Worth County School News

WCPS is fired up about reading and for their book fair that started on Friday. Be sure to stop by with your child and enjoy browsing the book fair. Family shopping night and open house will be held on Thursday evening, August 31st. The staff looks forward to seeing everyone. Be sure to visit the Worth County Primary School Facebook page to see the pictures each week of the Students of the Week along with other pictures and announcements that they post.

Character Rocks at WCES! As part of the Worth County Elementary School Character Education program, students now have the opportunity to participate in the Character Rocks at WCES program. Each week, a new character trait is announced during morning announcements. Starting this past Monday, August 21st, three student Character Rocks were hidden throughout the Worth County Elementary School campus. A student who finds a rock will report to the school counselor to claim a prize and have their picture taken. Each Character Rock will have a picture or inspirational message focusing on that week’s character trait. After claiming their prize, students will be allowed to keep their Character Rock and are encouraged to hide it again in the community. Character is developed and demonstrated throughout a lifetime. WCES doesn’t want to leave the grownups out of the fun! There will also be a rock for Worth County School System employees on the WCES campus. Each week, one rock will be hidden in places where employees are most likely to find it. After finding a rock, staff will report to the school counselor to claim their prize. They will also be allowed to keep their rock and use it for inspiration or hide it in the community to inspire others. Congratulations to the following people who found the Character Ed. Rock for this week, August 21st – 25th: Teacher: Mrs. Sara Terry, Students: Tukker Lee found The Lorax on the 3rd grade hall, Davontae McGuire found the Earth on the 4th grade hall and Denyriah Jackson found the Eclipse on the 5th grade hall. Congratulations to you all and good luck to everyone next week! It’s that time of year again at WCES! Their annual Fall PTO Fundraiser started this past week and will run through September 11th. Once again this year students will be selling resealable bags of popcorn as well an assortment of candy and other delicious snacks. Students have been sent home with their brochure and other information about the fundraiser. All money earned goes right back to the students of WCES by funding their family fun events, purchasing student incentives, student technology, etc. Thank you in advance for your continued support of WCES!

Join the WCMS Spirit Cheerleaders on September 5th-6th and learn some RAM cheers!  Participants will cheer during halftime on September 13th.  Cheer Clinic is for students 3rd through 8th grade. Dates are September 5th and 6th from 3:30-5:30 which is after school. Location is the WCMS Gym and attire is RAM black & gold. The cost is $30.00 and funds raised will help defer the cost for the cheerleader’s participation in the Georgia Tech Halftime Extravaganza. Registration is due by August 31, 2017. If you have any questions, please contact Coach Bodiford 912.246.3137. Mrs. Rachels Gifted/Accelerated Physical Science class has been hard at work designing roller coasters to investigate the use of potential and kinetic energy. They completed their projects, and demonstrated them for the class using a marble. The Scream Machine project was a fun way to learn about energy. Students in Mrs. Parten and Weaver’s classes built moon rovers and pinhole viewers to take home to celebrate the Eclipse. Just a reminder that on home football games for the Worth County Rams, WCMS will be selling tickets for the Friday night game and you can get yours at their front office.

WCHS is staying super busy with school and sports. Please be sure to check out their Worth County High School Facebook page in order to see the event listings and the pictures from the sporting events on their Facebook page. You do not want to miss the chance to see your student in action.

Janya’s Journey

Janya loves volunteering out at the Village Community Garden but what she loves even more than volunteering, is teaching others about it as well. She had that opportunity on Saturday, August 5th. Janya was able to explain to Mr. Green, a Plant Scientist, how the Aeroponics works compared to what he learned in earlier years. Mr. Green was very excited to learn about the new way of farming. Aeroponics is a great alternative for growing plants in small spaces, especially indoors. Aeroponics is similar to hydroponics, as neither method uses soil to grow plants; however, with hydroponics, water is used as a growing medium. In Aeroponics, no growing medium is used. Instead, the roots of plants are suspended or hung in a dark chamber and periodically sprayed with nutrient-rich solution. Pictured is Janya and Plant Scientist, Mr. Green.

Whether at school, at church, with family or in the community, Janya stays extremely busy. She believes in representing herself very well. On Monday, August 7th, Janya along with several members of the Village Community Garden including Sam White attended the City of Sylvester Council Work Session. They presented to the council that they were in need of a bathroom at the Village Community Garden. Janya voiced how important the need was. Councilman Larry Johnson covers this area of Sylvester and will be doing what he can do to see what help is out there for the Village Community Garden.

Saturday evening, Janya was able to do some volunteer work at the garden. She watered the inside plants and transplants and closed up the Hoop House for the night. A hoop house works much like a greenhouse. Before long, The Martin News plans to take a tour of the Village Community Garden with Janya. It seems like so much fun to learn and see what all she does when she volunteers.

Stay tuned to next week on the journey! Janya is running for the Freshman Class Treasure…. Stay Tuned!

Worth County Schools News

Worth County Schools are back in full swing. Students, Teachers and Faculty have started the 2017-2018 school year off to a GREAT start! Be sure to like each school’s Facebook page and the Worth County School’s Facebook Page. There is always news and pictures to see.

WCPS Media Center is excited for a new school year. Tiffanie McClung, the WCPS Media Specialist and Courtney Edwards are ready to help students start checking out books. Kindergarten and 1st grade will be able to checkout one book per visit while 2nd grade will be able to check out two books per visit. Pre-K students will be able to check out a book to keep in their classroom until the teacher feels that they are ready to start carrying books home. The Media Center staff asks that you encourage your child to take care of the book that they have checked out. The book fair is coming up too which students get very excited about. The book fair is August 25th through September 1st. Other news from WCPS is from the music and art departments. The Music Department will continue to participate in several programs to raise money for music materials. Currently they are participating in the Box Tops for Education, Tyson A+ and Labels for Education. All you have to do is clip those labels and turn them into the school. Mrs. Welch in the Music Department will greatly appreciate it. And last but definitely not least, let’s not forget about the Art Department. They use the “My Coke Rewards for Schools” to help raise monies for the art department. They are collecting the coke bottle caps and cardboard coke can packages.
Exciting news at WCES that all the students enjoy. The WCES Ram Buck Store opened for business! The Ram Buck Store is where students can spend their Ram Bucks on school spirit items, school supplies, candy, etc. Students can save their Ram Bucks and even purchase a new bicycle! Students can also purchase the incentives that are listed in their agendas. This past Saturday, Principal at WCES, Dr. Steven Rouse ran his first 5K to help support the Ram Color Run. He finished first in his age group. Way to go Dr. Rouse!

WCMS is getting busy with sports. Coach Holton would like to let parents know that if your child is playing football, please remember that practice is completed around 6:15 PM. Please be ready to pick up your child at that time. The season outlook for the Worth County Middle School Rams looks bright. The Rams are solid on both sides of the ball and look forward to leaving their mark on the Deep South Conference this year. On offense quarterback Chip Cooper will call the signals from behind a huge offense line handing the ball off regularly to running backs, Keonis Williams and NanTravious Toomer. The defense will be anchored by defensive tackle Nehemiah McCloud and linebacker Christopher McGahee supported by a host of up and coming Rams. The Rams kick of their season with a Jamboree at Milt Miller Stadium on August 16, at 5:00 please come out and support them. The Lady Rams Softball held their season opener on Thursday. The team’s home opener will be Monday, August 21th against Thomasville with a start time of 4:00 p.m. The Worth County softball team and coaches are eager to hit the diamond.  As head coach, Mitch Mitchell enters his 12th season at the helm of the Worth County softball program; he looks to continue to take the Lady Rams to new heights.  The middle school team welcomes 19 players to this year’s softball team, which includes six 6th graders, seven 7th graders, and six 8th graders.  Coach Mitchell’s initial thoughts about this year’s team, “The players and especially the eighth graders are excited about what this team can accomplish this season.  Several girls have worked very hard during the off season on their fundamentals and that will pay off during the season for us.”  The Lady Rams are coming off of a 12-11 record last season with a fourth place finish in the Deep South Conference regular season. Five starters moved up from last year’s team leaving the coaching staff with many holes to fill. Not only are the sports getting busy at WCMS but so are the classrooms. Students in Mrs. Rachels Gifted Physical Science class built molecules using pipe cleaners and beads. They are learning about the principles of matter and energy.

 WCHS has kicked off a great year as well and very busy in sports and the classroom too. WCHS wants to congratulate Jessica Lane on winning the 2017 Georgia High School Reader of the Year Award!  Jessica is a junior at WCHS and has been invited to attend the Superintendent’s Recognition Ceremony on Wednesday, September 6tth at the GaDOE in Atlanta.  This ceremony will honor students who have achieved excellence in education. WCHS is so proud of Jessica and this huge accomplishment! The WCHS Band is proud to announce they recently had 36 WCHS Band parents and school system volunteers attend Mandated Reporter training led by Ms. Jaki Johnson, WCMS Parent Involvement Coordinator. It takes numerous volunteers in the school system to help put on events, work sporting events and so much more. Thank you to all school and community volunteers. 
 Source: WCSD Web & Facebook Pages & The Martin News

Total Solar Eclipse August 21, 2017 : Safety First For Our Students

The Earth, the sun, and the moon all orbit in space in predictable paths.  On August 21, 2017, there will be a celestial alignment of the three resulting in a solar eclipse.  The moon will move between the sun and the Earth blocking the light of the sun.  Thus, the moon will cast a shadow on the Earth. Some lucky areas of Georgia will experience a total solar eclipse while most of us will experience a partial eclipse. This is a wonderful educational moment for all of us no matter where we live, but it can also be dangerous if one looks directly at the sun.  Student Safety: Most of us know we should not look directly at the sun, but during an eclipse, our curiosity and wonder can overtake our common sense.  We just want to look up!  Below is critically important information for our students and community about how to safely view an eclipse.  This event will be happening around school dismissal time.  Student Safety is Critical: Our schools are being proactive in sharing this information with students and reinforcing safety measures as we approach the eclipse date.  After school sports practice times are also being altered on this date.  The #1 rule for observing a solar eclipse, or for looking directly at the Sun at any other time, is safety first. As noted elsewhere on this site, with one exception, it is never safe to look directly at the Sun without a special-purpose safe solar filter. That exception is during totality, when the Moon completely blocks the dazzlingly bright face of the Sun. On August 21, 2017, this will happen only within the roughly 70-mile-wide path of the Moon’s dark inner shadow from Oregon to South Carolina — and only for a minute or two. Before and after totality, and at all times outside the path of totality, you must use a special-purpose safe solar filter when looking directly at the Sun. “Special-purpose” means designed exclusively for looking directly at the everyday Sun. Filters for direct viewing of the Sun are typically sold in the form of wearable “eclipse glasses” or “eclipse shades” or as solar viewing cards that you hold in your hand. What makes them special is that they reduce sunlight to safe levels so that you don’t injure your eyes. Our daytime star shines about a half million times brighter than the full Moon in visible light and emits potentially harmful ultraviolet (UV) and infrared (IR) radiation too. Looking directly at the Sun through anything that isn’t specially made to deal with all that visible light and invisible radiation is a recipe for serious eye injury, perhaps even blindness. Note that special-purpose solar filters are many thousands of times darker than ordinary sunglasses! What to Look For: How do you know if your eclipse glasses or handheld solar viewers are truly safe? You need to know that they meet the ISO 12312-2 (sometimes written as ISO 12312-2:2015) international safety standard. Filters that are ISO 12312-2 compliant not only reduce visible sunlight to safe and comfortable levels but also block solar UV and IR radiation. Unfortunately, you can’t check whether a filter meets the ISO standard yourself — doing so requires a specialized and expensive piece of laboratory equipment called a spectrophotometer that shines intense UV, visible, and IR light through the filter and measures how much gets through at each wavelength. Solar filter manufacturers send their products to specialized labs that are accredited to perform the tests necessary to verify compliance with the ISO 12312-2 safety specifications. Once they have the paperwork that documents their products as ISO-compliant, they can legitimately use the ISO logo on their products and packaging. Even more unfortunately, unscrupulous vendors can grab the ISO logo off the internet and put it on their products and packaging even if their eclipse glasses or viewers haven’t been properly tested. This means that just seeing the ISO logo or a label claiming ISO 12312-2 certification isn’t good enough. You need to know that the product comes from a reputable manufacturer or one of their authorized dealers. The AAS Solar Eclipse Task Force has been working diligently to compile a list of such vendors, now posted on our Reputable Vendors of Solar Filters & Viewers page. We’ve checked manufacturers’ ISO paperwork to make sure it’s complete and that it comes from a recognized, accredited testing facility, and we’ve personally examined manufacturers’ products. We’ve asked manufacturers to identify their authorized resellers, and we’ve asked dealers to identify the source of the products they’re selling. Only when everything checks out do we add a vendor to our listing. If we don’t list a supplier, that doesn’t mean their products are unsafe — only that we have no knowledge of them or that we haven’t convinced ourselves they are safe. How can you tell if your solar viewer is not safe? You shouldn’t be able to see anything through a safe solar filter except the Sun itself or something comparably bright, such as the Sun reflected in a mirror, a sunglint off shiny metal, the hot filament of an unfrosted incandescent light bulb, a bright halogen light bulb, a bright-white LED flashlight (including the one on your smartphone), or an arc-welder’s torch. All such sources should appear quite dim through a solar viewer. If you can see lights of more ordinary brightness through your eclipse glasses or handheld viewer, and you’re not sure the product came from a reputable vendor, it’s no good. Safe solar filters produce a view of the Sun that is comfortably bright (like the full Moon), in focus, and surrounded by dark sky. If you glance at the Sun through your solar filter and find it uncomfortably bright, out of focus, and/or surrounded by a bright haze, it’s no good. You should contact the seller and demand a refund or credit for return of the product, then obtain a replacement from one of the sources listed on our reputable-vendors page. What if you received eclipse glasses or a handheld solar viewer from a relative, friend, neighbor, or acquaintance? If that person is an amateur or professional astronomer — and astronomers have been handing out eclipse viewers like Halloween candy lately — they’re almost certainly ISO-compliant, because astronomers get their solar filters from sources they know and trust (in other words, from the ones listed on our reputable-vendors page). Ditto for professional astronomical organizations (including college and university physics and astronomy departments) and amateur-astronomy clubs. If you bought or were given eclipse viewers at a science museum or planetarium, or at an astronomy trade show, again you’re almost certainly in possession of ISO-compliant filters. As long as you can trace your filters to a reputable vendor or other reliable source, and as long as they have the ISO logo and a statement attesting to their ISO 12312-2 compliance, you should have nothing to worry about. What you absolutely should not do is search for eclipse glasses on the internet and buy whatever pops up in the ads or search results. Check our list of reputable vendors and buy from one of them. In addition to making sure your eclipse shades or handheld viewers come from a reputable source, make sure they’re in good condition: If the filters are torn, scratched, or punctured, discard them. If the filters are coming loose from their cardboard or plastic frames, discard them. Note: If your eclipse glasses or viewers are compliant with the ISO 12312-2 safety standard adopted in 2015, you may look at the uneclipsed or partially eclipsed Sun through them for as long as you wish. Furthermore, if the filters aren’t scratched, punctured, or torn, you may reuse them indefinitely. Some glasses/viewers — even new ones — are printed with warnings stating that you shouldn’t look through them for more than 3 minutes at a time and that you should discard them if they are more than 3 years old. Such warnings do not apply to eclipse viewers certified to meet the ISO 12312-2:2015 standard and may be ignored. What to Avoid: Ordinary sunglasses (or multiple pairs of sunglasses), neutral density or polarizing filters (such as those made for camera lenses), smoked glass, photographic or X-ray film (unexposed, exposed, or developed), “space blankets,” potato-chip bags, DVDs, and any other materials you may have heard about for solar viewing are not safe. In some cases these homemade filters may seem like they dim the Sun to a comfortable level, but that doesn’t mean they do so across the whole electromagnetic spectrum. While you’re enjoying a “comfortable” view of the “dim” Sun, solar infrared radiation could be cooking your retinas. And you wouldn’t know till later, because your retinas don’t have pain receptors. Only after the eclipse, when you notice blind spots or other vision problems, would you realize you’d made a catastrophic mistake. What about welding filters? The only ones that are safe for direct viewing of the Sun with your eyes are those of Shade 12 or higher. These are much darker than the filters used for most kinds of welding. If you have an old welder’s helmet around the house and are thinking of using it to view the Sun, make sure you know the filter’s shade number. If it’s less than 12 (and it probably is), don’t even think about using it to look at the Sun. Many people find the Sun too bright even in a Shade 12 filter, and some find the Sun too dim in a Shade 14 filter — but Shade 13 filters are uncommon and can be hard to find. Our Reputable Vendors of Solar Filters & Viewers page doesn’t list any suppliers of welder’s filters, only suppliers of special-purpose filters made for viewing the Sun.

Worth County School News

It has been a busy first week back to school for Worth County Schools. The Martin News is going to keep you updated weekly from announcements to great happenings from the schools. Please be sure to follow each school on Facebook for more news and pictures.
WCPS has a great first week of school. Beginning Monday, August 7th all persons picking up students must have the school issued car tag in their window. If someone comes through the line without a tag he or she will have to stay in the line, park in one of the parking lots, come into the building, and show an ID to pick up the child. Please remember that all persons picking up students must be listed on the student’s information sheet. Also beginning Monday, August 7th all parents who wish to walk their student to class must sign in at the front office. They encourage students to begin walking themselves to class.

WCES held a Back to School Bash on Friday afternoon to allow parents and students to come and ask any questions that may have come up during the first week. Families along with staff enjoyed food, fun and fellowship after the open house from 5pm-6pm. Fun was had by all.
WCMS had a great week back too. They welcomed a new School Resource Officer, Sgt. Steve Dyes. WCMS cross country will start August 14. Coach Popham will meet with the students that have already signed up again next Thursday. Students may only participate if they have a current physical on file along with the medical consent, concussion and $10 athletic insurance fee turned into athletics. These items can be turned into Coach Popham. No student will be allowed to participate without all of these items. Physicals are good for a calendar year from the day you get one so if you had one last year it expires on the same date this year. The music and dancing of Ugandan Thunder, a nationally acclaimed choir consisting of 22 multi-talented children, is scheduled to appear at Worth County Middle School to perform for 6th grade students on Monday, August 28, 2017 at 8:30 a.m. The choir members range in age from 8 – 16. Ugandan Thunder will sing some of your favorite songs both in African and American styles. The concert is packed with high energy music, dancing, and interaction with the audience. The Ugandan Thunder Tour is sponsored by Pennies for Posho, a non – profit Christian ministry that provides food, clothing, shelter, and clean drinking water for fourteen orphanages in Uganda. You may read further about this ministry at www.penniesforposho.org.

WCHS had a great first week back as well. It seems like they have a few lucky folks there too. Congratulations to Darin Potts on winning a Wal-Mart gift card from Ed’s Truck stop to help with classroom supplies! Ed’s Truck stop recently gave away a girl book bag and a boy book bag along with three gift cards for teachers. Bailey Suggs and Colten Rogers won the book bags along with Laura Bartley, Elena Thomas and Darrin Potts. Congratulations to all the winners! Congratulations to Jessica Potts for winning the teacher drawing for school supplies hosted by Digital Express Sylvester. Digital Express held a Back to School event on Friday July 29th where customers nominated their favorite teacher to win school supplies. Congratulations Mrs. Potts, you are clearly making a positive impact on your students! Congratulations to Mrs. Melissa Edwards on being named a 40 Under 40 recipient for Rural Leader Magazine. The 40 professionals were chosen from Alabama, Georgia and Florida. She is also being recognized as one of the Top 4 of the 40 under 40. And another congratulations goes to Mr. Christopher Stephens for being recognized as a 40 Under 40 recipient for Rural Leader Magazine. That means two professionals from WCHS have been named. Congratulations Mr. Stephens!