Thursday, April 20, 2000
Vol. 112 No. 16
AX O (AN *
ee Wo y
bv to be honored
at Friends of
Scouting dinner 7A
BY ALAN HODGE
Students need more than a
sharp pencil and a highliter to
do their work - they need moti-
vation, preparation and focused
attention just to name a few
When a student uses drugs
these things are often left by the
wayside. When a student at-
tends class under the influence
of drugs, the effects are felt not
only by the student, but by the
class as a whole, making the ar-
gument that drug use is a vic-
timless crime a little less valid.
It is not uncommon to see
changes in grade and behavior
patterns when a student begins
using drugs. According to the
U.S. Department of Education,
regular marijuana users are
twice as likely to receive low
grades as their classmates,
which only proves the point
that classroom performance is
one of the first things to suffer.
= What the teachers have to
deal with depends on the stu-
dent’s drug of choice.
According to the dope, students
‘can be lethargic or wired up.
“~ In today’s education system,
where time is as valuable a
commodity as textbooks, many
educators believe that an indi-
vidual’s drug use can stop the
whole classroom from learning
because teachers must spend
their time tackling disciplinary
issues. The question arises,
what can be done?
The U.S. Department of
Education recommends that
school officials establish clear,
consistently enforced drug-use
policies that specify drug of-
fenses, consequences including
notification of police and proce-
Teachers are encouraged to
share their thoughts on drugs.
Remaining silent, they say,
gives students the appearance
of indifference or even ap-
! Kings Mountain High School,
like many other schools across
._the nation, has not shied away
“from this display of anti-drug
“We stay on top of the prob-
“lem,” says assistant principal
Students who do get caught
~with drugs or alcohol at Kings
“Mountain High get a 10 day
suspension. There is however, a
= way for these students to get
"the suspension reduced to three
_ days by taking part in a special
> Called SOBIR (Student
Option Beginning With
=. Intervention), the program is an
- alternative early intervention
branch of CODAP (Community :
Organization for Drug Abuse
- Prevention.) CODAP is a non
~ profit group housed at the
Cleveland County Health
. Department. Carol Barr is pro-
“The SOBIR program begins
. with assessment and education
. of the student's problem,” Barr
said. “The student's parents al-
. so participate.”
© And while the teachers and
“administration are working at
“schools throughout Kings
‘Mountain and Cleveland
. County to stop drug use among
.the student body, it’s the stu-
"dents themselves that often feel
“the most need to do something
.about the problem.
. That, according to some stud-
.ies, may be the best defense yet.
See Drugs, 3A
; ALAN HODGE / THE HERALD
About 150 protesters marched outside Malcolm Brown Auditorium ‘at Shelby High School in THE ns to.
school merger Tuesday evening. The march was peaceful yet boisterous in its opinion th i
Ma! Tisuay svomy pinion that schools in Cleveland
KM to appeal decision to state
and may seek court injunction
BY ALAN HODGE
What many folks had long consid-
ered a done deal became reality
Tuesday night when the Cleveland
County Board of Commissioners vot-
ed 4-1 to merge the county's three
school systems into one. Willie
McIntosh cast the lone dissenting
Reaction by the capacity crowd in
Malcolm Brown Auditorium at
Shelby High School was explosive
and angry. At least a dozen members
of the Shelby City police and
Cleveland County Sheriff's
Department guarded the auditorium
stage following the vote.
Kings Mountain District Schools
superintendent Bob McRae said an
appeal to the State School Board
would be forthcoming in response to
the vote. McRae also said that the po-
tential for further legal action existed.
A group of Kings Mountain parents
have also retained an attorney to rep-
resent their interests in the merger
The evening began with over 150
protest marchers picketing outside
the auditorium in opposition to
merger. Several carried brooms as
symbols of the “clean sweep” they
hoped would occur when the com-
missioners come up for reelection.
Prior to the actual vote, over 80 cit-
izens were given the chance to ex-
press their opinions on merger.
About 20 of that number favored the
“I support your move to improve
the quality of education in Cleveland
County,” said Chuck Earley of the
Cleveland County roundtable.
Jim Allen of the Cleveland County
Chamber legislative action committee
also gave merger his endorsement.
“I hope you will do what should
have been done a long time ago,”
Another citizen who spoke for
merger was John Barker.
“I commend you for what you
stand for,” Barker said. “This deci-
sion will move us forward.”
Another Shelby resident, Stough
ALAN HODGE/THE HERALD
Kings Mountain High School fresh-
man class president Wesley Griffin
was just one of over 80 people who.
addressed the Cleveland County
Board of Commissioners Tuesday
night regarding merger.
Wray, spoke for merger by telling the
commissioners they had “sacrificed a
lot” to vote in favor of merger.
The Shelby City Council also went
on record to support merger by issu-
ing a proclamation to that effect. The
resolution was read aloud by council
member Andrew Hopper.
Though these and a few other folks
spoke in favor « “merger, the vast
majority of pai. is, teachers, and stu-
dents at the meeting took their three
minutes each to lambaste the com-
missioners for their perceived lack of
concern of the will of the people.
Outbursts following these speeches
became so frequent and loud that
commission chairman Crawley
threatened to “clear the house,” and
“yote on it now,” if the crowd didn’t
Ron Humphries of Kings
Mountain accused the commissioners
of “trampling on the Constitution”
and “laying siege to the values of
democracy.” When Humphries told
fhe commissioners that they had
“awakened a sleeping giant” and
“don’t tread on us,” the crowd went
wild with fervor.
East Elementary School principal
Jerry Hoyle provided one of the most i
electric moments in the three-hour
brouhaha when he took commission- :
ers to taskover the fact that they
hadn't included educators in their
merger analysis report.
“You didn’t bother to listen to us,
you hired a lawyer,” Hoyle said to
loud cheers. “Joe Cabiness, would
you hire a doctor to study merger of
The crowning touch - literally- to
Hoyle’s impassioned words came
when he threw a paper Burger King
crown on the stage and invited
Crawley to crown himself monarch.
Kings Mountain school board
member Stella Putnam took her turn
at the podium to remind commis-
sioners of a potential sticking point in
their plans to merge. The possible
bugaboo is the fact that about 200
students who attend Kings Mountain i
schools actually reside in Gaston
County. Putnam reminded the com-
missioners of a 1976 decision by the
North Carolina attorney general rec-
ognizing the Gaston Country /Kings
Mountain Schools relationship. The
Kings Mountain schools plan to use
this strategy in their appeal to the
State Board of Education.
“Merger violates state law,”
Putnam said. “The attorney general's :
decision is legally and morally bind-
Many of the people who spoke at
Tuesday's meeting were concerned
parents and ordinary citizens who
felt that the interests of money had
overruled the interests of the chil-
dren. Their heartfelt pleas to the com- ;
missioners to stop the merger train
were eloquent in their simplicity.
“You are voting for merger because :
your business buddies in Shelby can’t }
sell real estate,” said Grace Costner.
Parent Lisa Sisk went to the speak-
er’s stand with one child on her hip
and one in tow:
“We are the common people,” Sisk
said simply. “You need to listen to
ns.t See Merger, 3A
shot at KM
Kings Mountain Police are investigating an ear-
ly-morning shooting Tuesday at Pine Manor
Apartments that left three men injured.
According to Investigator Lisa Proctor, three
black males were shot about 12:52 a.m. at
Apartment 82 at the apartment complex located
at 612 Charles Street.
According to police, when they arrived at the
scene they found that Chance Lipscomb of
Gastonia and Antonio Barnes of Shelby had been
shot. Lipscomb was taken to Kings Mountain
Hospital, and then transferred to Carolinas
Medical Center in Charlotte where he was treated
Barnes was transported to Gaston Memorial
Hospital and is listed in stable condition.
A Mazda 626 was seen leaving the area and
was later stopped by police, and the occupant,
Kuriowa Jones of Shelby, had also been shot.
Jones was taken to Cleveland Regional Medical
Center in Shelby, where he remains in ICU.
Proctor did not elaborate on a reason for the
shootings, but said that all three men are consid-
ered victims and not suspects.
Proctor said witnesses said “people were get-
ting together at the home.” She urges anyone
with information about the incident to call her at
According to Proctor, the men ranged in age
from 19 to 23.
list major issues
for the county
By GARY STEWART
Editor of The Herald
The primaries for the year 2000 elections are
scheduled for Tuesday, May 2 in Cleveland
Parties will nominate their candidates for the
November general election in several areas, in-
cluding the race for the Cleveland County Board
of Commissioners. In addition, residents of the
Cleveland County School District will elect three
members to its Board of Education in a non-parti-
The race drawing the most interest in the coun-
ty is the Board of Commissioners. Four persons -
incumbents Joe Cabaniss and Jim Crawley, and
Ronnie Hawkins and David Morrow - are seeking
the three Republican nominations. Eight citizens -
incumbent Joe Hendrick, and Mary Accor, Tom
Bridges, Ralph Gilbert Jr. Ken Jones, Kenneth
Ledford and William Bill Walker Jr - are seeking
the three nominations of the Democratic party.
Since all eyes are on the Commissioners’ race,
The Herald asked the candidates for the
Republican Party to list their top three campaign
issues. (The response of the Democratic candi-
dates will be published next week).
#1 - How the County Commissioners conduct
“I am not running solely on the school merger
issue. I am opposed to it, yes, but my concern is
how the commissioners went about it. No gov-
ernment should go about conducting its business
in‘that manner. There's no reason for a board of
commissioners to undertake a project of that
magnitude and turn this county upside down in
the manner that they've done it. It would have
i* been much easier to say ‘we're going to do an as-
sessment. We want the school boards to talk
about it, we want information’ and do it in a
manner where it doesn’t scare people; and have
the answers before they try to implement some-
thing like this. This is not a small undertaking.
They've fractured this county with the way
they've handled it. They've been so busy hiding
behind other organizations trying to promote
merger that they couldn’t come out in the open
and do it like they should have done it.”
“ Another issue coming out of this will be tax.
Taxes are very, very important to people. I honest-
ly believe the people are really upset by what this
See GOP, 3A
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