‘What our kids need’: no cost meals in WNC schools

Every student in Haywood and Jackson County Schools can expect no cost breakfast and lunch in the coming school year, and Macon County is not far behind in meeting that mark as well. 

Woody joins Jackson Board of Education

The Jackson County Board of Education will look a little different at its next meeting after Chair Elizabeth Cooper departed and incoming board member Gayle Woody was sworn in last month. 

SCC Foundation sets date for 10th annual fundraising gala

Ten years ago, the Southwestern Community College Foundation launched a bold new effort to create a fundraising event that everyone in Western North Carolina could enjoy and get behind. That first year was a challenge. 

Highlands lecture on rare bird, habitat

The Highlands Biological Foundation (HBF) invites the community to the next installment of its Zahner Conservation Lecture series at 6 p.m. on Thursday, July 18. 

Macon reaches high school sports decision

The Macon County School Board has voted to require students to play high school sports at the school where they are enrolled beginning in the 2025-26 school year, meaning Macon Early College and Bartram Academy students will no longer be eligible for athletics at Franklin High School. 

Greeley appointed to UNC Board of Governors

The Western Carolina University Board of Trustees will have a bit of a different look at its next meeting. 

Kathryn Greeley, chair of the board, has been appointed to the University of North Carolina Board of Governors effective immediately.

Let’s get real about ‘school choice’

There are some things John Hood (SMN, May 29) and his ilk don’t want you to think about in their relentless promotion of “school choice” and “educational freedom” — their feel-good euphemisms for the transfer of your taxpayer dollars to private, church-related and “charter” schools. Hood, who pops up everywhere these days, is a paid mouthpiece for the libertarian-conservative and free-market agenda of Art Pope (remember him?) — and it shows. 

Nantahala Health Foundation launches grant cycle to benefit youth

Nantahala Health Foundation will launch its next competitive grant opportunity on July 1 with a focus on investing in educational, healthcare and workforce programs that benefit youth and young adults, ages 5 to 24. 

SCC recognizes OTA graduates

The newest members of the Occupational Therapy Assistant program recently celebrated their completion of Southwestern Community College’s program with family and friends at SCC’s Jackson Campus. 

Macon passes budget with adjustments

After several lengthy discussions, Macon County Commissioners approved the fiscal year 2024-25 budget by a split vote with a couple of last-minute changes to the proposed document. 

Smokey Mountain News Logo
Go to top
Payment Information


At our inception 20 years ago, we chose to be different. Unlike other news organizations, we made the decision to provide in-depth, regional reporting free to anyone who wanted access to it. We don’t plan to change that model. Support from our readers will help us maintain and strengthen the editorial independence that is crucial to our mission to help make Western North Carolina a better place to call home. If you are able, please support The Smoky Mountain News.

The Smoky Mountain News is a wholly private corporation. Reader contributions support the journalistic mission of SMN to remain independent. Your support of SMN does not constitute a charitable donation. If you have a question about contributing to SMN, please contact us.