Important Changes Coming To PBS LearningMedia Dashboard Tools
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Logan County Teacher Wins Above And Beyond Award
Garron Staten, a seventh-grade teacher from Logan County, has earned West Virginia Public Broadcasting’s Above and Beyond Award, which recognizes excellence and creativity in West Virginia teachers.

Staten was honored by WVPB during a Man Middle School assembly where he was presented with a monetary award, our signature Blenko Above and Beyond blue apple paperweight, a certificate of recognition, and a host of other special gifts made possible by the sponsorship of Advantage Technology.

“Thank you sincerely to WVPB for all that you do with education for both students and teachers in this state,” Staten said. “I was humbled to be nominated … Sometimes we feel that our jobs go unnoticed and the extra time is spent in vain. All teachers have put in extra time and have worked tirelessly this year more than ever. It is for all of them for whom I accept this award and truly appreciate all teachers. I don't feel like I deserve the award alone because I am sure there are teachers out there who remain unrecognized who also go above and beyond!

“He not only helps teachers at this school, but he opens himself up for teachers across the county if needed. He is a true leader," Rainwater said.

Having taught both English and science, the technical wiz is also creative. He created science lessons where students built their own Operation-style games from scratch, and in the past, he has had multiple winners in the CEDAR, Inc. Coal Fair and Young Writers Contest.

Staten has even designed virtual escape rooms, choice boards, online board games and other creative assets to help students learn in a fun environment. “He doesn't use generic templates. He creates them and shares them!” Rainwater said, adding that Staten decorates his room for holidays, dresses up for Halloween, Christmas and Star Wars Day and always has something interesting for his students to do.

“More importantly, Mr. Staten is one of only two teachers in the school who mentor fifth-to-eighth-grade students in the evenings through an AmeriCorps afterschool program that helps emotionally, and academically struggling students succeed,” Rainwater said. The program provides one-on-one assistance to give students extra attention where it is needed, whether it be homework, projects, playtime or crafts.

Staten takes his commitment into the community. He solicits businesses for donations for special events. Pre-pandemic, he invited speakers into his classroom. Now, he has them join by Skype. Although he’s not a math teacher, he helped create a commercial to promote a math contest and got local businesses to sponsor and donate prizes.

“He loves promoting positive things happening in and around his school community, such as student successes after winning contests. He likes to make his school look good!” Rainwater said.
“I would like to also thank my three children for encouraging me to do better and my wife for allowing me to spend a little extra money and a little extra time for our students and never allowing me to give up when I felt it was too much,” Staten said. “Finally, I would like to thank the awesome students at Man Middle School for working so hard during these trying times!”

WVPB Education Director Kelly Griffith said it was an honor to meet Staten and visit with students from Man. “Mr. Staten is one of those teachers a student never forgets,” Griffith said. “I immediately recognized his kindness toward his students as well as his dedication to their success. His teaching style makes learning enjoyable and his use of educational technology was a big hit! It was an honor to meet him and visit his classroom. We appreciate his efforts and thank him for all his hard work.”

Donetta Rainwater, a fellow teacher/administrator, nominated Staten. She said he goes above and beyond the call of duty especially during “this confusing time of miscommunication and technology difficulties.” Well-versed in several applications, Staten helps other teachers in the county learn them, even making step-by-step video tutorials for his colleagues.

Darlene Dingess-Adkins, assistant superintendent of Logan County Schools, was on hand for the assembly and awards presentation. “I want to extend my appreciation for the commitment that West Virginia Public Broadcasting has made to support education in West Virginia,” Dingess-Adkins said. “The efforts that your team has made to support and recognize outstanding teachers are amazing! We are proud of Mr. Garron Staten and his outstanding work with the students at Man Middle School and look forward to the continued work of WVPB.”

To nominate an outstanding West Virginia teacher, visit and look for the blue Above And Beyond apple logo on the right side.
West Virginia Public Broadcasting’s new summer-long series, “Closing the COVID Gap,” will explore this challenging road ahead for educators, students and families as they work together to close the learning gap created by the pandemic.
Important Changes Coming To PBS LearningMedia Dashboard Tools
On June 30, PBS LearningMedia will retire three of its longstanding, but infrequently used, teacher tools — Storyboard, Quiz Maker and Puzzle Builder. These tools are available to registered users on the platform and allow them to create custom activities for students. At WVPB, we are committed to offering quality experiences for educators. For the next several weeks, you will be able to download the materials you created with these tools before they are removed. Please download any materials created with these retiring teacher tools by June 30. To download your resources, please follow these instructions:
  • Go to quiz maker, story builder or puzzle builder
  • Click the ellipsis under the "Options" column
  • Click "Download Assignment"
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This year, amid growing protest movements against racial inequalities and police brutality, Juneteenth is receiving more attention than ever, including greater state-by-state recognition, businesses granting days off, and a push to make June 19 a federal holiday.
West Virginia History: Camp Washington Carver
Camp Washington-Carver, located at Clifftop in Fayette County, West Virginia, is a beautiful retreat listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Each season features events chosen to preserve the arts and traditions of yesterday while perpetuating those of today. The facility nurtures the cultural heritage embodied in the site since its dedication in 1942 as a 4-H camp for West Virginia's African American youth. Programs like the African American Heritage Arts Camp and the Appalachian String Band Festival, along with the camp's Great Chestnut Lodge, the largest log structure of its kind in the world, make this site a favorite place for Mountain State festivities. READ MORE.

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