In times of trouble, you know who your friends are: An old saying now with a new twist. Covid-19 has given everything a new twist. However, tenants of goodness, kindness and compassion for others remain the same.

Ashe County Superintendent of Schools Phyllis Yates knows the virtues of goodness, kindness and compassion for others. In the midst of the storm that Covid-19 has brought to our peaceful, mountain community, Superintendent Yates did not hesitate to demonstrate her goodness when called upon to help. After weeks of working to get resources in place to allow the essential staff of Ashe DSS to continue to work whether from their normal offices or not, I was at a seeming dead end. The current systems could not be used from other places. The computers that we had ordered to allow staff to continue their work had not arrived. Backlogs and distribution issues were unpredictable and no resolution was obvious. Then I called Phyllis to see if there were computers not currently in use at the now empty schools that DSS could borrow until we could get our own. She said she would be glad to help however she could, and she would check IT Director Amy Walker and see.

Within a couple of hours, 25 computer units were delivered to our doorstep. All this in the midst of feeding hundreds of children across our county and leading the army of teachers to teach in a new way. Thank you, Superintendent Yates. Your swift action and willingness to help in times of trouble is very much appreciated.

Tracie Downer

director, Ashe County DSS

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