A Message from our Principal
Welcome to the Catawba Elementary School family! We will work together during this challenging year to make learning fun, rewarding, and rigorous for our students. Please contact our staff or administrators if we can be of service to you or your family.
- Mr. Lee, School Principal
Meet Michael D. Lee, Principal
Joined Team CCS - August 2009
Schools and great teachers have had essential roles in my life. Previously, I lived one of my dreams of teaching Spanish and English as a Second Language and coaching at River Bend Middle and Bunker Hill High in Claremont. After graduating from Appalachian State University with my Educational Leadership certification, I began my administrative career at St. Stephens Elementary in Conover. I spent five truly memorable years there serving the students, staff and community to grow our students. I have worked with and learned from some of the very best. Currently, I am excited to join the team at Catawba Elementary to build a transformative learning environment in pursuit of taking kids higher, Ad Astra, with students at the core of everything we do.
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, B.A. Spanish and Management double major
New York University, M.A.T English to Speakers of Other Languages
Appalachian State University, Educational Leadership
Why I Became an Educator
Schools inspired me to dream and think I could become something. Equally important, they also enabled me to pursue those dreams
Growing up, my parents worked long hours and did manual labor so we could go farther, do more, and fly higher. But, with their own very basic education and limited English, they couldn't ever help us in school. They would simply and frequently tell my siblings and me, "Go to school. Listen to your teacher. Do your work." They truly believed my teachers and our schools held the key to our success.
I'm sure it wasn't easy for my teachers, but today I am here because of some truly caring teachers and the development platform schools gave me. I recognize all of that support, but also know that my story isn't unique. Our students still need us, teachers still matter, and great schools are still vital to our modern society. That's why I choose to serve in education.
Favorite Place in Catawba County
I grew up in a double-wide trailer with chickens, ducks and crayfish at the end of a tiny dirt road behind Blackburn Elementary. It is and will always be my favorite place in Catawba County.
When I am away from school, I enjoy exercising, writing and playing the guitar and piano. I believe learning should be a life-long journey. I strive for growth through conversation, reading, working on cars and tinkering with new technology.
Something Unique About Me
I am tri-lingual and am learning a fourth language, coding.
Anything Else You Want Us To Know?
I'm just very excited to start building something great with the team at Catawba Elementary! Go Rockets!
Catawba County is a great place to live, and our schools play a vital role in our community. As a graduate of Catawba County Schools, I know where we have been and where we can go if we work together.
Dr. Bethany Settlemyre
Meet Bethany N. Settlemyre, Assistant Principal
Joined Team CCS - August 2000
I have spent the last 23 years teaching middle school language arts at Maiden Middle School. Having enjoyed such a wonderful teaching experience, I am excited to begin my administrative career with the Catawba Rockets as we learn and grow together.
B.S. in Middle Grades Education, Gardner-Webb University
M.A. in Middle Grades Education, Appalachian State University
Ed.D. in Curriculum and Instruction, Gardner-Webb University
Add-on License in Educational Leadership, UNC Greensboro
National Board Certified
State Certification in Academically/Intellectually Giftedness
Why I became an Educator
School was never easy for me. Thankfully I was blessed with parents, teachers, and mentors who guided me through my educational journey and encouraged me to never, ever give up. It is my desire to encourage all students to discover their strengths and pursue their dreams to the best of their abilities. One of my favorite things about working with students is that every day is different. There are always new avenues to explore and new paths to discover. I absolutely love it when students figure out that their perceived weaknesses may actually be their superpowers!
My family enjoys hiking in the mountains, relaxing at the beach, and just hanging out at our farm here in Catawba County. My favorite places are coffee trucks, bakeries, and anywhere there is chocolate!
Drinking coffee ranks Number #1 on my list! Spending time with my family is a close second! I also enjoy swimming, reading, cooking, and baking.
Something Unique about Me
When I retire from education, I would love to open a bakery.
Anything Else You Want Us To Know?
I am very excited to join the Catawba Rockets Family!
Meet Kelli Jonas, Admins
My name is Kelli Jonas. I am the secretary here at Catawba Elementary. I have been at Catawba for 9 years. I am married and have 2 boys. I am going to be a MEME for the first time on October 31. My new baby is a little boy named Brooks. We are so excited to finally be grandparents.
Meet Donna Todd , School Data Manager
I began working in Catawba County Schools in August 2006 at Sherrills Ford Elementary as the Data Manager. I was very fortunate to be a part of the Sherrills Ford Elementary family for 14 years. I am excited to transition into a dual Data Manager position at Catawba Elementary School as well as Oxford Elementary School.
I’m married to my best friend, Gary, who makes me smile every day. We have 2 wonderful children, Marshall and Brittany. Marshall graduated from Bandys, attended UNCG then onto UT Knoxville (Go VOLS). Marshall and his wife, Angela live in Chicago, IL. Brittany also graduated from Bandys, she attended ECU (Go PIRATES). Brittany and her husband, Daniel live in Greenville, NC.
My family and I love to travel and spend time together. With everyone in different directions, we try to find time that we all can be in one place at the same time, preferably the beach. The beach is my most favorite place to visit and hopefully to live there someday.