Hannah McLeod

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After multiple allegations of sexual harassment were made against him, Physical Education Teacher and Head Football Coach Chris Brookshire has resigned from his post at Tuscola High School in Clyde.

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Both Tuscola Principal Heather Blackmon and head football coach Chris Brookshire have been suspended from their positions at the school — though not on the same day, or even the same week. 

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The expansion of two local businesses in Jackson County, American Sewing Corporation and Innovation Brewing, will lead to the creation of 52 new jobs and over $5 million of investments in the county. 

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The Jackson County Tourism Development Authority will reopen a cycle for tourism capital projects at the start of the new year. Local businesses, nonprofits and governments can apply for funds for projects that will benefit visitors and residents alike.

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Last week, the Jackson County Planning Board reviewed plans for a major subdivision in the Qualla Township on the northern end of the county. The planning board is tasked with reviewing subdivision plans before the process can continue toward approval.

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This month, the Macon County Schools Board of Education voted to approve its 2022-23 Budget Resolution.

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Autopsy results for the June death of a man in custody at Jackson County Detention Center indicate that he died of a drug overdose and was able to engage in drug dealing activity while incarcerated.

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These rich, dark chocolate, thin mint cookies are not as heavy and filling as other holiday cookies. They serve as the perfect slice of holiday goodness for otherwise “average” December days. Each of which can, and should, be celebrated in their own little way.

On Monday evening, Dec. 5, before a room full of family and community members alike, three men took the oath of office as the newest members of the Jackson County Commission.

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Jackson County schools will once again expand its pre-K capacity at the start of the 2023-24 school year, this time with a second classroom at Smokey Mountain Elementary School in Whitter

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At a time when North Carolina faces a serious nursing shortage, Haywood Community College has invested in its nursing program with a new Health Sciences Building. Full of the latest educational technology, it will expand, enhance and modernize the nursing student experience, preparing the next generation for a career in healthcare.

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The Office of Charter Schools decided a recent dispute between Shining Rock Classical Academy and a parent is outside its jurisdiction in a decision released Monday, Dec. 5.

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As Swain County Schools digs into the 2022-23 budget, staff are planning for the largest fund balance allocation needed in recent years — over $1 million — to balance that budget. This is largely due to the discrepancy between state mandated pay increases for public school staff and state/federal funding levels.

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All students in Swain County elementary schools will receive free lunch this year with the help of a grant from the Dogwood Health Trust.

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Decisions about following through with the new Franklin High School project were always going to fall to a new board of commissioners made up of different members than those who occupied the seats when plans were first initiated.

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In a world mired with conflict and divisiveness, it can seem like there is little common ground to be found with the proverbial neighbor. But Patrick Schneider of Adamas Entertainment and Julia Freeman of REACH feel sure that if common ground is to be found anywhere, it most likely involves two of the most basic tenets of human nature — music and helping others within a community. 

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Sylva will not update the Streets and Sidewalks section of its code of ordinances to include a section on panhandling after most of the board and public spoke against such a measure during a Nov. 10 public hearing.

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The Jackson County Board of Elections held a public meeting Friday, Nov. 11, to inform the public about a misstep in the election night ballot counting process. Thanks to the audit that takes place between Election Day and canvass, the board of elections had found the mistake and accounted for it early Wednesday morning.

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This month, the Jackson County Board of Commissioners took the next steps toward capital improvement and construction projects for parks in Qualla/Whittier and Cashiers.

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With the help of the Jackson County Municipal Grant, Sylva may soon be able to implement a Sylva Art Walk. 

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For those of you who read Rumble, you may have noticed the uptick in naked women painted across the artwork that adorns the top of the newsletter each week. For those of you who don’t, well, perhaps you’re more interested now. That’s how the world works, after all. 

Lily Seymour has been asked to join the State Board of Education as a student advisor. The Haywood County student’s appointment comes after hard work on other local and state advisory boards. During a recognition at the Nov. 3 Haywood County School Board meeting, Haywood County Schools administration sang her praises.

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For the fifth time in eight years, and the second time since July, someone has died while incarcerated at the Jackson County Detention Center.

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The latest development in the Leandro v. The state of North Carolina court case came last week when the North Carolina Supreme Court ruled that state officials can be ordered to transfer the funds necessary to fully fund a sound basic education to the state’s k-12 public schools.

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Ted Budd has beat Cheri Beasely to become the next senator for North Carolina. 

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In another tight race for Jackson County, Republican Doug Farmer has come out on top of the race for sheriff. 

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Stephanie Hyder Laseter and Diedre Kaye Breeden will join the Macon County School Board after winning elections for their respective districts. 

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With all precincts reporting, the race for Jackson County Commission is too close to call. Results will not be official until certified by the board of election. 

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All three incumbents in the race for Haywood County School Board will return to their seat on the board alongside one newcomer. 

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With all precincts reporting, unofficial results show Republicans R.L. Taylor and Lisa Loftis have won seats on the Swain County Board of Education. These Republican candidates beat out Democrats Jamie Fisher and incumbent Travis Hyatt. 

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When Western Carolina University Professors Katie Allen and Cyndy Caravelis approached Sylva Police Chief Chris Hatton with a proposal for a Community Care pilot program, using social work interns in the police department he was understandably skeptical. Crisis response involving a student intern seemed like a risk he was not willing to take.

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Macon County Commissioners approved a slew of capital improvement projects totaling almost $10 million during a joint meeting with the board of education Oct. 18. However, all members were not in agreement about approving the spending.

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The Macon County Board of Commissioners and Board of Education have authorized architectural firm LS3P to submit designs for the new Franklin High School to local and state agencies for review, the next step in a multi-year process toward a new facility.

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I am standing in my warm, dimly lit living room clutching a hot mug, scowling at the frostbitten ground outside, blanketed with air that has yet to feel the sun's warmth, when my black cat pounces onto the rocking chair on the porch. She jolts me out of my reverie and I spill coffee on socks that don’t match. She balances precariously on the top rung of the chair as it rocks back and forth with the sudden momentum of her scrawny body. Yellow-green eyes find me through the glass and a pointed meow reminds me of what I should have already known — she is hungry and cold. 

A parent at Shining Rock Classical Academy has filed an official complaint about discipline at the school with the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.

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Sylva plans to hold a public hearing on a panhandling ordinance after residents raised concerns about its growing prevalence at the Asheville Highway, NC 107 intersection during an August meeting.

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Earlier this school year, Haywood County Schools Superintendent Dr. Bill Nolte declared his impending retirement. Shortly thereafter, the school board announced it had selected his replacement, Associate Superintendent Dr. Trevor Putnam. Now, the school system has chosen which administrators will fill in the positions left open down the chain of command.

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Sylva has taken the next step in the long process of repairing Allen Street after slope failure destroyed parts of the road early in 2020. 

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The race for United States Senate in North Carolina has been dubbed a sleepy one, but with Election Day now just three weeks away, things are heating up and both candidates are ramping up the attacks.

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Last week I spent a four days biking across North Carolina with family and friends. It was an incredible chance to challenge the mind and body. We saw the rural areas of the state that are tucked far off our major highways, explored small towns we would otherwise be unlikely to visit and were almost exclusively out of doors for four days and nights — a rare opportunity in this day in age. 

Smoky Mountain Aquatic Club has not one, but two new coaches at the helm that know a thing or two about swimming, leadership and working together. The newly married couple, Dan and Sydney McGuire took the reins of the now 20-year-old team this September.

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Public schools have grappled with constant change over the last several years due to the impacts of COVID-19.

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Unique among the Smoky Mountain News’ four county coverage area, the Swain County School Board is a partisan-elected board. This election cycle there are four candidates competing for two seats. One is currently held by Travis Hyatt, a Democrat, who is seeking reelection. The other is held by Kim Carpenter who is not seeking reelection.

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On the heels of new academic data showing Haywood County Schools ranking seventh among the state’s 115 districts, school board elections will bring four seats before voters.

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This year, Macon County Schools began the process of building a new high school. The Franklin High School that exists now has been there since the 1950s and current plans are for the new school to be built on the same site, through a multi-year process of demolition and construction.

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As part of its public art initiative, Sylva will host a large, interactive cat sculpture in Bridge Park this fall and winter, after which the Sylva Art + Design Committee will find a more permanent home for the feline.

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In the face of a housing shortage and increased competition for employees, the Town of Sylva has updated its policy that allows police officers a take-home vehicle. The board also decided that in the future, updates to this policy would not have to come before the board but would be an administrative decision made within the police department. 

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Amaya Hicks, Swain County High School senior and captain of the women’s cross country, basketball, indoor and outdoor track teams, came before the Swain County Board of Education on Sept. 12 with a unique, albeit impressive problem. She and her peers had won so many state championships over the last several seasons that the teams were having trouble raising enough money for the state championship rings. 

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As a plant-predominant eater, lentils are a staple of my diet. With protein and carbohydrates, plus plenty of vegetables, this bulgur lentil salad is perfect for weekday lunches. It is also particularly appropriate for fall because it can be eaten warm when the weather is brisk, or cold on the days when summer weather lingers in the air. The creaminess of greek yogurt or feta cheese is a great topping for the dish. 

With the impending retirement of Jackson County Sheriff Chip Hall, two candidates will compete for the seat this fall in the General Election. While their careers and background vary greatly, both men have vast experience in law enforcement.

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