Thursday, March 27, 2008

3/28/08 Best Principal in the Universe, News from Elmont, Pig on Henry Street

I'm sure you know by now how highly I regard our public schools here in Hanover. I've always thought that they are a direct reflection on the kind of society we are. We are only as good as the schools we give our kids. I was so proud, but not surprised, to learn that Dr. Patricia Miller, principal of John M. Gandy Elementary School, was selected as one of the four 2008 REB Award Recipients for Educational Leadership. Dr. Miller is an exceptional principal; one who inspires her students as well as her staff. She is an amazing woman who deserves everyone's thanks and congratulations.

Did you all see Lorie Foley standing out by the old Chevron this past Saturday with her signs reminding people to write their story for the Yearbook? She was out there for hours! What dedication! What drive! If you haven't turned in your 300 word story about your life in Ashland, you only have a few days left. The deadline is April 1st, and you will be disappointed if you do not get this done, and I will say, “I told you so!” Visit for the details.

Congratulations to Annette Ardler and Sherly Phillips (Beaverdam) who walked a half marathon, 13.1 miles, in the Shamrock Sportsfest in Virginia Beach recently. With their team, these girls raised $130,000 for The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. What an incredible way to help others, and do something good for yourself at the same time! We should all be so motivated.

The news from LA, aka Lower Ashland, or Elmont as some people call it, has become a regular feature here in this column. Three cheers for Blair Moring and Adam Cheek who both placed in the Hanover County PTA Reflections Contest. Blair won 2nd place in Musical Competition and Adam took 3rd in Literature. This year's theme was "I Can Make a Difference by...", and clearly these kids are.

And here's another example of why I think that we have to stand back when we see Elmont kids coming down the street: two teams from EES participated in the Regional Odyssey of the Mind in Stafford recently. Zach Kahler, Hannah Hobson, Sean Hartigan, Jack Lavach, Isabella Trice, Brett Garrett, and Rachael Walsh represented grades K – 2. Carleigh Luck, Bennett Pienkowski, Ted Schubert, Maggie Hartigan, Phillip Hobson, Tessa Harris and Hannah Johnson represented grades 4 and 5, and received 3rd place in the Dinostories Problem. Well done kids!

Did anyone else see the large black pig strolling down Henry Street this past Thursday? I'd love to know if he's a local or just in town for a visit.

We have another free parenting workshop coming up in April sponsored by the Parenting Resource Network. Betsy Phillips, a “Ready to Learn” PBS Educator will present “Everyday Math and Science” from 6:30 to 8:00 pm. at the YMCA on Ashcake Road. This program will offer ways to help children (ages 4-7) explore, ask questions, problem solve and investigate as they develop a foundation for a lifetime of math and science. To register, please call Kathi Thomasson at 798-2767.

I hope you all have a fun April Fools Day! It was one of my grandmother's favorite days. Every year she would catch me with a wild story. More often than not, it involved Aunt Gertrude's cows getting out of their pasture and roaming down the road towards our house. I fell for it every time, because I'm naturally gullible, and because she would call early in the morning before anyone remembered what day it was. I would be ready to run out the door to see if I could catch a cow, and she would laugh, “Oh Meriwether, it's April Fool's Day!” So think of a fun joke and have a great week! Call me with your Ashland news or information about that pig. You can reach me by email at, or by phone: 310-5320.


j.b.e said...

Oh my gosh, I LOVE that pig picture!

Karen and Ken Cheek said...

Thank you for publishing your mention of the 2007 Hanover County PTA Reflections Contest. We have an important correction to pass along, however: Our son, Adam Cheek, won 1st place in the Intermediate Literature category for Hanover County, not 3rd. He placed 1st at Elmont Elem., and earned an Award of Merit in the Richmond District contest,as well. We appreciate your mentioning him, as well as Blair and their awards in their respective categories. They, along with their fellow entrants at Elmont and all of the Hanover Schools' students who entered the contest, put so much effort and talent into their creations. It was not the first time that Adam had placed 1st in the Reflections contest at Elmont, but it was the first time that one of his works won awards beyond the school. He was deeply honored by the recognition, and as his parents, we were so proud of him. Adam's entry was a poem advocating non-violence entitled "Take Action and Make a Difference". Many thanks for promoting Reflections, which provides thought-provoking avenues for students to express their ideas. Our County is blessed to have so many talented children!

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