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April Board of Education Recognitions



Superintendent's Star students

Sunnymede Elementary teacher Avery Johnson and Principal Krystle Smith nominated Ayden Amaya because he is a positive role model for his peers. Ayden is the son of Natasha Ahmed and Jose Amaya.

Finley Ballin was nominated by his teacher Cailin Powers and Cavanaugh Principal Hank Needham because Finley is considerate and compassionate toward his classmates and teacher. Finley is the son of Benito Ballin and Britney Watson. 

Kiya Bogdon was nominated by her teacher Tammy Matlock and Spradling  Principal Robyn Dawson because she is always willing to help others without being asked. Kiya is the daughter of Josh and Sarah Bogdon. 

Morrison Elementary teacher Laura Mixon and Principal Britney Watson nominated Karla Castro Zamorano because she excels academically and is always excited to learn. Karla is the daughter of Marco Castro and Maria Paramo. 

Elle Caesar was nominated by her teacher Joseph Cope and Trusty Principal Dr. Shantelle Edwards because she models maturity and displays a strong work ethic. Elle is the daughter of Deanna Moore and Leroy Caesar. 

Ballman Elementary teacher Rozanna Brown and Principal Lori Griffin nominated Xavier Coby because he has made so much progress in his academics and has worked hard to reach his goals. Xavier is the son of Maria Sanders.

Clayton Loggains was nominated by Euper Lane Principal Gina Mann and his teacher Jaime Gross because Clayton has taken charge of his learning and always comes to school with a smile on his face. Clayton is the son of Benton Loggains.

Pike Elementary Principal Monica Austin and teacher Amy Brotherton nominated Elian (Elle-e-an) Luna because he always tries his best, no  matter what. Elian is the son of Brenda Luna.

Sutton Elementary Principal Jennie Mathews and teacher Caryn Glenn nominated Damian Olivas Castorena because he goes above and beyond in everything he does. Damian is the son of Jacqueline Castorena and Jose Olivas.

Brody Pate was nominated by his teacher Valerie Hill and Bonneville Principal Sharla Whitson because he is cheerful, polite, and never complains. Brody is the son of Mike and Sunshine Pate.

Cook Elementary teacher Brittney Wilbanks and Principal Marna Boltuc nominated Kaegen (Kay-gen) Seaton because she works extremely hard and always goes the extra mile. Kaegen (Kay-gen) is the daughter of Heather and Bruce Seaton. 




A program of the Elks’ Grand Lodge Fraternal Committee, the Americanism Essay Contest, is geared towards students in 5th through 8th grades to promote patriotism among young people. This year’s topic was “How Can Patriotism Be Displayed?” Chaffin Junior High School’s Abigail Fischer and Maggie Jacimore  earned the first and second places in Arkansas with their essays. Abigail’s essay qualifies to compete in the national essay contest. 


With 106 members, Southside Future Business Leaders of America continues as Arkansas’ largest chapter. On March 30, 2021, Southside FBLA members earned recognition at the 2021 Virtual State FBLA Leadership Conference. Each of the following winners will advance to the FBLA Nationals this summer. 

  • Trista Truong, Boushra Raache, Bianca Perela: First Place, Publication Design
  • Tu Nguyen: First Place, Securities and Investments 
  • Jacob Weaver: First Place, Website Design


This year the 2020-2021 Arkansas as well as the National PTA Reflections theme is “I Matter Because…”. Fort Smith Public Schools were well represented with dozens of entries and 15 winners. Five of these winners earned first place recognition. 

  • Emery Liggett, Chaffin Junior High, Dance Choreography Category, Middle School Division
  • Serina Huang, Chaffin Junior High, Music Competition Category, High School Division


  • Jostin Flores, Sutton Elementary, Special Arts Division
  • Antonella Alvarez: Sunnymede Elementary, Primary Division
  • Bella Thornburg, Cavanaugh Elementary, Middle School Division


The Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society for High School Journalists was organized in 1926  to encourage and recognize individual achievement in journalism and scholastic publication. Southside High School sophomore Marissa Goodwin earned a National Gold Key from the Quill and Scroll International Honorary Society for her sports action photography, shown on the screen. 


Ballman’s Ruby Dean, Bonneville’s Lana McLaughlin, and Spradlings’ Merary Ramirez, have been selected to attend the High Reliability Teacher program which encourages and celebrates teacher effectiveness. Sponsored by the Arkansas Education Renewal Zone (ERZ), participants will receive intensive support as they implement and deepen their understanding of instructional strategies and student learning. Level 1 and Level 2 High Reliability Teacher certification qualifies an educator to earn the Master Teacher Professional designation. 

GREAT NEWS for HSA at Darby!

You may remember that for the first time sixth graders have had the opportunity to participate in a health care careers focused academy at Darby Middle School. Three of charter members who competed in the Arkansas Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) Medical Terminology Competition have scores that allow them to advance to the National HOSA Medical Terminology Competition in June. Congratulations Ethan Newton, Lyric Flemons, and Isabella Watkins. These sixth graders took a very difficult written test of 121 multiple choice questions covering medical terminology such as prefixes, suffixes and root words as well as anatomy, physiology, pathophysiology and occupations related to the health field. 

If you know any rising sixth or seventh graders who may be interested in the Health Sciences Academy, encourage them to call Dr. Kreimer Hall or Ms. Holwick at Darby to learn more.