In the school calendar, the month of April is jam-packed. Ask any educator and they will tell you, after Spring Break, it’s “all downhill,” “non-stop action,” and “not a spare minute in sight.” April means State Testing for our students. It means competitions for secondary students involved in career-tech, skills classes, and other extracurriculars. Spring sports are in full swing as well. April is blissfully busy for our students, teachers and staff. So, this week I thought I would give you a snapshot of some of the things that have been happening across the district in this first part of April.

At Conway High School, we received outstanding news this week regarding our junior class. We give the ACT to all juniors each year, at the end of February. On this year’s exam, we had two students who received a perfect score of 36 and 20 students who received a score of above 30. This is amazing! We are so proud of these kids and ALL our students for their hard work. They are doing great things in the classroom, and in the community. One of our seniors, already a National Merit Finalist, has also been named an Arkansas Times Academic All Star. Congratulations to Gopi Lukhi! This distinction is given to only 21 students in the state of Arkansas, and gives Gopi an scholarship award to take to the University of Arkansas next year.

Meanwhile students in our Culinary Arts program took part in an innovative partnership with the Conway Chamber of Commerce and Petit Jean Meats to create an “Official Hot Dog” for Toad Suck Daze this year. The students competed before a judging panel to see which hot dogs would make the final round and then the top two ‘dogs’ went head to head on social media for community votes. CHS Senior Sarah Maull’s “Toad Mode,” featuring dill relish, Petit Jean Chili, sautéed onions and peppers, cheese, bacon and jalapenos, will be sold at Toad Suck Daze this year! Such a fun and exciting thing for our students and great exposure for our Culinary program.

Our Middle Schools hosted an internet safety night for parents this week. The prevalence of social media in the lives of our kids makes staying up to date on the latest apps and technology available to students on their phones and computers absolutely vital. Thank you to Judge Troy Braswell and local law enforcement officials for helping us stay current with events like these. Our schools are always working to educate students on the importance of smart digital citizenship, and the dangers that are out there online; however, like so many other things, we need follow up at home in order for students to stay safe.

Our elementary schools have had, or will have, visits from the Conway Fire Department for the Annual “Crawl, Drag, and Squirt” competitions this month. This time-honored tradition gets kids so excited to cheer for their classmates as they race through the obstacles to the finish. We appreciate the firefighters taking the time to do this for our schools. Our elementary students are also getting ready to “do their best on the test” as state assessments are right around the corner. Our teachers really work hard to minimize pressure and help the students be successful on these tests. We are proud of all of them.

There is obviously so much more that is happening each day in our sixteen schools. Our individual school’s calendars are full and before we know it, it will be May…and then SUMMER! We are so thankful for all the community support we receive and the privilege it is to live in Conway and teach and work here in Conway Public Schools.