• Picture   John Glenn

    Graham A. Barden Elementary School is surrounded by a magnificent, diverse and fascinating community.  Our school  serves citizens from Havelock and Cherry Point MCAS, both of whom we are pleased and honored to serve.

    Havelock is a community that is dedicated to supporting the mission of Cherry Point, while striving for organized growth and development. The official population of Havelock in 1950 was 100. The current population is approximately  21,000. Many of the city's current residents are associated with the neighboring community of Cherry Point, Marine Corps Air Station.

    Nestled along the banks of Slocum Creek, at the edge of military housing, is Graham A. Barden Elementary School.  It was built in 1953 and was one of the first schools in Havelock.  Our school was named after Graham  Arthur Barden.  In 1919, he left the Navy and  attended the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where he                                                   studied law and was admitted  to the bar in 1920.  He later served as a Democratic  U.S. Congressman from N.C. He was a strong advocate for public education.

    The first principal of Graham A. Barden Elementary School was Arthur Edwards.  Mr. Edwards was also the acting Superintendent for the Havelock area and his office was located  at Graham A. Barden.

    Graham A. Barden Elementary also boasts a visit from astronaut John Glenn who visited our school on  December 21,1962 while touring the United States’ Air Bases in order to promote the U.S. Flight Program. Colonel Glenn received the Alfred A. Cunningham Award signifying his Marine Aviator skills during his visit.

    After much planning and hard work, an addition to the Graham A. Barden building was completed in April of 2000.  This addition contained a new front office, other adjoining offices, and a new media center.  The principal, school secretaries, counselor and the nurse all moved into the new addition in April of 2000.  The following month students began using the new media center.

    Graham A. Barden Elementary School is one of fifteen elementary schools and one of fourteen Title 1 schools in Craven County.  It is currently ranked in the top 10% regarding academic growth and progress which encompasses all elementary schools in the state of North Carolina. Graham A. Barden has been on a journey of continuous academic improvement by consistently implementing research based practices, differentiated and rigorous instruction, as well as, review and reflection regarding assessment data.  

    GAB operates under the guiding question of “What is best for children?”  


    The areas of Havelock that are designated to attend GAB include: All of Slocum Village (Lower Enlisted Housing that has recently been open to the public upon space available), Jackson Trailer Park, Havelock Park, Woodhaven, Sherwood Forest, Sherman Division, Lynnewayne Circle, and Lake Road subdivisions. The military housing area across the street from

    Graham A. Barden is Slocum housing.  As of November 2016, 32 students walk or ride their bikes from the new Slocum housing area to Graham A. Barden whereas in November 2015, 20 students walked or rode their bikes and in 2014, 38 students walked or rode bikes.


    GAB’s attendance data is currently 95% as of November 2016 compared to 95.7% as of November, 2015 and 95.36% in 2014. To encourage attendance for the 2016-17 school year, we have included the following incentives: daily attendance percentages and goals are posted and announced everyday during afternoon announcements, a graph is                           posted in the hallway to show classes with perfect attendance, and a certificate and coupon is awarded to individual students with perfect attendance by the principal and counselor.  There is also a “Be Cool...Come to School” initiative by the counselor.


    There is currently an enrollment of 65 students for the 2016-2017 school year while the 2015-2016 school year, GAB had a total of 55 students enrolled in Kindergarten and in 2014-2015, there were 52. Of the current 65, eight (12%) attended Pre-School at GAB. Graham A. Barden Elementary’s Pre-K provides an Exceptional Children’s Program (ECP) that includes typically developing children who serve as role models. Children who are identified with special needs receive services tuition free. Typically developing children are either part of the state-funded NC Pre-K program or pay tuition. This combination of children creates a diversified classroom which provides an optimum learning experience.

    In the preschool program, the Creative Curriculum is used, which promotes learning through play. The focus is on social-emotional, physical, language, and cognitive development throughout the school day.


    Graham Barden Elementary participates in the Craven County Schools HUG Volunteer Program. Currently, as of  January 2017, we have 52 volunteers with 620 hours recorded so far. During the 2015-2016 school year, as of October 31, we had 62 volunteers with 274 hours recorded.  1686 hours were recorded at the end of the previous year (2014-2015) with 87 certificates of appreciation awarded at GAB’s annual volunteer reception; and, two volunteers were presented the Governor’s Award for contributing over 100 hours each.

    Volunteers must meet the following criteria to be involved at our school:  completion of an online application, having fingerprints made and verified, and  obtaining approval from Craven County Schools Human Resource Services. Volunteers’ service ranges from serving as chaperones on field trips  assisting in the classrooms with clerical work, tutoring students in reading and math, assisting with field day activities, and Storybook Land Night.

    Graham A Barden has several community partners that also provide voluntary services. Cherry Point Marine and Naval personnel are highly involved as volunteer tutors, field day assistants and assessment proctors.   The Grandbuddies of the Civitans' organization volunteer to read with children during special occasions such as Guest Reader Day and Storybook Land.


    GAB teachers are being trained in the MTSS framework and are transitioning into full implementation.  MTSS uses  data-based problem-solving to integrate academic and behavioral instruction and intervention. The integrated instruction and intervention is delivered to students in varying intensities (multiple tiers) based on student need. “Need-driven” decision-making seeks to ensure that district resources reach the appropriate students at the appropriate levels to accelerate the performance of ALL students to achieve and/or exceed proficiency.


    Every grade level provides an intervention block(ZOOM) daily to give intense instruction in small group settings  addressing specific skills needed.


    More parent/family training sessions specific to grade levels and needs are scheduled to provide parents with the

    information and resources needed to help their children be successful.  Events include:  Orientation, Open House, 3-5 Bring Your Parents to School (every 12 weeks),Veterans Day Program, Christmas Program, Spring Program,Parent Training sessions for K-2 and 3-5, Conferences with teachers, 3rd grade information night for Read to Achieve,Family Literacy event (Storybook Land), Food Lion Math Night, and Family Science Night.

    At Graham A. Barden, we embrace  challenges and continue to  find creative and innovative ways to serve all of our scholars and their families, and providing rich educational experiences for all.  We appreciate our families, parents, and the opportunities  they afford  us to be a part of their child’s/children’s educational pathway.