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Catawba County Schools Welcomes Mark Reed from John M. Belk Endowment

Catawba County Schools Welcomes Mark Reed from John M. Belk Endowment

A Day of Learning and Connection


NEWTON, November 18, 2023 -- On Friday, November 18th, 2023, Catawba County Schools had the pleasure of hosting Mark Reed, Managing Director of the John M. Belk Endowment. This visit provided a valuable opportunity for our district to showcase its schools and programs, highlighting our commitment to educational growth.

Highlights of the Visit

The day's tour, led by Superintendent Matt Stover, began at the district's Central Office facilities and extended to several schools. A notable moment was at Maiden High School, where the visit featured the annual Thanksgiving luncheon sponsored by the Exceptional Children's Adaptive Curriculum class, highlighting their unique contributions and skills. The tour then moved to the new Maiden Elementary School's construction site, showcasing the district's vision for future educational spaces.

At Fred T. Foard High School, the focus was on Career and Technical Education (CTE) opportunities, illustrating the practical and diverse learning options available to our students. The visit concluded with insightful conversations with the CCS Principal of the Year, Heather Houser, and teachers at Mt View Elementary, showcasing our dedicated teaching staff.

Mark Reed's Contribution to Education

Mr. Reed's experience in education, from his time at Charlotte Country Day and St. John’s in Houston, brought a unique perspective to the visit. His success in leading educational institutions and developing their facilities and programs is noteworthy and aligns well with our district's goals.

About the John M. Belk Endowment

Under Mr. Reed's leadership, the John M. Belk Endowment focuses on increasing access to postsecondary education, particularly for underrepresented students. Their vision to provide “Access, Completion, and Workforce Relevance” complements our district's efforts to provide diverse educational opportunities.

Mark Reed's Insights and Commitment

During the visit, Mr. Reed shared his perspective on education, "Being around students is the easy win for me." He reflected on how the opportunity to lead the John M. Belk Endowment aligned with his personal and professional journey: "It got me thinking about my roots (in public education) and providing opportunities for others. That's what the endowment is about. We work with organizations that support students from all backgrounds. We have a legacy of starting organizations that really impact students." Mr. Reed’s engagement with our staff and students was a highlight of the day. His passion for education and commitment to student success were evident, aligning with our district's values and goals.

Learn More

To understand more about the work of the John M. Belk Endowment and its alignment with Catawba County Schools, please visit jmbendowment.org. We value such partnerships and interactions as we continue to focus on providing quality education to our students.


For more information about this event or our educational programs, feel free to contact the Catawba County Schools Office of Marketing and Communication.

Group photo of Mark Reed with CCS Cabinet

Mr. Reed with Catawba County Schools Cabinet. 


Mr. Reed standing with Jack Hoke and Matt Stover

Mr. Reed with Jack Hoke (Executive Director of NC Supt. Association, and Matt Stover, CCS Superintendent. 


Mr. Reed with Maiden Principal touring new facilities

Mr. Reed tours the new Maiden Elementary facilities with Principal Shannon Plemmons.  


Mr. Reed with Fred T Foard students using wood chipper

Mr. Reed with Fred T. Foard students learning more about our CTE programs.  


Mr. Reed with MVES Principal and teachers

Mr. Reed spent time in discussions with Mountain View Principal Heather Houser and teachers.