News You Can Use - 12/03/2012

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.

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News You Can Use…
A Gwinnett County Public Schools Tip Sheet For The News Media
12/03/2012 - 12/09/2012

Art clubs from Five Forks and Trickum middle schools teamed up to decorate a local business for the holidays. Five Forks Middle Art Teacher Melissa Mason and Trickum Middle Art Teacher Dr. Aimée Burgamy pulled their art clubs together for holiday decorations at a local Chick-fil-A. Students painted holiday and winter scenes on the windows of Chick-fil-A and chorus and band students also performed holiday songs. For more information, call Dr. Burgamy at 770-921-2705.

Two Gwinnett County Public Schools Healthcare Science instructors have been nominated for a 2012 Gwinnett Chamber Healthcare Excellence Award. The Gwinnett Chamber’s annual Healthcare Excellence Awards program honors local health care organizations and professionals making an impact in the community through their concern for patients, their research innovations and management skills. GCPS teachers Nancy Knight of Maxwell High School of Technology and Alicia McCracken of Grayson High Technical Education Program have been nominated in the Corporate Achievement in Healthcare category. These professionals will be recognized on Dec. 4 at the Chamber Dinner at the Gwinnett Place Marriott. For more information visit

The Duluth High Chorus has several performances planned for the month of December. The chorus will perform on Dec. 1 at the City of Duluth Tree Lighting at the Town Square. The students also will participate in the Winter Concert which will be held on Dec. 11 beginning at 7 p.m. For more information, call Jean Ann Moale, of the Duluth Boosters, at 770-476-5206.

The Brookwood High Visual Art Department will exhibit student art in the Community Room of Snellville City Hall. This is the first showing of its kind in City Hall, but the City of Snellville expects that these exhibitions will be ongoing and open to high school students in the Snellville Area. Student artwork from Brookwood will be on display Dec. 4-30. An opening reception is scheduled for Dec. 4, from 7 to 8 p.m. Both the reception and the exhibition are open to the public. For more information, call Donna Faulkner at 770-736-2088 or email

GSMST will host a silent auction of decorated wreaths and hold a talent competition on Dec. 14 at 6:30 p.m. during the Festival of Trees event at the school. Proceeds from this event will benefit Street Grace and bring awareness to the organization and human trafficking. For more information, call Teacher Jeni Prince at 678-518-6700.

North Gwinnett High Chorus and DECA members participated in Governor Deal’s Toys for Tots Kick-Off with the U.S. Marines. DECA officers had the opportunity to meet with Governor Deal in his office after he had signed the Toys for Tots Proclamation. The chorus sang holiday themed songs on the steps inside the building. Both groups also were featured on WAGA TV’s evening programming. For more information, call Teacher Jacqueline Huffman, marketing coordinator and DECA advisor, at 678-482-1025.

Georgia First Lady Sandra Deal visited Simonton Elementary and Dacula Elementary to read with students and promote the Salvation Army’s “Be a Shield” campaign. Ms. Deal is honorary chairwoman for the drive. The Salvation Army will partner with WXIA TV for the 30th Annual Can-A-Thon to collect food for shelters. Every canned food donation during the Can-A-Thon goes directly to The Salvation Army of Atlanta to feed the need in local communities. Through the WXIA TV Can-A-Thon, the schools and community at large generate enough food for The Salvation Army in Atlanta to feed the needy for almost an entire year. Items donated at the local school will be gathered at Turner Field on Nov. 30. For more information on the program, call Ember Bishop at 404-841-3175.

The school district’s charter schools and a technical education program have scheduled information sessions and registration dates as they prepare for the 2013–14 school year.
  • Gwinnett Online Campus (GOC), GCPS’ diploma-granting, virtual charter school, will serve grades 4–12 next year. GOC will hold information sessions around the district on Dec. 6, Jan. 10, Jan. 24, Jan. 31, and Feb. 7. Registration for full-time students will be open Feb. 1–28.
  • Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology (GSMST), the district’s STEM-focused charter high school, will hold informational meetings for interested 8th graders on Dec. 13 and Jan. 15. The registration packet is available for download with a Feb. 1 deadline. If more registrations are received than available seats, the school will hold a public lottery on Feb. 11.
  • Maxwell HS of Technology begins online registration on Feb. 1. Maxwell is GCPS’ technical career-focused charter high school. Students attend classes at both Maxwell and their regular GCPS school.
  • Grayson High Technical Education Program is a career-focused special program housed at Grayson HS. An information session for the 2013–14 school year is scheduled for Feb. 7 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Registration applications will be available online Feb. 1.
  • New Life Academy of Excellence, a system-approved charter school with two locations, will serve grades K–8 next year. Kindergarten families may register Jan. 7–11 at the Norcross campus. If more registrations are received than available seats, the school will hold a public lottery.

“First in War: George Washington and the American Revolution” Through dedication and determination, George Washington accomplished the impossible by leading the Continental Army to victory in the American Revolution. Join this panel of historians as they explore how Washington’s leadership was instrumental in securing American independence. This 60 minute program airs this week at 1 p.m.

“ParenTVision: Shattered” “Shattered” is the story of a girl’s choice to drink and drive that changed lives forever. A young girl was speeding and out of control when her car smashed into another car, killing the driver. Viewers hear interviews with eyewitnesses and 911 calls are played before, during and after the crash. There are 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 of ParenTVision features a discussion with Margaret Cheeley, Collins Hill High counselor, and host of ParentTVision; 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.

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, Comcast on Channel 24 and 26, and for AT&T check under local government listings. 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 web site--

Visit the school system website at for the most current News Releases.

11/27/2012Knight ES & Duluth HS: DOE highlights two of Gwinnett's largest classrooms (pdf)
11/20/2012Trickum MS art educator honored at state level (pdf)
11/19/2012Family-Friendly Britt ES welcomes Superintendent Dr. Barge (pdf)
11/16/2012Jones to lead Mason Elementary (pdf)
11/15/2012Nordson Foundation Supports Integrated Physics and Engineering (pdf)

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A regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., December 13, 2012, at the ISC, located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. NW in Suwanee.

December 17-19 are early release days for high school exams.

December 20-31 is Winter Break for schools.

December 21 is a planned furlough day for 12-month staff, and December 24-31 is winter break for 12-month staff, all Gwinnett central offices will be closed.

January 1 is New Year’s Day and a systemwide holiday for all employees.

January 2 is a student holiday/teacher planning staff development day.
The following schools will hold Local School Council Dates in December. Call the local school for the time and location.
Alcova Elementary
Alford Elementary
Annistown Elementary
Arcado Elementary
Berkeley Lake Elementary
Berkmar Middle
Brookwood High
Camp Creek Elementary
Centerville Elementary
Dacula High
G.H. Hopkins Elementary
Glenn C. Jones Middle
K.E. Taylor Elementary
Margaret Winn Holt Elementary
Mill Creek High
Norcross Elementary
North Gwinnett Middle
Parsons Elementary
Patrick Elementary
Rock Springs Elementary
Shiloh Middle
Trip Elementary
W.J. Cooper 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.

Certified Interpretive Guide WorkshopDec. 4
Green Living SeriesDec. 21
Green Living Kids: Become A Waste Warrior-Fighting Waste Through The Power Of RecyclingDec. 21
Young Architect: Designing the FutureJan. 13