus, attention, diligence, patience, enjoyment and more.”

Students then transition to Shelby Intermediate School where they are afforded the opportunity to begin or extend their training, thanks to Mrs. Quinn’s ability to obtain new instruments to the to the “tune” of over $21,000 from The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation Grant received earlier this year.

“Learning music in school is a way to engage kids and give them something that makes them better students and better people,” said Felice Mancini, President & CEO of The Mr. Holland’s Opus Foundation. “They deserve every tool available to help them receive a quality education, and we want to ensure that music is in that toolbox."

“The Shelby Intermediate School Orchestra received 3basses, 5 violas, and 12 violins that are currently being used by students who might otherwise not have the opportunity to take part in the orchestra program,” said Jennifer Quinn. “These students have shown growth on their instruments and are showing a great amount of responsibility by taking good care of these brand new instrument.”

Once through sixth-grade, students go to Shelby Middle where they receive additional training from Mrs. Quinn.

“The orchestra program has greatly benefited from this generous gift because it helps to diversify our program and offers a new opportunity for all our students,” added Quinn.

“We are extremely proud of our strings department at Shelby Middle School,” said Dustin Bridges, principal at Shelby Middle. “Our orchestra of nearly 90 students, is playing the most complex music that our middle school orchestra has ever played--helping set the stage for the great things that await them at Shelby High.”

From there, students grow into various levels of strings programs at Shelby High, where they have performed at world-renowned venues such as Carnegie Hall in New York City, the Strathmore in Washington D.C., and Davies Hall in San Francisco.

“It is so important that in the arts we focus on the big picture of what we do in the classroom each day,” said John Champney. “Providing musical opportunities that are going to help enrich our students from both a music perspective as well as a global perspective is crucial. The reality is most of our students will not go on to pursue music as a career. What we must focus on is how the musical experiences in their lives help to guide students in directions they may have never considered were possible had it not been for the music enrichment in their lives.”

This is just one of many exceptional educational experiences offered to students in Cleveland County Schools,” said Greg Shull, the district arts coordinator and director of communications. “The arts

Champney added, “Performing music helps to create vision and drive in young students to achieve in all areas.”

Now Screening for Preschool

posted Jan 6, 2017, 3:27 PM by Greg Shull

Cleveland County Schools is now scheduling appointments for preschool screenings.  If your child will be 4 years of age by Aug. 31, 2017, please contact the Office of School Readiness at (704) 476-8064 to make a screening appointment.

Employee Spotlight

posted Dec 22, 2016, 10:09 AM by Greg Shull   [ updated Dec 23, 2016, 10:39 PM ]

James Baker – Crest High Math Teacher and Asst. Football Coach

CCS Work History
I worked four years at Shelby Middle and this year came to Crest high. I have always taught mathematics and coached football. I graduated from Crest in 2003.

I graduated from Gardner-Webb University in 2007 with a Bachelor's degree in religious education with a minor in mathematics. I graduated from the Godbold School of Business at Gardner-Webb in 2010 with a Master’s in business administration with a concentration in human information systems. I received my teaching license through a program from the TNTP organization, Teach Charlotte, which allowed me to teach my first year in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools.

My wife, Lindsey, is a certified tutor at Boiling Springs Elementary. We have a 2-year-old daughter, Julia Marie, and a newborn son, AJ.

What do you like best about your school/work location?
I love teaching at Crest because of a couple of reasons: it is where I graduated from, so there is a sense of pride and tradition; and I get to coach football at the best program in the state of North Carolina. The Crest community invested a lot in me when I played here in the early 2000's, so being able to give back is a pleasure in itself.

If you could give students one piece of advice, what would it be and why?
Being a math teacher, I say it all the time: "Show your work." This piece of advice is useful in all types of educational settings. Showing your work proves that you understand the processes that are needed to find a solution to a problem. Showing your work also allows you to see where flaws might exist when trying to find the solution.

Why is Cleveland County Schools special to you?
Cleveland County Schools is special to me because it has provided jobs for a number of people in my family. My mother taught in the system for 30 plus years; my wife teaches, my mother in law teaches and I teach, so I am very grateful for the opportunity to serve our students and community which make up Cleveland County Schools.

Ashley Gilmore – Second Grade Teacher at Graham Elementary

CCS Work History
I am a product of Cleveland County, and after graduating college, I decided to return home to give back to my community.

I graduated from Kings Mountain High School and am a graduate of Western Carolina University with a major in Elementary Education and minor in sociology.

I have one brother, George, a sister, Havyn. I am the daughter of Henry and Wanda Gilmore.

What do you like best about your school/work location?
I LOVE the staff at Graham Elementary; we are truly a team that has come together to do what's best for our students.

If you could give students one piece of advice, what would it be and why?
Do everything with a sprinkle of love.

Why is Cleveland County Schools special to you?
It raised me and made me who I am. I am glad to say I am from this wonderful county!

Angie Knapp – Title I Administrative Assistant at Central Services

CCS Work History
I have been at Central Services as the Title 1 Administrative Assistant for a little over a year.

I have a Bachelor of Arts in Communications with a concentration in Advertising from Appalachian State University.

My husband, John Knapp, and I have been married for 19 years and have two children, Reagan and John Michael. Our children keep us very busy with their many extracurricular activities. Reagan is in 9th grade at Crest High, and John Michael is in 3rd grade at Boiling Springs Elementary.

What do you like best about your school/work location?
The relationship that has grown between the staff in the Title 1 office is the true meaning of comradery. Tamara Goforth, Laura Beaver, Gina Gold, Lisa Stachowicz, and Cindy Witherspoon are amazing women that give their all every day. I am blessed to work with such a motivated and experienced group of people that I have learned so much from. These ladies are my friends, and it is a pleasure to work with them. Together, we work hard and laugh hard.

If you could give students one piece of advice, what would it be and why?
Be a blessing to others. Be a friend to all. Encourage someone. Take time to care. Let your words heal, and not wound. John and I try to encourage our children to conduct themselves in this manner.

Why is Cleveland County Schools special to you?
CCS is special to me because my son attends Boiling Springs Elementary and my daughter is a student at Crest High School. CCS provides my children and others with a superior education along with making a positive impact on their lives. My kids have received first-rate love and care over the years. CCS has also afforded me with a job I love and a group of women who have become my friends.

Margaret Spangler Thomas – Teacher at Kings Mountain Middle

CCS Work History
I am in my 8th year as a 7th grade Social Studies teacher at Kings Mountain Middle School. I have been a member of the School Improvement Team team, Professional Learning Community leader for my department, and participated in many workshops throughout the county. I am a 2004 graduate of Crest Senior High.

I graduated from North Carolina State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Middle Grades Education with a focus in History and English.

I am newly married to my wonderful husband, Robbie Thomas. He and I grew up together even going to college together, and that friendship grew to love. We have two sweet puppies, Sadie Mae, a toy schnauzer, and Shelby, a German short-haired pointer. My family is from Cleveland County and very active in our community.

What do you like best about your school/work location?
I love my co-workers and the level of love and support at KMMS! We have great support from our parents and community.

If you could give students one piece of advice, what would it be and why?

Be kind! You never know what someone is carrying with them as they walk through the day.

Why is Cleveland County Schools special to you?

This is my home. I have spent my life in Cleveland County Schools and couldn't imagine any other place.

Dr. David Walker – Principal at Casar Elementary

CCS Work History
I am a product of Cleveland County Schools. I attended Casar Elementary School, Burns Junior High School, and Burns Senior High School. I began work as a teacher and coach at Burns High School in 1990. I taught math and coached soccer and baseball. In 1994, I switched roles and became a driver education teacher. In 2002, I changed jobs again and became an assistant principal at Burns High School. I was very fortunate to become principal of Casar Elementary School in 2014.

I received a Bachelor of Science degree in Mathematics/Secondary Education and certification in Driver and Traffic Safety Education from Appalachian State University in 1990. In 1994, I earned a Master of Arts degree in School Administration at Gardner-Webb University. I completed a Doctor of Education degree in Educational Leadership at Gardner-Webb University in 2006.


I am married to Tonya Walker who works as an EC Compliance Manager with Cleveland County Schools. We have two daughters. Morgan is in eighth grade at Burns Middle School, and Jordan is in second grade at Casar Elementary School.

What do you like best about your school/work location?
It is an honor to return to Casar Elementary School as principal since this is where I began my education many years ago. We have wonderful students, a very caring staff, and a supportive community.

If you could give students one piece of advice, what would it be and why?
Always work hard and never give up. I guess that's really two pieces of advice, but they go hand-in-hand. When there are stumbling blocks in the road of life, don't quit. Don't give up. Keep working hard, and you will find ways to overcome the difficulties.

Why is Cleveland County Schools special to you?

Cleveland County Schools provided me with a quality education while I was a student. I've spent my entire career working in this school system, and I've seen the hard work and dedication from employees here. I'm proud to be a part of Cleveland County Schools.

Shelby Civitan Club delivers holiday cheer to students at North Shelby School

posted Dec 21, 2016, 8:39 AM by Greg Shull   [ updated Dec 21, 2016, 8:50 AM ]

The Shelby Civitan Club recently held its annual Christmas party at North Shelby School, a school for special purpose school located in Shelby, North Carolina. Over 100 Junior Civitan students from Crest Middle as well as Burns, Crest, and Shelby high schools, converged at the party again to partner with North Shelby students in relay games, singing holiday songs, enjoying some good eats and treats, but more importantly, uniting in celebration.

Roger Harris, the president of the Shelby Civitan Club, explained, “The event helps form friendships and break down barriers by learning acceptance and toleration of differences.”

Travis Mangum, the vice president of the Shelby Civitan Club, emcees the party annually. As the emcee, Mangum provides direction for the students and volunteers making sure the event goes off without a hitch. He even gets to introduce Santa Claus who brings presents to every North Shelby student, specific to their Christmas wishes.

“This is the big event for our Civitan club, and we try to make it bigger and better each year,” said Mangum. "As the parent of two special needs children, it just warms my heart when kids with special needs are treated as equals. That happens each year at our Christmas party and I hope it continues for years to come."

“The planning for this party begins the afternoon of the previous year’s event,” added Harris. “The fundraisers are ongoing, and collaboration takes place often with North Shelby School staff members to provide unique experiences each year.”

Fully funded for over 40 years by the Shelby Civitan Club, the party provides a warm, heartfelt experience for everyone involved.

Mangum adds, “It is just a quality time and what makes Christmas special and meaningful.”

“We’re fortunate to have such caring and philanthropic partners as the Shelby Civitan Club members,” said Allison Hodges, principal at North Shelby School. This event affords our students the opportunity to enjoy Christmas while interacting with other students – of similar age - from across the county.”

If you are interested in joining the Shelby Civitan Club or wish to donate towards this worthwhile experience, contact Roger Harris at

New champions emerge at annual Math Field Day competition

posted Dec 13, 2016, 4:47 PM by Greg Shull

The Cleveland County Schools Central Services hosted the 24th annual mathematics competition sponsored by the Cleveland County Schools Educational Foundation, PPG Industries, and Laughlin Furniture Outlet. The holiday-themed competition – “It’s Beginning to Look A Lot Like Math Day!” provided the opportunity for students to showcase their minds as they competed for top honors.

Participating students were from Boiling Springs, Casar, Fallston, Springmore, Township Three, Union and Washington elementary schools, and Kings Mountain and Shelby intermediate schools.

The Shelby Intermediate Exponential Elves were the overall problem-solving grand champions for the day, edging out the defending champions, Casar Elementary Number Nutcrackers 2K16, who took second place. Rounding out the top three was KMIS Mathletes #1.

Problem Solving Tasks and Winners

  • Task 1: It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas – Students applied their knowledge in order of operations to solve numerical expressions. The winning team for this task is: Union Wise Men
  • Task 2: Santa Plans Hawaiian Vacation– Students designed and constructed swimming pool models. The winning team for this task is: Casar Number Nutcrackers 2K16
  • Task 3: Santa’s Christmas Eve Adventure – Students applied their knowledge of fractional concepts to reason about the size of fractions with different denominators and solve tasks requiring various operations. The winning team for this task is: Shelby Intermediate Exponential Elves
  • Task 4: Where Are You Christmas? – Students applied their knowledge of our base-10 system to examine and manipulate other place value systems. The winning team for this task: Casar Number Nutcrackers 2K16

Team Award
Working together, sharing ideas, and communicating while solving math challenges are vital to any team’s success. The following team exhibited outstanding collaboration: KMIS Mathletes Team 3.

One competition titled, Do You Think What I Think?, required students to use their mental math skills to answer a total of 50 questions.  Students were not allowed to solve problems using paper or pencil.  They had to solve all problems mentally. The highest scoring students on each team for the Do You Think What I Think? challenge are as follows:

  • BSE’s Yuletide Chargers: Benjamin Rose
  • Casar’s Number Nutcrackers 2K16: Arlenn Hyland
  • Fallston’s Festive Factors: Tie: Jaden Pierce & Conner Smith
  • KMIS’s Mathletes Team 1: Reed Cooper
  • KMIS’s Mathletes Team 2: Matthew Morrow
  • KMIS’s Mathletes Team 3: Sara Kate Bridges
  • SIS’s Mathematical Elves: Maggie Alexander
  • SIS’s Exponential Elves: Ga’ Laysia McEntire
  • SIS’s Math Reindeer: Samiah Moore
  • Springmore’s Claus Dawgs: Allie Jones
  • Township Three’s Gifted Grinches: Chase Ledbetter
  • Union’s Wise Men: Zachary Currier
  • Washington’s Christmas II (pi): Michael Allen

Click here to watch the Math Field Day awards ceremony that was presented “live” by the CCS Media.

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