News You Can Use - 03/05/2007

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.

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News You Can Use…
A Gwinnett County Public Schools Tip Sheet For The News Media
03/05/2007 - 03/11/2007

A team of Berkmar High students will advance to the finals of the Gallaudet University High School Academic Bowl for Deaf and Hard of Hearing Students in April to compete against winners from four other regional competitions. The team recently won 2nd place at the Southeast Regional Deaf Academic Bowl in Feb. Berkmar High hosted the competition, an honor for GCPS and Berkmar, as the first public school selected to host an Academic Bowl in the Southeast. For more information, visit

Brookwood Elementary student Kelsey Crouch has been awarded a $2,100 grant for her Towel Drive, which will provide towels to the Gwinnett Humane Society for use in lining cages and caring for animals. The Start Something Program, founded by Tiger Woods and funded by the Target Corporation, allows kids to explore areas of interest for future careers and learn leadership skills. Kelsey’s project involved working with animals as a veterinarian. Kelsey will use her grant to attend a camp at Sea World/Busch Gardens. The program at Brookwood Elementary is coordinated through the counseling department. For more information, call Brookwood Elementary counselor David Young at 770-736-4360.

Rebecca Minor Elementary teacher Laura Magner had her 3rd book published, “The Scientific Method in Fairy Tale Forest” by Pieces of Learning. Lessons from the book are designed to help students learn and practice the Scientific Method while testing common aspects from fairy tales. For more information, call 770-925-9543.

Middle and high school students with special needs, their parents, and teachers are invited to “Accessing Resources for the College-Bound Special Needs Student,” a college fair and program on March 5 sponsored by GCPS, the Gwinnett County Extension Service, and the Gwinnett County PTA Council. The event will take place at the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center, 75 Langley Drive, Lawrenceville. The College Fair runs from 5 to 6:30 p.m., followed by a program from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Representatives from four-year, two-year, and technical colleges will be in attendance to answer questions about how they can meet their special needs. Information will be presented on SAT, college admissions, and graduation requirements. A panel of UGA students will talk about what college life is like for students with a disability. For more information, call 678-377-4010.

The GCPS Tapestry exhibit will be displayed at the Gwinnett County Public Schools Instructional Support Center, located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. N.W. in Suwanee. Artwork from Collins Hill, Dacula, Duluth, North, Peachtree Ridge, and South clusters, will be displayed on March 6, from 6-8 p.m. Artwork from Central, Grayson, Mill Creek, and Norcross clusters-- including Grayson Technical Education Program and the GIVE East and West Centers-- will be on display March 13 from 6-8 p.m. Artwork from Brookwood, Meadowcreek, Parkview, and Shiloh clusters-- including Phoenix and Maxwell High School of Technology-- will be displayed on March 20 from 6-8 p.m. For more information, call Robert Andrews at 770-513-6788.

Central Gwinnett High will host the school’s 4th Annual Career Night on March 8 beginning at 7 p.m. Nearly 60 businesses and professionals will provide students with information about jobs and careers. For more information, call Elaine Elliott, business education teacher, at 770-963-8041.

Parents, students, and community members are invited to the 4th Annual Arcado Elementary Bicycle Rodeo on March 10 from 9 a.m. until noon at the school. Admission is free, advance registration is required. The rodeo will be conducted by the Gwinnett Public Safety and Gwinnett Fire and Emergency Services. Donations from local businesses will be shared with participants and a bicycle will be given away. For more information, visit

The Duluth High Winter Guard - an indoor, competitive performance ensemble - recently won 1st place at the ExSightment of Rhythm competition, hosted by Kennesaw Mountain High. The team’s score was so high that the Southern Association for the Performing Arts (SAPA) promoted them to the next competitive class of Scholastic AAA. The Winter Guard will compete at the new level on March 10-11 at Forsyth Central High in Cumming. The winter guard combines dance, flags, rifles, and sabers to choreographed routines with music. For more information, call Danelle Keck, Duluth High band director, at 770-232-3336.

Bethesda Elementary will celebrate Youth Art Month by hosting a student Art Exhibit on March 13 after the PTA meeting which begins at 6:30 p.m. The artwork will be framed and available for purchase. In addition to the artwork, the Bethesda Chorus will perform. For more information, call 770-921-2000.

Parents of rising 5th graders are invited to attend Five Forks Middle’s Parent Articulation Night on March 13 from 5:30 to 8 p.m. Information will be shared about ESOL, PROBE, Connections, and Special Education. There will be a General Meeting in the cafeteria from 6-6:25 p.m. meet followed by a time to meet with 6th grade teachers. For more information, call 770-972-1506.

Norcross Elementary will host a visit form the award winning author of children's literature, and storyteller Carmen Deedy on March 15 and 16. For more information, call 770-448-2188.

Rockbridge Elementary will celebrate the school’s 40th anniversary on March 16 from 6-8 p.m. at the school. Former and current staff, students, administrators, and community members are invited the celebration. For more information, call 770-448-9363.

Brookwood High will sponsor “Taste of Brookwood” March 24 from 5 to 8:30 p.m. in the Commons Area at the school. Participants are invited to taste food items from local restaurants. Entertainment will include performances by the Brookwood Jazz Bands, students, and special guests. Items for the silent auction may be viewed by visiting auction. Tickets may be purchased from band students or online at for $10, and include 5 taste tickets, a beverage and dessert. All proceeds benefit the Brookwood Band Program. For more information, visit The Taste of Brookwood Web site.

The Peachtree Ridge Foundation will sponsor the Fourth Annual Lions Golf Classic to be held at the Tournament Players Club at Sugarloaf on March 26. For more information and a registration brochure, visit or call Lynn Brunatti, executive director of the Foundation at 678-957-3166.

GCPS honors the system’s top bus manager and monitors at an annual banquet. The 2007 Bus Managers and Monitors banquet will be held on March 26 at 7 p.m. at Winfield Hall in Duluth. For more information, call Tammy Coogler in the transportation office at 770-513-6692.

Upcoming Events at Gwinnett Environmental & Heritage Center
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, county commissioners, 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 and weekends (closed Mondays). Learn more at or call 770-904-3500.

March 10, 11 a.m. and 2 p.m., Rain Barrel Workshop, $35 per person
Make a rain barrel and take it home the same day. Pre-register by calling 770-904-3500.

March 17, 9:30 a.m. – 3 p.m., Leopold Educator Workshop (LEP), $30.00 per person
LEP is a hands-on, interdisciplinary resource that uses the Sand County Almanac as a foundation combining an ecologically sound understanding of science with literary prose for teachers of 6-12th graders. Bring a sack lunch and snack. Call Kathy Barrett at 770-904-3500.

March 17, 1 p.m. - 2:30 p.m., Club Method, $10.00 per person
High and middle school kids bring your friends and join us for cool science experiments and fun. Dues vary depending on activity. For questions or to register, email

March 22, 7 p.m. – 9 p.m., SpineCrackers Book Club, $7 person, free to GEHC members
Join this monthly group to explore the story of the life of Will Cooper in Charles Frazier’s “Thirteen Moons.” Email to register or pay at the door.

March 24, 1 p.m. - 2:30 p.m., Greenway Gurus, (3rd-5th grade kids), $10.00 per child
Make “tracks” and join us in some serious detective fun. We’ll “track” down the clues to discover wildlife in our area as this environmental club learns about deer, raccoons and other critters. Club dues are $10 per meeting. For questions or to register, email

March 24, 1 p.m. - 3 p.m., Hawks, Falcons & Owls—Oh My!
Join the Georgia Falconry Association as they teach visitors about the importance of protecting these animals and their habitats. Free with paid admission.

March 31, 11 a.m. - 5 p.m., Boy Scout Soil and Water Conservation Merit Badge, $7.00 per Boy Scout
Come dressed in comfortable attire and bring a sack lunch. Pre-register at

“GCPS Focus - 100th Episode!” Coming up on GCPS Focus... it's “Music In Our Schools Month,” Gwinnett counselors receive special recognition, and Berkmar High hosts the Deaf Academic Bowl. This 30-min. program airs daily at 6:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m., and 10:30 a.m., 3:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m. and 11 p.m.

“Meet the Author - Dennis Denenberg” This former high school social studies teacher, former elementary school principal, and former assistant superintendent of schools, knows that children can grow up in a world without real heroes. Dr. Dennis Denenberg believes that children need real heroes - not just heroes of the cartoon variety - in their lives. In his book, “50 American Heroes Every Kid Should Meet,” Denenberg and coauthor Lorraine Roscoe introduce students to ordinary people who do extraordinary things. This 30-min. program airs March 5-10 at 12:30 p.m.

“Teaching Multi-Cultural Literature - A Workshop for the Middle Grades” This Annenberg CPB series introduces teachers to ethnically diverse American writers and offers dynamic instructional strategies and resources to make works meaningful for students. This workshop includes eight one-hour videos in which teachers model effective approaches - based on reader response, critical inquiry, cultural studies, and critical pedagogy - for using multicultural works in the classroom. In units that unfold over time, they also demonstrate activities and practices that engage students in critical discussions of race, class, and social justice, and empower them to take action for change. This 8-part workshop airs March 5-8 and March 12-15 at 1 p.m.

“English...Yes, I Can! (Series 1)” This video telecourse designed to teach English literacy skills to adult learners. Series 1 is scheduled to air through April 3 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.

“Spanish for Educators, Level 2” 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 March 18 (a new class airs each week, beginning on Monday).

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.
03/01/2007Four GCPS schools to compete at regional reading rally (pdf)
02/27/2007Berkmar High earns fifth consecutive Academic Decathlon win (pdf)
02/23/2007GCPS students and teachers advance to region STAR competition (pdf)

Each year, the Gwinnett County School Board reserves key dates relating to the development of the next year’s budget. Budget dates for FY 2008 include:
March 29 and 30, 2007-- Superintendent’s Recommended budget to Board
April 14, 2007-- Board budget work session
April 17, 2007-- Board budget work session and adoption of tentative budget
May 4, 2007-- First public hearing on budget
May 10, 2007-- Second public hearing and final adoption
June 2007-- Adoption of millage rate
Sept. 2007-- Transmit adopted budget to State Department of Education

March is Music in Our Schools Month, National Middle Level Education Month, National Nutrition Month, Social Work Month, Women’s History Month, and Youth Art Month.

March 2 is Read Across America (Dr. Seuss’ birthday).

March 5-9 is Exceptional Children’s Week, National School Breakfast Week, National Foreign Language Week, and Newspapers in Education Week.

March 5-11 is Newspapers in Education Week.

The next regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., March 8, 2007, at the Instructional Support Center, located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. N.W. in Suwanee.

March 19 is a student holiday and teacher planning day.

The following Gwinnett schools will hold Local School Council Meetings during February and March. Call the local school for the time and meeting place.
Alton C. Crews Middle3/13
B.B. Harris Elementary3/27
Benefield Elementary3/8
Berkeley Lake Elementary3/15
Berkmar High3/27
Bethesda Elementary3/20
Brookwood Elementary3/12
Brookwood High3/6
Cedar Hill Elementary3/15
Charles Brant Chesney Elementary3/16
Collins Hill High3/20
Dacula Elementary3/16
Dacula High3/30
Dr. M.H. Mason Jr. Elementary3/9
Duluth Middle3/13
Duncan Creek Elementary3/8
Fort Daniel Elementary3/3
Frank N. Osborne Middle3/9
Glenn C. Jones Middle3/15
Grayson Elementary3/16
Gwin Oaks Elementary3/9
Harbins Elementary3/20
Harmony Elementary3/30
Henry Partee Elementary3/8
Ivy Creek Elementary3/16
J.C. Magill Elementary3/2
J.P. McConnell Middle3/26
Jackson Elementary3/8
Lawrenceville Elementary3/20
Level Creek Elementary3/15
Lilburn Elementary3/22
Lilburn Middle3/29
Louise Radloff Middle3/15
McKendree Elementary3/16
Meadowcreek High3/15
Nesbit Elementary3/22
Norcross High3/8
North Gwinnett High3/13
Oakland School3/8
Parsons Elementary3/2
Peachtree Elementary3/15
Pinckneyville Middle3/15
Richard Hull Middle3/9
Riverside Elementary3/13
Rock Springs Elementary3/29
Shiloh High3/5
Simpson Elementary3/30
Snellville Middle3/8
South Gwinnett High3/20
Summerour Middle3/13
Sweetwater Middle3/29
Sycamore Elementary3/1
T. Carl Buice School3/20
Trickum Middle3/13
Walnut Grove Elementary3/8