Archery Comes to Piney Woods

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

Piney Woods has given birth to its first all-black outstanding archery team. February 12th marked the students’ first game, a contest against St. Joseph.

With nerves and arrows quivering, the two teams eventually made it through the 10 and 15-meter rounds. The Piney Woods team competed with gusto and put up quite a fight in their first match of the season.

Since the beginning of the season, the team has squared off against Lawrence County and in the Enterprise County Tournament.

With one final tournament looming at the end of the month, the team has continued to practice diligently.

Teamster Union Sponsors Make Annual Visit – Slywenda Geeston

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

On an academic Saturday, The Piney Woods school had the absolute pleasure of being visited by our annual teamster union sponsors. These dedicated persons provided career and life skills

advice to our male and female students, and they each gave out personal details and descriptions under the efforts of their union positions.

We at The Piney Woods school, specifically Slywenda Geeston, Aliana Parker, and Akia Terry, were allowed to present a summary of what was discussed during the afternoon session.

Overall, The Piney Woods School greatly appreciates our Teamsters sponsors, for they have given us so much heart by the work of their head and hands.

Staff Spotlight: Jordon Hillhouse, English Teacher

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

Mr. Jordan Hillhouse is originally from Terry, Mississippi. He attended Mississippi College in Clinton, MS, for his undergraduate studies and earned his master’s degree at Alcorn State University.

Teaching isn’t just a job for Mr. Hillhouse, it’s a passion to help others learn. He stepped into teaching after being dissatisfied with his last job. Despite it being a great job, Mr. Hillhouse didn’t feel as if he was helping anyone. He doesn’t have to worry about that now because in teaching, you get to see the fruits of your labor displayed in the students’ understanding of the content.

Alaina Parker – Piney Woods School Senior

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

Alaina Parker is a senior at The Piney Woods School. With needle and thread in hand, she can knit anything she chooses. With her goals set on an upstate culinary arts school in either New York or Rhode Island, she is definitely going places.

Originally, from San Antonio, Texas, Alaina has attended Piney Woods all four years of high school. She plans to open her own business in the future. She is a member of the Legacies of Grace, Cotton Blossom Singers, and archery team. With a well-rounded schedule, Alaina has thrived during her time at PWS.

Alumni Spotlight – Maya Riddles

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

Ms. Maya Riddle is currently enrolled at Berea College in Berea, Kentucky, where she was named Miss Homecoming 2018-2019. She graduated from The Piney Woods School in 2016. She attended PWS throughout her high school career. She is a health studies major, with plans to apply and enroll in a direct Master’s in Nursing program.

After her first year, she’ll be a registered RN; and after her second year, she’ll be working as a Nurse Practitioner in whatever field she selects. Ultimately, Ms. Riddle plans to become a nurse; however, currently, she wants to start out in the public policy and public health sector.

Adjusting from Piney Woods to Berea was easy because Ms. Riddle was accustomed to being away from home and living in a dormitory. Academically, it was a bit more challenging to adjust because she underestimated the challenge of Berea’s academics. She struggled her first semester, but the second semester she was able to “jump on the train and kept rolling.”

Ms. Riddle is originally from Atlanta, Georgia. Her journey has taken her from Atlanta to Piney Woods to Kentucky. She hasn’t stopped to look back. She had her heart set on attending Baylor in Texas, but she wasn’t accepted into the school. Understandably, she was sad about not getting into the school of her choice. Dr. Crossley actually caught her crying outside. At that time, she informed him that she wasn’t going to school anymore. The next day, Ms. Riddle went to Dr. Crossley’s office, where he and Ms. Sheria Smith sat her down and told her that she was going to go to school.

Ms. Smith actually encouraged her to apply to Berea, basically telling her that she would be challenged intellectually. Berea not only accepted her--they offered her a full scholarship!

Ms. Riddle’s fondest Piney Woods memory was meeting the 44th President of the United States of America. The choir went to Washington D.C,. and she was able greet President Obama. Her second memory is of the very first Give From Your Heart Concert.

Ms. Riddle's motto is: "Anyone can find the dirt in someone. Be the one who finds the gold.” (Proverbs 11:27) Advice to the PWS Class of 2019: "You can make many plans, but the Lord’s purpose will prevail.” (Proverbs 19:21)

Piney Woods Hosts Blood Drive

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

The Piney Woods School held a blood drive on Tuesday, March 5, 2019. It started at 12:30 p.m. and ended at 5 p.m. Mississippi Blood Services was in the school parking lot to receive the blood donations.

Seniors who donate twice during the school year will receive a red cord to wear at graduation. All donors received a t-shirt.

Mississippi Blood Services (MBS) is a not-for-profit blood service, founded in 1979. Their mission is to provide a safe and adequate supply of voluntarily donated blood and blood components for patients in hospitals and to offer related services to our hospitals and other medical facilities.

MBS is the only FDA licensed blood center headquartered in Mississippi, created to manage the state’s blood supply. They service hospitals across the entire state.

MBS operates nine drawing centers across the State of Mississippi with distribution hubs in Jackson, Oxford and Greenville. MBS supplies a safe and adequate supply of blood and blood products to hospitals in Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas and Tennessee.

MBS is licensed by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), accredited by the American Association of Blood Banks (AABB), a founding member of Blood Centers of America, Inc. (BCA/hemerica), a member of America’s Blood Centers (ABC), and a member of the South-Central Association of Blood Banks (SCABB). – Caribbean

PWS Tennis Teams Off to a Great Start

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

The Piney Woods tennis teams began their season at the MSHAA/USTA Tournament in Ridgeland, Mississippi. The students did very well in the tournament. Rediet Gebray and Kenyata Gray won their second-round match against Lanier in Girls Doubles, 6-3.

Keishawn Deloney and Natnael Kebede won 2 sets of their match against Collins HS, 6-1. Kirubel Zebene stole the show with his athleticism and he won the hearts of several of the High School coaches, as they voted for him to receive the Outstanding All-Round sportsmanship award for the entire tournament. The selection entitled him to a prize and a photo opportunity.

Temesgen Aimro won the last match of the tournament, 6-1, against a Meridian team. Keishawn Deloney was nominated for two sports awards for his abilities on the tennis court.

This tournament was a good start to the season. Piney Woods is sponsoring both varsity and junior varsity teams this year. Rebecca J.

-Beattie, Ph.D.

Boys’ Basketball Season Ends Shy of State Championship

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

The Piney Woods boys’ basketball team preformed as a dream team the entire season. For every win and loss, they played as a cohesive unit. Finishing the season with an overall record of 16-6, the Tornadoes had their eyes focused on the MHSAA division 1A championship prior to falling 82-53 to East Marion.

How did they get here? PWS was 6-3 in divisional play. The season opened with a 79-62 loss to Simpson Academy. Shaking back, the team went on an eight-game winning streak. Leake County was able to gain two wins against Piney Woods, one from a forfeit and the other an 86-65 victory at Piney Woods.

The Nado Nation celebrated as the Tornadoes downed Yazoo City, 66-43, at the MLK Classic at Lanier High School. Returning to their own court, Piney Woods defeated Sebastopol 63-53. Stringer was able to clinch a 69-48 win over PWS. Ridgeland High School downed Piney Woods 55-43.

In the district playoffs, Piney Woods defeated Mount Olive 93-51 and Leake County 72-59 to claim the District Championship. In the playoff system, PWS hosted and defeated Sacred Heart 70-38 and Coffeeville 91-66. It was at East Marion that the season came to an end.

If Not Us, Then Who?

Christopher Windfield | Uncategorized

On Tuesday, February 19, The Piney Woods School was treated to an excellent play from a local theater troupe. New Stage Theater of Jackson presented If Not Us, Then Who? Freedom Rides to Freedom Summer. This original play with music chronicles two historic events that made an unforgettable impact on American history: 1961’s Freedom Riders and 1964’s Freedom Summer.

The play featured four talented actors: Cherry Rendel, Hayden Schubert, Sarah Coleman, and Jordan Williams and was expertly directed. The play revealed the harsh realities of the South Eastern United States during the Civil Rights Era and highlighted real American heroes who fought for the freedoms we all have today.

In 1961, thirteen “Freedom Riders” began a journey to fight racial segregation. In 1964, Mississippians and out-of-state volunteers alike organized “Freedom Summer,” a massive voter registration drive to give African Americans a voice in politics. Interspersed with freedom songs from the movement, this production encourages us to remember that America is at her best when we are working for the common good of all her citizens. Featuring stories from famous participants like Fannie Lou Hamer and Senator John Lewis, as well as lesser-known heroes like James Zwerg and Diane Nash, this play recounts the lives of these brave folks whose bold actions continue to inspire us all. If Not Us, Then Who? is best suited for middle and high school audiences.

New Stage Theatre is Mississippi’s professional not-for-profit theatre. Winner of the 2019 Governor’s Awards for Excellence in Theatre, the education program tours throughout Mississippi and has a strong reputation for presenting entertaining and educational shows that elevate students’ literary knowledge and problem-solving skills. The New Stage Arts-in-Education touring program is sponsored by Entergy Mississippi, The Selby and Richard McRae Foundation, The Chisholm Foundation, and the Fountain Family Foundation.

PWS would like to thank Ms. Miller and Mrs. Crossley for arranging this incredible event, as well as Sharon Miles, who serves as an education director at New Stage.