News You Can Use - 04/02/2012

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
04/02/2012 - 04/15/2012

News You Can Use… will return April 12, 2012, after spring holidays.

Gwinnett high schools took the top spots at the 2012 Georgia Science Olympiad State Tournament. Brookwood High earned the title of State Champion and Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology finished as First Runner-Up. These teams took first and second in the 2011 state tournament as well. Brookwood High has won the State Championship four of the last five years. Both schools have qualified to compete at the Science Olympiad National Tournament May 18-19 at the University of Central Florida. Each team is comprised of up to fifteen members, who compete in 23 different events covering physics, chemistry, earth space science, biology and engineering. At tournaments, students engage in hands-on, interactive, inquiry-based activities that are lab-based, research-based, or pre-built. For more information, call Donna Faulkner at 770-736-2088 or email

The Brookwood High Academic Team won 2nd place at the Georgia Academic Team Association State Championships. The team will move to the National Academic Quiz Tournaments high school championship on May 26-27 in Atlanta. More than 200 teams are expected to compete in the national competition, with quiz bowl questions ranging over the entire spectrum of high school curriculum in addition to current events, sports, and pop culture. For more information, call Donna Faulkner at 770-736-2088 or email

Gwinnett County Public Schools is hosting a 5K race to benefit Relay for Life. The race is scheduled for April 14 from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at the ISC (Instructional Support Center), Building 200 in Suwanee. Participants registering by April 2 will receive a race t-shirt. Warm-up begins at 7:45 a.m. in front of Building 200 and the 5K Run/Walk begins at 8 a.m. Prizes will be awarded to age group winners. For more information, call Patrice Pendergast or CoTinna Harris at 678-301-6076. To register, visit

Norcross High will host a visit from Gov. Nathan Deal at an April 16 baseball game. Gov. Deal will throw out the first pitch in recognition of the school’s scholar athlete baseball player— Chris Raasch. For more information, call 770-448-3674.

Beaver Ridge Elementary will hold a ‘Little Beavers’ information session for rising kindergartners on April 19 from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Parents and students will learn what to expect in kindergarten and how to support their students. For more information, call Assistant Principal Nury Crawford at 770-447-6307.

Beaver Ridge Elementary students and teachers have been working hard throughout the year preparing for the CRCT and now it is time to “Roll Out The Red Carpet For The CRCT!” The school will hold a pep rally on April 20 at 8:30 a.m. in the gym to get students excited about taking the test.
For more information, call Assistant Principal Nury Crawford at 770-447-6307.

Meadowcreek High students will perform “Westside Story” on April 26 at 7 p.m. and April 27 at 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. For more information, call 770-381-9680.

Sweetwater Middle’s award winning “Sweetwater Players” have placed in the top three schools in State Theater competition for two years in a row in addition to several members of the players winning individual awards. The Sweetwater Players will perform the musical “Fame, Jr.” on April 27 and 28 at 6 p.m. More than 200 student performers will be on stage with the help of 30 student technicians. Tickets may be purchased for $5 in advance beginning April 9 or at the door for $6. Parents and community members who need more information or to purchase tickets, can call the Sweetwater Middle Parent Center at 770-923-4131.

Duluth High’s Chorus will perform Peach Jam on April 27 and 28 at 7 p.m. This program is the last performance for the school year. For more information, call 770-476-5206.

Meadowcreek High will host the school’s 25th Anniversary Celebration on April 30. Call the school at 770-381-9680 for more information.

Gwinnett elementary schools invite families to Kindergarten Registration on May 3 at the local school. Parents may call the Planning Department at 678-301-7085 to find which school their student will attend. Parents and guardians of children who will be five years old on or before September 1, 2012, are invited to register their children for the 2012-13 school year on this day. Parents may call the school for registration times and should bring the following documents for registering their child: an official document showing proof of birth date, proof of residency in an attendance zone; a Georgia certificate of immunization; evidence of vision, hearing, and dental exams obtained in the past year; a photo ID of the person registering the child; proof of custody/guardianship; a child’s social security number; and a copy of the pre-K progress report. Additional information may be viewed on the system web site

The GCPS Foundation Fund will present the 2012 Gwinnett County Sports Hall of Fame fundraiser for World Class Schools at the Gwinnett Braves Stadium on May 5, at 6 p.m. Gwinnett County’s best athletes will be inducted into the Hall of Fame. Sponsorships are available by calling 678-301-7287, or by visiting

Maxwell High School of Technology is holding a Middle School Summer Camp for 6th, 7th, and 8th grade students from across the district interested in exploring careers in Architecture Drawing and Design, Auto Collision, Auto Services, Construction, Cosmetology, Culinary Arts, Early Childhood Education, Electronics, Graphic Communications and Design, Healthcare, Law and Justice, and Pre-k Camp Counseling. The camp is scheduled to take place June 11-14 from 8 to 11 a.m. All camp programs are led by certified GCPS instructors with enthusiastic high school student aides. Registration runs through May 7, and the registration fee is $50. For more information and to register your child today, visit or call Nancy Zamprelli at 770-338-4603 or Sherri Stephenson at 770-338-4625.

High school students who need to make up a class or want to get ahead, including rising 9th graders may take designated classes during the summer. Registration is ongoing at the following locations and online.
Face-to-Face ClassesOnline Classes
When: June 12 to July 11 (July 4 holiday)
  • 1st Period: 7:30-11:00 a.m.
  • Lunch: 11 a.m.-11:30 a.m.
  • 2nd Period: 11:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Where: Mountain View High, Peachtree Ridge High, and South Gwinnett High.
How: Learn more about face-to-face summer school. Students may register online for face-to-face classes through June 4 or register in person on May 31 at Peachtree Ridge High.
When: June 11 to July 10 (July 4 holiday)
Where: Offered through Gwinnett County Online Campus (GOC).
How: Register online. Online registration closes June 4.
Face-to-face meeting required for final exams and for selected classes (health, PE, and science labs).
Important information for face-to-face and Online Campus summer school students:
  • Transportation is not provided for face-to-face summer school classes or for the face-to-face sessions required for Online Campus courses.
  • A student should take no more than two summer classes: two face-to-face classes, two online classes, or a combination.
  • All tuition fees are due at the time of registration.
  • Any student planning to participate in the summer school graduation ceremony must take all summer classes with Gwinnett County Public Schools.
  • Both the Face-to-Face classes and the online programs will follow a Monday-to-Thursday schedule. Face-to-face and online summer classes will not meet on Fridays.

“ParenTVision – Shattered” Hosted by Collins Hill High Counselor and Graduation Coach Margaret Cheeley, the program explores topics relating to raising teens in the 21st century. This week’s show features the Connect With Kids Network (CWK) program “Shattered” which is the extraordinary story of one night that changed lives forever. A young girl driving under the influence was speeding and out of control when her car smashed into another car, killing the driver. There are interviews with eyewitnesses and their 911 call before, during and after the crash. There are also interviews with the driver, her boyfriend and family, footage of her in prison, and interviews with the family of the man who was killed. This episode features a discussion with Ms. Cheeley; Pam South, State Court Judge, Gwinnett; and Andre Castro, Youth Development Coordinator for the East Metro Health District. This 60 minute program airs this week at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.

“The Author in You - Nikki Grimes” Nikki Grimes is a noted poet and award-winning author. Best known for “Bronx Masquerade” and “Jazmin’s Notebook,” Grimes discusses how she overcame personal obstacles and developed her unique writing voice. This 30 minute program airs April 2-4 at 7:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m.

“Spanish for Educators - Level 2” This GCPS original 10-part series, taught by Hopkins Elementary Assistant Principal Elisa Brown, is an introduction to the Spanish language tailored especially for educators and other school employees. Hour-long segments will air at 11 a.m. Monday-Sunday.

Tune in to
Gwinnett County Public Schools’ educational access channel for education programs and information. TV cable channels and providers include: Charter on Channel 22, and Comcast on Channel 24 and 26. For more information, call the GCPS Broadcast and Distance Learning Department at 678-301-7800, or e-mail GCPS TV is now available via live video streaming on the GCPS TV website--

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Each spring, the Gwinnett County Board of Education goes on the road, meeting once in each Board member’s district. The meetings are a time for the School Board to share information with the public and for citizens to discuss education topics with their elected officials. New this year, the meetings will be organized by Board electoral districts, reflecting the new district lines, rather than by school clusters. However, citizens may attend any of the five meetings. All Area Board Meetings begin at 7 p.m. in the host school’s theater, with refreshments served at 6:30 p.m. The change in Board district lines prompted a venue change for two of the meetings. Remaining meetings are scheduled for the following dates and locations.
Tonight – March 29, District I, represented by 2012 Vice Chairman Carole Boyce, Dacula High
April 10 District II, represented by Daniel Seckinger Collins Hill HS
April 12 District V, represented by 2012 Board Chair Louise Radloff, Meadowcreek HS
April 17 District III, represented by Dr. Mary Kay Murphy, Duluth HS

Visit the school system website at for the most current News Releases.
03/22/2012More than 50 projects to represent GCPS in state science fair (pdf)
03/21/2012GCPS 8th graders improve already high scores on writing test (pdf)

April is National Poetry Month, Occupational Therapy Month, and School Library Media Month.

Spring holidays for schools are April 2-6.

April 6 is a holiday for all staff members.

National Library Week is April 8-14.

A regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., April 19, 2012, at the Instructional Support Center (ISC), located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. NW in Suwanee.

The following schools will hold School Council Dates in April. Call the local school for the time and location.
Alcova Elementary
Alford Elementary
Arcado Elementary
B.B. Harris Elementary
Benefield Elementary
Berkeley Lake Elementary
Berkmar Middle
Bethesda Elementary
Brookwood High
Camp Creek Elementary
Chattahoochee Elementary
Craig Elementary
Creekland Middle
Dr. M.H. Mason Jr. Elementary
Duluth Middle
Duncan Creek Elementary
Ferguson Elementary
Fort Daniel Elementary
Frank N. Osborne Middle
Gwin Oaks Elementary
Harmony Elementary
Ivy Creek Elementary
J.E. Richards Middle
J.G. Dyer Elementary
K.E. Taylor Elementary
Kanoheda Elementary
Knight Elementary
Lanier High
Level Creek Elementary
Lilburn Middle
Louise Radloff Middle
McKendree Elementary
Meadowcreek Elementary
Meadowcreek High
Mill Creek High
Monarch School
Mountain Park Elementary
Mountain View High School
Nesbit Elementary
Norcross Elementary
Norcross High
North Gwinnett Middle
Oakland School
Parkview High
Parsons Elementary
Patrick Elementary
Peachree Ridge High
Peachtree Elementary
Pinckneyville Middle
Puckett's Mill Elementary
Rebecca Minor Elementary
Richard Hull Middle
Riverside Elementary
Rock Springs Elementary
Rockbridge Elementary
Simpson Elementary
South Gwinnett High
Sugar Hill Elementary
Summerour Middle
Suwanee Elementary
Sweetwater Middle
Sycamore Elementary
Trickum Middle
Walnut Grove Elementary
White Oak Elementary
Woodward Mill Elementary

Part science and nature center, part energy institute, and part history center, the Gwinnett Environmental & Heritage Center (GEHC) is a collaborative educational initiative. Partners are GCPS, Gwinnett County Government, the University of Georgia, and the Center’s foundation. The Center is dedicated to student field studies and activities Mon. through Sat. from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. The center is open to the public Mon.-Sat. from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn more at or call 770-904-3500.

Earth Day Every Day-April Visitor ServiceApril 2-6, 14, 21
Off the Hook: Exploring Our Rug Hooking HeritageApril 9, 14
Full Moon Hike-Egg MoonApril 9
Green Living Kids: Gardening For The Kids, By The KidsApril 14,