News You Can Use - 05/21/2007

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.

View All Archived News You Can Use

News You Can Use…
A Gwinnett County Public Schools Tip Sheet For The News Media
05/21/2007 - 05/27/2007

GCPS TV had three winning entries in the 28th Annual Telly Awards. The GCPS TV production “The Author in You - Summer Writing Institute” won in the TV Programs - Education category, “GCPS Focus - October 2006” won in the TV Programs - News or News Feature category, and “Area Board 2006 - GCPS” won in the Non-broadcast Productions - Education category. The Telly Awards honors the best local, regional, and cable TV commercials and programs, as well as the finest video and film productions. For more information, call Greg Lahatte, director of Broadcast and Distance Learning at 678-301-6454.

GCPS was well represented at the Georgia Junior Classical League convention in April. Participating high schools sent students from Berkmar, Collins Hill, Dacula, Norcross, North Gwinnett, Parkview, and Peachtree Ridge to compete at Rock Eagle with 1,100 students from around the state. Gwinnett students took home 21 1st-place awards, 23 2nd-place awards, and 16 3rd-place awards. For more information, call North Gwinnett High Latin teacher Patrick Yaggy at 770-945-9558. For a complete list of winners, call Sue Peterson at 678-301-6020.

GCPS had 22 students who ranked in the top 15th percentile in the state on the National French Exam, (the Grand Concours). Students from Berkmar, Dacula, Norcross, Parkview, Shiloh, and South Gwinnett participated in the exam which included levels 1-5 in French. For a complete list of winners, call Sue Peterson at 678-301-6020.

Students from Norcross and Parkview high schools earned national recognition on a recent foreign language exam—the National Spanish Exam.
Norcross High
Michael Kahn 1st place 4th year
Eboni Vance 4th place 2nd year
Mariela Huerta-Suarez 4th place 4th year (outside experience)
Parkview High
Caroline Bass 4th place 3rd year
Shalini Ramachandran 5th place 3rd year
For more information, call David Jahner, director of foreign language, at 678-301-7020.

The Duluth High AP Studio Art and Music Theory classes will present their portfolios and musical compositions to the community on May 18 beginning at 5 p.m. in the school theater lobby. Refreshments will be served and the student work including drawings, paintings, pottery, and jewelry, along with musical recordings from the Music Theory presentations will be available for purchase. For more information, call media specialist Marsha Hunter at 770-232-3336.

The 2007 Peachtree Ridge High senior class will dedicate a new courtyard at a ribbon cutting ceremony on May 23 at 3:30 p.m. This project was led by class president Matt Schrichte and vice president Candy Hwang, and made possible with contributions from local businesses. This is the first graduating class of students to attend Peachtree Ridge High for four years. For more information, call staff member Diane Clausen at 678-957-3132.

Alton C. Crews Middle will hold a Birthday Bash on May 24 from 4 to 6 p.m. in the cafeteria to celebrate the school’s 10th anniversary. Former and current school parents, students, staff, and business partners are invited to join the celebration. Former principals will be in attendance along with Ms. Alton C. Crews, the wife of the school’s namesake. Music, birthday cakes, balloons, and party hats will be made available for the enjoyment of all. For more information, call local school technology coordinator Dr. Janet Blanchette at 770-982-6940.

Charles Brant Chesney Elementary held the school’s annual outdoor spring concert, “Let’s Celebrate America!” on May 11. The Summerour Middle band, conducted by James Rozzi, and the Chesney Concert Choir, conducted by Elkin Mosquera, performed patriotic music and classical selections for the entire student body and staff. An energetic group of more than 850 students, teachers, parents and Chesney staff members joined their voices with the Summerour Middle band to honor America. In addition, students and staff celebrated the Relay for Life Team efforts by throwing a pie in the face of two favorite teachers, Brooke Sturgis and Tina Pennell. The team raised more than $5,000 for the American Cancer Society. For photos or more information, call media specialist Kimberly Sharp at 678-542-2300.

Part science and nature center, part energy institute, and part history center, the Gwinnett Environmental & Heritage Center is a collaborative educational initiative. Partners are Gwinnett County Public Schools, Gwinnett County Government, the University of Georgia, and the Center’s foundation. The Center is dedicated to student Field Studies and activities weekday mornings and is open to the public weekday afternoons Monday - Friday from 1 to 5 p.m. and Saturdays 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (closed Sundays). Learn more at or call 770-904-3500.

May is Teacher Appreciation Month
Free admission for teachers (with school ID) -- Win a free Field Study Program or Annual Family Membership.

May 19, 8 a.m., EcoRun (5K and 1K Fun Run), $20 if registered by May 5, $25 to register on Race Day
Love to run? Then this is for you. Experience beautiful scenery and a challenging race course through the multi-surface trails. Race Times: 5K- 8 a.m., 1K Fun Run - 9:30 a.m. Download registration form at Registration includes a T-shirt for all runners. Additional charge for admission to the EHC.

May 19, 1 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. Club Method (Middle and High School)
Get Wacko with Macros. Join Club Method for fun in the sun catching bugs and wetland antics.

“ArtStage - Duluth High Advanced Women’s Ensemble and the Duluth Middle Boys Choir” GCPS TV is proud to present the Duluth High Advanced Women's Ensemble and the Duluth Middle Boys Choir in this special edition of “ArtStage.” The Ensemble and the Duluth Choir had the distinct honor of performing at the 2007 Georgia Music Educators Association Conference, and this program is a special presentation of the music performed at the conference. This 60-minute program airs May 21-26 at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m.

“Education News Parents Can Use - Teacher Quality: Inspiring Excellence and Strengthening Innovation” The May edition of Education News Parents Can Use will look at how we can prepare all teachers to lead our students toward success in today’s world by showcasing award-winning teachers; exploring how effective teaching is at the core of America's long-term economic competitiveness; and highlighting alternative strategies to recruit, train, and reward effective teachers. This 60-minute program airs May 21-26 at 1 p.m.

“Spanish for Educators, Level 1” This video telecourse is an advanced Spanish Language class designed to help educators learn words and phrases relating to school rules, school personnel, giving directions, parent-teacher conferences, and more. This series airs in hour-long segments at 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday-Sunday through July 1. (a new class will air each week, beginning on Monday).

“English...Yes, I Can! (Series 2)” This video telecourse is designed to teach English literacy skills to adult learners. Series 2 is scheduled to air through May 24 on GCPS TV. A new 60-minute class airs daily Monday–Thursday at 9 p.m., and repeats at 1 a.m. On Sunday, viewers can see the week’s programs from noon to 4 p.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 678-301-6460, or e-mail A list of this week’s programming may be found on the GCPS Web site--

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Visit the school system website at for the most current News Releases.
05/17/2007GCPS honors its top custodians (pdf)
05/16/2007Principals named for four Gwinnett schools: Trickum MS, Walnut Grove ES, Bethesda ES, and GIVE Center West (pdf)
05/15/2007Georgia PTA honors GCPS with nine awards (pdf)
05/11/2007Gwinnett 11th graders improve already high marks on Georgia High School Graduation Test (GHSGT) (pdf)
05/11/2007Principals named for T. Carl Buice School and Brookwood High (pdf)

Visit for graduation dates and information on summer school.

May is National Physical Fitness and Sports month.

May 21-22 is early release for high school exams.

May 23 is early release for high school exams and the LAST DAY OF SCHOOL.

Memorial Day on May 28 is a systemwide holiday and all locations are closed.

Remaining Dates in the FY 2008 Budget Process
June 4, 2007, 7 p.m.-- First public hearing on tax millage rate
June 11, 2007, 11:45 a.m.-- Second public hearing on tax millage rate
June 11, 2007, 7 p.m.-- Third and final public hearing and adoption of millage rate
(All meetings will be held at the Instruction Support Center)
Sept. 2007-- Transmit adopted budget to State Department of Education

The next regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., June 21, 2007, at the Instructional Support Center, located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. N.W. in Suwanee.

The following Gwinnett schools will hold Local School Council Meetings during May. Call the local school for the time and meeting place.
Brookwood Elementary5/14
Cedar Hill Elementary5/14
Charles Brant Chesney Elementary5/18
Corley Elementary5/15
Dacula Elementary5/18
Glenn C. Jones Middle5/17
Harbins Elementary5/15
Lilburn Elementary5/17
Lilburn Middle5/17
Mountain Park Elementary5/14
North Gwinnett High5/15
Peachtree Elementary5/17
Pharr Elementary5/17
Rock Springs Elementary5/17
South Gwinnett High5/15
Sweetwater Middle5/17