$1.5 million granted to Paintsville Independent’s STEAM Academy

$1.5 million granted to Paintsville Independent’s STEAM Academy

PAINTSVILLE, Ky. (Oct. 23, 2023) – Today, at Paintsville High School, Rocky Adkins, senior advisor to Gov. Andy Beshear presented $1.5 million in funding from the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) to benefit Paintsville Independent Schools.

The funding will be used to help renovate an old bank building on Main Street in Paintsville and turn it into a vocational learning center for students in 7th through 12th grades known as the STEAM Career Center. The STEAM Career Center will be within walking distance of the high school and middle school and is projected to serve 500 students annually.

“We know that the best investment we can make is in our future,” said Adkins. “Our students are the future of Kentucky, and they deserve every opportunity to get ahead and be successful. This new career center will prepare these students for the jobs of today and of tomorrow.”

“The new Paintsville Independent Economic Development STEAM Career Center is going to provide our students, community members and regional partners opportunities and options,” said Paintsville Independent Schools Superintendent David Gibson. “Our students will be able to explore different career paths and decide which one may suit them best. Investing in our region and helping our students achieve success and reach their dreams is our ultimate goal.”

The renovation plan proposes to modify the old bank building to support engineering labs, an allied health space, a sound studio and a meeting space. Programs expected to be offered will include nursing; phlebotomy; marketing and entrepreneurship; computer programming; advanced manufacturing; culinary arts; and media and sound production.

Several businesses have agreed to provide equipment and expertise to help with the new STEAM academy. Paintsville Independent Schools bought the old bank building in 2022 and received $2.5 million in state funds to establish the STEAM Career Center.

The $1.5 million in funding comes from the base program of the ARC. Projects from the base program are approved at the federal level upon Gov. Beshear’s recommendation.

The ARC is an economic development agency of the federal government and 13 state governments focusing on 423 counties across the Appalachian region. Its mission is to innovate, partner and invest to build community capacity and strengthen economic growth in Appalachia to help the region achieve socioeconomic parity with the nation.

Reported by K-94.7

Jami Ward earns this years KDPP Award

Jami Ward earns this years KDPP Award

With her hard and outstanding work, Paintsville Independent would like to congratulate our very own Director of Pupil Personnel, Mrs. Jami Ward, for being named the Kentucky Directors of Pupil Personnel 2023 DPP of the Year! Congratulations!

Paintsville Ranked #15 in Kentucky

Paintsville Ranked #15 in Kentucky

Source: https://www.usnews.com/education/best-high-schools/kentucky/districts/paintsville-independent/paintsville-high-school-8398

Overview of Paintsville High School

Paintsville High School is ranked 15th within Kentucky. Students have the opportunity to take Advanced Placement® coursework and exams. The AP® participation rate at Paintsville High School is 51%. The total minority enrollment is 4%, and 42% of students are economically disadvantaged. Paintsville High School is the only high school in the Paintsville Independent.

Paintsville High School 2023-2024 Rankings

Paintsville High School is ranked #1,629 in the National Rankings. Schools are ranked on their performance on state-required tests, graduation and how well they prepare students for college. Read more about how we rank the Best High Schools.

3 Tigers selected for the Governor’s Scholar

Governor’s Scholar

Congratulations to these three members of the Class of 2024- Brett Gibson, Om Patel, Maisie Ward. These students have been selected to participate in the 2023 Governor’s Scholars Program!

Each of these students represent well-rounded students both athletically and academically who are also active members in their community.


Paintsville breaks ground on football field turf project

Paintsville breaks ground on football field turf project

Paintsville alumni and community members gathered at the Paintsville High School football field April 11 to break ground and mark the beginning of a project to install a turf surface.

The ceremony began at 1 p.m., featuring speeches from Paintsville Superintendent David Gibson, Mayor Bill Mike Runyon and others.

“It’s something to be able to leave our school system and say you graduated from Paintsville,” Gibson said. “I would argue that it’s the highest honor we can bestow on our students. It means something. But also to be a part of a team, the Tiger family, I am honored to be a part of the Tiger family.”

Gibson noted that the new field brings new energy and excitement in anticipation of the first home game, scheduled for Aug. 18.

“Honestly, it’s humbling,” said Gibson. “There’s 130-plus years of tradition here, and the progress that we’ve made and continue to make is incredible. We have a really good board that has the foresight to look towards the future. Our tradition is rich, and it’s the excellence that we represent that is at the heart of our traditions. I’m humbled to be a part of this, and hopefully kids across the region will see the field we have and see the commitment we have academically and encourage them to become a Tiger. Go Tigers.”

The ceremony also included a time capsule, in which students and alumni were encouraged to participate, leaving something behind for future generations of Paintsville Tigers.

“This makes me feel so proud of our school system,” Runyon said. “That we’ve elected to show a lot of progress. There were a lot of people against removing the natural grass, but if you look around you, every school up and down this river is going to turf. We had two choices: we could lag behind, or move forward. We’re choosing to move forward with this new field.”

By Justin Begley Staff Writer

Harris Phelps signs with Centre

Harris Phelps signs with Centre

PAINTSVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) – One of the best running backs in Paintsville history is on to the next level.

Harris Phelps made it official on Friday, signing his letter of intent with Centre College. The Tiger running back exploded last season with 1,527 rushing yards and 23 all-purpose touchdowns.

Phelps helped lead the Tigers in 2020 to their first-ever state championship, earning MVP of the championship game against Kentucky Country Day.

Copyright 2023 WYMT. All rights reserved.
by John Lowe (WYMT)

Paintsville Food Baskets

‘Small school, big impact’: Paintsville students to have fruitful Christmas break

PAINTSVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) – Students in Paintsville packed their pantries with produce Thursday, each taking home a bag of fruit as a district Christmas gift.

”Our Board of Education has been adamant that we start helping our kids, because of what’s going on with inflation and stuff,” said superintendent David Gibson. “So, this is one way that we can give back to our community- to give back to our students, who we think are some of the best kids in the world.”

The district used some of its excess funds to buy enough fruit for more than 800 gift bags, then the seniors and juniors at the high school helped divide them up and personalize the bags for their peers.

“This is a small school so it feels more like a family and a community,” said senior Camryn Helton.

The idea to make the district-wide gift something sustainable and substantial was important to administrators. Culinary teacher Melissa Castle said the students were able to take part in giving back in a way that could have a true impact on someone who will be home without school meals in the two weeks to come.

”It’s a gift that they can eat and it’s also a gift that they may not have in their house households every day,” she said. ”We take for granted that everybody has fresh fruits and vegetables in their home and they don’t. So, to be able to offer them something that’s fresh to eat during these next two weeks? I think it’s just a gift that will keep on giving.”

Board member Joe Porter said it was important to the Board of Education to see the students take home the provisions, since they do so much to make the district proud.

“Students appreciate what we do for them, but they do much more for us than we do for them,” he said.

Paintsville High School Principal Tiffany Austin said the project is a drop in the bucket of the outpouring of love her students are always willing to give.

”We may be a small school, but we’re making a big impact,” she said.

Copyright 2022 WYMT. All rights reserved.


BOE Recognizes Volleyball Team

BOE Recognizes Paintsville Volleyball Team

The Paintsville Board of Education took time to recognize the Paintsville volleyball team at their latest regular meeting. “We’ve had a remarkable season,” said Superintendent David Gibson.

Gibson along with Kay Hall said the team won 38 games this season which is a school and region record.

“They won the All “A” State Championship and it was something to behold, we had our backs against the wall and the grit that came through brought us back to win the state championship,” said Gibson.

The Lady Tigers led by Coach Dawn Kinner who took over the program in 2010, went undefeated in the 15th region this year while also winning their 11th district championship and becoming All “A” champions.

“We are only the second public school in the state to get that accomplishment of becoming All “A” champions,” said Hall.

According to Hall, no public school has ever won the All “A” tournament.

Hall said along with the standout season this year, the team also received other accolades including player of the year and coach of the year in the 15th region.

“What you accomplish this year you will remember for the rest of your life,” Gibson said. “It’s something that is very remarkable, so be proud of what you’ve accomplished. Coach Kinner has done a phenomenal job building this program up.”


Paintsville scores playoff road win

Paintsville went on the road to Bishop Brossart and the Tigers turned in a dominating performance, rolling to a 42-16 second round win on Friday night.
Running back Harris Phelps had a big game, rushing for 155 yards and four touchdowns on 21 carries. Grayson Peters added a rushing score.
Quarterback AJ James passed for 172 yards and one touchdown. He completed 11-of-14 passes.
Receiver Austin Allen hauled in the TD pass.
Paintsville, now, 6-5, will play at Pikeville (9-2) in the regional championship game on Friday. Kickoff is 7:30 pm.


Paintsville’s Steam Academy

Paintsville’s Steam Academy

PAINTSVILLE, Ky. (WYMT) – A $2.5 million investment in education is popping up in Paintsville, with plans to provide career pathways to students in the area.

The STEAM Career Center, opening in the Paintsville Independent Schools office building on Main Street, is embarking on a new era of education for Johnson County’s youth.

“A student success hub, which will bring in some of the latest technology, latest job trainings, latest partnerships- in an individualized way- so our students will have access to what the job market is actually looking for,” said Paintsville Superintendent David Gibson.

The STEAM center will create programs with innovative subjects: Biomedical, engineering, advanced manufacturing, aerospace, robotics, and more. Including partnerships with entities like Awesome, Inc., opening entrepreneurial incubators to build more small businesses across the region.

“A learning center that’s going to really focus down into what the child wants, what the student wants,” said Gibson. “What do they want to do? How do they want to build a career?”

The programs, while rooted in the school’s tradition, seek to expand the minds of the students by letting them carve out a space of their own in the future in the workforce.

“Being able to take a child’s dreams and help them reach those dreams- as far as their career- that’s what education is about,” said Gibson.

The programs will reach out to potential employers and industry, using their input on how to train the next generation, and will allow potential employers to submit ideas for programs that would train students for their specific needs.

The building process is expected to take around three years, remodeling 30,000 square ft. of the current building on Main Street, but Gibson hopes to see small steps begin next year.

He said it is about more than just growing the school district.

“This is about our region. It’s about Appalachia. How can Paintsville Independent- Paintsville, the city of Paintsville- give something back to our region that maybe stops the bleeding a little bit,” he said. “Maybe stop the out-migration. Maybe saves us for a few more years. We want to be part of the solution.”

Copyright 2022 WYMT. All rights reserved.


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