Darts and laurels
Laurels to teachers who commit to the rigors of getting National Board Certification. As of 2012, North Carolina had 19,799 board certified teachers, the most of any state, the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards announced this week. The Rowan-Salisbury School System accounted for 191 of them (with another eight teachers about to be officially recognized as board certified). The certification process assesses teacher expertise and effectiveness in several core areas and can take up to three years to complete. “It takes a deep professional and personal commitment to pursue National Board Certification, and even more so now that teachers have to absorb the certification cost,” notes State Superintendent June Atkinson. “Public schools and the teaching profession in general benefit from these educators’ commitment to educational excellence, whether they are in the classroom or in administrative roles.”
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Dart to the 460 meth labs busted across North Carolina in 2012, a record number as criminals increasingly turn to small, mobile “one pot” operations to brew their toxic concoctions. Law enforcement also charged more parents with exposing their children to the dangers of meth. Last year, 120 children were taken from homes in the state where meth labs were found, including at least one in Rowan County where a mother was charged with having a child in proximity to a meth operation. While the record number of busts here and around the state shows law-enforcement officers are diligently battling this drug scourge, the statistics are also a measure of how deeply entrenched the meth trade has become. Even so, anti-meth measures are having an impact. Officials said that electronic tracking of pseudoephedrine, the main meth ingredient, has prevented an increase in larger meth operations and helped block 54,000 illegal purchases.
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Laurels to Catawba College for helping Pat McCrory take office on a high note this weekend. Members of Catawba’s Vernaculars All Stars — a contemporary-pop music ensemble — performed Friday evening at the new governor’s inaugural ball. The Catawba Pride, the college’s marching band, will be among participants in today’s inaugural parade in downtown Raleigh. Although local residents are already aware of the college’s many fine music programs, the weekend performances will help spread the word — and the music — to a wider audience.