GCPS Board Meeting Summary for August 11, 2005

The following are highlights of the August 11, 2005, meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education. The official minutes of the meeting will be approved by the Board at its next monthly meeting.

Board recognizes award-winning students and staff
-- School Board members recognized Shiloh HS' Air Force Junior ROTC unit on its recognition as a Distinguished Unit. The Shiloh cadets were honored as the "Best of the Best" of our nation's 746 Air Force ROTC units. Cadets present at the Board meeting include Cadet Lt. Col. Ronald (Ty) Brackin, Cadet Col. Stephen Orf, Cadet Capt. Joey Sanders, Cadet CMSgt. Nathan Luker, and Cadet SMSgt. Lauren Butker. In addition, the Board honored Major Lourdes Trujillo and CMSgt. Thomas Held, who were recognized as "Outstanding Instructors" out of a pool of more than 1,700 AFJROTC instructors worldwide.
--The Board praised June Sweat, director of program planning- math/science high school, on her selection as the 2004-05 Administration Career and Technical Educator of the Year by the Georgia Association for Career and Technical Education. Annually, this professional association selects an outstanding Georgia educator who has made extraordinary contributions to the field. Ms. Sweat was selected for her leadership in development and support of an exemplary technical education program in the school system, as well as for her leadership across the state.
-- Collins Hill HS' girls cross country team was honored on its 2004-05 AAAAA state championship season. Principal Glenn McFall praised staff and students for their commitment and dedication in winning the title. Head Coach Andrew Hudson commended his team on the runners' impressive performance. Of 250 runners in the championship meet, all seven team members finished in the top 30.
-- The Board of Education recognized Parkview HS' soccer teams for their sweep of the state titles at the AAAAA-level. Parkview's girls soccer team, led by Head Coach Mark Albertus, had a great season. Coach Albertus expressed appreciation for the school's and community's support of his team. Of his team, he said, "They are great in the classroom and they are very dedicated young ladies. Truly, they are champions in every way." Assistant Coaches Beth Culver and Mark Leviton joined Coach Albertus and team members in this Board recognition. Parkview HS boys soccer Head Coach Tracy Crouch introduced his team and acknowledged his assistant coach, Judson Hamby. Coach Crouch recognized the 12 seniors on the championship team, praising them for their leadership and example on and off the field, saying the championship was a "total team effort."
-- Parkview HS also received the Georgia Athletic Directors Association's Dodge Directors Cup, which recognizes the athletic departments in all Georgia High School Association classifications that have excelled and showed superior performance throughout the year. Principal Charles "Buck" Buchanan expressed pride in his school's students' performance in the classroom and on the field/court.

GCPS earns designation of "Company that Cares"
United Way recognized Gwinnett County Public Schools as a "Company that Cares" for its support of United Way and its support of the community. United Way representatives called the school system a flagship organization, a true "community partner investing in the success of the community's plan through targeted volunteering, in-kind giving, unique employment empowerment and education programs, and campaign giving." Jai Rogers, director of corporate partnerships for United Way of Metropolitan Atlanta, and Mandi Long, director of United Way in Gwinnett County, presented the recognition, citing the school system's 2004 campaign that raised more than $500,000. In gaining recognition as a "Community that Cares," the system also demonstrated active involvement in four strategic areas of the Community Impact Plan-- helping children succeed, strengthening families, maximizing economic self-sufficiency, and promoting community leadership and neighborhood development. Jean Walker, an executive director for School Improvement, chaired the school system's 2004 United Way campaign. This is the second time GCPS has been named a "Company that Cares." Only two other education organizations were among the community partners recognized under the program.

2005-06 school year opens smoothly
"Smooth," "organized," and "well-prepared" are some of the words Chief School Improvement Specialist Emmett Lawson used in describing the opening of school this year. New classrooms, new teachers, new bus drivers and support staff, new technology, and new training were just a few of the additions that made this school year opening such a success. On the second day enrollment count, there were 137,469 students. Enrollment will continue to climb through the year with enrollment peaking in the fourth or fifth school month. Mr. Lawson concluded his report by saying, "Every school and division has been very busy to make this another successful school opening."

Gwinnett summer school report indicates success
Delores Hendrix, an executive director for School Improvement, provided the School Board with a summary of Gwinnett County Public Schools' summer school programs. At the elementary level, 7,542 students attended summer school. At the middle-school level, 3,420 students attended, and 2,686 high school students attended summer school at the three high school sites. In addition, 1,193 students enrolled in online courses over the summer. Summer success stories include the fact that 334 4th graders and 638 7th graders who had not passed the Gateway earned promotion through a summer school retest. In addition, 249 high school students graduated after successfully completing their high school summer courses.