Covid numbers trending down

Maumelle's Lindsey Gustafson talks PCSSD School Board, Founders Week at CAC continues, Karnawal starts Friday in Marche, Hornets at Shreveport for football tonight plus news and sports headlines

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The headlines

In a report issued Thursday morning, the Arkansas Center for Health Improvement said 161 public school districts in the state have Covid-19 infection rates of 50 or more new known infections per 10,000 district residents over a 14-day period, down from 189 last week. Read more by clicking ACHI report: Covid infection rates for school districts trending down

Sports headlines

MAUMELLE: Maumelle is no stranger to the road this season as the Hornets head to Shreveport, Louisiana for a game tonight against the Byrd Yellow Jackets. The Hornets are coming off a tight 34-32 loss at Vilonia last Friday and are now 1-2 on the season. Read more by clicking Hornets head to Louisiana to face Shreveport Byrd tonight

TONIGHT’S GAME

Natural State Sports will be streaming the game and click here to watch on YouTube. Coverage starts at 6:30 p.m. with the kicking off at 7 p.m.

NORTH LITTLE ROCKIt wasn't exciting but a win is a win and North Little Rock will take it as they beat Fayetteville, 14-7, on the road to improve to 2-0 on the season. North Little Rock now travels to West Memphis this Friday. Trip to West Memphis next for 'Cats

CACCentral Arkansas Christian shook off the rust from its opening loss and will welcome Mayflower to Mustang Mountain on Friday. This one was supposed to have been the season opener, but the Eagles had Covid complications, so the game was rescheduled for this week. Tommy Shoemaker’s Mustangs are 1-1 after falling to Riverview in a shocker, 41-7; and knocking off Carlisle last week, 55-46. By Donna Lampkin Stephens and read more by clicking Mustangs look to continue winning ways

Travs playing for keeps

The Arkansas Travelers are in the final week of the regular season and playing some of their best baseball.

With just four games left, as of Thursday morning, they have pulled into second place in the standings behind Wichita and ahead of Frisco, with the top two teams playing for the crown next week.

The championship series will be best-of-five with the second-place finisher hosting the first two games, with the remaining games at the first-place finisher.

So games would be Tuesday and Wednesday with Thursday off for travel with the series resuming on Friday and, if needed, the remaining two games would be Saturday, Sept. 25 and Monday, Sept. 26.

If games are played at Dickey-Stephens Park, tickets will be $1 for general admission, $6 for reserved seats and $8 for box seats.

  • BASEBALL ON BROADWAY is the weekly newsletter that spotlights the Arkansas Travelers. It is published on Monday and click the link above to give it a read.

Click headlines to read more

Moore on Maumelle: My Take 

Neal Moore is taking the week off.


Founders Week at CAC continues; Adams voted school's best football player

Central Arkansas Christian’s 50th birthday party continues this week at the school in North Little Rock.

The school opened on Sept, 13, 1971 at the Sylvan Hills Church of Christ with 156 students and Betty Murray as principal.

On Monday, the school celebrated Founder’s Day, while a talent show followed on Tuesday with a breakfast on Wednesday.

There’s junior high football tonight at Mustang Mountain and the big event will be Friday with the Backyard Birthday Bash.

Doug and Kathleen Freeman, considered the school’s founders, will be honored this Friday at halftime of the game between the Mustangs and Mayflower. After the game will be fireworks sponsored by Dr. Joel & Jennifer Smith  and McConnell & Sons Inc.

The Backyard Birthday Bash will be at the football practice field and tickets are $5 in advance.

For more information, click here and for a photo album, click here.

Schedule of events

  • Tonight: Home Athletics … Seventh grade and junior high football games against Stuttgart.

  • Friday: CAC’s Backyard Birthday Bash ... Join CAC for a community-wide outdoor celebration complete with food and live music prior to the football game and fireworks to follow. It starts at 5 p.m. at the football practice field, at 1 Windsong Drive. Tickets are $5 per person and a separate ticket is required for the game against Mayflower. 

Who was CAC’s best football player?

The answer to that question appears to be Joe Adams, now an assistant football coach at the school and a former wide receiver in the NFL.

Or at least that’s what Twitter thinks in a very informal poll seen below.

And it was a landslide for Adams, who got nearly 51 percent of the vote.

Other candidates, in order of finish, included:

  • Trent Morgan, now the boys basketball coach at Pulaski Academy, and described as the “most versatile” athlete at CAC, He had football and basketball scholarship offers as a Mustang and chose to play basketball at Harding

  • D.J. Williams a star at the University of Arkansas and another NFL alum

  • David Henson, a former all-state football player at CAC and multiple All-American at the University of Central Arkansas and who became the first Mustang in the NFL when he was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in 1992.

Some good suggestions rolled in on Twitter with former quarterbacks Jesse Gates and Jack Thomas, among others, getting mentioned.

As Kyle Sutherland of Rocktown Sports Media, said, "I frequently tell people Jesse is one of the better QBs in state history no one talks about. One of his many incredible plays was in the ‘04 semis, the ball was snapped over his head…he picked it up, juked out multiple defenders & turned a 15 yard loss into a 2-3 yard gain."

Ball, and video, don't lie.

Q&A with Maumelle's Lindsey Gustafson, PCSSD School Board

Lindsey Gustafson was, in August, appointed to the School Board of the Pulaski County Special School District to represent Maumelle.

Gustafson previously served on the advisory board for the school district from 2013 to 2016, when it was under state control, and is currently the associate dean of academic affairs at the Bowen School of Law at UALR, where she has worked since 1998.

Her undergraduate and law school degrees are both from Brigham Young University and she went to high school at the now-closed Oak Grove, that was replaced by Maumelle High School.

Gustafson, above, replaces Alicia Gillen Wilmoth, who resigned in July, and she will serve out Wilmoth’s term that ends in November 2022 as the appointment comes after the filing deadline for the school board election this fall.

Below is a lightly edited transcript of an interview with Gustafson from Tuesday before her first School Board meeting that night.

Being an attorney, and a law school dean, you bring some unique insight into both legal issues and teaching. How do you think that will help you on the board as well as providing guidance and leadership to the district?

I obviously cannot act as the Board's attorney -- I’'m not licensed in Arkansas -- but it is helpful to understand both the law and the value of good teaching. I appreciate good teachers every day, both in my work at the law school and as a parent. 

Looking back, what was your personal biggest achievement in that capacity?

If you are talking about my job teaching, my biggest challenge every year is helping every student succeed, and when that happens it is my most significant achievement. Every student needs to be diagnosed so that we, as teachers, can help that student progress. It is immensely satisfying to be part of the learning process. 

What was, to you, the biggest achievement made by the district?

I'm not sure I can answer this yet. As a parent, I've paid the most attention to the training, support, and retention of good teachers. 

Now that you are on the Board, what do you hope to see the district do this school year as well as what you hope to see in the future?

We need to continue to keep students and educators physically safe in a pandemic. But across the country (actually the world), we all also have a tremendous responsibility to assess the pandemic's impact on student learning and advancement. I assume we will all be working to help students who are behind or off track.

Numbers for Covid cases, quarantines dropping at Academics Plus, North Little Rock and Pulaski County Special schools

The Covid case count and quarantine numbers at area schools is trending down.

The Academics Plus System, which includes the Maumelle Charter and Scott Charter elementary schools as well as Maumelle Charter High School, have dropped below five Covid-positive cases in the system with no campus at more than five individual cases.

  • Maumelle Charter High … N/A

  • Maumelle Charter Elementary … N/A

  • Scott Charter … N/A

The Pulaski County Special School District released numbers on Monday for the previous week and that report can be viewed by clicking here.

The five schools considered feeders for Maumelle are Crystal Hill, Oak Grove and Pine Forest elementaries as well as Maumelle Middle and High School.

That report shows a total of 35 students and staff in quarantine. Last week, it was 49 students and staff in quarantine.

The school breakdown follows.

School ... Student Positive ... Staff Positive ... Student Quarantine ... Staff Quarantine ... Total Out

  • Crystal Hill Elementary ... 0  ... 0 ... 3  ... 1  ... 4 

  • Oak Grove Elementary ... 0 ... 0  ... 0  ... 0  ... 0 

  • Pine Forest Elementary ... 1  ... 0 ... 6  ... 0 ... 7 

  • Maumelle Middle ... 2  ... 0 ... 15  ... 2  ... 19 

  • Maumelle High ... 1  ... 0 ... 2  ... 2  ... 5 

The Arkansas Department of Health report from Monday, Sept. 13, shows a total of 75 active cases across the Pulaski County Special and North Little Rock school districts. The Academics Plus system wasn’t on the report and district or system below 5 is not included.

District … Active Cases … Cumulative Faculty/Staff … Cumulative Student … Cumulative Total

  • PCSSD … 47 … 23 … 139 … 201

  • North Little Rock … 28 … 16 … 87 … 122

North Little Rock School District is doing a daily dashboard that can be found by clicking here, and these are numbers from this afternoon:

  • Total Number of Employees Testing Positive ...5

  • Total Number of Employees in Quarantine ... 5

  • Total Number of Students Testing Positive ... 6

  • Total Number of Students in Quarantine ... 80

Glenview Elementary has 12 students in quarantine while North Little Rock High School is eight behind with 11 students in quarantine. They are the only North Little Rock campuses in double figures in terms of quarantine.

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