News You Can Use - 12/05/2004

During the school year, the Department of Communication & Media Relations produces a media tip sheet called "News You Can Use, which is distributed to metro Atlanta news outlets electronically. This publication provides school and system news, including recent honors, upcoming events, calendar items, and photo opportunities at local schools and central office locations. The tip sheet is sent out at the end of each week, and covers news and GCPS items of interest for the coming 7-10 days.

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News You Can Use…
A Gwinnett County Public Schools Tip Sheet For The News Media
12/05/2004 - 12/12/2004

Debi West of Level Creek Elementary and GCPS Teacher of the Year, earned the title of 2005 National Elementary Art Educator of the Year. For more information, call 770-904-7950.

The following GCPS employees presented sessions at the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (ACTFL) conference in Chicago Nov. 19-21: Lynne Gant of J.P. McConnell Middle and Dr. Phil Carroll of Snellville Middle teamed with Dr. Julia Hanley of Georgia State University to present “Exploring Key Components of Middle School Programs in Foreign Language.” Ms. Gant also presented “Building a Community of Support for New Teachers with WebCT,” with Dr. Hanley. David Jahner, GCPS foreign language coordinator, teamed with Georgia Department of Education Foreign Language Specialist Elizabeth Webb to present “Georgia’s K-12 Standards: A Curriculum for All Students.” Mr. Jahner also served as chair of the selection committee for the ACTFL Florence Steiner Award for Leadership in Foreign Language Education, K-12, and the organization's most prestigious award. Also, Mr. Jahner was elected president of the National Association of District Supervisors of Foreign Language (NADSFL). For more information, call 770-513-6788.

The College Board recognized several South Gwinnett High students for their performance on Advanced Placement (AP) exams (Exams are scored on a 5-point scale.) Charles Dopppelheuer, Rebecca Heisler, Michelle Johnson, and Jaclyn Ortiz qualified for the National AP Scholar Award by scoring an average of 4 or higher on eight or more AP exams. Ezinne Okwandu and Joseph Pociask qualified for the AP Scholar with Distinction Award by scoring 3.5 or higher on 5 or more exams. Nathan Waldron qualified for the AP Scholar with Honor Award by earning an average score of at least 3.25 on all AP exams taken, with scores of 3 or higher on four or more of these exams. For more information, call Rena Hanson at 770-972-4240.

Laura Beldree of Berkmar High has been selected to participate in the Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE) Teacher Academy. The Academy is designed to enhance the skills of teachers with fewer than four years of experience who show great promise. For more information about the PAGE Academy, contact Dr. Stucke at 1-800-344-6861 or

Four Brookwood High teams won highest honors in this year’s WordMasters Challenge, a national competition for high school students. Brookwood’s 10th grade team earned 1st place. Annette Clemons, Rashni Devlia, and Steve Gower earned perfect scores in the meet, placing among the nine highest scorers nationally. For more information, call 770-972-7642.

Norcross High placed 3rd at the Georgia High School Association one-act play competition. For more information, call 770-448-3674.

The Trickum Middle Academic Bowl team competed in the Westminster School Academic Quiz Team Tournament in November. The A team placed 3rd out of more than 30 teams. Team members include Glenn Branscomb, Deep Datta-Roy, Kristen Jolley, David Rhodes, and Josh Wong. The B team placed in the top half of all teams making it to the second round of play-offs. Members include Nicholas Eberhart, Charles Fang, Murat Johnson, Timmy Phillip, Pranav Ramesh, My-Ngoc To, and Caroline Bass. For more information, call 770-921-2705.

Steven Giles’ 4th grade class at R.D. Head Elementary earned 1st place in the Stone Mountain Park “A Southern Christmas” Greeting Card Project for the elementary school level. As a 1st place winner, Mr. Giles’ class will receive 50 complimentary all-attraction passes to distribute to participating students. For more information, call 770-972-8050.

Grayson Elementary will hold a Holiday Chorus concert on Dec. 6 at 7 p.m. at the school. For more information, call 770-963-7189.

Brookwood High Performing Arts department will sponsor a student adaptation of Charles Dickens’ “Scrooge,” Dec. 9-11 at 7:30 p.m. in the theater. Tickets are $6 for adults and $5 for students and senior citizens. For more information, visit the Brookwood Performing Arts Booster Web site at, or call the Performing Arts department at 770-985-0653.

Grayson Elementary will host a Winter Art Workshop sponsored by art teachers Alice Murphy and Christi Umans on Dec. 11 at 8:30 a.m. There is a $25 charge, which includes supplies. Students will use a variety of materials to make 2-D and 3-D art. Please contact Christi Umans at or 770-963-7189 for more information,.

The Brookwood High chorus groups will present their annual Holiday Concert on December 13 at 7:30 p.m. in the theater. The choruses are directed by Kim Peeples. Tickets are $6 for adults and $5 for students and senior citizens. For more information, visit the Brookwood Performing Arts Booster Web site at, or call the Performing Arts department at 770-985-0653.

Friday mornings in December, Ms. Pockets will visit Peachtree Elementary. Ms. Pockets, a parent dressed as an elf, visits every classroom and collects pocket change from students. The money collected is used by the Peachtree Care Team to help families in need throughout the year. In the past, more than $1,500 has been collected.

SAT tests will take place at Buchanan High School of Technology throughout the academic year. The SAT I test will be administered on Jan. 22 in building F. Preregistration is required. The new SAT, which will include a writing portion, will be administered beginning in the spring of 2005. For more information, call 770-326-8000.

Brookwood High held an annual fundraiser “Helping Hands and Hearts.” Donations are collected to assist needy families in the Brookwood Cluster with rent, food, electricity, clothes, Christmas toys and other necessities. This year, Brookwood students and staff raised $26,427.49. For more information, call 770-972-7642.

Grayson Elementary sponsored an Adopt-a-School Outreach Program. The Student Council organized a donation drive in the middle of November to collect school supplies for Lincoln Park Elementary in Pensacola, Fla. Lincoln Park was one of many Florida schools damaged by the recent wave of hurricanes. Grayson faculty members, parents, and students donated 14 boxes of the supplies requested by the school. For more information, call 770-963-7189.

The Social Studies department at Parkview High sponsored a schoolwide project to collect letters, cards, and other items for U.S. troops overseas. Items will be packed up and sent out by Dec. 6. For more information, call 770-921-2874.

In November, B.B. Harris Elementary hosted former principals of the school to visit for a “Welcome Back” day. The following principals visited the school: Brooks Coleman—1966-67, Gary Fairley—1973-75, Russell Everson—1975-76, Dr. Fred Rundle—1976-81, Judy Sullivan— 1981-98, and Melinda Sepmeyer—1998-2003. Nancy Harris Hammond is the current principal. For more information, call 770-476-2241.

“Where are all the Little Green Men- E3 Electronic Field Trip.” This distance-learning journey will inspire the next generation of explorers by taking a look at planetary exploration. This 90-minute program airs Dec. 7 at 10 a.m. and then reairs at 1 p.m.

“Meet the Author- Dan Gutman.” This program features author Dan Gutman and his use of sports to get students, especially “reluctant readers,” excited about reading and writing. This 30-minute program airs live on Dec. 8 at 1 p.m.

“Musical Theater: Thoroughly Modern Millie,” Prince William Network/Kennedy Center Performing Arts Series. Tony Award®-winning songwriters Jeanine Tesori and Dick Scanlan join Broadway singers and moderator Michael Kerker for a discussion of careers in musical theater. This 60-minute program airs live Dec. 9 at 11 a.m.

Tune in to Gwinnett County Public Schools’ educational access channel for education programs and information. TV cable channels and providers include:
Adelphia on Channel 20 (Ch. 97 without converter) BellSouth on Channel 21
Charter on Channel 22 Comcast on Channel 24
For more information, call the GCPS Broadcast and Distance Learning Department at 678-985-5233, or e-mail A list of this week’s programming may be found on the GCPS Web site--

December 15-17 are early release days for high school exams.

December 17 is the last day of school before Winter Break. Students return to school Jan. 5, 2005.

The following Gwinnett schools will hold Local School Council Meetings during December. Call the local school for the time and meeting place.
Alford Elem678-924-5300Lanier Middle
Alton C. Crews Middle
770/982-6940Lawrenceville Elem
Annistown Elem770/979-2950Lilburn Elem
Arcado Elem
770/925-2100Lilburn Middle
B. B. Harris Elem770/476-2241Mason Elem770/232-3370
Beaver Ridge Elem
770/447-6307McConnell Middle770/554-1000
Benefield Elem
770/962-3771McKendree Elem678/377-8933
Berkeley Lake Elem770/446-0947Meadowcreek Elem770/931-5701
Berkmar High
770/921-3636Meadowcreek High
Bethesda Elem770/921-2000Mountain Park Elem770/921-2224
Brookwood Elem770/736-4360Nesbit Elem
Brookwood High
770/972-7642Norcross Elem
Camp Creek Elem770/921-1626Norcross High770/448-3674
Cedar Hill Elem770/962-5015North Gwinnett High770/945-9558
Centerville Elem
770/972-2220Norton Elem
Central Gwinnett High770/963-8041Oakland Center
Chattahoochee Elem
770/497-9907Parkview High770/921-2874
Collins Hill High
770/682-4100Parsons Elem678/957-3050
Cooper Elem770/554-7050Partee Elem
Corley Elem678-924-5330Peachtree Elem
Craig Elem770/978-5560Peachtree Ridge High
Creekland Middle770/338-4700Pharr Elem770/985-0244
Dacula Elem
770/963-7174Pinckneyville Middle770/263-0860
Dacula High
770/963-6664R.D. Head Elem770/972-8050
Dacula Middle
770/963-1110Rebecca Minor Elem
Duluth High770/476-5206Richard Hull Middle770/232-3200
Duluth Middle770/476-3372Riverside Elem678/482-1000
Duncan Creek Elem678/714-5800Rock Springs Elem
Five Forks Middle770/972-1506Rockbridge Elem
Fort Daniel Elem
770/932-7400Shiloh Elem
Freeman's Mill Elem
678/377-8955Shiloh High
GIVE Center
770/338-4898Shiloh Middle
Grayson Elem
770/963-7189Simonton Elem
Grayson High
770/554-1071Simpson Elem770/417-2400
Gwin Oaks Elem
770/972-3110Snellville Middle
Harbins Elem770/682-4270South Gwinnett High770/972-4840
Harmony Elem770/945-7272Stripling Elem770/582-7577
Hopkins Elem
770/564-2661Sugar Hill Elem770/945-5735
Ivy Creek Elem
678/714-3655Summerour Middle
J. G. Dyer Elem770/963-6214Suwanee Elem770/945-5763
J.C. Magill Elem
770/554-1030Sweetwater Middle
J.E. Richards Middle
770/995-7133Sycamore Elem678/714-5770
Jackson Elem770/682-4200T. Carl Buice Center
K. E. Taylor Elem
770/338-4680Trickum Middle770/921-2705
Kanoheda Elem
770/682-4221W. C. Britt Elem770/972-4500
Knight Elem770/921-2400Walnut Grove Elem