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From the Desk of ACS Supt. Burleson: Hard To Believe Another Summer Almost Gone


To the Editor:

It is hard to believe that summer is almost over and on August 17 students will be coming back to school. I do hope our students have had some time to spend with their families, enjoyed their summer vacation, and are excited about coming back to school to experience another year of learning.

Supt. Burleson
Supt. Burleson

The Avery High Viking Freshmen will have an opportunity for an orientation to high school on Friday, August 14 beginning at 8:30 a.m. Students will meet their teachers, go through a simulated schedule, and have time to tour the high school without other students in attendance. Buses will run on this day for all freshmen needing a ride to school. A meeting for all freshman parents will be held in the Avery High Gym at 1 p.m.

We have completed a great summer school program. Over 400 of our students had additional time to work on their reading and math skills. Under the leadership of Ruth Shirley, Patti Franklin, Kent Hayes, Justin Carver and Todd Griffin, along with an outstanding staff and volunteers, our students made tremendous progress. I want to personally thank the staff and volunteers for all their hard work along with the support of our parents.

This year we are anticipating over 2,200 students in our school system. I want to take this time to thank our entire community for their support of our school system and each student we serve. During this week, we will be welcoming our new employees to Avery County and to the finest community in the country. We have a three day New Teacher Orientation planned that will expose our new staff to the philosophy of the Avery County Schools, provide them suggestions on how to become a master teacher, and give them an opportunity to prepare their classrooms for their students. We are very excited about our new teachers and believe they will help us continue making a positive difference in the lives of our students.

Without the help of many professionals, we would not be ready to start school this year. Our maintenance staff has worked very hard this summer getting buildings ready for students. Our custodial staff has put in countless hours preparing every part of each school for the first day students will arrive. Our teachers are putting in long days preparing their classrooms. Our teacher assistants and school clerical workers are working hard to have everything ready as students enter that first day. Many of our child nutrition employees have worked throughout the summer providing meals for the summer feeding program and will continue to serve nutritious meals during the school year. Our transportation department has been active this summer in getting our buses ready to go, looking at bus routes, and making them as efficient as possible. Our technology department has worked tirelessly to have all our computers working, provide wireless internet access at all our schools, and to provide additional training for our faculty and staff on the latest technology that we are using to support all our students.   Each of our principals have spent many long hours hiring the best staff possible, double checking every detail for a effective school opening, and making sure no job has gone undone. Consequently, we are very proud of the work that has been accomplished this summer and are excited about the 2015/2016 school year.

I encourage each student to set as goals this year to make this the best year they have ever had, to work hard, to get involved in their schools, and to make their parents/guardians proud. As a community, we greatly appreciate the way our students represent Avery County and encourage them to continue to take the lessons they have learned at home, in the faith community, and at school to be good citizens in our community. We always enjoy hearing the positive stories of how Avery County Schools’ graduates make a difference in our community and in the lives of others.

Our mission as a school system is to graduate every student from high school globally prepared for life in the 21st century. ACS is committed to offer the very best education and services possible for our children.

Please accept a thank you from me on behalf of Avery County Schools for all you did to make our summer successful. We are looking forward to the new year and working with the best faculty and staff in any school system in the nation as well as our community partners.

My hope and prayer is that this school year will be the best ever for our school system and for each student we serve. If we, as a school system, can help you, we want to hear from you. Our Central Office has an open door policy, and we encourage you to visit with us at your convenience. If you are unable to stop by our office, please feel free to call me. I would love to discuss your concerns regarding our school system. I am always open to suggestions on how we can better serve our community. Thank you for your support of our school system and our children.



David Burleson