State Superintendent Visits Garrett County Schools

Last Updated on Mar 18, 2015 at 3:27pm

Dr. Lillian Lowery, State Superintendent of Schools, visited Garrett County on Wednesday, March 18, to view the cutting edge educational practices taking place, with a special emphasis on STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics). Garrett County has developed STEM programs that are designed to strengthen workforce and economic development.

Dr. Lowery was accompanied by Ms. Cindy Hasselbring, Special Assistant to the State Superintendent, Mr. John L. White, Chief of Staff in the Office of the State Superintendent, and Dr. Janet Wilson, Superintendent of Garrett County Public Schools.

Dr. Lowery visited Swan Meadow School, where she participated in a STEM lesson using Legos with Mrs. Erica Foley’s class of 3rd, 4th, and 5th graders. Several members of the FIRST 1629 Robotics Team, along with Mr. Chuck Trautwein, computer resource teacher, presented the activity which led to the creation of a top spinner. Mrs. Liz Gilbert’s 6th – 8th grade class, gave a presentation to Dr. Lowery involving their participation in the Cherry Creek Stream Restoration project. The project involved the class working in collaboration with the State Highway Administration. In the restoration project, the class indicated the importance of using plants native to Garrett County; ones that would grow strong and survive the extreme weather conditions. The plants would also provide food and habitats for wildlife.
State School Superintendent at Swan Meadow School
Pictured above: Front - Travis Martin and Isaiah Duff
2nd row –Mrs. Liz Gilbert, Dr. Lillian Lowery, Dr. Janet Wilson, Victoria Kauffman, Kalei Kauffman, Judy Peachey, Keaton Beachy, Lauren Quinn and Mrs. Fratz.
3rd row – Mr. John L. White, Ms. Cindy Hasselbring, Alayna Beckman, Christy Beckman, Sam Robinetter, Ben Duff, Jesse Helmuth, Michael Yoder, and Landon Custer

State School Superintendent at Swan Meadow School.
Pictured above: Dr. Lillian Lowery, Ms. Cindy Hasselbring, and Mason Smith, 4th grade student.

Next, Dr. Lowery visited Crellin Elementary School. She viewed the school’s Sunshine Farm. Several students informed the Superintendent of their engineering skills that helped to solve a problem in the agricultural barn. Each evening a teacher or parent had to return to the school barn to close the chicken door. This ensured that the chickens were safe from nocturnal animals and were protected from the weather. The students decided to build an automatic chicken door that would be set on a timer and open and close like a garage door. Students also shared with Dr. Lowery their electronic blogs they publish using the computers.
State School Superintendent with Crellin School students

Pictured above: Row 1: Alayna Savage, grade 4; Abigail Butina, grade3; Alexis Shaffer, grade 4; Dr. Lillian Lowery; Kira Rinker, grade 4; and Carly Friend, grade 4.
Row 2: John L. White, Cindy Hasselbring, Dr. Janet Wilson, and Dr. Dana McCauley, Principal of Crellin School.
State School Superintendent at Crellin Schools Sunshine Farm

Pictured above: Emillie Baker, grade 5; Madison Inman, grade 5, and Dr. Lowery.
The GEARS building in Accident was Dr. Lowery’s final stop in Garrett County. Student team members and mentors of the GCPS High School FIRST Robotics Competition (FRC) Team 1629, demonstrated this year’s robot used in competition, discussed various aspects of robotics, and shared their vision for STEM education. The team invited her to attend the Chesapeake Regional competition in College Park (University of Maryland) in April and spend the day with them.
State School Superintendent and GCPS Superintendent with the robotics team
Pictured above: Front Row: Alexandra Miller, Dr. Lowery, Dr. Wilson, Abby Burdock, McKenna Fazenbaker, Ian Bramande, Pam Trautwein, and, Bethany Phillips.
Back Row: Chuck Trautwein, Cindy Hasselbring, John L. White, Matt Knauff, Titus Beitzel, Justin Hershberger, Josh Smith, Alex Meyer, Larry Friend, Lorie Burdock.
State School Superintendent with the robotics team

Pictured above: Ian Bramande, 11th grade at Southern High; Dr. Lillian Lowery; and Josh Smith, 10th grade at Northern High.

Dr. Lowery departed late morning to tour several facilities in Allegany County in the afternoon.
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