Volume 4 , Number 1December 1, 2011


Need-to-know highlights in National and State Recognitions:
  • GCPS recognized by the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation. Read more…
  • Gwinnett’s environmental stewardship practices gain national recognition. Read more…
  • GCPS honored as Most Outstanding School District by PACE Award program. Read more...
  • GCPS receives $272,610 grant to support student achievement through after-school FUTURE program. Read more…
  • GCPS TV’s production team takes center stage with EMMY and Telly awards. Read more…
  • Radloff MS’ Raville takes a star turn as co-host of PBS show. Read more...
  • Eight GCPS educators receive surprise honors for classroom excellence. Read more...
  • 14 Georgia Master Teachers applauded for their achievement. Read more…
  • Parsons ES receives state’s Exemplary Library Media Program award. Read more…
  • GCPS counselors and educators earn state and regional recognition. Read more…
  • Parkview HS’ Leviton receives state kudos for stock market savvy. Read more…
  • Georgia PTA recognizes contributions of Gwinnett schools and leaders. Read more…
  • Georgia School Nutrition Association honors schools and staff. Read more…
  • Gwinnett schools receive Environmental Achievement Awards from Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful. Read more…
  • The Quality-Plus Leader Academy Aspiring Principal Program names Class of 2012. Read more…

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    GCPS recognized among nation’s
    best communities for music education

    Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) is in tune with its music education curriculum, and has been recognized for the third time as a Best Communities for Music Education Award honoree by the National Association of Music Merchants Foundation. GCPS also received the award in 2005 and 2010.

    “GCPS’ music programs have received recognition throughout the state of Georgia, and the highly qualified and dedicated music educators in the district are recognized as exceptional teachers among their peers across the state,” says Robert Andrews, the school district’s director of Fine Arts. “We have a Board of Education and Superintendent who value and support the arts, and the Board’s support enables the district’s 265 music educators to provide quality music instruction to more than 90,000 students in grades K–12.”
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    GCPS honored for environmental
    stewardship, cost-saving practices

    The United States Green Building Council, Georgia Chapter, recently presented GCPS with its “2011 Leadership in Energy Efficiency Award.” Georgia’s Lt. Gov. Casey Cagle honored the district with the national recognition during the “High Performance, Healthy Schools Regional Summit” held at the Georgia World Congress Center in November.

    Gwinnett County Public Schools was selected for the honor from among Georgia’s school districts thanks to the system’s efforts to meet the highest standards in building and operating facilities that are resource-efficient for both water and energy use. With more than 21-million square feet of ENERGY STAR-certified areas, GCPS leads the nation for K-12 certified building space, saving $8.4 million in operating costs annually systemwide.

    GCPS Facility Planning Staff
    Architect Greg Pruitt (left)
    accepts the Leadership in
    Energy Efficiency Award
    on behalf of the school district
    from Georgia Lt. Gov.
    Casey Cagle.


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    GCPS receives PACE Award
    Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) was recognized through the Clean Air Campaign with a PACE Award as Most Outstanding School District.

    GCPS was an early proponent of the Clean Air Schools program, participating since 2007. During the last school year, nearly 50% of schools in the county implemented one or more programs to improve air quality on school grounds. High participation from students and teachers, coupled with the school system’s partnership with Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful, helped the school district reduce vehicle idling by nearly 50%, the highest average of any school system during the 2010–11 school year.

    The PACE Awards program recognizes the best commute options programs in Georgia, celebrating the success of employers, property managers, schools, and individuals in advancing the promise of cleaner air and less traffic.
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    GCPS awarded grant for $272,610 for graduation program
    GCPS and South Gwinnett HS have been awarded a three-year grant for FUTURE, a comprehensive after-school program to support at-risk students in fulfilling graduation requirements.

    The federal grant, which is funded by the 21st Century Community Learning Centers Program, will support services for 150 students each year, offering 12 hours a week in tutoring, credit recovery, graduation test requirements support, recreation, and skills development. Transportation for students from the school site to their homes also is included.
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    GCPS TV earns EMMY and Telly awards
    The Southeast Chapter of the National Academy of Television Arts & Sciences recognized GCPS TV with two EMMY Awards for the GCPS original series, “Love That Book!”
  • Outstanding Achievement: News and Program Specialty Excellence, Children/Youth (12 and under) Program. (The production team included Peggy Shivers (now retired), Kolinda Scialabba, Chris Smith, and Randall Tolliver.)
  • Outstanding Achievement: Crafts Achievement Excellence, Editor-Short Form. (The production team included Greg LaHatte, Chris Smith, and Randall Tolliver.)

    The Broadcast and Distance Learning team also earned Bronze awards in the 2011 Telly Awards for the following broadcasts:
  • “Gwinnett Has It!”
  • “Science Fair”
  • “Love That Book!”
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    Radloff’s Raville tapped as PBS co-host

    Caroline Raville prepares for her
    close-up on PBS’
    This American Land.
    Teacher Caroline Raville of Radloff MS was selected by PBS to co-host “This American Land,” a television show about natural resources in the United States, including the landscapes, waters, and wildlife.

    “I am so very excited,” Ms. Raville says. “It is part science, part travel, and part hard-hitting news.” She adds, “I think this is a great opportunity for our kids. I am already working with some of the production staff to come up with ways to get them into my classroom next year.” She hopes to expose her students to the technology behind the show’s production and spark their interest in careers behind the camera.

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    GCPS teachers honored for classroom excellence
    Gwinnett’s educators are helping develop the next generation of leaders. OfficeMax and Adopt-A-Classroom recognize their effort, and, as part of a nationwide cause called A Day Made Better, the following teachers have been honored for their work in the classroom.
    A Day Made Better Honorees
    Ken Almon of Norcross ES
    Whitney Barlament of
    Buice School

    Nancy Johnson of
    Benefield ES

    Brenda M. Jones of Lawrenceville ES
    Martin Maze of Chesney ES
    Tracy Pelinsky of
    Beaver Ridge ES

    Drew Schoen of Lilburn MS
    Anashay Wright of Nesbit ES

    The teachers were nominated by their principals for demonstrating passion, dedication, and innovation in the classroom. Each educator was surprised with an award and $1,000 worth of school supplies from OfficeMax.
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    14 GCPS educators among new Master Teachers
    Since 2005, Georgia educators have had the opportunity to earn the Georgia “Master Teacher” certification, a designation based on appreciable gains in student achievement. Among the state’s 600 Master Teachers, 84 Gwinnett educators have achieved the honor.

    Gwinnetts newest Master Teachers are:

    Master Teacher Honorees
    Jan Chastain of Osborne MS
    Marylee Duggins of
    Berkmar MS

    James Arthur Fisher Jr. of Osborne MS
    Lacey Jakes of Osborne MS
    Jill Lambes of Mulberry ES
    Brad Mayer of
    North Gwinnett MS

    Betty McClam of Crews MS
    Jane B. Moore of Mulberry ES
    Jan Pruitt of Osborne MS
    Michelle Ruhl of Mulberry ES
    Teri Schneider of
    Peachtree Ridge HS

    Jean Sohn of Duluth MS
    Susan L. Tavernier of
    Mulberry ES

    Stephanie Wilker of
    Puckett
    s Mill ES

    “The Master Teacher program represents the pursuit of excellence within the teaching profession,” says Nikki Mouton, GCPS executive director of Staff Development. “Gwinnett’s educators continue to rise to the challenge regarding their professional development, and our students reap the ultimate rewards.”

    Georgia’s Master Teacher Certification Program is coordinated by the Georgia Professional Standards Commission (GaPSC). It provides statewide recognition to certified public school teachers in Georgia who have at least three years of teaching experience and who consistently demonstrate instructional excellence through student achievement. Master Teachers are eligible to automatically renew their teaching certificates as long as they continue to qualify for Master Teacher status. Application materials for the 2012 cycle are available on the GaPSCs website.

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    Parsons ES receives state library media award
    As the largest classroom in Gwinnett elementary schools, the media center plays an important role in teaching and learning. The Georgia Department of Education honored Parsons ES for its efforts in making its media center an Exemplary Library Media Program.

    It is such a great honor to have our media center recognized at the state level in such a special way! said Suzanne Skeen, media specialist. Our media center is viewed by students and staff as an extension of the classroom, where we assist teachers in improving student achievement and help the school meet school improvement goals.
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    Counseling award recipients win state, regional honors
    The Georgia School Counselors Association named David S. Young of Mountain Park ES as the 2011 Counseling Writer of the Year; Dorothy Parker-Jarrett, principal of Summerour MS, as the 2011 Georgia Counseling Advocate of the Year; and Dianne Thompson, director of Advisement and Counseling, as the 2011 Georgia Counseling Supervisor of the Year. All three Gwinnett honorees were formally recognized in November at the Georgia School Counselor Association annual state conference in Macon.

    “I am honored and humbled to join with my colleagues to celebrate these distinctions,” says Dianne Thompson, director of Advisement and Counseling. “I couldn’t ask for better company in the quest to make the greatest difference for students in every Gwinnett school.”

    Mr. Young was recognized for his published work, “Skits, Raps, and Poems for the School Counselor.” Mr. Young, Ms. Parker-Jarrett, and Ms. Thompson earned Georgia’s top counseling honors after being named county and Region 2 winners earlier this year. Kim Geer of North Gwinnett HS also was recognized at the Region 2 level. It is no secret that Gwinnett County counselors are consistently among the most recognized in the country in state and national honors. All of the state-recognized winners will vie for national titles.
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    Parkview’s Leviton earns state kudos
    Mark Leviton of Parkview HS took top honors in the Georgia Council on Economic Education (GCEE) state competition among Stock Market Game advisors for both the fall ($150,364 ending portfolio value) and spring ($145,048 ending portfolio value) competitions during the 2010–11 school year.

    Says Mr. Leviton, “In this kind of game, luck plays a big role. You have to pick your stocks in an aggressive, more high-risk fashion than you might with real money. Then, you just hope for the best.”

    Each spring and fall semester, teams start with a hypothetical portfolio of $100,000 and research publicly traded companies on the Internet, read business publications, and crunch the numbers to select stocks during the 10-week competition. Parkview HS’ student team, advised by Mr. Leviton and achieving an ending portfolio value of $276,235, also received top state honors, and Mountain View HS’ student team, advised by Scotty McDaniel and achieving an ending portfolio value of $193,112, was the statewide runner-up.

    The feedback he receives from students is “they enjoy the game because it does teach them a little bit about investing. They can see that in the investment world, some people get rewarded and some get punished, so there is a little reality lesson involved.”

    With strong support from businesses, foundations, and individuals, GCEE provides K-12 curriculum materials and specialized programs like the Stock Market Game to Georgia students.
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    Georgia PTA recognizes GCPS leaders and schools
    Georgia PTA extended statewide kudos to several schools and individuals at its annual conference:
    Outstanding Principal
    Clay Hunter of South Gwinnett HS

    Outstanding Local Unit - Elementary
    Couch MS PTSA, 2nd place

    Outstanding Local Unit - Middle
    Taylor ES PTA, 2nd place

    Model PTAs
    Annistown ES
    Camp Creek ES
    Cedar Hill ES
    Couch MS
    Craig ES
    Jackson ES
    Parkview HS
    Puckett’s Mill ES
    Roberts ES
    Taylor ES

    Best Ideas
    Pharr ES
    Trip ES

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    Schools honored for SNP participation, staff contributions
    As the number of GCPS students eating at school continues to increase every school year, Gwinnett schoolchildren are eating well-balanced and nutritious meals during the day and learning how to make healthy nutrition decisions at home. The Georgia School Nutrition Association (GSNA) recently recognized GCPS’ School Nutrition Program (SNP) in the following categories:

    —Increase of 3% or more in Lunch Participation
    —Increase of 3% or more in Breakfast Participation
    —Consistently High Breakfast Participation
    —Consistently High Lunch Participation

    Gwinnett schools recognized
    for increased participation of 3% or more
    Breakfast
    Arcado ES
    Berkeley Lake ES
    Benefield ES
    Brookwood HS
    Buice School
    Britt ES
    Camp Creek ES
    Cedar Hill ES
    Chattahoochee ES
    Corley ES
    Creekland MS
    Crews MS
    Dacula ES
    Dacula HS
    Dacula MS
    GIVE Center West
    Grayson ES
    Grayson HS
    Gwin Oaks ES
    Harris ES
    Hooper Renwick School
    Jackson ES
    Lanier MS
    Lawrenceville ES
    Lilburn MS
    Magill ES
    Mason ES
    McKendree ES
    Minor ES
    Phoenix HS
    Rock Springs ES
    Shiloh ES
    Simonton ES
    Snellville MS
    South Gwinnett HS
    Summerour MS
    Sycamore ES
    Taylor ES
    Walnut Grove ES
    Lunch
    Alcova ES
    Berkmar HS
    Buice School
    Central Gwinnett HS
    Creekland MS
    Collins Hill HS
    Dacula HS
    Duluth HS
    GIVE Center West
    Hull MS
    Lanier MS
    Lovin ES
    McConnell MS
    Meadowcreek HS
    Mill Creek HS
    North Gwinnett HS
    Parkview HS
    Partee ES
    Shiloh MS
    Simpson ES
    Simonton ES
    Snellville MS
    South Gwinnett HS
    Sycamore ES
    Trickum MS


    Gwinnett schools recognized
    for consistently high participation
    Breakfast
    Annistown ES
    Benefield ES
    Buice School
    Cedar Hill ES
    Corley ES
    GIVE Center East
    GIVE Center West
    Harris ES
    Hooper Renwick School
    Hopkins ES
    Jackson ES
    Kanoheda ES
    Lawrenceville ES
    Lilburn ES
    Meadowcreek ES
    Minor ES
    Monarch School
    Nesbit ES
    Peachtree ES
    Radloff MS
    Richards MS
    Rockbridge ES
    Shiloh ES
    Simonton ES
    Stripling ES

    Lunch
    Berkmar MS
    Duluth MS
    Hopkins ES
    Lilburn ES
    Lilburn MS
    Meadowcreek ES
    Nesbit ES
    Radloff MS
    Richards MS
    Rockbridge ES
    Stripling ES
    Summerour MS
    Sweetwater MS



    GSNA also recognized the Gwinnett County School Nutrition Association, 4th District, with the President’s Award, the highest honor an association can win. Ann Hamner of Britt ES served as president during the 2010-11 school year, and Heather Miller of Sugar Hill ES is the president-elect for 2011-12. The following SNP staff members also received awards for their contributions to GSNA’s membership and organization:

    Diane Edwards of SNP won the Naomi Tolbert Central Office Support Award. The Central Office Support Award was created to honor a central office staff person who exhibits an extraordinary commitment to the school nutrition program.
    Alice Ertley (retiree) won the Ann C. Smith Hall of Fame Award. The Hall of Fame honor is presented annually and it may be awarded to three people each year who have made outstanding contributions to the state association and the school nutrition program.

    This school year, 127 Gwinnett schools serve breakfast daily, while 128 serve lunch.
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    GCPS schools earn Environmental Achievement Awards
    The Green & Healthy School Program, a joint initiative of Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful and Gwinnett County Public Schools, promotes strategic planning, teaching, learning, and doing that results in a greener and healthier natural world.

    During the 2010-11 school year, 77 schools earned Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful’s Environmental Achievement Award, which recognizes schools for documenting their planning and implementation of environmental programs, practices, and education efforts in seven specific earth-friendly areas. Those areas are waste reduction, education and stewardship, water conservation and watershed protection, air quality, energy conservation, beautification and green space preservation, and community outreach.

    “The first level, Discovering, allows a school to concentrate on discovering and recognizing the healthy, environmentally sound practices and activities that are already in place,” discovering more ways to be green, says Brenda McDaniel, education manager for Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful. The Discovering schools include:
    Discovering Green & Healthy Schools... getting started
    Ferguson ES
    Phoenix HS
    Snellville MS

    She adds, “The second level, Progressing, involves a school completing some of the  listings from each of the seven Earth Friendly areas that help conserve our valuable natural resources.” The Progressing schools include:
    Progressing Green & Healthy Schools... making progress
    Bethesda ES
    Dacula MS
    Kanoheda ES
    Nesbit ES
    North Gwinnett HS
    North Gwinnett MS
    Oakland Meadow School
    Parkview HS
    Peachtree ES
    Woodward Mill ES

    The third level, Taking Action, concentrates on expanding involvement in all seven Earth Friendly areas. “Schools also use many ’green’ resources and lesson plans and allow for student-initiated project ideas that impact our environment and community,” Ms. McDaniel says. Schools reaching this level earn an award sign that can be posted at their school. The Taking Action schools include:
    Taking Action Green & Healthy... renewing commitment
    Alcova ES
    Anderson-Livsey ES
    Britt ES
    Centerville ES
    Chesney ES
    Collins Hill HS
    Dacula ES
    Gwin Oaks ES
    Harmony ES
    Head ES
    Knight ES
    Lanier HS
    Lilburn MS
    Meadowcreek ES
    Mountain Park ES
    Mountain View HS
    Patrick ES
    Pharr ES
    Simpson ES
    Sycamore ES
    White Oak ES

    Ms. McDaniel says the fourth level, Reaching Higher, gives schools the opportunity to create new environmental initiatives that go above and beyond the previous levels. These schools also demonstrate their best green practices at the Green & Healthy Schools training sessions so that other schools may learn from their programs. Schools at this level receive an “Earth Banner” to display in their school. The Reaching Higher school include:
    Reaching Higher Green & Healthy Schools... at the highest level
    Annistown ES
    Arcado ES
    Beaver Ridge ES
    Berkeley Lake ES
    Brookwood HS
    Buice School
    Camp Creek ES
    Cedar Hill ES
    Chesney ES
    Corley ES
    Craig ES
    Duluth MS
    Duncan Creek ES
    Dyer ES
    Five Forks MS
    Fort Daniel ES
    Grayson ES
    Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science and Technology
    Harbins ES
    Harris ES
    Jackson ES
    Lanier MS
    Level Creek ES
    Lovin ES
    Mason ES
    Maxwell HS of Technology
    McKendree ES
    Minor ES
    Monarch School
    Norcross HS
    Parsons ES
    Peachtree Ridge HS
    Pinckneyville MS
    Puckett’s Mill ES
    Riverside ES
    Roberts ES
    Rosebud ES
    Shiloh MS
    Starling ES
    Sugar Hill ES
    Taylor ES
    Trickum MS
    Trip ES
    Winn Holt ES

    “All of the levels promote hands-on learning for students to demonstrate good citizenship and instills in students a sense of leadership and responsibility,” Ms. McDaniel says. “The G&H program also allows students to make curriculum connections by collaborating and practicing problem-solving skills by analyzing data, identifying areas needing improvement, implementing changes, tracking progress, and sharing results.”

    GCPS staff members who currently serve on the Gwinnett Clean & Beautiful Board of Directors include Berney Kirkland, Chief of Staff; Dale Robbins, Associate Superintendent for Teaching and Learning Support, and Jim Steele, Chief Operations Officer.
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    GCPS names sixth class of Aspiring Principal Program
    Gwinnett County Public Schools selected 13 educators to participate in the sixth class of the district’s Quality-Plus Leader Academy (QPLA) Aspiring Principal Program. These 13 school leaders, who currently serve as assistant principals, will receive the training and support needed to better prepare them for a principal position in Gwinnett.

    Once each month, academy members participate in nine hours of instruction led by system leaders; this instruction includes case studies, team activities, and simulations. While in training, Quality-Plus Leader Academy Aspiring Principal Program members also participate in a required 90-day residency program working with a current school principal. This GCPS leadership development initiative is funded through a grant from The Wallace Foundation.

    The QPLA members for the Class of 2012 are:
    Class of 2012 - Cohort VI
    Dr. Yvette Arthur of Jones MS
    Tonya Burnley of
    Meadowcreek ES

    Crystal Cooper of Bethesda HS
    Bonnie Driscoll of
    Peachtree Ridge HS

    Margaret Fehrman of
    North Gwinnett MS

    William “Bo” Ford Jr. of Brookwood HS
    Kristina Jackson of Arcado ES
    Dr. Brenda Johnson of
    Minor ES

    Todd Marschke of
    GIVE Center West

    Katise Menchan of Hull MS
    Dr. Sarah L. Skinner of Pinckneyville MS
    Mary M. Thomas of Arcado ES
    Dr. Rukina Walker of
    Trickum MS

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    Need-to-know highlights in Spotlight:
    Learn more about…
  • System, School, and Staff Honors

  • Student/Team Honors

  • Degrees

  • Presentations

  • Publications

  • Participants, and

  • Grants/Scholarships.

  • Something to celebrate?


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    System, School, and Staff Honors
  • The following GCPS educators were recognized at the Georgia Art Education Association (GAEA) Conference:
    Jackie Ellett of Duncan Creek ES— named as the 2012 GAEA Art Educator of the Year.
    Dr. Bruce Bowman and Debi West, both of North Gwinnett HS— named by GAEA as the National Art Honor Society Outstanding Sponsors of the Year.
  • Archer HS and Mountain View HS— honored with the 2011 Cooperative Spirit Sportsmanship Award from the Georgia High School Association.
  • Patti DuMestre of Superintendent’s Office— attained certification as a Certified Professional Secretary from the International Association of Administrative Professionals.
  • Marsha Hunter of Media Services— recognized by the Georgia Historical Records Advisory Board with the Educational Use of Historical Records Award for the library media program “Using Primary Sources in Language Arts.
  • Jeff Peterson of Mountain Park ES— honored with the 2011 Marilyn Brackett Excellence in Teaching Physical Education Award.
  • Dr. Frances Davis, Chief Human Resources Officer— recognized by the United Way Women’s Leadership Council with United Way’s Legacy Award.
  • Congratulations to GCPS foreign language teachers who have earned PEAK Awards, which recognize teachers for their professionalism, experience, achievement, and knowledge. This year’s PEAK honorees include:
    Fourth-year award recipients
    Alexandra Boyle and Donna Johnson, both of Parkview HS
    Christy Belbey of Dacula HS
    Dr. Jaime Claymore of Mountain View HS
    Ingrid Crook of Collins Hill HS
    Keith Toda of Brookwood HS

    Third-year award recipients
    Holly Brodnax and Anne Hawkins, both of Grayson HS
    Muriel Davison of Collins Hill HS
    Laura Droms of Mountain View HS
    Marcia Littlefield of Crews MS
    Joe Frank Uriz of Parsons ES
    Kathy Wheeler of Pinckneyville MS
    Patrick Yaggy of North Gwinnett HS

    Second-year award recipients
    Sanja Knezovic of Parkview HS
    Julie Smith of Collins Hill HS

    First-year award recipients
    Rhonda Archer of North Gwinnett HS
    Yvonne Boone of Berkmar HS
    Lindsey Campbell of Dacula HS
    Nicole D’Antonio
    of Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology

    Mary Meyer, Dr. Kris Muir, and Ashley Newman,
    all of Brookwood HS

    Sergio Parra of Osborne MS

  • Debi West of North Gwinnett HS— featured in a short documentary film about “The Dream Art Contest,” discussing art and the Civil Rights Movement and America today.
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  • Student/Team Honors
  • Brookwood HS Marching Band, directed by Laura Stanley and Rudy Wilson— named Grand Champions at the Lake Lanier Tournament of Bands.
  • Crews MS Orchestra, directed by Ashley Phillips and Sydney Mellard; and Hull MS Orchestra, directed by Dana Lu, Amanda McClellan, and Janice Yoon— received the Exemplary Performance Award from the Georgia Music Educator’s Association (GMEA).
  • North Gwinnett HS AFJROTC— selected as a U.S. Air Force Distinguished Unit for 2010-11. Major Bruce Bonds and Chief Michael Shannon serve as instructors.
  • Shiloh HS AFJROTC— selected for a 2010-11 Air Force Junior ROTC Outstanding Organization Award by the Department of the Air Force. Major Lourdes Trujillo and Master Sgt. Demetris Cook serve as instructors.
  • Congratulations to the following school communities, student-athletes, and coaches with a recap of AAAAA state athletic championships in 2010-11:
    Brookwood HS’ Boys Cross Country team— Ben Dehnke, head coach;
    Brookwood HS’ Boys Tennis team— Heath Hinton, head coach;
    Brookwood HS’ Football team— Mark Crews, head coach;
    Collins Hill HS’ Wrestling team (Dual and Traditional)— Josh Stephen, head coach;
    Collins Hill HS’ Softball team— Billy Dooley, former head coach 2010-11; Paul Pierce, head coach 2011-12;
    Gwinnett Heat’s Adapted Football team— coached by Michaela Istone of Oakland Meadow School, Jennifer Elinburg of Mountain View HS, and community coach Brian Elinburg;
    Norcross HS’ Boys Basketball team— Jesse McMillan, head coach;
    Norcross HS’ Girls Basketball team— Angie Hembree, head coach;
    Parkview HS’ Baseball team— Chan Brown, head coach;
    Peachtree Ridge HS’ Boys Track team— Ron Clanton, head coach;
    Peachtree Ridge HS’ Swim and Dive team— Jeremy Laird, head coach; and,
    Peachtree Ridge HS’ Co-ed Cheerleading team— Dr. Rob Spencer, head coach.
  • Congratulations to the following school communities, student-athletes, and coaches for AAAAA state athletic championships in 2011-12:
    Brookwood HS’ Boys Cross Country team— Ben Dehnke, head coach;
    Collins Hill HS’ Softball team— Paul Pierce, head coach, and
    Mill Creek HS’ Competition Cheerleading team— Brenda Petty, head coach.
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  • Degrees
  • Dr. Kathy Daymude of Mill Creek HS— earned a doctoral degree in Mathematics Education from the University of Georgia.
  • Dr. Uzoma O. Egbuonu of Lilburn MS— earned a doctoral degree in Instructional Leadership from Argosy University.
  • Dr. Dawn White of Rock Springs ES— earned a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership from Argosy University.
  • Dr. Nicole A. White of Meadowcreek ES— earned a doctoral degree in Educational Leadership from Argosy University.
  • Gayle Adkinson of Teaching and Learning Support— earned a specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia.
  • Robin Aubrey of Duluth HS— earned a specialist’s degree in Teaching and Learning from Piedmont College.
  • Crystal Cooper of Bethesda ES— earned a specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia.
  • Angelique Mitchell of Knight ES— earned a specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia.
  • Helen Morris of Level Creek ES— earned a specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia.
  • Rosemarie Placek of Peachtree Ridge HS— earned a specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia.
  • Lisa Rhodes of Taylor ES— earned a specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia.
  • Angela Schoenknecht of Berkeley Lake ES— earned a specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia.
  • Pasha Souvorin of Phoenix HS— earned a specialist’s degree in Learning, Design, and Technology from the University of Georgia.
  • Ruth Westbrooks of Partee ES— earned a specialist’s degree in Educational Leadership from the University of West Georgia.
  • Biljana Cepic of Mason ES— earned a master’s degree in Social Science from the University of Southern California.
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  • Presentations
  • Kathy Marks of Hopkins ES— presented Changing Mindsets: Teaching How to Cultivate Intelligence Through an Online Book Study at the National Association for Gifted Children Convention.
  • The following GCPS educators presented at the 52nd Annual Georgia Math Conference:
    Jill Kelly and David Dimsdale, both of Brookwood HS— AP Statistics Panel Discussion for New Teachers and Report from the Advanced Placement Statistics Exam;
    Leanne Luttrell of Lovin ES— Do Algebraic Reasoning and Critical Thinking Have Strong Connections? Yes!;”
    Liz Meany of Meadowcreek HS— To Be Exponentially Better, Be Cooperative!”;
    Kathy Traylor of Shiloh MS— Improving Problem Solving Skills: Two Strategies that Work, and
    Kathy Spruiell of Stripling ES— Guided Math for Real Teachers.
  • The following GCPS educators presented at the Georgia Art Education Association Conference:
    Jackie Ellett of Duncan Creek ES— Engaging in Arts-Based Research: Caught in the Process of Becoming;
    Amber Arnold of Level Creek ES— Elementary Art Can Be Sketchy! Using Bookmaking in Your Classroom,” and “Building Narratives Across Classrooms: Researching Best Classroom
    Practices;
    Sue Grigalunas of Magill ES— “Gustav Klimt and the Tree of Life: Creatively Branching Out-Vertical Lessons;”
    Jeanine Jones of Nesbit ES— Video Sub Plans;
    Lauren Christine Phillips of Nesbit ES— What Can You Do with Little Kids in the Art Room?” and “Aesthetics as Care in the New Georgia Visual Arts Performance Standards;
    Debi West of North Gwinnett HS— The Art of Anatomy and Get Published: Through the NAEA’s IRG - It’s as Simple as ABC;
    Hope Steele of Peachtree Ridge HS— Painting Titian to Life;
    Keagan OMara of Sweetwater MS— Teaching in 3-D: Using Google SketchUp in the Classroom;
    Dr. Aimée Burgamy of Trickum MS— ESD Paper Sensei: Explore the World of Japanese Paper Art, and
    Patricia Spencer of White Oak ES— Exploring Portraits: Using Literacy to Guide a Unit on Confidence and Artistic Expression.
  • The following GCPS counselors and educators presented at the Georgia School Counselors Association Conference:
    Terri Allen of Annistown ES, Maria Grovner and Carla Winkler of Creekland MS, Sarah Belknap of Peachtree Ridge HS, and Tracie Sharpe and Teshia Dula of Benefield ES— We’ve got RAMP! Yes, We Do! We’ve got RAMP and Want To Show You How to, too!”;
    Dr. Karen Griffith of Berkeley Lake ES— Careers in Classroom Guidance;
    Dr. Stacy Dehnke of Brookwood HS— Using the ACA Advocacy Competencies in School Counseling;
    Maria Grovner of Creekland MS— Keys to Promoting Your School Counseling Program;
    Kelly Flower of Five Forks MS— Increasing Motivation in Underachieving Males: A Small-Group Approach;
    David S. Young of Mountain Park ES— Skits, Raps, Poems, and Sing-Along Guidance: Unforgettable Lessons in the Classroom;
    Karen Alligood and Brandy Bortak, both of Cooper ES, Andrea Antwine of Couch MS, and Dwayne Wiggins of Archer HS— Unlocking a World of Potential through Community Involvement;
    Dianne Thompson and Galen Reavis, both of Advisement and Counseling— Unlocking Your Potential as a Counseling Advocate;
    Dorothy Parker-Jarrett of Summerour MS— “Strut Your Stuff: Preparing Professional Recognition Packets;
    Blair Morton of Parsons ES— “Reactive Attachment Disorder Poster Presentation;”
    Stacey Miller of Roberts ES— served as chair of the Elementary Worksetting Meeting;
    Vanita Moon of Snellville MS— served as chair of the Middle School Worksetting Meeting; and
    Terri Allen of Annistown ES— served as chair of Region II Meeting.
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  • Publications
  • Karen Burnette Garner of Teaching and Learning Support— published work in the 2011 anthology of poetry, The Reach of Song. Three poems were selected for publication, including two award-winning entries: Lowcountry Morning placed 2nd in the Byron Herbert Reece International Competition and Manifest Destiny - The Cherokee Lament placed 3rd in the Founders Competition.
  • Dr. Lawanna M. Lewis of Norton ES and Dr. Ronald E. Lewis of Norcross ES— published the article, Spiraling the Math Curriculum for Elementary Students in the September 2011 issue of The Journal of Elementary and Secondary Education.
  • Dr. Charlotte R. Sadler of Parsons ES— wrote the book, Comprehension Strategies for Middle Grade Learners: A Handbook for Content Area Teachers, Second Edition. The book was published by the International Reading Association and was chosen as the Book Club Selection for July 2011.
  • DeNelle West of Human Resources— published a description of the GCPS framework for helping new teachers in the August 2011 edition of the Journal of Staff Development.
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  • Participants
  • Allison Doherty of Stripling ES— selected to serve on the 2011-2012 Ticktocker Advisory Council of the National Charity League.
  • Debbie McAfee of Peachtree Ridge HS— selected to participate in the annual reading and scoring of the College Board’s Advanced Placement Examinations in English Language and Composition.
  • Renee Wilson-Wicker of Lanier HS— elected to serve a two-year term as Vice President for All-State Events for the Georgia Music Educators Association.
  • Congratulations to the following GCPS staff members on their selection for the 27th Class of Leadership Gwinnett: Greg LaHatte of Broadcast and Distance Learning; Molly McAuliffe of Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology; Ed Shaddix of North Gwinnett HS; and Kendra Washington-Bass of Leadership Development.
  • Kudos all around for members of the Teachers As Leaders Class of 2011-12:
    Teachers as Leaders participants
    Dr. Brittany Aarestad of Norcross HS
    Nelldra Allen of Duluth MS
    Jennifer Bahr of
    Brookwood HS

    Sharon Black of
    Walnut Grove ES

    Mandi Burgess of Lovin ES
    Lindsey Cafarella of Peachtree Ridge HS
    Doug Callahan of Jones MS
    Shannon Carter of
    Beaver Ridge ES

    Mary Clelland of Riverside ES
    Jacquelyn Dargon of Benefield ES
    Robin Davis of
    North Gwinnett MS

    Cappy Douglass of Shiloh HS
    Mandy Goodwin of Lawrenceville ES
    Tarcida Hernandez of Creekland MS
    Venice Hinds of Norcross ES
    Brenda Hitchcock of Bethesda ES
    Bernita Houston-Craven of Rosebud ES
    Mandee Jablonski of
    Berkmar MS
    Eve Jones of Harris ES
    Dr. Rosalita Kennedy of
    Jenkins ES

    Staci Kinsler of Ivy Creek ES
    Ashley Kirkland of Chattahoochee ES
    Anna Lawrence of Dacula MS
    Amy Lopez of Mulberry ES
    April Mitchell of Radloff MS
    Dr. Vickie Nash of Arcado ES
    Gary Neff of Pinckneyville MS
    Lisa Noel of Partee ES
    Jill Reid of Mason ES
    Amber Russell of
    Anderson-Livsey ES

    Mary Siler of Minor ES
    Donna Stimpson of
    Central Gwinnett HS

    Candace Swords of Shiloh ES
    Lori VanBuskirk of
    Berkeley Lake ES

    Dr. Meaghan Wagar of
    Walnut Grove ES

    Katie Walker of Harbins ES
    Lauren Whiting of Hopkins ES
    Ginger Whitley of
    Camp Creek ES

    John Willis of Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology

    The Teachers As Leaders program fosters leadership skills among these educators and helps them gain new knowledge and perspectives on their role in the classroom, allowing them to help their students become strong community leaders.
  • Mike Emery of School Leadership and Operational Support— honored by the Board of Education for serving on the Booster and Foundation Education Committee.
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  • Grants/Scholarships
  • GCPS Foundation Fund— received a $50,000 grant from Cisco to support programs that address performance gaps between different groups of students.
  • GCPS Foundation Fund— received a $50,000 donation from Gwinnett Federal Credit Union in honor of its 50th anniversary to fund academic initiatives over the next ten years.
  • Meadowcreek ES— received a $2,000 grant from Target and a $750 donation from Vulcan to support the school’s Book Tree program. Other program supporters include Barnes and Noble, Scholastic Book Fair, and Everybody Wins Atlanta.
  • Dr. Stacy Byous of Collins Hill HS— recognized with $500 for classroom supplies for her students’ 2nd place finish in the Technology Association of Georgia WebChallenge.
  • A round of applause is in order for the following GCPS educators selected to receive a $2,000 Career Advancement Scholarship from Gwinnett Federal Credit Union:
    Career Advancement Scholars
    Chanay Boone of Trickum MS
    Elizabeth Brown of Hopkins ES
    Carmen Carrera-Enamorado of Hooper Renwick School
    Sally Carroll of
    Peachtree Ridge HS

    Emma Clyde of Mill Creek HS
    Kristen Hill of Gwin Oaks ES
    Naomi Kirchner of Lanier HS
    David Lockwood of
    Brookwood HS

    Michael McEvoy of
    School Nutrition Program

    Pamela Underwood of
    Five Forks MS

    Gloria Watson of
    Rockbridge ES

    Lacy Young of Grayson HS

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  • Something to celebrate?
    Share your good news with your colleagues in the Spotlight publication. If you have earned a state or national award, earned a degree, made a presentation, or had work published, send the information to the Spotlight mailbox via Lotus Notes, or to the Communication and Media Relations department through the courier. Click here to send your submissions to Spotlight. The deadline is January 9, 2012, for the Winter issue.

    Problems with the feedback link? If you recently upgraded to Microsoft Office 2007, you may get a message to set up Microsoft Outlook in order to send your feedback by e-mail. This occurs because the upgrade defaults your e-mail preference to Outlook. To reset your e-mail preference to Lotus Notes, with your browser open, go to Tools/Internet Options/Programs/Internet Programs/Set program access and computer defaults. Toggle Custom, and using pull-down menu, select Lotus Notes as e-mail default. Select OK and save. You may have to close your browser and reopen to update your e-mail default.

    Share your feedback on Spotlight!

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        Last modified on 01/09/2013