Return to Headlines

April Board of Education Recognitions

The Kannapolis Board of Education was proud to honor outstanding representatives from North Kannapolis Elementary School at its April meeting.

Zi’On Williams (5th Grade Student): Zi'On is a fifth-grade student at North Kannapolis Elementary School. Zi’On has spent his entire elementary career at North Kannapolis. Zi'On is compassionate and hardworking. His teacher, Mrs. Powell says, “He comes to school ready to put forth his best effort every day, as well as offering help to those around him.” Zi’On has been very successful this school year in learning how to manage virtual learning in addition to face to face instruction. Although this has been an unconventional school year, Zi'On has not let the hybrid learning slow him down as he continues to show growth in his reading skills. He shows up every day ready to learn and with a smile.  Zi'On, we are so proud of you and impressed at the respectful young man you have grown to become.” Good luck at Kannapolis Middle School and we look forward to hearing about your successes in middle school.

Oliver Alvarez (4th Grade Student): Oliver Alvarez is a fourth-grade student at North Kannapolis Elementary School.  Oliver is an outstanding student and great role model for others. He always gives his best effort on any task put before him. Morning meetings are an integral part of Oliver’s classroom.  Through morning meetings, the teacher has observed extraordinary growth in Oliver.  Oliver desires to "want to grow" and "want to learn."  He applies each lesson to his personal life for real change.  A real change his peers and others can definitely see.  He is a great role model and demonstrates great character.  He displays respect, responsibility, care, and concern towards others.  He's always willing to lend a helping hand.  Oliver, "Ms. Wakefield is so very proud of you and your accomplishments you have made this year. Thank you for showing your character, who you really are. I will never ever stop believing in you!"

Joy Garman (Volunteer): Joy Garman is a volunteer and parent at North Kannapolis. She is the Pastor at North Kannapolis Wesleyan Church. Joy offers constantly to volunteer at North Kannapolis and actively seeks ways to support the school. When we reached out asking to use Joy’s church as a partner, she immediately said yes and offered the church in any capacity to fulfill any needs the school has. Joy is always positive and offers words of encouragement for our staff. Her service to the school and community is appreciated. Joy says her favorite thing to do is help others in any way possible. Joy is married and has one child at North Kannapolis, Wesley, and a four-year-old daughter, Valorie. Joy loves coffee and is a huge Star Trek fan!

Brandie Cline (Substitute): Brandie Cline is the “go-to” substitute for North Kannapolis. Mrs. Cline has volunteered at North Kannapolis for several years and she is a wonderful volunteer. Admin convinced her to apply to become a substitute teacher within KCS. Mrs. Cline became a substitute last school year and she has not looked back. She has the ability and skill to walk in to any classroom and begin teaching where the teacher left off. Mrs. Cline is always on standby and will come to the rescue within minutes when we need her. She is reliable and dependable. Mrs. Cline loves children and all of her children attended and currently attend North Kannapolis Elementary School. She is an active member of the PTO and when not subbing, she continues to volunteer. She is part of the North Kannapolis staff and we appreciate her dedication and effort to our school and district.

Crystal Overcash (School Nurse): Crystal Overcash is the school nurse at North Kannapolis Elementary School. She started at North Kannapolis in 2018 and it has been decided she can never leave. Dr. Pelusi says, “Nurse Crystal is one of the most selfless and compassionate nurses. Not only does she provide care for our students, she takes care of staff as well.” Crystal is a trusted member of our school and community. Nurse Crystal goes above and beyond her expected duties to serve North Kannapolis, but when the pandemic hit everyone got was able to witness first-hand how compassionate and caring she truly is. While North Kannapolis transitioned into remote learning, Crystal took the lead in the CHA onsite COVID 19 testing, including PPE inventory last spring. She led Long Term Facility COVID testing, and worked full time last summer assisting with testing throughout the community. During the 2020-2021 school year, Crystal served as the resource lead nurse for all KCS new elementary school nurse hires. She also assisted with the drive-through back to school immunization clinic. Crystal was not told to serve in this capacity, she graciously volunteered her time and energy to better our community. Throughout the COVID response she worked an enormous amount of overtime, sometimes exceeding 90-100 hours for a two-week period, in addition to her normal school nurse duties. She has volunteered at numerous vaccine clinics, entering vaccine billing, data entry, and administering the vaccine to our community members. She has worked countless hours contact tracing, assisting with meals on wheels, and led trainings for CHA and county employees. She has a servant heart and makes sound ethical decisions with a common-sense mentality. North Kannapolis appreciates Nurse Crystal and everything she has done for our school and community.

Kaysea Torrence (3rd Grade Teacher): Kaysea Torrence is a third-grade teacher at North Kannapolis. Kaysea is currently in her fourth year of teaching with KCS, but she teaches as if she has been teaching for many years. Kaysea began the 2020-2021 school year teaching a combination class of second and third graders remotely at North Kannapolis. Shortly after the first quarter ended she began teaching third graders face to face. When another school in the district needed an additional teacher due to class size numbers, Dr. Pelusi asked Kaysea if she would be willing to help. Kaysea responded by saying, “Yes. This will be an exciting opportunity and provide a challenge for me.” Kaysea packed her bags and traveled to Forest Park Elementary to teach fifth grade students face to face. Kaysea is now back at North Kannapolis teaching third graders in person. It was no surprise Kaysea was selected as Teacher of the Year at North Kannapolis. Kaysea is an ambitious leader in the classroom and school. She is constantly looking for new teaching strategies and technology to try in her classroom. She works collaboratively with her peers and is highly respected by the staff. She serves as a mentor for beginning teachers, is currently serving as a cooperating teacher for a student teacher, is a member of the core STEM committee, and serves on the School Leadership Team. Kaysea is an advocate for our school and district. She never complains and always has a smile on her face.

The Board was also pleased to recognize the Hilbish Ford Teacher of the Month, Doretha Grier from Kannapolis Middle School.

Doretha Grier is an encouraging and passionate science teacher at Kannapolis Middle School.  She makes her class interesting and exciting for her students so they enjoy learning. One of Mrs. Grier’s current students recently said “she is a great teacher and she has made virtual learning fun.  She always helps her students and provides quick feedback when we have questions.” The other students who nominated Mrs. Grier echoed these thoughts and described her as helpful, kind, thoughtful, outstanding and amazing.  They were so appreciative of the efforts she has gone to assisting students in navigating virtual learning and the encouragement she has given them to be thorough in completing their notes and assignments. 

KMS Principal Nick Carlascio shared that, “Mrs. Grier has been instrumental in rolling out virtual learning to the KMS families.  She constantly reflects on her instructional craft to ensure she is always doing what is best for our kids.”  He went on to say, “One thing that Mrs. Grier does not get enough credit for is her care and dedication to the community.  She is a true advocate for Kannapolis.  Thanks to her thinking and reflection, we have communicated through several different lenses to ensure all of our virtual families get the needed information and support.  Mrs. Grier sets the standard of what a good teacher is and does.”

We are extremely proud that Doretha is part of our Kannapolis City Schools’ family, and we are and delighted to present her with the Hilbish Ford Teacher of the Month Award.  Congratulations!