The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Local News

August 13, 2012

Joplin teachers lauded at school year kickoff celebration

More than 1,200 teachers, administrators and staff members are preparing for Eagles to land with the start of the school term on Wednesday in Joplin.

On Monday morning, a celebration to mark the impending first day of classes was staged at the Holiday Inn Convention Center for school district employees.

“The teachers are amazing; they’ve already proven to the rest of the world that their hearts are all about kids,” Superintendent C.J. Huff said in an interview after the event.

The theme was “Take Flight,” a play on the school district’s mascot and the path the district will need to take to reach its “destination” of higher achievement for students.

“You will know we have arrived at our destination when, as a community, we say with one voice, ‘We do not allow our children to fail in Joplin,’ and everyone knows what that means,” Huff told the teachers.

In his speech, Huff outlined the district’s plans for the coming year, including additional community service opportunities for students, the expansion of early childhood education services, a career pathway curriculum that focuses on making students career-ready, and increased partnerships with local businesses. Huff also mentioned the development of an “employability report card” to measure students’ preparedness to work for area employers.

In addition to a new curriculum, the district is undertaking what may be the largest public school construction project in Missouri’s history as it rebuilds the schools destroyed in the May 2011 tornado, Huff said.

“We’ve come a long way, but we have a long ways to go,” Huff said in an interview. “Our main focus needs to continue to be taking care of our children and our staff members over the next number of months in particular as we move into year two (after the tornado). ...

“Our intentions are to move forward in a big way and take a new step in terms of curriculum implementation, and get the new program in place so when we open the new Joplin High School in 2014, everything is on line to make great things happen inside the walls of that building.”

The keynote speaker for the event was Peter Herschend, president of the Missouri State Board of Education and owner of Herschend Family Entertainment Corp., which owns Silver Dollar City and other parks.

“You have come through a world-class disaster, and you won,” Herschend said of the 2011 tornado. “That took leadership.”

Huff said Herschend worked with the district in the days after the tornado, including helping to provide cellphones for communication in the immediate aftermath.

The district also gave its first Eagle Legacy Award to Mike Woolston, a Joplin city councilman and former mayor. The award is meant to honor an individual or organization that has helped the district the most that year.

Video announcements were sent from Gov. Jay Nixon and U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan wishing the teachers the best as they prepare for the new year and thanking them for their commitment.

“Schools are the heart and soul of Joplin,” Nixon said in the video.

Teacher of the Year

THE SCHOOL DISTRICT’S Teacher of the Year award went to Staci Saunders, who teaches first grade at Stapleton Elementary. Saunders is a fourth-generation Joplin schoolteacher.

Text Only
Local News
  • Pseudoephedrine sales in Pittsburg to require prescription

    Starting Friday, those who purchase pseudoephedrine and related products in Pittsburg will need a prescription to do so.

    July 22, 2014

  • Cherokee County Commission accepts general counsel's resignation

    Kevin Cure, who has served as general counsel for the Cherokee County Commission since 2005, submitted a handwritten resignation to the board on Monday in the aftermath of a landfill controversy.

    July 22, 2014

  • Mike Pound 2010.jpg Mike Pound: Parents can get help with school supplies

    I don’t know much about demographics other than the fact that I no longer belong to a “targeted demographic.” When I was younger, I was bombarded by commercials and ads from companies that were trying to sell me things that I not only needed but wanted.

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • Jasper County Commission reviews traffic plans

    The Jasper County Commission will hold public hearings today and Thursday on a number of traffic changes proposed in the county. No one spoke when the first hearing was held Tuesday as part of the regular commission meeting, according to Jim Honey, Eastern District associate commissioner.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin school board reviews audit procedures

    A team from the Missouri State Auditor’s Office has begun requesting documents in its task to audit the operations and management of the Joplin School District, the audit manager told the Board of Education on Tuesday.

    July 22, 2014

  • Joplin man to stand trial in accident case

    A passenger accused of causing an accident on Interstate 44 in Joplin that injured three others as well as himself was ordered bound over for trial Tuesday on three felony counts.

    July 22, 2014

  • r072214soroptimist3.jpg Volunteers spend week providing camp experience to foster youths

    Karen McGlamery is a massage therapist. Terri Falis-Cochran is a finance manager. Jane McCaulley is a retired art teacher. But for a week each summer, the three are among dozens of area residents who become camp counselors.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Neosho school board hires company to manage substitutes

    Citing its hopes of shifting health care costs and utilizing more time from retired teachers, the Neosho Board of Education granted a contract Monday to a temporary employee company to manage its substitute teacher program.

    July 22, 2014

  • Main Street TIF district study to begin

    A measure that allows the city to charge its $15,000 in administrative costs for studying a proposal to create a tax increment financing district on South Main Street was approved Monday by the Joplin City Council.

    July 21, 2014

  • Carthage man pleads guilty in sexual abuse case

    A Carthage man pleaded guilty Monday to sexual abuse of a 12-year-old girl in a plea agreement that would cap the length of his prison term at no more than 15 years.

    July 21, 2014

Must Read


A state lawmaker who is one of two doctors in the Oklahoma Legislature is insisting that unaccompanied immigrant minors being housed at Fort Sill be quarantined. Do you think those kinds of measures should be taken?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter