Cherokee County Schools rank OUTSTANDING in US News Report

Cherokee County Schools ranked outstanding in a poll done by US News. They surveyed 18,790 schools in 4o states. When all was said and done, only 505 (3%) received a gold or silver medal. 1,086 (6%) were awarded a bronze medal.

Hiwassee Dam High School was awarded the Bronze Award!

Murphy High Schoolwas awarded the Silver Award!

Click Here for the US News Ranking or the US News Homepage

For those of you who would like to find out more about the methodology behind it, here’s a copy of US News’ article written by Mr. Robert Morse.
The 2008 U.S.News & World Report America’s Best High Schools methodology, developed by School Evaluation Services, a K-12 education data research business run by Standard & Poor’s, is based on the key principles that a great high school must serve all its students well, not just those who are bound for college, and that it must be able to produce measurable academic outcomes that show the school is successfully educating its student body across a range of performance indicators.

We analyzed 18,790 public high schools in 40 states using data from the 2005-2006 school year. This is the total number of public high schools in each state that had grade 12 enrollment and sufficient data to analyze for the 2005-2006 school year. A three-step process determined the best high schools. The first two steps ensured that the schools serve all of their students well, using state proficiency standards as the measuring benchmarks. For those schools that made it past the first two steps, a third step assessed the degree to which schools prepared students for college-level work.

College readiness. The first step determined whether each school’s students were performing better than statistically expected for the average student in their state. We started by looking at reading and math test results for all students on each state’s high school test. We then factored in the percentage of economically disadvantaged students (who tend to score lower) enrolled at the school to find which schools were performing better than their statistical expectations.

For those schools that made it past this first step, the second step determined whether the school’s least-advantaged students (black, Hispanic, and low-income) were performing better than average for similar students in the state. We compared each school’s math and reading proficiency rates for disadvantaged students with the statewide results for these disadvantaged student groups and then selected schools that were performing better than this state average.

Schools that made it through those first two steps became eligible to be judged nationally on the final step: college-readiness performance, using Advanced Placement data as the benchmark for success. (AP is a College Board program that offers college-level courses at high schools across the country.) This third step measured which schools produced the best college-level achievement for the highest percentages of their students. This was done by computing a “college readiness index” based on the weighted average of the AP participation rate (the number of 12th-grade students who took at least one AP test before or during their senior year, divided by the number of 12th graders) along with how well the students did on those AP tests or quality-adjusted AP participation (the number of 12th-grade students who took and passed (received an AP score of 3 or higher) at least one AP test before or during their senior year, divided by the number of 12th graders at that school). For the college readiness index, the quality-adjusted AP participation rates were weighted 75 percent in the calculation, and 25 percent of the weight was placed on the simple AP participation rate. Only schools that had values greater than 20 in their college readiness index scored high enough to meet this criterion for gold medal selection. The minimum of 20 was used since it represents what it would take to have a “critical mass” of students gaining access to college-level coursework.

The top 100 high schools nationwide with the highest college readiness index scores were ranked numerically (ties were broken using the average number of AP exams passed per test taker) and awarded gold medals. The next 405 top-performing high schools nationwide based on their college readiness index earned silver medals. An additional 1,086 high schools in 40 states that passed the first two steps were awarded bronze medals.

John and Jessica Poltrock – REMAX of Murphy, NC – Homes and Land in the Mountains of North Carolina – – (877) 837-3002 –

Getting Settled in the New Office!!!

Here’s the New Office!!!

4800 US Highway 64 West
Murphy, NC 28906

Wow! We’d love to give you the grand tour of the *greatest* professional building in Murphy. Totaling approximately 18,000 square feet, it’s quite an impressive building! RE/MAX occupies the second level and parts of the third. The basement, or lower level, is available for retail leasing. The third level is leaseable to those seeking office space.

We look forward to giving you the grand tour of not only our office, but the entire complex – dubbed “Cornerstone.” 

John and Jessica Poltrock – REMAX of Murphy NC – The POLTROCK TEAM – – (877) 837-3002 – Real Estate in the Mountains of North Carolina – Homes and Land for Sale

Moving in Progress!!

We’ve moved! With the new office building up and running, we’re almost at full force again! 18,000 square feet of beauty, it is truly an impressive professional office building. Cornerstone is bring a new level in Murphy.

We have yet to have the new sign installed and the internet up and running, but its coming! We’ll keep you posted as more comes along.

John and Jessica Poltrock – REMAX at Murphy North Carolina – Real Estate in the Mountains – – 877-837-3002

We’re Officially Moving!

Great news! We’re changing (and certainly upgrading) our location to 4800 US Highway 64 West in Murphy. The owner/broker of our office, David Ritz (recognize the name? He’s Jessica’s brother!), is not only creating a new real estate office, but a the nicest professional building in the entire town of Murphy – or for that matter, Cherokee or Clay County! With office space for lease on the 3rd level, REMAX on the second level, and retail/office space on the first, this is truly raising the bar

Officially named Cornerstone, it was presented with many names. I had the idea of letting everyone in the area try their hand at the name, so that’s what we did! David ran an ad in the Cherokee Scout newspaper with a write in slip offering their name. The Ritz, The Rock, Ritz-o-Rama, The Compound, and many others came in. Cornerstone was selected, and we gave away a dinner at Enrico’s Italian Restaurant in Hiawassee.

We should be moving in tomorrow so long as Verizon is able to switch over the phones in time. As soon as that happens, we’ll start moving! It’s a gorgeous building and you’ll have to stop by and see it! Gorgeous rock fireplace, scraped hard wood floors, BOLD colors, and more than I can describe – just come see it for yourself! There will be a grand opening, we just don’t know when yet.

Can’t wait to see you in our new office at Cornerstone!

John and Jessica Poltrock – The POLTROCK TEAM – REMAX at Murphy, NC – (877) 837.3002 – –

When you want results, demand the POLTROCK TEAM!

Murphy Medical Center’s 5K Challenge

Ready to Run??!! Murphy Medical Center Foundation is hosting the “About Two Hours From Anywhere” 5k Challenge, Heart Walk, and Kids Fun Run this upcoming Saturday on September 15, 2007.I (John) will be running the 5k Run, which is roughly 3.1 miles, this Saturday. I’d love for someone to join! If you need a registration card, let me know as I have extras. Registration on Race Day is from 7:30 to 8:30 am with the race beginning at 9. Early entry fee is only $15, so come out and run!

John Michael Poltrock – REMAX Mountain Properties – Real Estate in Murphy NC – – (877) 837-3002

Murphy NC Township Seeks to Annex New Area

The town of Murphy, North Carolina is seeking to annex 34 additional acres. According to the Cherokee Sentinel Newspaper, it makes the “perfect annexation.”
It is proposing to bring in the property that includes the Lowes Home Center, Sonic restaurant, the BP station (which by the way, is closed), and some public land belonging to Cherokee County and the Tennessee Valley Authority (TVA).
According to reported figures, the town expects to gain about $38,753 annually as a result of the new territory. There will be another public hearing on September 13th at 5pm at the city hall. It could become finalized as early as the end of the year.
John Michael Poltrock – REMAX Mountain Properties – – (877) 837-3002 – Murphy, NC Real Estate

Liquor by the Drink Coming to Murphy?

Many of our clients are always shocked to find out you can’t get a mixed drink or shot at any of the local restaurants (with the exception of Cherokee Hills Golf Course, which is classified as a resort). Not only that, you can’t buy beer. Does it seem sane when you can buy wine at the grocery store and straight liquor at the ABC store in town?

Either way, Murphy’s Town Board is reconsidering the liquor by the drink option. Wells and West (very influential persons in our community) are trying to generate interest in large chain restaurants coming to Murphy on land they own. Two restaurants want to come badly, but will only do so if they can serve drinks. It was up for vote in 2003 and was not passed – 55% voted no and 45% voted yes.

Will you be able to have a mixed drink with dinner now? It may be coming soon. In most Southern small towns, they eventually allow it and we very well may be next. What do you think? Would you prefer Murphy to be a largely "dry" county or serve alcohol?

The Liquor Law Did Pass In Murphy, North Carolina!

John and Jessica – REMAX Mountain Properties – Murphy, North Carolina – (877) 837-3002 –