New Mountain Hill Elementary School is making history again

HARRIS COUNTY, Ga. (WRBL)— On Tuesday, New Mountain Hill Elementary School (NMHES) received two banners recognizing academic excellence from the Georgia Department of Education. The first: their STEAM recertification. Through integrated curricula that utilize science, technology, engineering, art and mathematics, students receive a hands-on education while supporting their community.

“[STEAM] “Adds another level of interaction with our children and expands opportunities for children whose strengths may not be in math and science, but they can do something in the arts,” Georgia Superintendent of Schools Richard Woods told WRBL. “In this way, and particularly through what they are doing here in New Mountain Hill, they are using this to make an impact in their community. We reach out, provide food to pantries and simply provide assistance to families in need.”

NMHES was the first in the Harris County School District to receive its STEAM certification in 2017, sixth in the state at the time. Also the first in the district to be recertified. NMHES announced in March that it had been informed of the success.

Beyond this certification: an evolving approach to addressing food insecurity in Harris County. The school has tended its gardens to donate fruits and vegetables to local food pantries.

“This community has its roots in rural areas. There are gardeners and people who care about horses, cows and chickens all over this community. That’s why people come here,” Harris County Superintendent Roger Couch said. “It was really special to build a connection with the kids and show them that these are lifelong things that you will continue to do. An appreciation for nature, an appreciation for art and technology and how everything is connected.”

Their second banner, Georgia’s Literacy Leadership. Earned to last year’s third graders, 90.1% of whom completed the year at the expected reading level.

“We were pretty pleased to see some of the reading with the younger grades. But we know we can improve across the state. “Obviously we’re not where we want to be yet, but we have a lot of initiative across the state to prepare for the implementation of new reading standards,” said Superintendent Woods. “As a high school social studies teacher, I know how important reading is. I wasn’t trained to do that, but I saw the impact of students either being able to read or not being able to read.”

Superintendent Woods then visited all of the fourth graders who received this award. He says reading is an essential tool used in all aspects of life outside the classroom, no matter what profession one pursues.

“This is something that really has to be a lifelong endeavor for them. It will help them open every door of whatever career they want to pursue, especially if they are very successful when they go to university, college or the military. There are technical manuals that you have to read, and even as an athlete there is something like a playbook in which a lot is written.”

This literacy achievement is a new banner presented by the Georgia Department of Education for the second time on Tuesday.

On Wednesday’s News 3 evening broadcasts, WRBL will take a closer look at how NMHES’s nonprofit STEAM initiative is expanding again.

Laura Coffey

Laura Coffey is a Worldtimetodays U.S. News Reporter based in Canada. His focus is on U.S. politics and the environment. He has covered climate change extensively, as well as healthcare and crime. Laura Coffey joined Worldtimetodays in 2023 from the Daily Express and previously worked for Chemist and Druggist and the Jewish Chronicle. He is a graduate of Cambridge University. Languages: English. You can get in touch with me by emailing:

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