We are excited to announce a new segment that we are starting this morning and will continue throughout the entire school year. It's called "Cool Schools." Russell Biven and Mike Witcher will be live at a different East TN school every Wednesday highlighting what's "cool" about that school. Every school is different-- they each have something unique to them. So let's find out what that is!
Sarah Moore Greene Magnet Academy
Russell visited with School Principal Dr. Amy Brace to talk about the cool things happening at this school. They've got a morning news broadcast that goes live at 7:33 a.m., a newly added disc golf course that a PE teacher worked to add, a Leader in Me Program that teaches students leadership skills and goal setting and a community schools program that offers supports for families. Want to see it all for yourself? Watch the video below.
Cedar Bluff Elementary School
Russell and Mike were at Cedar Bluff Elementary on August 22 to see what's happening-- and boy, do they have a lot going on! Russell got called to Principal Keith Cottrell's office, it was the first day of kindergarten and we got a look at the lunch menu. And this cool school has a totally cool student named Hannah Spradling, whose love of reading got her an invite to dine with the Governor in Nashville.
A post shared by Mike (@mikewitcher_tv) on Aug 22, 2018 at 2:42am PDT
Thanks for hanging out with us this morning (and for taking over for Russell when he got called to the Principal's office..)!
Copper Ridge Elementary School
While Russell went to school on August 29, Mike was "playing hooky." It's ok, though, because Russell got to interview School Principal Jennifer Atkins about what's going on at the Cool School. They've got a morning news team that announces the lunch menu and recites the pledge, as well as an awesome Girls on the run team that promotes both running and confidence for girls-- and they've got an awesome pump-up song. Want to see them perform the song and dance for yourself? Watch the video below.
Dogwood Elementary School
Russell went to check out Dogwood Elementary on September 5-- and the students there showed him a thing or two! Russell jumped in to a bucket with Principal Lana Shelton-Lowe, it was house spirit day for the kids and, last but certainly not least, we got to take a look at the lunch menu. Watch the video below to see Russell get schooled at an anchor desk and do a disco dance.
Northwest Middle School
On September 12, Russell went to his first middle school of the school year! He got to hang out with some kids, saw some cheerleaders and got to talk to teach, as well as the principal. Watch the video below to see his whole visit!
Blue Grass Elementary School
Russell and Mike went to explore Bluegrass Elementary and saw quite a bit of the school on September 18. They learned from the pros about how to put together a great morning news show, saw a STEM lab in action and spoke with Principal Brian Cantrill, who's seen a thing or two, including the school's roof for a coupon challenge. And Mike even played dodgeball with the kids! Watch the video below to see all the fun they had at this Cool School.
Spring Hill Elementary School
Russell, well, he was never early to school growing up.. but on September 26, he was bright-eyed and bushy-tailed at Spring Hill to interview Principal Beth Lankey, look at some traditions of the school like the 5th grader basketball game, and how they're taking steps forward too with their STEM program. Watch the video below to see the kids show off their robotics skills.
Karns Elementary School
Russell strolled on over to Karns Elementary on October 3 to check out what cool things this school has in store. He checked in with Principal Shay Siler, took a look at the beautiful murals painted on the ceiling, got chased by the safety patrol and joked with 10News Anchor Heather Waliga about her own Karns days, checking out her yearbook photo in the library.
Beaumont Magnet Academy
Russell went to check in on Beaumont on October 17, which just celebrated the grand opening of the new Beaumont Arts Playspace back in May. Cheryl Burchett, one of the school's art teachers, won a $100,000 grant to transform an unused place into a work of art in 2016. And, well, Russell also got sent to the principal's office... again. This time though, it was with Principal Windy Clayton. Check it out.
Sterchi Elementary School
Russ hit the road to check out Sterchi's stock, October 24's Cool School. He got a tardy, spoke with the principal, learned about the details of "reflex math" from some enthusiastic (and not-so-enthusiastic) students, but also still fit in some fun and games with the safety patrol kiddos, along with more antics during his visit. Watch the video below to learn just what reflex math entails... from the students themselves!
Kenny and Dolly take Cool Schools! 10News Anchors Abby Ham and Russell Biven dressed up for this Halloween edition of Cool Schools as Dolly and Kenny, and they had some pretty realistic costumes! The teachers and kids dressed up in their Halloween best too, with a pirate and a knight a few of the costumes among them! Check out the costumes in the video below.
West View Elementary
School might have been out on November 6 for Election Day, but Russell made sure to start the next day with a bang at this cool school, speaking with students, checking out the cafeteria and learning about all the different things students do there.
Farragut Middle School
On November 14, Russell went to see what was happening with this cool school's symphony and how they were preparing for the holiday season. He even spotted one of the other anchors hanging off a Christmas tree... And then he got called in to the principal''s office. Check it out below!
Rocky Hill Elementary School
On November 28, Russell went to check out this cool school's holiday decorations and preparations. The students were filled with Christmas cheer and the holiday spirit in the school's Candy Cane Cottage, where students can go buy presents for their loved ones and all the money spent goes back into their school. Russell also got to see the school's drone attempt to place a star atop a Christmas tree. Did it succeed? Check out the video below.
Adrian Burnett Elementary School
Russell had a few days off from work, but he was back in school on December 5 hanging out at Adrian Burnett. He got to check out the holiday decorations for their big international holiday tour, with the halls decked out to represent all different kinds of celebrations and holidays from around the world for the season. He practiced his German, spoke with the principal and learned a bit more about this school. Check it out.
Lonsdale Elementary School
We switched things up for our final Cool Schools before the holiday break, and sent reporter Leslie Ackerson to Lonsdale Elementary School instead of Russell.
As soon as she arrived she was blown away by the beautiful display of Christmas lights outside the entrance! Principal Christopher Deal said community group Thrive put up the decorations at their school and other homes nearby to brighten up the community.
With no buses, students at the school all walk or are dropped off by family, and the colorful array greets them as they start their day.
"It doesn't matter what you celebrate, but the lights bring positive energy and lift the kids spirits," Principal Deal said. "They know they are coming into a safe environment."
Leslie enjoyed listening to the students show off their talents on the bucket drums, meeting the robotics team, hula-hooping in the gym, and joining in as the students sang "Happy Birthday" to Mr. Deal!
Carter Middle School
Winter break has come to a close for Knox County students, and they're back in school... and so is Russell! He joined forces with Meteorologist Mike Witcher to head to this cool school and ring in the new year. And they were joined by Tucker Riley, an 8th grader who hopes to be a weatherman just like Mike one day. And he told Mike he was going to test his hand at it. What do you think about his performance in the video below? Plus, they spoke with principal and got a special performance from the cheerleaders, too.
Gibbs Elementary School
Russell took a trip to Corryton on January 16, 2019, to check out what's happening in the new year at Gibbs Elementary. He got to test out some new moves and shoot hoops with the kids and adults, and heard from the peer mentors about their role in the classroom, too. Plus-- everybody did the "YMCA" for his 'grand finale.' Check it out below!
10News Today will continue to update this story every week with our visits to each school!