FANNIN COUNTY, Ga – Fannin County School System released further details explaining their protocols following the decision to close schools from Monday, March 16 through Friday, March 20 due to COVID-19.
Students are not expected to complete a Curriculum Online Learning Day (COLD) packet on Monday, March 16. The school will let families and students know when to begin COLD packets and what lessons to complete. This information will be communicated through automated phone calls, social media, and school websites.
Students should take everything they need with them this Friday, March 13 because they will not be able to enter the school next week.
For the high school, the SAT is still scheduled for tomorrow, March 14, but next week all activities are canceled.
Faculty, staff, and school leaders are expected to report on Monday, March 16, unless they are sick. This is standard practice. Monday’s hours are from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. and faculty should use the time to prepare COLD packets. They are instructed to have a total of 13 packets ready.
Leaders are asked to meet with faculty and staff in small groups, not gatherings. Admin meetings are canceled and directors will follow up through email and Simbli. A decision will be made soon if leaders are needed after Monday.
Leaders should make sure that stakeholders know that all events are canceled and encourage social distancing, handwashing, and to not report if sick.
Custodial staff and available personnel should continue to deep clean the school.
Currently, FCSS has no idea how long the school closing will last and are preparing for it to potentially last another week. The decision for the week of March 23 will be made sometime next week as the situation unfolds. Faculty and staff may be asked to report to work on additional days. This decision will be made on a day-to-day basis.
Here’s a copy of the entire statement released by the school district.
Fannin County Schools will release two hours early today (Thursday), February 6. All buses will run their routes two hours early today. Student drivers can leave Fannin County High School at 11:00 a.m. An automated call will go out shortly.
Many of you may have heard about the disturbing “ Momo” Challenge where children are being targeted through various medias to participate in a game that tells them to complete various objectives and eventually challenges them to hurt themselves. It originally started connecting kids through various social media apps, but now it is being found embedded YouTube videos that younger children watch. Many say it is an online hoax, yet some media outlets are reporting that children have indeed engaged in the game and harmed themselves. Regardless if it is real or not, it has gone viral and kids are talking about it. This is an excellent time to talk to your kids about online safety. Please refer to the graphics for specific tips when talking to your child about the Momo Challenge and digital safety in general.
Want to be in the Race?
The Blue Ridge Soap Box Derby Official Rules as of December 7, 2018
Category 1: Age 7-11
Category 2: Age 12-17
Category 3: Age 18 and over
Category 4: Corporate Race w/driver of any age (7 and over)
Race Registration Fees
Category 1 & 2 race fees shall be $25 per entry which includes: one (1) event shirt
and two (2) pit pass & badges.
Category 3 race fees shall be $35 per entry which includes: one (1) event shirt and
two (2) pit pass & badges.
Category 4 (Corporate races) vehicle fee shall be $150 per vehicle which includes:
two (2) event shirts and two (2) pit pass badges. Also required with entry is a
“prize” or gift card worth $25 or more (to be donated as part of the winning prize
NOTE: Race fees are based on drivers entering the race, not vehicles. This
allows families with one car and multiple children to participate without
building each driver their own car. If drivers using the same car are ever pitted
against each other for any reason, the driver with the lower official registration
number will automatically win (unless they specifically withdraw in favor of
the other driver).
Derby Car Guidelines & Rules:
All drivers must wear an approved helmet. Additional safety gear may be worn at the
driver’s discretion. NOTE: keep in mind the overall weight limit of the car/driver
Restraints are not mandatory, but are recommended. Please consider the age and
ability of the driver.
Drivers must be in a sitting position with legs facing forward. Drivers may lean back
for aerodynamics, but may not lay head first.
Drivers are encouraged to be creative and think outside of the box; however, derby
cars should be constructed with SAFETY in mind. While vehicle parts may be new,
used, or recycled from almost any material, they should be structurally sound. All
bolts should have locking washers or nuts to secure them while any sharp edges
should be rounded over.
Derby cars must be completely gravity powered. No other mechanical propulsion is
allowed, i.e. springs, rubber bands, pedals, human propulsion, weighted drives,
engines, or motors of any kind.
Derby cars should be mostly handmade, i.e. you cannot simply use a motor less “go-
kart” frame. No “Power-Wheels” or other commercially made vehicle. If you are
unsure of your selection, please ask a race coordinator before you start or continue
construction on your derby car entry. Officials/Inspectors have the final say.
Derby cars must have a minimum ground clearance of 2.5″ and a maximum of 9″
Derby cars must have a wheel base width min/max of 24″- 40″ and a maximum body
width of 40″.
Derby cars must have a wheel base length min/max of 56″- 80″ and a maximum body
length of 90″.
Derby Car Wheels
Derby cars must have 4 wheels, and must be fixed in a single direction, no casters or
Wheels shall have a minimum of .75″ width and a maximum of 6″ width.
Wheels shall have a minimum of 4″ diameter and a maximum of 30”.
Maximum vehicle/driver weight for Category 1: 225lbs.
Maximum vehicle/driver weight for Category 2: 325lbs.
Maximum vehicle/driver weight for Category 3 & 4: 350lbs
All weights and ballast must be securely fastened to the derby car at its lowest point;
no additional weight can be added to the drivers.
Derby cars must have a reliable steering mechanism, with stops, to limit the
movement to no more than 25 degrees, or any degree to prevent the wheels from
contacting the body, in either direction.
All vehicles must have a braking system! All brakes must be friction based. Brakes
can be applied to the tires, the axel or to the ground (or any combination of the three).
Any ground contact system must be rubber soled and cannot damage the ground
surface. Braking systems must be completely controlled by the driver and cannot be a
parachute or anchor system, i.e. nothing can be dragged behind to slow the vehicle
Name of driver(s) and/or a "racing number" will be allowed on any vehicle. Drivers
are encouraged to decorate their vehicle any way they want with certain exceptions.
Derby cars in Category 1-3 may not advertise for any business. Phone numbers,
websites, social media links or business slogans will not be allowed. A vehicle may
represent a business theme, i.e. if your family business is a grading company; you
could decorate your vehicle as a dump truck or bull dozer (leave off the business
name/logo). If you would like to advertise a business on your car, you must join the
Corporate Class (Category 4).
Exception to Advertising Rules – Category 4 (the Corporate Class) may decorate
their derby car with as much advertising as they’d like and are encouraged to design
and decorate their car with a theme that matches their business. The other exception
to this rule is “Sponsored” cars, which may only have “advertising” items on its
12”x6” license plate. Finally, certain "causes" will be allowed to decorate their
vehicles without joining the Corporate Class. Typically, these are non-profits;
however, please inquire before decorating.
Topics that include politics, guns, drugs, alcohol, tobacco, or otherwise controversial
topics WILL NOT BE ALLOWED on any derby car. If you are unsure if your
chosen theme fits this rule, please contact a Derby Car Official. During derby car
check-in and on race day, Derby Car Officials will enforce this at their discretion.
To maintain fairness, vehicle inspections will occur. All cars must be at the Fannin
County Middle School between 4-7pm on April 26 th , 2019 for inspection (certain
hardships will be considered if you cannot make the time frame but you must contact
a race official). After cars are inspected and pass all requirements, they will be
moved into the school facilities and stored overnight. No modifications can be made
to the cars after a passing inspection, with the exception of safety modifications under
the watch of an inspector/official. Cars failing inspection will be allowed to exit the
facility for modification and allowed to be re-inspected for entry into the race.
On race day, cars may be inspected at ANY time per the direction of an official. At
the end of each category, cars in 1 st through 4 th place will be inspected prior to
announcement of winners and distribution of prizes. Play fair as you and your vehicle
may be disqualified!
If anyone suspects another driver/team of cheating, please address an official
The Soap Box Derby Race
Races will be held in a bracket style within each race category (age group); each
bracket winner will be determined in a best “two out of three” runs.
Races will be held on a side by side track with two cars racing against each other.
Cars will be launched from the top of a declined ramp. The ramp stop will rest
against the front most structural piece (typically considered the “bumper” or “grill” of
a car); however, the race will end when the FRONT WHEEL crosses the finish line.
Participants will be assigned a number at the April 26th inspection (in order of check-
in). These numbers will later be drawn (at random) to decide the race brackets. The
lower of the two numbers will have first option of lane choice. Consecutive runs will
switch lanes to determine the best two out of three winners. NOTE: this assigned
number will be your official race number, not the number that may be on the side of
Derby Car Tune-Ups
We are aware that derby cars may require adjustments and minor repairs during the
race. There will be a designated work area with basic power access. Racers are
encouraged to bring their own power tools and back up supplies. Please do not be
alarmed if an official asks to re-inspect your derby car after you’ve worked on it.
Category 1-3: Winners shall receive the following prizes;
1 st Place – $250 cash
2 nd Place – $75 cash
3 rd Place – $25 cash
Category 4: Corporate races shall have ONE winner who receives the “prize
package” (provided from all other corporate racers).
Best of Show: $100 cash! This winner will be decided from a panel consisting of one
member from each of the 5 Executive Sponsors.
Event Shirts & Pit Pass Badges
All drivers are expected to wear their event shirt. Whether they choose to wear the
event shirt above or below safety gear (as long as it does not impede with their safety
gear), is the choice of the driver. Additional event shirts will be available for
Anyone entering into the race car pits (car staging under the overhang on sidewalk)
must display a pit pass badge. This prevents safety issues and minimizes liability and
accidents. Additional pit pass badges will be available (for your driver’s crew) for
$10/each during the event ($5/each after the event ends).
Want to be a sponsor?
Thanks for your consideration in sponsoring this community event! We are The Blue Ridge Soap Box
Derby, a 501c3 organization. With a festival or event almost monthly, there is always something exciting
to do here. However, most of the events are tourist driven and not geared towards kids in particular, so we
set out to change that. The Blue Ridge Soap Box Derby was created by locals and is geared towards the
local community, specifically kids and kids at heart. 100% of all profits go back to the Fannin County
School system, specifically the S.T.E.M program (Science.Technology.Engineering.Math). We hope this
will be a great success this year and many more years to come. Here is how YOU can help.The different levels of sponsorships listed have a dollar amount listed for those wishing to contribute monetarily; however, any combination of money and “in kind” services and/or donations will be considered towards the total amount. The sponsor privileges below are a minimum and more perks may be added as the Blue Ridge Soap Box Derby (BRSBD) progresses towards the event date. Thank YOU for helping us make this event successful for the citizens of Fannin County, Georgia!
Vehicle Sponsorships: $150 – This special sponsorship is designed to assist those who are unable to
afford the vehicle materials and registration. It will provide both the materials and registration fee for a
participant and includes a 24”x24” sponsor sign displayed in the derby car “pit” area as well as a 12”x6”
sponsor license plate to be displayed on the vehicle. Additional graphics may be displayed on the vehicle
or the driver at the sponsor’s expense. (The sponsor may choose to be anonymous and we will work with
them to design a fitting sign/license plate.)
Executive Level: $1,000 – Executive level sponsors will be provided a 10’x10’ booth space at the event
to use for their own promotional purposes and are the ONLY sponsors allowed to solicit products or
services during the event. A 3’x6’ banner will be provided by the BRSBD and displayed in the most
prominent location. Executive sponsors will have their name prominently displayed in each derby car
“pit” area (24”x24”). The name of the business will be mentioned prior to every race category by the
event announcers. Executive sponsors will have their name listed on top of sponsor boards and/or
announcements and event t-shirts. NOTE: Only 5 Executive Sponsors will be accepted for the event and
will not have “competing services”; for example, if Real Estate Company X is an executive level sponsor,
no other “real estate company” will be accepted as an Executive Sponsor.
Diamond Level: $500 – This level of sponsorship will include 3’x6’ banner will be provided by the
BRSD and displayed at the derby starting area; have their name prominently displayed in each derby car
“pit” area (24”x24”). The name of the business will be mentioned prior to every race category by the
event announcers and will have their name listed on top of sponsor boards and/or announcements and
Platinum Level: $250 – This level of sponsorship will include 2’x4’ banner will be provided by the
BRSD and displayed alongside the track; have their name prominently displayed in each derby car “pit”
area (24”x24”). The name of the business will be mentioned prior to every race category by the event announcers and will have their name listed on top of sponsor boards and/or announcements and event t-
Gold Level: $150 – The name of the business will be mentioned prior to every race category by the event
announcers and will have their name listed on top of sponsor boards and/or announcements and event t-
Silver Level: $75 – This level of sponsorship will have their name listed on sponsor boards and/or announcements and event t-shirts.
Bronze Level: $25 – This level of sponsorship will have their name listed on sponsor boards and/or
We hope you’ll help support this awesome event and remember,
· We are an event for the local community by locals, but all are welcome of course!
· We are a 501 C-3, and volunteer-driven, NO ONE gets paid a dime.
· 100% of all the money raised after the bills are paid goes to the school system, specifically the
· We are working with the Boys and Girls Club to allow them to race for free (I’ll be building extra
cars for them)
· We’re also working on a getting Special Needs group together. They will be riding in tandem cars
with a driver, so they can experience the race as well.
· We will be reaching out to all of the surrounding Chamber of Commerce and school systems in
order to make it as big of an event as possible.
· It’s just going to be fun!
Fannin County Young Farmers Association was awarded a $1200.00 grant from the Georgia Young Farmers Association. The grant will be used to purchase a stage for the new agriculture facility.
Pictured above is Kenny Queen-FCYFA President and Kenny Holland- FCYFA Treasure
The Fannin County High School and Middle School students attended the Technology Student Association (TSA) Fall Leadership Conference in Jekyll Island, GA on November 8th through the 11th. Students competed in the cardboard boat races, First Lego League Robotics, VEX Robotics, and managed the Electrathon Go-Cart Race. Students also attended leadership development sessions and a college fair for engineering schools. The Fannin High School TSA Chapter was presented with a White Star Chapter award for increasing the membership by 10% from last year. This is the second year in a row that the chapter has been presented with a White Star award!
Students Pictured in Feature Image (L-R):
Cooper Brooks, Eli Young, John Moler, Henry Leben, Gene Carbonell, Christian Jensen, Ramtin Doroodchi, Max Mathis, Will Garland, Thomas Green, Steven Setser, Isaiah Cargle
Dear FCSS Community:
It is with a heavy heart that I share with you that Mrs. Sandra Mercier passed away earlier today.
Mrs. Mercier dedicated her life to our community through the field of education. She began her teaching career with the FCSS in 1972, and her service spanned five decades. She completed 26 years as a classroom teacher and served longest as “the” senior English teacher of FCHS. Mrs. Mercier was chosen as the STAR Teacher five times, was FCHS’s Teacher of the Year, and was selected as the 1999 FCSS Teacher of the Year.
In addition to her outstanding career as a teacher, Mrs. Mercier entered leadership in 1999 as an assistant principal at FCHS. In 2000, she was promoted to the central office to serve as a director, and from 2002 to 2007, Mrs. Mercier served as Superintendent. After retirement, she returned to serve as a member of our Board of Education.
Through her impeccable methodology, Mrs. Mercier taught countless students how to write and to think in a variety of ways; she did the same for many of our district’s current teachers and leaders. Generations looked up to her, and her legacy will impact many more to come. Please join me in keeping the family in thoughts and prayers.
Arrangements are available at the following link.
Mr. Buffy Coleman was the Red Ribbon Week Speaker at Fannin County Middle School on Oct 24, 2018. Buffy “Mr. Magic” was discovered by and attended the 1993 Harlem Globetrotters training Camp. He still makes personal appearances with the World Famous Harlem Wizards.
Buffy has spoken to more than 5,000,000 adults and youth across North America while visiting over 3,000 schools. The show was entertainment as well as fun for the entire student body and school faculty, with comedy and amazing basketball skills. Most of all there was an inspirational message for our FCMS students which included making good choices for their lives.
Fannin County High School students and staff will host their annual Veterans Recognition Program on Wednesday, November 14, at 9 am in the Performing Arts Center. All veterans are invited to attend and asked to arrive by 8:45. The program will last approximately one hour with veterans and their families being served brunch afterward. For more information please contact the school.
On October 4th-7th, the Fannin County High School Livestock Show Team competed in Perry,
Georgia at the Georgia National Fair. The show team participated in sheep, goat, and cattle
weight classes and showmanship. The team members were Jordan Long, Kayla Hipp, and
Bretton Williams. Jordan long placed 11th in the weight class and Kayla Hipp received 9th in
her Ewe weight class. Bretton Williams placed 1st in his weight class with his Dexter steer.
Besides competing with sheep, goats, and cattle, team members also enjoyed time at the fair,
viewed the new animal birthing barn, and viewed many educational exhibits.