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September Board of Education Recognitions

The Kannapolis Board of Education was proud to honor outstanding representatives from around the district at its September meeting.

Forest Park Elementary School

Rayshaun Cunningham is currently a fifth-grade student in Mrs. Wood’s class. He radiates positive energy into his classroom. He is also a role model student! Rayshaun is kind to all of his classmates, has a top-notch work ethic, and has a heart of gold! He is so deserving of recognition for the amazing citizenship that he displays at school on a daily basis! Mrs. Woods is SO proud of you, Rayshaun!

Wendy Figueroa Caballero is a fifth-grade student in Ms. Simmon’s class…. 

She is a BEAR….

Be a Leader-She is a part of the Student Council for our school.
Encouraging- She is always willing to help another student.
Accountable- She holds herself accountable for her actions.
Responsible- She takes her role in the student council very seriously and does her part for the school. 

Forest Park students and staff are grateful for the generous way the All Saints Episcopal Church supports our school. Last spring, All Saints provided “Blessing Bags” for each teacher which were stuffed full of items that made teachers feel appreciated. This school year, All Saints treated staff members to donuts on the first day of school. They have also started providing a food bag for about 25 students to take home biweekly. These students are able to go home for the weekend with food which has helped families tremendously. We are very grateful for the kindness and generosity All Saints Episcopal Church has shown Forest Park.

Martha Pell is a fantastic tutor for Forest Park. Ms. Pell works effectively with all groups of students and teachers. Ms. Pell has expanded the scope of her position by taking the time to truly analyze the skills and abilities of her students, then providing detailed reports to teachers about the work and progress that is accomplished during her sessions. Ms. Pell has also worked closely with the curriculum coach to learn and use our school programs to better help her students. Ms. Pell is a valuable addition to the Forest Park family as she is always willing to step in and help where needed, and she always does this with calmness, grace, and a smile.

Latoya Borders has a smile that lights up the room. She is always willing to jump in to lend a helping hand and she has a heart of gold. Mrs. Borders is professional and excellent in everything she does, whether it be checking folders, straightening up the classroom, working with a small group of students, or driving the bus. Mrs. Borders never seeks recognition or thanks but is always working hard to make Forest Park a better place.

Lindsi McDaniel is a Kindergarten teacher at Forest Park Elementary. Lindsi is a proactive teacher who is always looking for ways to improve her teaching practice and maximize student learning. Lindsi has emerged as one of the great teacher leaders at Forest Park. Lindsi serves as her grade level lead and is a great role model to the beginning teachers on her team. Lindsi also began serving as our Beginning Teacher Coordinator at Forest Park this year. In this capacity, she spearheads district initiatives for our beginning teachers and helps out mentors and mentees develop effective practices. Ms. McDaniel’s efforts at Forest Park make a very positive effect on our ability to recruit and retain our strong beginning teachers. Lindsi has a very loving and warm personality that radiates throughout the Forest Park community. Lindsi has a reputation in the school and community for being a loving and effective teacher.

Kelly Fainter is the Instructional Data Coach at Forest Park but serves in so many ways beyond her title. She is one of the first people students see in the morning as they arrive at breakfast and one of the last people many children get to see as they go out to their car. She organizes meetings, supports teachers, and is consistently willing to jump in wherever she is needed! Mrs. Fainter truly knows the students in this building. She not only knows their instructional levels and data but she also takes time to learn about them, their interests, and their families! Mrs. Fainter is truly a one-of-a-kind education and she makes Forest Park a better place for teachers to teach and children to learn!

Mrs. Laura Gray embodies what it means to be a bus driver. She is conscientious, safe and caring. Not only does she transport her students to and from school safely but she takes the time to get to know her students and build lasting relationships with them. She does this while also fulfilling the duties of her job as a teacher assistant at Forest Park Elementary School. "Driving a school bus is a stressful job but I have never heard her complain", says Transportation Director, Beryl Torrence. Her principal, Mrs. Motley says of Mrs. Gray " she is an encourager for our other TA/BDs.

The Board was also pleased to recognize the Hilbish Ford Teacher of the Month, Stephanie Brooks from Fred L. Wilson Elementary.

Stephanie Brooks is an extraordinary third grade teacher at Fred L. Wilson Elementary School.  The family that nominated Mrs. Brooks shared how helpful her communications have been as they prepared to start the school year, including classroom expectations and support for the family as they help their child grow academically, emotionally, and socially.  They said their third grader regularly tells them the amazing things happening in Mrs. Brooks’ classroom and they have seen for themselves how wonderful and patient she is as a teacher.

Her teammate, Brooke St. Clair, has only high praise for Mrs. Brooks, as well.   She said, “Mrs. Brooks does it all!!  She meets the needs of every child in the dual language classes and does it with a smile.  She is foxtastic!”

Fred L. Wlson principal, Mandi Campbell, shared that Mrs. Brooks is an outstanding teacher.  She went on to say, “She is reflective, sets high expectations for herself and embraces all situations with positivity.  She offers nothing less than her best self each day for her students, parents, and colleagues.”  Dr. Campbell feels Mrs. Brooks is deserving of this recognition for Hilbish Ford Teacher of the Month as she is the epitome of each child’s best teacher.

Thank you, Mrs. Brooks, for all you do for Fred L. Wilson and KCS! We are so glad you are part of the KCS family and we are grateful that Hilbish Ford is honoring your excellence with the Hilbish Ford Teacher of the Month Award.  Congratulations!

In 2018, A.L. Brown transitioned to a Coed Model for Cheer including young men into the everyday program. Motivation and dedication to school and community drove the organization to excellence quickly. Both squads have representing the Wonders and Kannapolis at the Cheerleading State Championship well.  Their hard work and dedication have paid off and their awards have highlighted their excellence.  In their inaugural year, they finished 2nd and placed 3rd in 2019. In 2021, the varsity squad secured their second consecutive State Coed Title. With a continued push towards excellence, the JV squad was given the opportunity to compete at the state level and also won back to back Championships in 2020 and 2021.

Continuing the commitment of improvement and growth, the varsity squad attended UCA summer camp in Cary NC in early August with other squads from across the state. At the conclusion, the Wonders received the prestigious Program Tradition Award for excellence in Cheerleading Tradition both on and off the field. A proud testament to their character as well as their skills in cheer. Squad members also had the opportunity to try out for All-American Cheerleader. A.L. Brown members received 13 All-American selections at camp.

Congratulations to all of these state champions.  Thank you for your dedication and for your enthusiasm to support all of the Wonders!  We appreciate you and the amazing way you represent KCS in our schools, community and state!

JV State Champions

Paige Gaskins, Lexi Honeycutt, Cami Stegall, Tia Griggs, Ashley Ruben, Ana Flores, Darria McGuine, Ne’veah Kimble, Leah Morales, Alice Hernandez, and Brooklyn Drye (All-American in 2020).

Varsity State Champions

Current Members:

Rexi Lemelin, Da’Marryian Simmons, Tanner Adams (All-American), Canice Hicks (2 time All-American), Bella Iaullucci (All-American), Chloe Johnson (All-American), Niya Kerr (All-American), Anjilena Knight (All-American), Calvin Laliemthavixay (All-American), Chelsea Linton (All-American), Malaina Meeks (All-American and Ambassador Award), Maggie Pittmon (All-American), Ruby Rios (All-American), Emma Wesselman (All-American), and Riley Zimmerman (All-American).

Graduated Seniors:

Emma Boswell, Juan Jacquez, Melvin Alarcon (US Navy Recruit), Morgan Tilley, Kennedy Jackson, Anija Sloan(Lenoir Rhyne Cheer), Cayla Artis (NC All-State Cheerleader 2020), and Quanashia Wilkerson.


KCS had 2 employees retire since our last retiree recognition in August; Terri Gilliam and Carletta Klutz.

Mrs. Klutz, who was in attendance, has served with KCS for more than 30 years!  She spent many of those years at Jackson Park Elementary where she has been a dedicated and hard-working Exceptional Children’s Resource Teacher.  In spite of the many changes in EC compliance over the years, Mrs. Klutz has remained committed to what is best for her students.  She has worked to address the needs of many children and has served numerous families throughout the years.  Even with the challenges COVID presented, Mrs. Klutz has made sure her special needs students received what they needed and she has served them with grace and determination.

Her Jackson Park co-workers will miss the example she set as a role model and her ability to motivate others.  Her dedication to the field of special education has been remarkable!