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Schools do super in contest promoting public education

E.B. Frink Middle School won first place for its video and a poster created in an exceptional children class at Southeast Elementary School won third place in statewide contests sponsored by the North Carolina School Boards Association designed to highlight “What’s Super about Public Schools.”

The awards were announced last week during the NCSBA’s fall conference in Greensboro. A video by North Lenoir High School earned an honorable mention in the high school division.

Winner in the middle school division, Frink’s video featured its cheer squad and an original cheer that hailed technology, teachers and friends as the most super aspects of public schools. Lauran Smith, who heads the school’s media center, and teacher and cheerleading coach LaPorscha Gardner headed the video project.

“They got our cheerleaders together to brainstorm the idea of ours and begin putting it together,” principal Elizabeth Pierce said.

Superheros poster drawn by children mounted on a black board with a white third-place ribbon attached. Traci Marshburn’s EC class at Southeast focused on the word “super” – as in superhero – for the poster that placed third in the K-2 division.

“The children in my class love superhero toys, costumes and movies,” Marshburn said. “We used the superhero theme to recognize that all teachers, administrators and related services staff within the EC Department use their ‘powers’ to enable all students to become superheroes. In our poster, we portrayed students representing diverse backgrounds and needs being empowered by school personnel with the simple message that there are no limits to what all children can accomplish through N.C. Public Schools.”

The North Lenoir High video was created by students from Jacob Mewborn’s Vocal Music and Musical Theatre classes. They visited classrooms and attended extra-curricular events to capture the variety of life in a public high school, according to Elizabeth Thompson, North Lenoir’s digital learning specialist, who had a hand in production of the entry. To show public school’s K-12 reach, the video also incorporated clips of students from Southwood Elementary and E.B. Frink Middle School.

All finalist and honorable mention videos can be viewed online at

Photo caption:

Traci Marshburn’s exceptional children class at Southeast Elementary School played on their enthusiasm for superheroes in its award-winning poster for the North Carolina School Boards Association’s ‘What’s Super about Public Schools’ contest.