Our Schools

Athletics, Healthful Living, & Safety

The mission of Safe and Healthy Schools is to keep students safe, healthy, and ready to learn. Research supports that healthy children learn better. We collaborate with local, regional and state partners to provide a safe and healthy learning environment in all Jackson County Public Schools.

Health Education, Physical Education, Physical Activity, Employee Wellness and a Safe Environment are components of the Coordinated School Health Program which is based on the Whole School, Whole Community, Whole Child model (WSCC). This model provides a collaborative approach to education and health. The goal is to achieve greater alignment, integration, and collaboration in our efforts to improve a child’s overall development.

We believe an effective school health program includes a working partnership between the schools and community, parents and families, focusing on how health and academic success go hand in hand. By coordinating policy, process and practice we can improve health and learning and ensure each child in school is healthy, safe, engaged, supported and challenged.

NC Healthy Schools Whole Child Model

Healthful Living

The Healthful Living Education program is a planned, sequential K-12 curriculum that is part of the North Carolina Standard Course of Study. It promotes behaviors that contribute to a healthful lifestyle and improved quality of life for all students. The Healthful Living Education portions of the North Carolina Standard Course of Study support and reinforce the goals and objectives of its two major components – health education and physical education. Fit, healthy students who are present and alert in school have a head start on academic performance. If you would like more information please contact the Health and Physical Education teacher at your child’s school.

NC Healthful Living Curriculum Standards

Health and Physical Education

Healthful living is a combination of health education and physical education. When the two are integrated, lives are improved. The Healthful Living curriculum is designed to provide students with the necessary knowledge and skills to make decisions, become advocates of healthful living.

Health Education: Classroom instruction that addresses the physical, emotional and social aspects of health – designed to help students improve their health, prevent illness, and reduce risky behaviors.

Physical Education: Physical Education: Planned, sequential K-12 curriculum that promotes lifelong activity, develops basic movement skills and sports skills. Physical education provides an environment in which students learn, practice, and are assessed on developmentally appropriate motor skills, social skills, and knowledge.

JCPS promotes positive attitudes and behaviors for a lifetime commitment to physical activity and good health, Physical Education is a sequential instructional program that provides learning experiences that develop physical and mental fitness, motor skills and moral/social behavior. It is based on the study of human movement and includes educational games/sports, dance and gymnastics with fitness concepts integrated into all of the content areas. A variety of teaching styles are used to develop experiences that encourage students to become efficient, versatile and creative movers.

Healthy Active Children

Recent statistics state that more than one in five 5-11 year old kids in North Carolina is overweight. This is putting them at risk for Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and social and psychological problems such as poor self-esteem and discrimination. The chances that an overweight child will become an overweight adult are nearly 70%. The Healthy Active Children’s Policy (HAC) guides health and physical education specialists and outlines ways to encourage, monitor, and advocate for increased physical activity for students.

All K-8 Schools in Jackson County strive to meet the requirements of the NC Healthy Active Children’s Policy. According to this policy schools are to provide a minimum of 30 minutes of physical activity for all students in grades K-8. This can be accomplished though Physical Education class, recess, intramurals, or energizers in the classroom. Another requirement of this policy states that schools may not use physical activity as a punishment for students or that structured recess cannot be withheld from a student.

CPR Graduation Requirement

Fast Facts on Cardiac Arrest:

  • Sudden cardiac arrest if the leading cause of death in adults?
  • CPR doubles a person’s chance of survival from sudden cardiac arrest?
  • About 60% of heart attacks resulting in cardiac arrest occur in the presence of a witness who might be able to save the victim?

With the knowledge of these and other facts, the legislature passed Session Law 2012-197-House Bill 837 "an act to make successful completion of instruction in CPR available to all students with a plan to phase in completion of CPR instruction as a high school graduation requirement by 2015." Jackson County Schools, the first group of students to face this requirement was the class of 2015.

JCPS Implementation of the CPR Graduation Requirement

Although the requirement is for high school graduation, it is in the middle school curriculum. It prepares each 8th grade student with knowledge to analyze the necessary steps to prevent and respond to unintentional and demonstrate basic CPR techniques and procedures and pass and approved test of CPR skills. With this being a high school graduation requirement, it will be up to the high schools to ensure each student is properly trained prior to graduation.

The following attachments can provide more information regarding the specific requirements of the law and the State Board of Education:

CPR Graduation Requirement FAQ's

School Health Advisory Council (SHAC)

The School Health Advisory Council for JCPS is composed of community and school representatives from different areas. of the coordinated school health program. The goal of SHAC is to help plan, implement and support the coordinated school health plan.

More information on the SHAC can be found on the JCPS School Nutrition webpage.

Active Routes to School: Let's Go NC!

2017 JCPS Let’s Go NC! Curriculum Guidance

  • Bike to School EventAll K-5 students receive comprehensive pedestrian & bike safety skills education/training through the use of the Let’s Go NC! curriculum.
  • There are two main teaching modules—one on walking, the other on biking. And there are three grade ranges: K-1; 2-3, and 4-5. Each grade range unit has five lessons (some lessons can be compressed if needed).
  • Each progressive grade range unit builds on the skills a student has learned in the previous unit.
  • We encourage teaching all students the basic pedestrian and bicycle safety skills they will need throughout their lives; skills that will help them be well-rounded and healthy—plus, it’s fun!
  • Students with disabilities will receive accommodations as appropriate.
  • This guidance has been approved by the administration in that teaching the curriculum encourages healthy and safe lifestyles for students.
  • Professional development opportunities/training has been completed; and will continue to be made available to the staff responsible for teaching the Let’s Go NC! curriculum.
  • Allow the shared use of the bicycles and the trailer to other community organizations wishing to hold bicycling safety events or training.


The safety and security of students in Jackson County Public Schools is of primary importance. This department is committed to taking a proactive approach to the safety and security needs of this school system. The school district utilizes partnerships with local emergency services, law enforcement agencies and other safety leaders to make our campuses safe places to learn. The Superintendent of Schools is provided with recommendations on ways to best secure our facilities and stakeholders.

District Crisis Management Team

The District Crisis Management Team works with all schools and departments to ensure the safety and security of students, staff, and visitors. We have plans and procedures in place at each school and administrative site to protect your child and communicate with you in the event of an emergency. Each school has a school level crisis management team that meets regularly with the focus on prevention and reaction to incidents. Regular practices of crisis responses take place at each school. Training and staff development in school violence, crisis management, incident command, emergency drills and emergency response procedures are provided to all staff in JCPS. A Crisis intervention team is available to provide support to students and staff if needed.

In an emergency situation we must be able to contact you:

  • Please provide accurate emergency contact information to your child’s school at the start of the year.
  • Update your contact information with school staff as soon as it changes.

Related Links:


The goals of the athletic department are to provide opportunities for student athletes to excel in teamwork, sportsmanship, self-discipline, acceptable personal and social behavior, and character. The athletic program is designed to produce well-rounded citizens who can take their place in a community and in a democratic society. The program is intended to develop leadership skills, a sense of responsibility and accountability, and sportsmanlike attitudes of the student population.


  • To provide our participants with the best possible administration, supervision and instruction available.
  • To provide our participants with quality facilities and equipment that is both safe and student friendly.
  • To provide our participants with safe, quality transportation to and from all competitions and activities.

The Middle and High School athletic programs are considered integral parts of the total school experience for students in our school system and contribute much to the individual students’ positive growth and development. The program offers a variety of fourteen organized sports at the middle school level and twenty-six at the high school level in our county. Approximately one third of our students are directly or indirectly involved in athletics or an athletic related activity. All participating students and schools must comply with the rules and guidelines of Jackson County Public Schools (JCPS), the North Carolina High School Athletic Association (NCHSAA), and the North Carolina State Board of Education (NCDPI).

High School and Middle School Handbooks


Athletic Directors

Tim Mayse

Blue Ridge Early College
(828) 743-2646 ext. 1382

Megan Brown

Cullowhee Valley
(828) 293-5667 ext. 1463

Jeremy Ellenburg

Fairview School
(828) 586-2819 ext. 1209

Jill Cook

Scotts Creek School
(828) 631-2740 ext. 1102

Michelle Marr

Smokey Mountain Elementary
(828) 497-5535 ext. 1704

Adam Phillips

Smoky Mountain High
(828) 586-2177 ext. 2905

Crisis Management

Dr. Kim Elliott

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1933

David Proffitt

(828) 586-2311 ext. 1937

Jason Watson

(828) 586-2311 x1927