September 2022

Keeping ConnectED: 2023 Teacher and Service Personnel of the Year Ceremony

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we celebrate the 2023 Teacher of the Year Amber Nichols and Service Personnel of the Year Jessica Grose. Watch as they reflect on their awards, career, and how they plan to represent the state in the future.

Keeping ConnectED: Veterans in the Classroom

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we highlight the impact of West Virginia teachers who previously were in military service. Their skills, experience, and training are uniquely resourceful in public schools.

August 2022

Keeping ConnectED: Back to School 2022-23

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, 2022 West Virginia Teacher of the Year Brian Casto shares his expectations for the new school year. Several students also talk about what they are looking forward to this fall.

Keeping ConnectED: Dolly Parton’s Visit to West Virginia

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, singer-songwriter and icon Dolly Parton visits West Virginia to celebrate all 55 counties actively participating in the Imagination Library.

July 2022

Keeping ConnectED: AdultEd Graduation

Keeping ConnectED: Summer SOLE in McDowell County

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we take a look at some of the project-based activities from the Summer SOLE program in McDowell County. SOLE provides engaging learning opportunities to 468 sites around the state.

Keeping ConnectED: AdultEd Graduation

Keeping ConnectED: 2022 Student Success Summit

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we visit the West Virginia Student Success Summit, a collaborative event focusing on creating seamless and supportive lifelong learning systems for our state’s students. This event is a partnership between the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission, the West Virginia Community and Technical College System, and the West Virginia Department of Education.

Keeping ConnectED: AdultEd Graduation

Keeping ConnectED: Summer SOLE 2022 in Raleigh County

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, WVU STEAM TAC specialist Clifford Sullivan shares an engineering project with students attending WVDE’s Summer SOLE program at Beckley Stratton Middle School in Raleigh County. Students create a hydraulic claw that can lift household items.

June 2022

Keeping ConnectED: AdultEd Graduation

Keeping ConnectED: 2022 Golden Horseshoe Ceremony

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch inducted 221 West Virginia eighth graders into the Golden Horseshoe society during a ceremony at the West Virginia Culture Center. The Golden Horseshoe is the longest running program of its kind, testing middle schoolers on their knowledge of West Virginia history.

Keeping ConnectED: AdultEd Graduation

Keeping ConnectED: Send-off to the 2021-2022 School Year and Superintendent’s Spotlight Series

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch ends the Superintendent Spotlight video series with a look back at past critical conversations from county superintendents.

May 2022

Keeping ConnectED: AdultEd Graduation

Keeping ConnectED: AdultEd Graduation

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, West Virginia native and America’s Got Talent winner Landau Eugene Murphy, Jr. participates in the West Virginia Adult Education High School Equivalency Graduation Commencement. Murphy earned his high school equivalency diploma during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic with the help of WVDE’s Adult Education program.

Keeping ConnectED: 2022 Reentry and Recovery Works Conference

Keeping ConnectED: 2022 Reentry and Recovery Works Conference

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, the West Virginia Schools of Diversion and Transition (WVSDT) partnered with the Office of Drug Control Policy and other agencies to host the Reentry and Recovery Works Conference at the Charleston Marriott Town Center in Charleston. This event helped bridge the gap between employers looking to hire skilled workers and job seekers who were formerly incarcerated, in substance abuse recovery or have other barriers to employment.

Keeping ConnectED: Classroom Library

Keeping Connected: Classroom Library

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we visit classroom libraries in Berkeley County to witness the impact and learning opportunities amongst the students. This initiative placed 275,250 books in the hands of 8,323 students.

Grow Your Own - County Efforts

Grow Your Own – County Efforts

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The WVDE has been busy working with counties. In recognition of Teacher Appreciation Week, and School Lunch Hero Day, we are pleased to share highlights of the hard work that continues in our counties and schools.

Superintendent Spotlight Jeff Bryant

Superintendent Spotlight: Jeff Bryant

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In this month’s Superintendent Spotlight, Superintendent Burch chats with Greenbrier County Superintendent Jeff Bryant. Superintendent Bryant discusses his advocacy for the arts and the county’s emphasis on arts-focused learning.

April 2022

Reverse Job Fair

Keeping ConnectED: Military Signing Week

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April 25 – 29, 2022, was West Virginia’s first Military Signing Week. Students in several high schools across the state made the decision to commit to military service. We are truly thankful for these students’ decision to serve this country.

Reverse Job Fair

Keeping ConnectED: Grow Your Own Pathways to Teaching

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch and WV Teacher of the Year Brian Casto launch their tour of counties to promote the TeachWV Grow Your Own Pathways to Teaching Initiative. Students learn about an opportunity to become a teacher by taking coursework while still in high school and spending less money for college.

Reverse Job Fair

Keeping ConnectED: Reverse Job Fair

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we take a look at the Reverse Job Fair that assists Career Technical Education students in showcasing their talents and skills while networking with industry leaders.

March 2022

Superintendent Jacob Green

Superintendent Spotlight:
Jacob Green – March 27, 2022

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In this month’s Superintendent Spotlight, West Virginia Schools of Diversion and Transition (WVSDT) Superintendent Jacob Green highlights the WVSDT programs. He also showcases footage from a recent video call, during which several classrooms were able to speak with a Ukrainian refugee in Poland.

2022 National Board Certified Teachers

National Board Certified Teachers Recognition Celebration (2020-2021)

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, the West Virginia Department of Education celebrates teachers who have earned the highest educational credential in the country  the National Board Certification. Honorees include 35 newly certified teachers and 66 who have renewed certification.

Katherine Miller poses for National Nutrition Month

National Nutrition Month – Katherine Miller

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we celebrate National Nutrition Month with our West Virginia Service Personnel of the Year winner and cafeteria manager Katherine Miller. She reflects on nutrition in the schools and how meals help students learn and grow.

February 2022

Sheena Van Meter photo - Superintendent Spotlight

Superintendent Spotlight – Sheena Van Meter Hardy County Schools

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In this month’s Superintendent Spotlight, Superintendent Burch sits down with Hardy County Superintendent Sheena Van Meter. The home of one of West Virginia’s most recent Milken winners, Superintendent Van Meter explains what makes Hardy County special and unique.

All-Female West Virginia FFA State Leadership Team

All-Female West Virginia FFA State Leadership Team

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Career Technical Education Coordinator Alyssa Keedy-White, discusses FFA (formerly Future Farmers of America) and introduces the first all-female West Virginia FFA State Leadership team. We also sit down with the women who are part of FFA State Leadership team and discuss the way FFA impacts their lives.

School Counselor of the Year 2021

West Virginia School Counselor of the Year 2021

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we sit down to speak with the 2021 West Virginia High School Counselor of the Year, Christopher Showe. Mr. Showe is a great example of how the role of counselor has an impact on West Virginia student growth and development.

Teacher Pathways Explained

Teacher Pathways Explained

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Dr. Carla Warren explains the pathways of teacher licensure for individuals seeking to become educators in West Virginia. Additionally, WVDE launches its newest website for teacher recruitment and preparation, TeachWV.com.

January 2022

Superintendent Spotlight: Mike Wells

Superintendent Spotlight: Mike Wells

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In the January edition of our Superintendent Spotlight, State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch sits down with Pleasants County Schools Superintendent Mike Wells to discuss the challenges and achievements of the district and the hopes for summer and the school year.

2021 Year in Review

Academic Showdown Celebrates West Virginia Scholars

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch, West Virginia’s Chancellor of Higher Education Dr. Sarah Armstrong Tucker, and West Virginia Senate President Craig Blair introduce the Academic Showdown. This inaugural competition pits teams of high school scholars from around the state against one another, answering questions about history, science, pop culture and much more.

2021 Year in Review

2021 Year in Review

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch reviews the challenges and accomplishments of the Department from 2021. He further encourages compassion and dedication so our students may thrive in the new year.

December 2021

STEAM demonstration at Mountaineer Middle School

Superintendent Spotlight: Deirdre Cline – December 17, 2021

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In the December edition of our Superintendent Spotlight, Deputy Superintendent Michele Blatt sits down with Wyoming County Schools Superintendent Deirdre Cline to discuss community supports and pandemic challenges that have led to greater collaboration and success in the county.

STEAM demonstration at Mountaineer Middle School

WVDE Celebrates Opening of STEAM Technical Assistance Center – December 10, 2021

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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we celebrate the opening of our newest Technical Assistance Center, which focuses on science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics (STEAM TAC). A special ceremony was held at Mountaineer Middle School with partners from West Virginia University, the West Virginia Public Education Collaborative, and COSI to commemorate our commitment to helping the next generation hone essential skills that will prepare them for college and STEAM-based careers. Learn more at wvde.us/tac.

Computer Science Education Week

WVDE Celebrates Computer Science Education Week – December 3, 2021

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As we look ahead to Computer Science Education Week, this week’s Keeping ConnectED highlights computer science advancement in West Virginia schools. Cabell Midland High School teacher Adam Riazi and his students discuss the school’s computer science offerings and how innovation and diversity are encouraged in the world of computer programming.

November 2021

Superintendent Gary Hough

Superintendent Spotlight: Gary Hough – November 19, 2021
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In the November edition of our Superintendent Spotlight, State Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch meets with Fayette County Schools Superintendent Gary Hough to discuss updated school facilities in the district and how they are dealing with the teacher shortage that is affecting the nation.

Watch Second Launch video

Second Launch Gives Tech a Second Chance
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Director of Infrastructure and Network Operations Dave Cartwright talks about Second Launch, a program providing refurbished technology to schools around the state. Early and Elementary Learning Coordinator Janet Bock-Hager speaks about the program’s impact on pre-K students and CTE students.

Watch video of Homer Hickam Q and A

Rocket Boy Comes Home: A Q&A with Homer Hickam
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, the 2022 West Virginia Teacher of the Year Brian Casto sits down with West Virginia native and award-winning author Homer Hickam to reflect on his experiences growing up in McDowell County and his hopes for students to pursue careers in STEAM disciplines. Additionally, he discusses his decision to donate proceeds from his new book, “Don’t Blow Yourself Up,” toward the H.M. “Mike” Adams Memorial Scholarship, which will benefit West Virginia students who wish to attend Space Camp.

October 2021

Superintendent Spotlight: Troy Ravenscroft
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In the October edition of our Superintendent Spotlight, State Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch sits down with Mineral County Schools Superintendent Troy Ravenscroft to discuss the district’s efforts to care for students and staff throughout the pandemic. Furthermore, they acknowledge how the county’s school personnel have stepped up to fill necessary roles to ensure consistent and safe in-person instruction.

WVDE Celebrates School Bus Safety Week
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we recognize National School Bus Safety Week, which provides an opportunity to focus on safe practices around school buses and celebrating bus operators. WVDE School Transportation Manager David Baber and Jackson County bus operator David Johnston share the impact of bus safety.

WVDE Highlights Social-Emotional Supports Available to Students
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, 2021 National Certified School Counselor and 2020 West Virginia Middle School Counselor of the Year Susan Jones speaks about mental health resources available for students in schools. Also, we are introduced to the Natural Student Helpers at Ripley Middle School, who assist in recognizing social-emotional issues in their classmates and helping them find support.

Lessons Learned: A Conversation with West Virginia Teachers of the Year
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Dr. Carla Warren, Director of the Office of Educator Development & Support at the West Virginia Department of Education, sits down with 2021 and 2022 West Virginia Teacher of the Year winners, Erin Anderson and Brian Casto. Watch and listen as they discuss the important role of educators, how they are adjusting to the classroom amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, and lessons learned throughout their careers.

Local Pharmacies Continue to Support School Vaccine Clinics
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Fruth pharmacist Drew Massey speaks about the impact local pharmacies have had in encouraging vaccines in school communities. State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch also reminds viewers of the “I Got Vaxxed to Get Back” competition in which schools can win $50,000 for getting students and staff vaccinated. Learn more at wvde.us/IGotVaxxed.

September 2021

Superintendent Spotlight: Christine Miller
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In the September edition of our Superintendent Spotlight, State Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch sits down with Taylor County Schools Superintendent Christine Miller to discuss Taylor County’s approach to another unprecedented school year and to share an overview of the academic and social-emotional support the county provides to ensure student success.

Local Pharmacies Continue to Support School Vaccine Clinics
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Fruth pharmacist Drew Massey speaks about the impact local pharmacies have had in encouraging vaccines in school communities. State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch also reminds viewers of the “I Got Vaxxed to Get Back” competition in which schools can win $50,000 for getting students and staff vaccinated. Learn more at wvde.us/IGotVaxxed.

WVDE Honors Adult Learners in 2021 Adult Education Awards Ceremony
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we conclude Adult Education and Family Literacy Week with a special look at the 2021 Adult Education Awards Ceremony held last week. WVDE Adult Education Director Mendy Marshall shares the special occasion, which included a surprise award presentation and concert by WVAdultEd ambassador Landau Eugene Murphy Jr. Learn more about WVAdultEd programs in your area by visiting wvadulted.com or call the hotline at 1-800-642-2670.

State Health Officials Provide COVID-19 Updates

State Health Officials Provide COVID-19 Updates
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Deputy Superintendent Michele Blatt sits down with Dr. Ayne Amjad, Commissioner and State Health Officer for the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources, to discuss the impact of the pandemic on school-aged children and the importance of getting vaccinated. Additionally, Shannon McBee, epidemiologist at the West Virginia Bureau for Public Health, provides a clinical overview of COVID-19 transmission rates and compares the data to the previous school year.
WVDE Celebrates Teachers and Service Personnel

WVDE Celebrates Teachers, Service Personnel
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we reflect on this year’s Celebration of Excellence in Education ceremony and talk with Brian Casto, West Virginia’s 2022 Teacher of the Year, and Katherine Miller, the 2022 School Service Personnel of the Year.

Putnam County Schools Gets Vaxxed to Get Back
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, the West Virginia Department of Education visits Putnam County Schools’ vaccine clinics to speak with staff, students, and parents about the importance of getting vaccinated. Administrators also discuss how they might utilize the $50,000 should their school win the “I Got Vaxxed” competition. Learn how your school can participate by visiting wvde.us/IGotVaxxed.

August 2021

WVDE Unveils New Technical Assistance Center for Accessibility & Transitions

Superintendent Spotlight: Dr. Donna Burge-Tetrick
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In the August edition of our Superintendent Spotlight, State Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch sits down with Nicholas County Schools Superintendent Dr. Donna Burge-Tetrick to discuss the success of the county’s summer engagement programs and goals for the upcoming school year.
WVDE Unveils New Technical Assistance Center for Accessibility & Transitions

WVDE Expands Vaccination Campaign: “I Got Vaxxed To Get Back”
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent of Schools Clayton Burch discusses the expansion of the Department’s vaccination campaign, “I Got Vaxxed To Get Back,” which focuses on encouraging eligible school-aged children to get vaccinated so that they can get back to a sense of normalcy. Additionally, we hear from students and student-athletes from Lincoln County High School about their reasons why they chose to get vaxxed to get back.
WVDE Unveils New Technical Assistance Center for Accessibility & Transitions

WVDE Unveils New Technical Assistance Center for Accessibility & Transitions
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, the West Virginia Department of Education unveiled the Technical Assistance Center for Accessibility &Transitions located on the campus of the West Virginia Schools for the Deaf and the Blind in Romney, West Virginia. Administrators, staff, and partners speak about the exciting ways to improve educational equity for students with access exceptionalities and serve as a statewide resource for those who work with students.
In this week’s Keeping ConnectED we take a look back at the summer Student Opportunities for Learning and Engagement (SOLE) Program. Counties worked hard to ensure students had high levels of engagement and learning as part of their recovery efforts. As summer comes to a close, we share some of the activities that were captured over the past three months.

A Send-off to Summer SOLE
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we take a look back at the summer Student Opportunities for Learning and Engagement (SOLE) Program. Counties worked hard to ensure students had high levels of engagement and learning as part of their recovery efforts. As summer comes to a close, we share some of the activities that were captured over the past three months.
In this week's Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent W. Clayton Burch reviews the details from the back-to-school guidance released by the Department of Education this week. The Fall 2021 School Recovery and Guidance document can be viewed at wvde.us/covid19.

WVDE Releases Back-To-School Guidance
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent W. Clayton Burch reviews the details from the back-to-school guidance released by the Department of Education this week. The Fall 2021 School Recovery and Guidance document can be viewed at wvde.us/covid19.

July 2021

In this week's Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch sits down with Wayne County Schools Superintendent Todd Alexander and discusses the county's response during the pandemic, how summer SOLE programming has helped engage students and the many ways Wayne County is preparing for the upcoming school year.

Superintendent Spotlight: Todd Alexander
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch sits down with Wayne County Schools Superintendent Todd Alexander and discusses the county’s response during the pandemic, how summer SOLE programming has helped engage students and the many ways Wayne County is preparing for the upcoming school year.
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WVDE launches “Never Too Late to Graduate” Campaign with Landau Eugene Murphy Jr.
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Mendy Marshall, director of the WVDE Office of Adult Education, introduces West Virginia native and “America’s Got Talent” winner Landau Eugene Murphy Jr., the face of the recently launched “Never Too Late to Graduate” campaign. Murphy shares his journey in earning a high school equivalency diploma through WVAdultEd and encourages others to follow their dreams.
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West Virginia Expands Imagination Library to All 55 Counties
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent Clayton Burch and special guest Dolly Parton congratulate West Virginia for its full participation in Imagination Library. All 55 counties in the state are now fully active to serve its youngest learners. Established in 1995, this international program provides books to children, ages birth to five, throughout the country with a book each month to encourage reading from an early age. In West Virginia, more than 3 million books have been delivered to children since 2007.
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“I Got Vaxxed Competition” Launches to Encourage Student Vaccinations – July 9, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Deputy Superintendent Michele Blatt joins Coronavirus Czar Dr. Clay Marsh to discuss the new COVID-19 variants and their impact on young people. Additionally, Deputy Superintendent Blatt introduces the “I Got Vaxxed Competition,” a new initiative to encourage students, teachers, and staff to get vaccinated. Find out more at wvde.us/igotvaxxed.
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WVDE Announces Blue Ribbon Book Club – July 2, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent Clayton Burch visits Taylor Books in Charleston to announce the second year of the West Virginia Blue Ribbon Book Club, a partnership between the West Virginia Department of Education, the Marshall University June Harless Center and The Dollywood Foundation.

June 2021

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Superintendent Spotlight: Dr. Shelby Haines – June 25, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, Marshall County Schools Superintendent Dr. Shelby Haines discusses Marshall County’s efforts to support students during the pandemic and shares how community engagement will continue to play an important role in student support and well-being this summer and into the upcoming school year.
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Summer SOLE programs offer hands-on learning for K-12 students – June 22, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, West Virginia Summer SOLE (Student Opportunities for Learning and Engaging) programs kicked off in June 2021 with hands-on, interactive learning experiences taking place statewide for K-12 students. The programs are made possible through grants from the West Virginia Department of Education (WVDE). SOLE is designed to offer engaging summer programming to address students’ social-emotional needs and support their recovery from lost learning opportunities experienced during the school year.
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Opportunities Available through ACE and Adult Education – June 11, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we learn more about the differences between the Offices of Advanced Career Education (ACE) and Adult Education and how they work together to enhance the educational opportunities for all West Virginians. Mendy Marshall, director of Adult Education, and Adam Canter, director of ACE, announce the joint campaign launching this summer to promote both ACE and Adult Education programs and services.
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#IGotVaxxedWV Student Athletes – June 4, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we visit student athletes and club members who have experienced significant disruptions to their seasons and scheduled activities due to the pandemic. As we continue to promote the importance of vaccines through the #IGotVaxxedWV campaign, students share their experiences and their hopes for the class of 2022 and beyond.

May 2021

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Superintendent Spotlight: Will Hosaflook – May 28, 2021
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The last Friday of the month is reserved for our Keeping ConnectED Superintendent Spotlight. In this episode, State Superintendent of Schools W. Clayton Burch sits down with Wood County Schools Superintendent Will Hosaflook who shares details of the county’s exciting Summer SOLE program.
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Vaccine Rollout for Middle School Students – May 21, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we continue the #IGotVaxxedWV campaign as Deputy Superintendent Michele Blatt discusses the vaccine rollout for students age 12-15. Thank you to the schools and counties that invited the WVDE to their clinics to speak to middle school students who received the vaccine and look forward to fewer COVID-19 restrictions.
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WVDE Launches #IGotVaxxedWV Campaign – May 14, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent Clayton Burch launches the new WVDE #IGotVaxxedWV campaign, which aims to encourage West Virginia students, age 12 – 18, to get vaccinated as soon as possible.
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Creating a Skilled Workforce – May 7, 2021
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In this week’s #KeepingConnectED, Career Technical Education (CTE) students discuss how they’ve navigated the challenges posed by the pandemic. Despite the challenges, they continue to hone their trades and create a skilled workforce for West Virginia. Find out more information about CTE here: wvde.us/technical-education/.

April 2021

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Superintendent Spotlight: Ryan Saxe – April 30, 2021
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Cabell County Superintendent Ryan Saxe invites State Superintendent Clayton Burch to the site of the county’s future Career and Technology Center. They discuss the county’s approach to post-pandemic learning and highlight Cabell County’s efforts to enhance college -and career-readiness through the new Center. Learn more about Superintendent Saxe in this month’s Superintendent Spotlight.
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Powerful Partnerships: The Path Back to Normal – April 23, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we spotlight Fayette County and Cabell County Schools as they host vaccination clinics for students 16 years of age and older. Administrators, educators and students alike speak about the importance of student vaccinations and what vaccinations mean for themselves and their school communities.
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Importance of Student Vaccination Clinics – April 16, 2021
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In this week’s Keeping ConnectED, we spotlight Fayette County and Cabell County Schools as they host vaccination clinics for students 16 years of age and older. Administrators, educators and students alike speak about the importance of student vaccinations and what vaccinations mean for themselves and their school communities.
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Vaccine Rollout for High School Students – April 12, 2021
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Superintendent Burch speaks with state Coronavirus Czar Dr. Marsh about the vaccine rollout for high school students. Counties are hosting clinics for students and families around the state, and Dr. Marsh explains the importance of vaccines for those 16 years of age and older.
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Celebrating National Autism Acceptance Month – April 2, 2021
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West Virginia Department of Education Special Education Coordinator Dr. Jason Conaway kicks off National Autism Acceptance Month, and introduces several West Virginia students with autism who share stories of hope, joy and love. Join the West Virginia Department of Education all month long as we spotlight our students with autism on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn.

March 2021

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Superintendent Spotlight: Stephen Wotring – March 26, 2021
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Preston County Schools Superintendent Stephen Wotring discusses lessons learned from COVID-19 and highlights Preston County’s efforts to support students during the summer and next school year with extended learning opportunities.
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Summer SOLE: Engaging All Students – March 19, 2021
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Christy Swartz, coordinator at the West Virginia Department of Education for the summer Student Opportunities for Learning and Engagement (SOLE) program, sits down with the 2021 Teacher of the Year Erin Anderson to discuss the importance and need for summer and extended learning and engagement activities.
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Empowering our Leaders of Literacy – March 5, 2021
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Dr. Monica DellaMea, Director of Early and Elementary Learning for the West Virginia Department of Education, discusses the state’s early literacy efforts through the Leaders of Literacy: West Virginia Campaign for Grade-Level Reading. She also provides an overview on professional development opportunities for educators and how the literacy campaign will supplement summer learning and engagement programs.
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Funding Available through Summer SOLE Grant Program – February 26, 2021
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Melanie Purkey, Federal Programs Officer at the West Virginia Department of Education, discusses the Summer SOLE grant program, which is dedicated to providing additional resources for summer learning and engagement for our K-12 students. The Department is allocating its portion of the CARES 2 funding to counties allowing them to better address learning losses suffered during the pandemic.
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One-Year Anniversary: WVDE’s COVID Recovery Timeline – March 12, 2021
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As we commemorate the one-year anniversary of COVID-19’s impact on West Virginia schools, State Superintendent Clayton Burch introduces the new COVID Recovery Timeline in this week’s Keeping Connected video. The timeline provides a comprehensive overview of important events and milestones reached during the pandemic. Explore the interactive timeline by visiting wvde.us/covid-timeline/.

February 2021

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Exploring Wood County’s Distance Learning Academy – February 19, 2021
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Sonya White, Teaching & Learning Officer for the West Virginia Department of Education, speaks with Wood County Superintendent William Hosaflook. They discuss how Wood County’s Distance Learning Academy is making an impact on virtual learning.
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Shared Experiences: A Visit with Wyoming and McDowell Counties – February 12, 2021
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In this Keeping ConnectED, State Superintendent Clayton Burch discusses his recent visit to McDowell and Wyoming counties, and addresses lessons learned about the important role schools play in each community. He emphasized how each county has demonstrated strong leadership and support when facing challenges over the past year.
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A Message for High School Seniors – February 5, 2021
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The pandemic has interrupted many aspects of education including Promise Scholarship applications, which are down 50 percent. In this Keeping ConnectED, West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission Chancellor Dr. Sarah Tucker discusses the importance of high school seniors pursuing financial aid opportunities.

January 2021

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Meet Erin Anderson: West Virginia’s 2021 Teacher of the Year
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In this Keeping ConnectED, West Virginia’s 2021 Teacher of the Year Erin Anderson shares her thoughts on the profession, the pandemic, and the importance of relationships with her students and families.
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Planning for Progress – January 15, 2021

Superintendent Clayton Burch and Kanawha County Schools Superintendent Dr. Tom Williams discuss Kanawha County’s experience with in-person instruction during the first semester and the important role mitigation strategies have played. They also consider efforts to address pandemic learning now and in the future.
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Realizing the Importance of In-Person Learning – January 8, 2021
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Superintendent Clayton Burch and Jackson County Superintendent Blaine Hess discuss the challenges of remote learning, the importance of in-person instruction and what they’ve learned to prepare for the spring semester.

Past Years

2020