KM Herald 6-10-20

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106 East Mountain Street Kings Mountain, NC 28086 Volume 132 • Issue 24

Wednesday, June 10, 2020 • 704-484-1047


Photo by TPS Photography


Big money for Class of 2020 Kings Mountain High School graduating seniors received over $2 million dollars in scholarships, according to Jill Cruise, National Board certified counselor. The grand total is $2,240,794.00. The full list of recipients is in today’s Herald. Students will be using the money to attend colleges and universities to pursue careers in many

areas of study beginning in Fall 2020. Thirty juniors and seniors have earned extra credits at Cleveland Community College – 24 receiving certificates and six graduating with Associate degrees enabling them to enter college as Sophomores or Juniors this Fall. See story and photos on the front page of the B section in today’s Herald.

Metals company multi-million-dollar expansion in Shelby Ames Copper Group, a joint venture of Prime Materials Recovery, Inc. (PMR) and the Cunext Group, will create 46 jobs in Cleveland County, North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper announced on June 4. The company will invest at least $26.3 million with the expansion of its copper manufacturing facility located in Shelby.

“This is good news for Cleveland County, and the City of Shelby,” said Governor Cooper. “Ames Copper Group knows our state’s strong workforce and looked to North Carolina for this next phase of growth.” Ames Copper Group plans to invest more than $50 million in infrastructure, See EXPANSION, Page 10A

KMHS Commencement exercises this Saturday

C o m mencement exercises for 286 seniors in the Kings Mountain High School Class of 2020 will be held Saturday, June 13 from 8:30 a.m.-1 p.m. at John Gamble Stadium. In event of rain the ceremonies will be held in B. N. Barnes Auditorium on the

school campus. All seniors have received letters from the school administration with designated times to arrive plus all details of the firstever drive-through-walkthrough event, instructions for entering and exiting the stadium and instructions on entering and exiting the auditorium in event of inclement weather, according to KMHS Principal Julie

Rikard. Each senior will be represented by one vehicle that will be driven on the track. The senior and his/her four guests will go onto the field while the driver remains in the vehicle. The senior will go on stage to receive his/ her diploma from Principal Rikard and Supt. Stephen Fisher. After the presentation, the senior and guests will return to their vehicle

and exit the stadium. A video, which includes speeches as well as graduate pictures can be viewed and downloaded on the school website: The video program begins with the processional, “Pomp and Circumstance” by Elgar by the 9th Grade Band followed by the Pledge of Allegiance by Zahra Kapri Roberts, senior


Traditional graduation in December planned for senior classes of 2020 Cleveland County Schools will hold a traditional graduation for the Class of 2020 in December 2020, according to a statement from the Superintendent’s Office on the school’s website. The announcement is receiving mixed reaction from students and others. Last week the Cleveland County Board of Commis-

sioners unanimously sided with students in their desire for a traditional graduation and sent a letter to Supt. Dr. Stephen Fisher. However, the county board has no authority to require the school board to change plans for commencement. School officials say their plans were drafted in accordance with the Governor’s executive orders to start Phase 2 of the

state’s reopening plan. The letter from the Superintendent follows: “Due to the impact and health concerns related to COVID-19 and the Governor’s executive orders traditional graduation ceremony is not allowed at this time. “While a non-traditional graduation is not what anyone expected when we started the school year last

August we still have the opportunity to celebrate the accomplishments and graduates of the Class of 2020. “This year’s graduation experience will include a hybrid model drive-through and walk-through options for parents and family members wishing to share in the graduation celebration. School specific details have


Marchers send petition to Governor Cooper

Citizens wait for the school board meeting to begin. Due to social distancing, the audience capacity was reduced by more than half. Supporters of a traditional graduation filled the school board chambers and spilled into the hallway outside. Photo by Mot Davis

School Board meeting is heated over 2020 graduation decision

By Loretta Cozart

On Monday, June 8 at 6 pm, the Cleveland County School Board (CCSB) held its June meeting. On the agenda was a COVID-19 update, including information regarding graduation. Last

week the board announced a hybrid graduation model with drive-through and walk-through options for parents and family members. Ten people spoke, including four from Kings Mountain. Each asked the board to reconsider the decision in favor of a traditional graduation that incorporates social distancing. The conversation got heated at times and the discussion went on

for 90 minutes. Last week, Mot Davis and Nicole Humphries took a letter from Steven Fisher to Governor Cooper. Davis explained, “Fisher had sent the letter the week before but did not received a reply. He was adamant that the governor had to sign it in order to hold a traditional graduation. So we took the letter to Governor Cooper, along with See MEETING, Page 2A

The 60 students, parents, one school board member and several candidates for school board who marched in front of the Cleveland County Administrative School Offices last Thursday sent their petition for a traditional graduation by two members of the group, Mott Davis and Nicole Humphries, to Governor Roy Cooper at the state capitol Friday morning. “We went to the NC Legislative building to deliver the letter and petition but with all the protests outside the building we were not allowed to enter,’’ said Davis, who added, ‘’Eventually we were allowed to enter and a clerk took the material to the Governor’s office.” “It was a peaceful demonstration last Thursday of our concerns, we wanted to be heard,’’ said school board mem-

Two high school students exercise their right to protest the school board’s decision for a hybrid graduation. ber Danny Blanton who read over a speaker system the Governor’s Executive Order not allowing traditional graduation ceremonies this season as the group marched with their signs to the music

of “Pomp and Circumstance.’’ “We asked the Governor to reconsider his executive order which limits outdoor gatherings to 25 people but also grants See MARCHERS, Page 2A

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