Contributing Writer: Andrea Lopez, Theresa Coates Ellis | Images: CCN —
Manassas City Public School (MCPS) employees were all gathered at Convocation on Monday, August 25, to get ready for the new school year. The crowd was enthusiastic and eager in the auditorium of the Hylton Performing Arts Center.
Chick-fil-A, Liberia Ave., was the main sponsor this year. Sam Perez, Assistant Manager and George and Sandy Snyder, Store Owners, catered the event serving delicious chicken biscuits and burritos.
The employees were welcomed back by Ms. Almeta Radford, Public Communications Coordinator and Mr. Tim Demeria, MCPS School Board Chairman.
The N.E.S.T. Osbourn High School (OHS) Class of 2028 and Michala Stepler and Wilson Umaana, OHS Students participated in The Pledge of Allegiance and The National Anthem.
Theresa Coates Ellis, Tackle Management spoke about business and community connection. She also talked about CCN Manassas, Community Connection Network and their achievements so far. The CCN team was introduced and shared their school and community activities and their future plans beyond high school.
Ms. Diana Hahn, MCPS 2015 Agnes Meyer Teacher of the Year, spoke about experiences in teaching. After her speech a video started playing. It was video about performer Ethan Bortnick and his journey as an artist.
Ethan Bortnick is 14 years old and is recognized for being the world’s youngest solo musician to headline his own concert tour. Ethan has met a lot of famous people such as Oprah Winfrey and Elton John. He was the keynote event who performed for the teachers. It was exciting to see his talents.
Bortnick said, “I am honored to be performing for our teachers. Teachers are so important in a child’s life. They make a huge impact on who the child becomes when they are older.”
He asked for two volunteers and asked if they could play their phone ring tones. He combined the two ring tones and made a song called the “Manassas Sparkle.” After that he asked for the two volunteers to pick ten people each to come up to the stage. Twenty two people stood on the stage together and sang, “Lean On Me,” by Bill Withers. Bortnick left the crowd very upbeat.
Suzanne Westre Seaburg spoke about the MCPS Education Foundation’s role in the schools by offering student scholarships and teacher grants with their annual fundraisers.
Mr. Jeff Abt, Christina Goss, Caroline Wittenberg, Brandon Calandra, Megan Gleason, Luke Krizmanich, Elizabeth Owens, Tracy Misero, Lauren Funkhouser were a part of the PBIS Kickoff.
Ms. Pamela Cove, the MCPS 2015 Elementary Teacher of the Year, spoke to the crowd. Ms. Cove is a teacher at George C. Elementary School.
Dr. Catherine Magouyrk, MCPS Superintendent, was the last speaker. She concluded the ceremony with words of wisdom to start the new school year. She emphasized that every employee’s contribution is important to educate the students of the Manassas City Public Schools.
The Manassas City Public School employees singing “Lean On Me” with Ethan Bortnick: