Lesson Learned (Dec. 10)

Buckhannon-Upshur High School, our flagship school, in Navy terminology continues to help our brightest and best sail to “Destination Graduation.” Principal Jonathan Pollock reports on progress for our academic year by presenting the Local School Improvement Council (LSIC) report to our Board of Education on November 10, 2020. 

Lesson learned is that the bar is set higher when we reach a goal. For example, a phenomenal 93.26% of our students graduated last spring. Our new goal is to increase graduation to 95% in 2020-2021.

At the same meeting, our Military Club members, working closely with Sergeant Kit Cottrill, helped us honor our Veterans and their families on the eve of Veterans Day, November 11, 2020. We had an emotionally patriotic “America’s White Table” and an always appropriate pledging to the American Flag led by a young future leader. Definitely I give a salute to our B-UHS Future Leaders Program (FLP) fostering community involvement, personal responsibility, self-reliance and leadership. Students are gaining graduation credits in our new program reminiscent of the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC).

Heidi Thompson, art teacher extraordinaire, gave the B-UHS Faculty Senate Report. There were three pages of exciting educational opportunities sailing along the stormy year of the coronavirus pandemic. I am reminded of the Navy “Don’t Tread on Me” flag! It has a proud history as a symbol of liberty and defiance. The USA last used the flag during the Global War on Terrorism in 2002. B-U could fly it now.

For example, Jeremiah Smallridge had five students in the All-State Jr. High Choir, five in the All-State Chamber Choir, and eight in the All-State Chorus. Additionally, the B-U Soundwaves received two first-place awards at state-level competition.

Just as impressive, Garret Friend had three All-State band members and two All-State orchestra members.

I am partial to farmers. How very pleased I am that Future Farmers of America of B-UHS had the second highest count in West Virginia of 10 students who earned their State FFA Degree. This is a new high for Upshur County.

Again, as I marvel at the numerous accomplishments listed on three pages, I see that Heidi Thompson organized the first-ever Upshur County Schools Youth Art Exhibit, which was held in the newly restored Historic Colonial Theatre Gallery on Main Street. Approximately 180 Upshur County students had their artwork on display.

Liberty and defiance for our teachers and our students represent a flag we can run up the flagpole! We are sailing against the wind, but we are winning. I thank the current cadre of teachers and students who have received the relay banner from us senior citizens. I urge the Upshur County Schools to hold the “Don’t Tread On Me” flag high.


Keep the Faith! We see from the LSIC / Faculty Senate presentation that you can win. Carry on! 



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