News You Can Use - 01/22/2007

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
01/22/2007 - 01/28/2007

Students, teachers, and community members are invited to the Grayson High Technology Education Program Open House on Jan.18 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Visitors may tour the building, meet instructors, and check out the program. Classes offered include Technical Theater (Scenery and Lighting or Costume and Makeup), Music Recording, Music Technology, Digital Media Design and Animation, Culinary Arts, Television Broadcast, Commercial Photography, Biotechnology, Veterinary Technology, Horticulture, Environmental and Conservation Science, Travel Planning/Hotel and Hospitality Management, Law Enforcement and Public Safety, and Computer Information Technology and Network Systems. The open house will be held in the Technical Education Program Building, located on the campus of Grayson High at 50 Hope Hollow Rd. in Loganville. For more information, call Kristie Martin at 770-554-7082.

The 2007 Gwinnett County Spelling Bee will be held on Jan. 20 in the Mill Creek High Theater with registration from 8:15-8:50 a.m. One winner from each of the 83 GCPS elementary and middle schools will compete in the Written Bee beginning at 9 a.m. The top 11 winners will compete in the Oral Bee immediately following the Written Bee, and will also represent GCPS in the District 3 Bee on Feb. 24. Spectators may attend the Oral Bee. For more information Cindy Gaskins, the Gwinnett County Spelling Bee Coordinator, can be contacted at The Gwinnett County Spelling Bee is co-sponsored by the Gwinnett County Association of Educators and The Gwinnett Daily Post.

Duluth Middle will host the Gwinnett County Middle School Conference on Jan. 20 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Students take classes in the morning in Improvisation, Audition Techniques, and Stage Movement from Atlanta professionals. After a pizza lunch, students will see student performances. The fee to attend is $25 per student which includes lunch and snacks. For more information, email kathy_gillcrist@gwinnett, or call Duluth Middle at 770-476-3372.

North Gwinnett High teacher Jacqueline Huffman presented a session at the National Career and Technical Education Conference in Atlanta. The session was titled “School-Based Enterprises: Enhancing the Experience!” Ms. Huffman’s School Based Enterprise (SBE) model was named the model program for the state of Georgia. For more information, call 770-271-5185. For a photo, call 678-301-6020.

Bethesda Elementary is sponsoring an annual family literacy night on Jan. 23. The media center will host a Book Fair open house from 5-6:30 p.m., selling books priced from $2 to $4. A brief PTA meeting will take place at 6:30 p.m. Beginning at 7:15 p.m., literacy coaches Crystal Cooper and Nancy Childers will give parents tips on how to expand their children’s vocabulary at home. Literacy expert Iris Dodge will discuss how parents can help their children become stronger readers with home literacy activities. Parents and students will attend smaller sessions and participate in a family read-aloud time with a book led by staff members. Parents and students are invited to participate in a Literacy Walk throughout the school enjoying the students’ posted stories. The Book Fair will also be open for additional browsing time for families. For more information, call Nancy Childers at 770-921-2000.

The Shiloh Cluster school counselors will sponsor a parent education night entitled “No Parent Left Behind” on Jan. 23 at Shiloh High. Parenting classes begin at 6:45 p.m. and include: Maximizing Your Child’s Chances for Success by Ari Russell, Executive Director for GUIDE (Gwinnett United in Drug Education). She will discuss 40 developmental tools to help successfully raise children. Assistant Principal Connie Wright will discuss Promotion Criteria in Gwinnett County Public Schools. A free pizza dinner will be served at 6 p.m. Child care will be provided at no charge for youngsters ages three to ten, allowing parents to attend the parenting workshops. Local school PTAs and area businesses have donated door prizes. This topic includes the necessary classes and testing requirements students must successfully pass for promotion to the next grade. For more information, call 770-972-8471.

Shiloh Middle is conducting a science fair competition on Jan. 24. Participants include 7th and 8th grade students, gifted science students, and science club members. Nearly 88 projects will be judged from 4-6 p.m. Members of the judging panel include Board member Dr. Robert McClure and two representatives from the Gwinnett County Extension Service. For more information, call Sharon Webber at 770-972-3224.

The Duluth High Chamber Orchestra will perform at the Georgia Music Educators Conference (GMEA) in Savannah on Jan. 25. The program includes a piece by Ricciotti, two tangos by Paizzolla, and a string symphony by Dag Wiren, all of which will be performed for students at the school on Jan. 18 and 20. In addition, the Duluth High Chorus Advanced Women’s Ensemble was also selected to perform at the GMEA Conference on Jan. 26. The Duluth community will have the opportunity to see the performance together with the Duluth Middle Boys Choir on Jan. 22 at 7 p.m. in the Duluth High Auditorium, followed by a reception. For more information, call 770-476-5206.

Maxwell High School of Technology will host an open house on Jan. 25 from 2:30 to 4 p.m., and 6 to 7:30 p.m. Visitors may tour the building and check out the program. Classes offered include:
Auto Collision Repair Electronics
Automotive Services Graphic Communications
Commercial Art Healthcare Sciences
Computer aided Drafting Horticulture
Computer Technology Public Safety
Construction Technical Apprenticeship
Cosmetology Welding
Early Childhood Education
Rising GCPS juniors and seniors who have earned eight units of credit may participate in the spring application process. Maxwell offers students advanced training in preparation for postsecondary education and the work force. Visit for more information.

Level Creek Elementary will host “Learn Together, Play Together,” a winter carnival, on Jan. 26 from 5 to 9 p.m. Proceeds from the carnival will benefit the school’s playground development program. Activities include inflatable rides, face painting, fun hairdos, games, and an auction. Food, popcorn, ice cream, and cotton candy will be served in the cafeteria. A $10 wristband may be purchased to gain entrance to the event. For more information, call 770-904-7950.

Creekland Middle 7th grade students and parents will host a mini “Power Over Prejudice Summit” in partnership with the Anti-Prejudice Consortium on Jan. 26 from 9:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. The Summit will start with a keynote speaker and continue with interactive sessions and group discussions. The goal will be for students to develop appropriate follow-up programs at Creekland Middle that promote an appreciation of diversity and acceptance among classmates, and anti-bullying. Participating students will model positive citizenship, conduct, leadership and communication. In addition to the Power over Prejudice Summit, Creekland Middle promotes a pledge for nonviolence at home, school, and in the community by observing the 64 Day Season for Nonviolence, Peace Pole dedication schoolwide, World Fest, and peer mediation programs. For more information call counselor Carla Winkler at 770-338-4709.

The Brookwood High Dance Department will host the Nu Delta Alpha “Dance for Health” project on Jan. 27, from 9 a.m. to noon. Girls are invited to learn about dance with “Girl Scouts Love to Dance” workshops. These workshops are open to local girl scouts in the brownie, junior, or cadet levels. The scouts come with their troop to have fun while completing several requirements for different badges and patches. For more information, call 770-978-5075.

Chattahoochee Elementary will host an International Night on Jan. 29 from 6-8 p.m. Participants will enjoy an evening of international music, food, and student displays. Parents are asked to bring food from their native country, and dress in clothing native to the country. There will be a parade of students dressed in costumes. Students can also bring a flag or write the name of their country on a banner to carry. For more information, call 770-497-9907.

Trickum Middle will host a visit from author Neal Shusterman on Feb. 5. Mr. Shusterman will answer questions from students while visiting classes. His presentation is interactive, informing students about his writing and the process of writing. For more information, call 770-921-2705.

Peachtree Ridge High hosted a Science Fair on Jan. 9 where 106 projects were displayed. From those projects, 48 earned 1st place awards and will go on to compete at the District level on Feb. 9 at the Gwinnett County Fairgrounds. For more information, call Diane Clausen at 678-957-3132.

“ArtStage - Marching Band Exhibition, Part 1” March to the beat with GCPS TV and tune in to ArtStage: Marching Band Exhibition, Part 1. This is a great opportunity to see talented high school musicians from Berkmar, Brookwood, Central Gwinnett, Grayson, Parkview, Shiloh, and South Gwinnett perform their spectacular half-time shows. Support your local band by watching this time-honored tradition, only on GCPS TV. This 60-min. program airs Jan. 22-28 at 2 and 7 p.m.

“Multi-Cultural Parent Panels: In the School Setting” This program demonstrates how parent panels identify cultural issues that affect family interactions with schools and suggests ways to build bridges between home and school. This 30-min. program airs Jan.22-28 at 12:30 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 will air 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.
01/18/07GCPS educators earn National Board Certification (pdf)
01/12/07Camp Creek Elementary earns certification as National PTA Parent Involvement School of Excellence (pdf)
01/12/07Principals named for five schools, including three new facilities (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:
Feb. 2, 2007-- Central Office budget managers submit proposed budget requests
Feb. 26 and 27, 2007-- Superintendent and Cabinet meet to discuss FY 2008 requests
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

February is Black History Month, and National Children’s Dental Health Month.

Feb. 5-9 is National School Counseling Week.

The next regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., Feb. 8, 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 January. Call the local school for the time and meeting place.
Alford Elementary
Alton C. Crews Middle
B.B. Harris Elementary
Berkeley Lake Elementary
Brookwood High
Camp Creek Elementary
Charles Brant Chesney Elementary
Chattahoochee Elementary
Collins Hill High
Craig Elementary
Dacula Elementary
Duncan Creek Elementary
Frank N. Osborne Middle
Grayson Elementary
Gwin Oaks Elementary
Henry Partee Elementary
J.P. McConnell Middle
Lilburn Elementary
Lilburn Middle
McKendree Elementary
Nesbit Elementary
Norcross High
Parkview High
Parsons Elementary
Peachtree Elementary
Pinckneyville Middle
Richard Hull Middle
Rock Springs Elementary
Snellville Middle
South Gwinnett High
Susan Stripling Elementary
Trickum Middle
Walnut Grove Elementary