Hospital Authority purchases vision screening tool for schools
Teachers and school nurses often notice potential vision problems in students before parents do and a local organization’s purchase of a machine will enable schools to continue to perform vision-screenings. The McDuffie County Hospital Authority has purchased the Titmus machine, an eye-screening instrument for the McDuffie County Board of Education.
The Titmus machine will replace an out-dated machine at Dearing Elementary School, said Margaret Samuels, lead teacher/Positive Behavior Intervention Support Coordinator for McDuffie County.

Students learn about the Sept. 11 attacks
Norris Elementary teacher Khrista Henry answers questions from students about the Sept. 11 attacks. Shown are Josh Rabun, with hand raised; Keller McCord; and Jasmine Thomas.
For the first hour of the school day on Sept. 11, students at Norris Elementary all learned about the tragic events from 14 years earlier.
Along the hallways, classroom doorways were darkened as students watched video presentations about the attacks and then learned from teachers about what happened.
Khrista Henry, one of the Norris Elementary teachers, was working with a mixture of fourth and fifth grade students during this first school period of the day.
“People don’t watch the news like we used to, so children don’t passively pick up information from the news,” Henry said.

City to smoke test sewer system
Weather permitting, the City of Thomson Sewer Department will conduct smoke testing on the sanitary sewer collection system across the area throughout the month of September, starting on the south end of town on Jackson St.

Bunches of Briarwood birds
Jeff Blakey holds the grill grate up as Shawn Johnson shovels more charcoal into the barbecue pit at Briarwood Academy during a chicken barbecue fundraiser Aug. 21.

Queensborough to purchase two bank branches near Savannah
Queensborough National Bank and Trust Company (QNBT) announces regulatory approval of the purchase of certain loans, deposits and two branches of CertusBank, N.A. (CertusBank). These branches are located at 7393 Hodgson Memorial Drive in Savannah and 597 S. Columbia Avenue in Rincon.
As the specific date for the changeover nears, transition teams from Queensborough and CertusBank will communicate with customers and be on hand to make the process as seamless as possible.

Thomson Police Officer fired
Jammie Smith is shown while he was still an officer with the Thomson Police Department.
A Thomson Police officer has been fired for violating department search policy, which resulted in a woman cutting herself while in his custody.
The Thomson Police Department fired Sgt. Jammie Smith on Aug. 5 for infractions of violating department rules, conduct, work quality and work performance. He was hired as a police officer in 1990. In addition to patrol duties, he is a part of the department’s K9 unit and is the handler of Angus, a tracking dog.

NAACP ‘Journey for Justice’ crosses McDuffie County
Walkers on America’s Journey for Justice enter McDuffie County on Washington Road on a 866-mile march to Washington, D.C. to call for a national focused agenda that protects the rights of all Americans.

Teen arrested after taking gun to school
A Campus Police car is shown parked outside of the high school. The GBI is now handling the case.
The local office of the Georgia Bureau of Investigation has now taken over the investigation of a student who entered Thomson High School with a gun Friday morning.
Casey Williams, 18, was arrested and booked into the McDuffie County Jail according to THS Resource Officer Detric Jones. No information is available at this time concerning the specific charges against Williams.
According to Jones, Williams entered the front door of the school and was discovered to have a handgun when the metal detector alerted.
Metal detectors are used at both entrances to the school.

Student caught taking gun into Thomson High School
Thomson High School
A male student was caught trying to enter Thomson High School this morning with a gun.
Metal detectors are used at both entrances to the school and the gun was discovered when the student tried to pass through one of those checkpoints.
According to Superintendent Mychele Rhodes, the weapon was taken from the student immediately and law enforcement was contacted by school administrators.

17 South back on the road
The band performed July 3 at Wild Wing Cafe Augusta. Photo courtesy of 17 South.
A local band has launched a new beginning and hopes fans will welcome its reemergence.
“With God and our music, family and fans, we are back,” said Jake Jacobs, of 17 South.
The country/Southern rock band has performed a few times with a new lineup and will bring the music to its hometown in a Friday, Aug. 28 concert at The Auction House.
“We started in February, and we have really come back in force with a few changes,” said Jacobs, bassist for the group, which is named for the highway that leads from Thomson to Wrens and beyond.

McDuffie Progress

McDuffie Progress

McDuffie Progress

McDuffie Progress