Newport News Public Schools – Update August 2021

Menchville High School FareShare team’s work recognized

From left: Menchville FareShare team members Leah Louk, Laura Beier, Sigrid Perkinson and Beth Ellis won second place in this year’s Youth Volunteer Corps Canstruction competition.

FareShare, Menchville High School’s Lead4Change Team, is one of six nationwide grand prize winners for its outstanding efforts to serve its school and the community. The Lead4Change Student Leadership Program awarded $10,000 to the Menchville team. The team will donate half of the prize to THRIVE Peninsula, and the school will use the remainder for the school’s garden, food pantry and other projects. In the last six years, the group has received $62,000 in award money that it has shared with local non-profits.

The Lead4Change Student Leadership Program teaches students leadership lessons and skills. To participate in the award program, students use their leadership skills to develop a service project that addresses a need in their community.

The Menchville FareShare team led the “Take a Stand” student activism campaign to encourage students to advocate for a cause. The district-wide food drive raised $4,000 and collected 2,900 donated food items. The group also earned second place in this year’s Youth Volunteer Corps Canstruction competition and hosted a virtual talent show for Menchville students.

Participating students included Sigrid Perkinson, Beth Ellis, Kailani Vera, Ashley Johnson, Melissa Zheng, Desiree Harrington, Leah Louk, Logan Taylor, Tera Ortega and Laura Beier.

NNPS Teachers of the Year

Newport News Public Schools proudly announced the 2021 elementary, middle and high school teachers of the year. These teachers were honored with their counterparts from each school at a ceremony in June.

Menchville High School’s Nicole Cooke, a librarian with 21 years of experience, is the 2021 High School Teacher of the Year. Ms. Cooke strives to make students media literate and improve their ability to evaluate sources and think critically.

Representing Crittenden Middle School, 7th grade math teacher Tiona Staton is the 2021 Middle School Teacher of the Year. Ms. Staton has 23 years of experience and was named one of NNPS 21 to Watch for her efforts.

The 2021 Elementary Teacher of the Year is Riverside Elementary’s Mitzi Emblidge. Ms. Emblidge is a music teacher with 19 years of experience who leads students in an elementary drum line, a ukulele group and virtual lessons on the recorder. Ms. Emblidge is also the Newport News Public Schools Citywide Teacher of the Year and will now be considered for the state teacher of the year title.

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