■ Fayette County Farm Bureau sponsored a countywide spelling bee Feb. 15 for students in grades 4 to 8. Sixty-six participants represented 22 private, parochial, public and home schools across Fayette County. Austin Booth, a fifth-grader at Athens- Chilesburg Elementary, won the spelling bee and received a trophy and $75. Alexandra Whitley, an eighth-grader t The School for the Creative and Performing Arts, finished second. In third place was Erin Christopher, a seventh-grader from Edythe J. Hayes Middle School.
Austin will represent Fayette County at the Kentucky Derby Festival State Spelling Bee on March 19 in Louisville.
■ Amy McVey, principal of Veterans Park Elementary, will receive the 2011 Excellence in Education award from Kentucky AdvancED.
Never miss a local story.
This honor goes to an individual in each state who has demonstrated unparalleled leadership in promoting excellence through accreditation and school improvement initiatives. McVey will be recognized March 21 at the AdvancED international summit in Chicago.
McVey is chairwoman of AdvancED's state council. She recently was elected to serve on the AdvancED accreditation commission, which oversees the accreditation process for more than 27,000 schools in the United States and throughout the world. She also has been nominated for the national Excellence in Education award.
A Mount Sterling native, McVey has been principal at Veterans Park since 2004. Before that, she taught at Veterans Park and Ashland elementary schools and was principal at Dixie Elementary.
■ The Kentucky Society for Technology in Education has named Michelle Lee of Lexington's Russell Cave Elementary its 2011 Outstanding Teacher of the Year. The award recognizes a teacher who has demonstrated outstanding achievement and leadership in implementing technology to improve education. Lee will receive the honor March 2 at the state conference in Louisville.
■ Technology experts Jarrett Moore, Muhlenberg County School District, and Brandon Blackburn and Neil Arnett, Pikeville Independent, were among a group of 37 Kentucky educators to be recognized recently as Apple Certified Systems Administrators.
■ Students stepped lively in the annual Fayette County Middle School Cheer and Dance Showcase at Henry Clay High School on Feb. 3.
In the cheer division, Lexington Traditional Magnet School was the grand champion, and Morton's "A" Team won the best choreography award. In dance, Edythe J. Hayes was the grand champion, with Leestown's hip-hop squad taking best choreography honors. In the step team division, Bryan Station was the grand champion, and Tates Creek won best choreography.
In addition, more than 400 students were recognized for academic achievement (3.0-4.0 GPA).
Top cheerleading results: sideline/timeout: Morton Spirit Team, coached by Carla Trisko and Christina Herrington, first; LTMS Flag Team, coached by Turqouise Edwards and Rachel Pittman, second. Level 1: Tates Creek, coached by Tesha Livingston, first; Winburn, coached by Nietta Frazier and Rachel Lush, second; Southern, coached by Jennifer Kearns, third. Level 3: Beaumont, coached by Amanda King, first; Jessie Clark, coached by Katie Harper, second; LTMS, coached by Marilee Applegate, Megan Applegate and Bretta Hulcha, third. Level 5: Edythe J. Hayes, coached by Deedra Murphy and Ashlee Hyde, and Morton's "A" Team, coached by Trisko and Herrington, tied for first.
Top results in the dance showcase: Step: 1st — Bryan Station, coached by Kathryn Raitiere, first; Tates Creek, coached by Darnetta Sanders, second; LTMS, coached by Belinda Jackson and Cassandra Jones, third. Pom: Edythe J. Hayes, coached by LeAnn Hall and Sarah Lamothe, first; LTMS, coached by Marilee Applegate, Megan Applegate and Hulcha, second; Beaumont, coached by Emily Rector, third. Jazz: Morton, coached by Herrington, first; Jessie Clark, coached by Megan Thompson, second; Southern, coached by Cassie Peyton, third. Hip-hop: Edythe J. Hayes, coached by Hall and Lamothe, first; Tates Creek, coached by Lauren Fields, second; Leestown, coached by Lisa Dykes and Jason Thompson, third.
■ Paul Laurence Dunbar High School won first place in the 2011 National High School Cheerleading Championship, the country's most prestigious cheer competition. Henry Clay High School finished fourth in Large Varsity Division I.
Dunbar is coached by Donna G. Martin, who noted it was the Bulldogs' seventh title. Dunbar came in third in the Large Junior Varsity category, with Henry Clay seventh. Morton Middle School was seventh in the Large Junior High division.
The Universal Cheerleaders Association competition was Feb. 12 and 13 at Walt Disney World.
■ The 2010 Kentucky Science Teachers Association's Science Teachers of the Year for middle and high school were announced in November during the group's annual conference. They are: April Helton, Knox County Middle School, Barbourville; and Trina Merrick, Marshall County High School, Benton. Merrick began a Junior Engineering Technical Society group at her school that, in its first year, placed first in the state and 26th in the nation.
■ McKenna Vicini, a fourth-grader at Stonewall Elementary, won the annual "Hit the Books" bookmark design competition. Her entry, selected from 25,000 in Central Kentucky, was the third win in four years for Stonewall Elementary. Jackson Gonzalez, a second-grader at Liberty Elementary, earned honorable mention in the Lexington Legends/Chick-fil-A contest.
McKenna received a framed "Hit the Books" poster featuring her artwork, a prize pack from the Legends and Chick-fil-A, and a membership in Little Legends Kids Club. She will throw out a ceremonial first pitch at Whitaker Bank Ballpark.
■ Six people will be inducted into the Kentucky Journalism Hall of Fame on April 5 at Fasig-Tipton during a luncheon ceremony sponsored by the University of Kentucky School of Journalism and Telecommunications Alumni Association.
They are: John William "Bill" Bartleman, retired legislative reporter for The Paducah Sun; Jackie Hays Bickel, retired anchor for WAVE-TV in Louisville; Robert Carter, retired publisher of the Kentucky New Era (Hopkinsville) and a former Kentucky Press Association president; Albert Dix (posthumous), former publisher of The State-Journal (Frankfort); Tom Loftus, the Frankfort bureau chief for The Courier-Journal of Louisville, recipient of the 2008 James Madison Award for Service to the First Amendment; and Edward "Ed" Shadburne, former general manager of WLKY-TV and of WHAS.
■ Kentucky Equine Research has established a graduate student fellowship at the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture to honor the memory of Larry Lawrence, a KER employee. The Lawrence Fellowship, worth more than $25,000 a year, will fund a graduate student in a program of study related to applied equine sciences.
Catherine Whitehouse, a former KER intern who completed an undergraduate degree in equine science from Lincoln University in England, is the first fellowship recipient. Bob Coleman, assistant professor in UK's Department of Animal and Food Sciences and associate director of the Equine Initiative, will advise Whitehouse.
■ George Boulden, associate professor of music and associate director of University of Kentucky Bands, has been named the 2011 Kentucky Music Educators Association College/University Teacher of the Year. Boulden was recognized at the KMEA General Assembly and state awards presentation in Louisville on Feb. 11. At UK School of Music, Boulden serves as the conductor of the UK Symphony Band, teaches conducting and instructs in applications of music technology.
■ Lexington native and Tates Creek High School graduate Scott Denno has been selected to participate in the charitable Bike and Build event this summer. Denno, a junior at Truman State University in Missouri, will spend the summer biking from North Carolina to California, helping to build and advocate for affordable housing along the way.
Bike and Build, which has been sponsoring rides for eight seasons, helps foster leadership abilities and a giving spirit in its participants.
To contribute to Bike and Build on Denno's behalf, go to Bikeandbuild.org and click on the donate tab.
■ The 16th District PTA, which encompasses all of Fayette County Public Schools, has launched Education Advocates, a community-level PTA for anyone interested in supporting education and promoting the well-being of all students. It's an opportunity for individuals to get involved in education regardless of whether they have school-age children. People who have children in school are encouraged to join the local PTA first.
For more information, e-mail Liza@lizaholland.com, call (859) 533-3038 or visit Fcps.net/pta.
■ About 75 fourth- and fifth-grade students will gather at Mary Queen of the Holy Rosary School at 11 a.m. Saturday to take part in the District 75 Governor's Cup Competition. The academic event is administered by the Kentucky Association for Academic Competition and sponsored by The Kentucky E ducation Savings Plan Trust.
Participating schools are Clays Mill Elementary, Lexington Christian Academy, Lexington Universal Academy, Mary Queen of the Holy Rosary and Rosa Parks Elementary.
Governor's Cup features eight events, including quick recall, the only event open to the public.
■ The Lafayette Alumni Association will host its annual chili supper at 6:30 p.m. March 7 in the school cafeteria. Attendees are asked to bring a salad or dessert. All alumni are invited. For reservations or more information, call (859) 278-1489.