Some Liberty County School System teachers and administrators rang in the new school year Tuesday at the East End Convocation Tuesday morning at Midway Middle School.
Teachers and staff from Liberty Elementary School, Midway Middle School and Liberty County High School gathered at MMS for a pep rally where they danced, sang and got motivated for the school year, which starts this week.
The theme of the ceremony was “Saddling Up for a Successful School Year” with teachers dressing up in cowboy hats, boots and scarves.
LCSS Interim Superintendent Dr. Franklin Perry told teachers the district is here to support them.
“There’s nothing more important than a teacher and what you do,” Perry said.
He had the crowd repeat the phrases “Excellence in everything” and “Results not excuses.”
Perry announced there will be no new initiatives, which got cheers and applause. He said the district and will focus on perfecting current school programs.
Liberty County Board of Education Chairwoman Lily Baker said teachers play a significant and memorable role in students’ lives. She said “Your students will remember you forever.”
Board member Verdell Jones called teaching a “high calling” and encouraged everyone to press forward during hard times.
Liberty County Commissioner Chairman Donald Lovette said it’s his job to “sell the county” to industry leaders, and teachers play a critical role in creating and educating the “best product”—a good workforce.
Rep. Al Williams, D-Midway, touched on a variety of topics, including legislation to help teachers, higher pay, more funding and school vouchers.
“You cannot be intimidated by those you must prepare. The six o’clock news does a great job in scaring the heaven out of most people,” Williams said. “There are a lot of children that are not a part of the 6 o’clock news. A lot of them need fundamental love.”
Midway Mayor Dr. Clemontine Washington, a longtime educator, welcomed everyone back to school.
“It’s a new day. Can you feel it? It’s time for you to reopen your treasure chest and remove the sensational gifts you have packed away for the past six weeks or more,” Washington said.
She ended with “Welcome back to school, it’s electrifying!” and then danced to the “Electric Slide” as the crowd cheered.
The keynote speaker for the event was motivational speaker Keith L. Brown.
Brown interacted with the audience and said it is important to encourage children, change perspectives and that failure is not an option.
His message was littered with quotes, such as “Whatever you give to kids, they will have to give to you,” “If we can build children, we don’t have to repair adults” and “Not impossible, I’m possible.”
The crowd then did a cheer where each school did a section of the phrase “I love myself. I believe in myself. I’m proud of myself. I’m a genius” while dancing.
At the end of the convocation each school did their own cheer.
MMS Principal Debra Frazier hopes to make the convocation an annual event.