Jan. 07, 2013 @ 03:01 PM

Willow Oak Montessori charter school signs lease, plans sessions
PITTSBORO – The new Willow Oak Montessori charter school, expected to open in August, now has a three-year lease with the Bold Building in Governors Village in northeast Chatham County.
The school’s board of directors continues to negotiate for 15 acres of land closer to Pittsboro for a more permanent campus to house the school and pre-kindergarten program.
The school is hosting information sessions for families who might want to enroll first-, second- and third-grade students at Willow Oak during the first year. The school will add a grade each year up to eighth grade. The first session will be Jan. 13 from 2 to 4 p.m. at the Bold Building. The second will be Feb. 9 from 3 to 5 p.m. at the Chatham Community Library.
For information, visit the school’s website at
Nominations sought for Teaching Chair Awards
CHAPEL HILL – The Chapel Hill-Carrboro Public School Foundation seeks nominations for two awards of $1,000.
Two Teaching Chair awards are slated this year: the Upper Elementary Chair for Excellence in Teaching Innovation and the Zora Rashkis Chair for Excellence in Teaching Middle School Language Arts.
Colleagues, parents, students and community members may nominate, but are asked to comment on at least one of three criteria: how the nominee ignites enthusiasm for learning, how the nominee creates an exceptional learning environment for all students and how the nominee is a role model.
Submit nominates to the PSF via the awards website at Printed forms should also be available at the front office of each school. Nominations must be submitted by Jan. 31.
For information, contact Judy Jones at
Holocaust essay contest entries due in February
DURHAM – The Durham-Chapel Hill Jewish Federation is sponsoring a Holocaust essay contest that’s intended to make high school students, regardless of heritage, think about those events and what implications they have for the world today and in their own lives.
The contest is made possible by the Penny Daum Aldrich Endowment Fund for Holocaust Remembrance of the Jewish Community Foundation of Durham-Chapel Hill.
Students can research an individual from the Holocaust, examine a specific location, explore a specific event or compare an event during the Holocaust to a current event.
First and second prizes will be awarded, with $250 and $125 respectively. Essays should be no longer than 1,200 words. Entries must be sent no later than Feb. 15, 2013. Email entries to or mail to Holocaust Essay Contest c/o Sam Norton, 1937 W. Cornwallis Road, Durham, NC 27705.
For information, call 919-354-4953 or email
New learning challenge launched for Durham, Chapel Hill and Raleigh
The new Belk Service Learning Challenge, a collaboration of Belk, Discovery Education and the International Society for Technology in Education, encourages middle students to improve communities by taking on service-learning projects.
The challenge is open to all middle school students within 50 miles of Durham, Chapel Hill and Raleigh. Students work in teams of two to four with a teacher/mentor and identify a community issue, research, create an action plan, implement the plan and reflect on their service by submitting an electronic portfolio that tells their story.
Entries are due by March 14, 2013. Grand prize for the top team is a $1,000 scholarship per student team member and a $250 teacher award. Second place gets $500 scholarships and a $100 teacher award.
For information, visit

Got news for Class Notes? Send information to K-12 education reporter Wes Platt at Call 919-419-6684. Follow on Twitter at @wplattheraldsun. Connect on Facebook at