School board honors exceptional students, staff

Published 7:00 am Sunday, June 2, 2024

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The Butler County Board of Education meeting on May 23 was marked by heartfelt recognitions of outstanding students and staff members. 

“It’s great to see a full boardroom,” said Superintendent Joseph Eiland in his opening remarks.

“It’s even greater to know that our boardroom is full today because we’re recognizing students and staff members for excellent and outstanding service, both in the classroom, on the fields, in various competitions, and at the state level.”

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The evening’s accolades began with the State Superintendent’s Art Exhibit Contestants. Lisa Hatch, Secondary Curriculum Specialist for Butler County schools, presented the awards. 

“I love projects that ask students to work from the creative sides of their brain,” Hatch said. “Art activities foster creativity, critical thinking, self-expression, and vital skills that help students to navigate an increasingly complex world with confidence and innovation.” 

She commended the students for their bravery and talent.

“It takes a lot of guts to do this, to get your work out there, show it to everybody and let them look at it,” Hatch said. “They were courageous enough to participate, so we want to applaud them for the creativity and the remarkable talent that they have showcased in our youth art show this year.”

Next, the board recognized William Bogle from McKenzie School, who emerged as the SkillsUSA State Champion in Carpentry. Rick Eddins, a building and construction teacher at the Greenville High School Career and Technical Education Academy (CTE), shared Bogle’s journey to success. 

“Will competed at a district-level in Opp for the SkillsUSA Competition in carpentry. He placed second place. Winning second place gave him the privilege to go to the state level and compete against all the students in the state and he won first place,” said Eddins. “Winning that gives him the opportunity to go to Atlanta and compete at a national level against all students in the nation.”

During the meeting, the board also celebrated the Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (JROTC) Drill Team’s achievements. Colonel Alan Hester highlighted the team’s dedication and success. 

“The drill team had a great year. You don’t just show up to a state championship or to Daytona Beach for the Nationals and just hope it comes together,” Hester said. “It takes a lot of work to get ready and a lot of preparation, and they did a great job. We entered and won two regional meets, two Commander’s Cups and first place overall in meets leading up to the state championships.”

School nurses were also honored for their critical role in the education system. Superintendent Eiland expressed deep gratitude for their service before Head Nuse Ebony McMeans handed out certificates. 

“School nurses, I can’t tell you how much we appreciate you nurses for all that you do, for the care that you give, the supervision you provide, and the support that you provide, not only medically but physically and emotionally,” Eiland said.