PPS Salutes Its Many Volunteers

PPS Salutes Its Many Volunteers
Posted on 04/12/2019

Our Volunteers: Part of What Makes PPS Great!

Thousands of individuals serve as volunteers in our schools each year –moms, dads, grandparents and business people – they are all part of what makes Portsmouth Public Schools such a great place to be.  Consequently, it is only appropriate that PPS salutes the many volunteers who give selflessly to our schools, students and staff daily, especially since we are celebrating Public School Volunteer Week from April 22-26.

We have taken the time to share a few wonderful examples here of the many volunteers who make a difference each and every day. We hope you will enjoy reading about their selfless commitment to public education in general and children in particular. In the meantime, if you know of a school volunteer you think should be added to this page, contact us at goodnews@portsk12.com.

Willie Ann Bines





From Churchland Primary

Willie Ann Bines has been volunteering at Churchland Primary faithfully for the past two years.  Daily she checks in with the school’s Parent Liaison to see where she may be needed.  You will see her at work in various classrooms, the library, Parent Resource Center, and for any event the school is having during the day or evening and she also makes sure her family attends as well.  Mrs. Bines brings compassion, dedication, and a beautiful smile to Churchland Primary each time she enters the building!  







Ginger Evans


From John Tyler Elementary

Ginger Evans is a dedicated volunteer who is always willing to help out at school events and also to lend a hand tackling those everyday tasks that are “must dos” in schools. She is a very familiar face at all of John Tyler Elementary’s book fairs and has worked in the school’s Santa Shop as well. She believes that schools work best with families when communication is ongoing so she also works with the school’s Parent/Family liaison to keep families informed and involved.





Julius Hayes



From Norcom High School

Dr. M. Julius Hayes, who runs the Saturday Academy for Positive Self-Development at the Living Word Victory Center in Portsmouth, brings his expertise to Norcom by providing positive discipline and mentorship. He is often seen in the cafeteria, engaging with students, assisting with special events, such as the Black History Month program, and visiting classrooms to speak to students. He has been volunteering at the school since 2004, averaging as much as seven hours a week. He works for Portsmouth Parks, Recreation and Leisure Services with the Youth Leadership Development Program, so he is already well-known in the community. He works with the principal, administration, faculty, staff, and students to make positive contributions







Nelson Small, Fannie Bullock, Principal Dr. Camilla Ferebee, Dr. Julian McGhee, and Teacher of the Year Rachael Lasky

From William E. Waters Middle School

Calvary Evangelical Church has been a wonderful partner for William E. Waters Middle School. Parishioners from the church have lent their talents in many ways, by planting a flower bed, repairing all door frames and donating backpacks to students. In the accompanying photo, from left to right are: Nelson Small, Fannie Bullock, Principal Dr. Camilla Ferebee, Dr. Julian McGhee and Rachael Lasky, a science teacher at the school and the division-wide Teacher of the Year.

Lois Pyles                         



Barbara Edwards


From Westhaven Elementary School


Barbara Edwards, the grandparent of two Westhaven Elementary School Blue Jays, has long been a volunteer for the school.  Mrs. Edwards serves as one of the school representatives on the District Parent Advisory Committee. In addition, she volunteers her time to read to students, works with small groups in the classroom, and serves as helper for the Book Fair and the Penguin Patch Holiday Shop, a Dr. Seuss Day reader, and a Westhaven Community Health Fair volunteer.  Mrs. Edwards is known for her kindness, willingness to assist, and gentle redirection. She brightens Westhaven Elementary School with her smile, warmth, and joyful countenance.

Lois Pyles, the great-grandmother of a Westhaven Blue Jay, began volunteering at the school this year by helping students improve their reading skills. Mrs. Pyles also has given her time to serve as a Book Fair helper, Dr. Seuss Day reader, Penguin Patch volunteer, and a Westhaven Community Health Fair volunteer. Multiple days during the week will find her working with small groups of students.  In short, she volunteers with a genuine passion for every student to enjoy learning and to succeed.

From Victory Elementary

Sylvia Higginbotham is a loyal volunteer who works hard to support classroom instruction. She handles filing, organizes worksheets for future lessons, works with small groups and assists with holiday shop, school dances and Scholastic book fair. She also has provided needed donations such as books, clothing and clinic supplies. 



There are many volunteer opportunities in PPS some include: 
Serving in a PTA/PTO/PTSA
Serving as tutors, mentors or guest speakers
Providing assistance in classrooms, cafeterias, libraries or main offices
Organizing student enrichment and recognition activities
Supporting special events, athletics, school planning councils and advisory boards

If you want to lend a hand at one of our schools, the best place to start is by contacting that school’s administration or by emailing us at ask.super@portsk12.com.