Team PCPS kicks off new school year with celebrations
Ponca City Now - August 14, 2018 11:54 am
Barbara Cusick (Executive Director of Curriculum), Hollye Theobald, Tanya Gibson (long-time teacher)
Ponca City Public Schools’ award-winning Wildcat Steppers, Cheerleaders and Big Blue Band kicked off the 2018-19 school year for all certified staff at a motivational back-to-school assembly held on Monday, Aug. 13, in Robson Fieldhouse. The event began with the Band playing the “Star Spangled Banner” and “Oklahoma!” The Po-Hi Wildcat Steppers and Cheerleaders both performed.
“In an effort to continue to build one district, one team, one community, we want our employees to know how much we appreciate them and recognize their service to the district,” Superintendent Shelley Arrott said. “We have a lot to celebrate this year! Most all of our employees are starting the year with a raise, thanks to the State Legislators. We also need to celebrate our awesome facilities and the community support we received in our 2015 $32 million Bond Issue.
“Another great celebration is that for the first time ever, we are all WILDCATS! Every school in our district will be Wildcats from now on,” Arrott said.
The district motto this year is Team PCPS! Arrott said every employee in the district will receive a Team PCPS T-shirt, funded by a local donor.
The school principals were asked to come down to the gym floor, and all new teachers were introduced and stood with their principal. The district hired 54 new teachers this year.
“This was not an easy task,” Arrott said. “The teacher shortage/crisis in Oklahoma is real.” She encouraged all educators to stay engaged with Legislators advocating to keep education top priority.
Service pins were given to employees in five-year increments for their years of service to the district. Employees were asked to stand while being presented a Paw Print Pin with their number of years on it. She asked the certified employees with 25 years or more to come down on the floor to be recognized. The certified employee who had been working in the district the longest was Hollye Theobald with 42 years. She was presented a bouquet of flowers. All employees received a loud ovation.
The Support Motivational Assembly is scheduled for Wednesday, Aug. 15 at 12:30 p.m. in Robson. A similar agenda will be followed, and support employees will be recognized for their years of service.