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Got J? We do!

Mr. Rob Jackson, UCPS Principal of the Year 2010-2011

Congratulations to Mr. Rob Jackson on being nominated and winning the Principal of the Year award for Union County. What an honor to have a principal at my school with such character to be nominated for and win the Principal of the Year award. I don’t know of a principal who is more deserving of this award; I’m sure my peers would agree.

Mr. Jackson accepted this astonishing award via “Skype” while he was in Denmark with Cuthbertson High School’s Sister school, Aarhus Katedralskole. Upon Jackson’s return to Cuthbertson, a warm welcome was given to him from students and staff.

I interviewed Mr. Jackson on October 14, 2010 to learn more about the process to becoming a Principal of the Year. Mr. Jackson explained the steps taken. “There are 53 principals in Union County,” he said. Each principal nominated someone who he/she thought would most likely live up to the high expectations. When I heard of this, it was no surprise to me why Mr. Jackson was nominated.

I believe, along with the students and staff of Cuthbertson High School, Mr. Jackson creates an environment in our school that makes us proud that we are known as the Cavaliers. We are no longer different pieces from all the other schools in the county; we have come together to form The Cuthbertson Cavaliers. Mr. Jackson has been the main catalyst behind this smooth transition and unifying process.

I asked Mr. Jackson what happens now that he has been named the Principal of the Year. He told me that he would compete in the regional competition. The regional winner would then compete at the state level; the state winner then competes at the national level. Student council representatives hope the selection committee comes to Cuthbertson to interview students and staff about Mr. Jackson. If I know our Cavaliers, like I think I do, we will make sure that everyone we possibly can knows about our principal of the year. After everything he has made happen for us, we would love to see him go far in something he truly deserves.

He really cares about each student and staff member individually, and it shows every day. From standing out front of the school every morning or walking around the school throughout the day, Mr. Jackson drives himself to connect with each individual and let each student and staff member know he is there for them. “ When I see someone smile at me, it makes me smile too; I just walk around smiling,” said Mr. Jackson.

I was so curious to find out why Mr. Jackson is so motivated and so caring. Never before have I seen someone care so much about the well-being and productivity of students as Jackson does. Mr. Jackson told me about his elementary school principal, Mr. Bill Williams. Mr. Williams gave Mr. Jackson a positive vibe every morning he got off of his school bus. Mr. Williams would shake Mr. Jackson’s hand and say, “You can do it Robby.” Mr. Williams provided that feeling that Mr. Jackson needed to succeed. He believed in himself. When times grew hard, Mr. Jackson would think about the positive message given to him by Mr. Williams. Someone believed in Mr. Jackson, and he would never forget it. This may be why Mr. Jackson himself carries on the hand shaking tradition. “His handshakes makes my day every morning,” commented junior Stephen Stickle.

The confidence Mr. Williams instilled in Mr. Jackson led him to become the first one in his family to go to college. Mr. Jackson wants to be that positive person that lets others know he is there for them and truly loves them. He claims the title of Principal of The Year but gives all the credit to the students and staff. I honestly believe without having a principal with such a great morals, work ethic, and determination that we wouldn’t have accomplished so much so early.
It is amazing what our school has already accomplished.

“Jackson really set the tone for Cuthbertson,” Social Studies Teacher Mr. Wayne Phaneuf said, referring to the planning of our high school. Mr. Phaneuf continued, “ I was very happy for Mr. Jackson when he was nominated for Principal of The Year. It was a well-deserved award. Mr. Jackson has always been there for me; he is very supportive on the job.” In Cuthbertson’s first year of operation we have achieved more than any other Union County Public School has; Cuthbertson became the only high school in Union County to become an International School and a North Carolina Honor School of Excellence. Cuthbertson High School has conquered more than I would have ever believed. I simply can’t grasp the concept that after one year of operation, the goals, the academic achievements, the success with sports teams; it’s just not normal. In my opinion Mr. Rob Jackson has been the best principal that any student or staff member could ask for. “ He is an awesome principal; he puts the students first. Mr. Jackson does everything he can for us,” said senior Kassi Mangum. Mr. Jackson has been Cuthbertson’s cheerleader for every single event. He is the one who makes us The Cavaliers. I know when I walk in the building every morning, I’m glad to be here. Not only does he establish a great learning environment, but he gives the students an opportunity to let their voices be heard. If the students are hard working and have their priorities in order, he is one happy man. He allows us to set the standard for future cavaliers.

Being a part of Cuthbertson’s first senior class has given us the opportunity to make our senior year our dream. It’s not a tradition that we are following, but a new one that the students have created. On graduation day; the moment we walk across that stage will be a moment that I will never forget. Graduation is a special moment where Mr. Jackson and myself will share a connection, not just taking a picture, receiving my diploma, and shaking Mr. Jackson’s hand. To me it is a time that will never be forgotten, and I will be honored to share that moment with him. I am proud to call him our Union County Public School Principal of the Year.


Written by: Derek Hoyle, senior, CHS Media Production class
Posted: Oct 18, 2010 by Ms. Paula White

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