News You Can Use - 02/19/2007

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.

View All Archived News You Can Use

News You Can Use…
A Gwinnett County Public Schools Tip Sheet For The News Media
02/19/2007 - 02/25/2007

The Duluth Center-Stage Alliance presents “Harvey” Feb. 16 and 17 at 7 p.m. in the Duluth High Theater. Tickets are $6 and may be purchased at the door. Visit for more information on The Duluth Center-Stage Alliance.

These 7 GCPS students are among 2,600 students selected nationwide as candidates for the Presidential Scholars Program based on their performance on the SAT and ACT college entrance exams. Next, 500 semifinalists will be selected, based on their leadership, and participation in activities. Later in the spring, up to 141 Presidential Scholars will be announced.
Steven Lau Duluth High
Elinor Willis Meadowcreek High
Christine An North Gwinnett High
Nicole Nation Parkview High
Stephanie Wang Parkview High
Bommy Kim Peachtree Ridge High
Calley Mersmann South Gwinnett High
For more information on the program visit

Nesbit Elementary writing specialist Paula Keinert presented at the 2007 National Reading Recovery & K–6 Classroom Literacy Conference in Columbus, Ohio on Feb. 5. The session was Writer’s Workshop and Preparing for State Writing Assessments. For more information, call 770-414-2757.

The North Gwinnett High Marketing Lab— the Dawg House— earned National Gold Certification from Distributive Education Clubs of America (DECA). The School-based Enterprise (SBE) Certification Program was developed to provide recognition for outstanding achievement by school-based enterprises and to motivate SBEs to strive for excellence and to grow. The program provides SBEs with standards for model school store operation. The Certification Program provides recognition for school-based enterprises at three levels: bronze, silver and gold. The number and type of activities a school-based enterprise completes in each of the twelve categories will determine the recognition level. Details about the program can be found at Three lab students-- Katherine Cho, Katie Martin, and Gennie Nguyen-- worked with marketing coordinator Jacqueline Huffman to submit the manual to DECA. They will be recognized at the Georgia DECA Career Development Conference. North Gwinnett High will receive an award at the DECA International Career Development Conference in Orlando in April. For more information, call Jacqui Huffman at 678-482-1025.

The Parkview High yearbook staff has been recognized by Taylor Publishing Company with an Award of Excellence for their accomplishments in yearbook design and coverage. The Parkview High Yearbook is featured in the “2007 Yearbook Yearbook.” Dr. Carol May is the yearbook sponsor. For more information, call 770-921-2874.

Brookwood High freshman counselor Cary Kennedy received a $1,500 grant from the Richard C. Munroe Foundation for improving the Freshmen Success Center at Brookwood High. The Freshman Success Center works with new students on their transition from eighth grade, and offers peer tutoring and leadership classes. For more information, call 770-985-7422.

Benefield Elementary assistant principal Charisse Redditt presented a seminar entitled “Building Community in the Online Academic Process” for doctoral students attending a national colloquium at Capella University. For more information, call 770-682-4184.

Maxwell High School of Technology Technical Apprenticeship Coordinator Dave Avery published a book titled “Machine Projects.” The book is available from Goodheart-Willcox Publishers. The book contains competency development sections for major machine tools as well as a collection of machining projects that cover a wide spectrum of student interests and machining processes. Many of these projects are Mr. Avery’s personal designs and are being printed for the first time. This book is the first new machining projects book to be printed in almost 40 years, and the only one currently offered by any educational publisher. For more information, call 770-963-6838.

Mill Creek High girls fast-pitch softball coach Kelly Murdock, was honored as Georgia’s Female Coach of the Year. For more information, call 678-714-5850.

The Duluth High CLAW Squad was recently named the 2007 Georgia Team of the Year by the Georgia Cheerleading Coaches’ Association. The team will be officially recognized at the Georgia Cheerleading Coaches' conference on March 9 at Lake Lanier. For more information, call 770-476-5206.

Students from Berkmar, Central Gwinnett, Collins Hill, Dacula, Grayson, North Gwinnett, Parkview, Peachtree Ridge, and South Gwinnett high schools participated in the German Convention at Camp Jackson in Covington, Ga., on Feb. 2 and 3. GCPS had 68 first, second, and third place level winners in different categories. Cassandra Goolsby of North Gwinnett High was named American Association of Teachers of German, Georgia Chapter’s Leader of the Year. Ms. Goolsby will receive a round-trip flight from Lufthansa German Airlines. For a complete list of winners, call Sue Peterson at 678-301-6020.

Benefield Elementary student Aniya Matthews won 3rd place in Georgia’s Arbor Day Poster Contest from among 35 posters submissions. The theme for the contest was “Trees are Terrific...and forests are too!” Aniya will receive a $50 savings bond from Georgia Project Learning Tree and a certificate. For more information, call 770-962-3771.

Maxwell High School of Technology students and the Grayson High Technical Program students at Grayson High recently competed in the Region 3 Skills USA Competition at Atlanta Area Technical College on Feb. 9. The 1st and 2nd place winners from this competition will compete at the State Skills USA Competition on April 27 at Maxwell High School of Technology, the Gwinnett County Fairgrounds, and Gwinnett Technical College.
1st Place winners from Maxwell
Cody Belcher-- Automotive Service Tech
Edgardo Cruz, Justin Eldredge, Clark Herring, Joey Rao-- Team Works
Alex Fernandez-- Plumbing
Wes Freeman-- Power Equipment Tech
Jeff Hanson-- Carpentry
Meagan Schultz-- Basic Health Care Skills
2nd place from Maxwell
Anthony Gonzalez-- Masonry
Breana Knight-- Job Skill Demo A
Ruele Nelson-- Welding
Felix Ortuno-- Technical Drafting
Kevin Pierce-- Graphic Communications
3rd place winners from Maxwell
Ashley Bowser-- Cosmetology
Shane Cottrill-- Residential Wiring
Robert Hoover-- Architectural Drafting
Heather Lee-- Preschool Teaching
Thomas Scott-- Advertising Design

GCPS employees were honored at the 4th District Culinary Arts Competition. Michael McEvoy, manager at Peachtree Ridge High, earned 1st place in the Rice Dish competition. Meadowcreek High manager Stella Drake won the Oatmeal cookies category, and Curley Nelson, Margaret Winn Holt Elementary food assistant, won the Wheat Roll Category. These winners will move on to state competition at the Culinary Institute “Le Cordon Blue” in Tucker.

GCPS had three finalists at the Nutrition Advisory Council Art competition, sponsored by the Georgia School Nutrition Association. Anish Amin from Trickum Middle will move to state competition. Runners up were Kayla Anderson and Eugene Reynolds, both from Richards Middle. For more information, call the local school.

The Duluth High baseball team will sponsor a “100 Inning Game and Dinner” on Feb. 23 at 5:30 p.m. in the Duluth High old gym. Tickets may be purchased for $12 and all proceeds benefit the Duluth High Baseball Dugout Club. For information and tickets, email Coach Bobby Link at or Sally Southerland at

The Mill Creek High Drama Department will present “The Diary of Anne Frank” on Feb. 22, 23, and 24 at 7 p.m. in the theater. Tickets may be purchased for $7 for adults and $5 for students at the door. For more information, call 678-714-5850.

GCPS will host the 2007 Gwinnett Reading Rally on Feb. 24 at Mill Creek High from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. The Gwinnett Readers Rally is a quiz-bowl competition for readers in grades 4-12. Forty-six teams will compete for the countywide championship. Readers will compete in ten-man teams using their knowledge of literature to answer questions based on a given list of books. Two winning teams from both the middle and high school levels will proceed to the Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl, a regional competition on March 3 in Augusta. The state playoffs will be held April 21 during the Children’s Literature Conference at the Georgia Center for Continuing Education in Athens. For more information, call Leslie Greer at 770-232-3255.

“ArtStage - Marching Band Exhibition, Part 2” The beat goes on this week with GCPS TV and the premiere of ArtStage: Marching Band Exhibition, Part 2. This is a great opportunity to see talented high school musicians from Collins Hill, Dacula, Duluth, Meadowcreek, Mill Creek, Norcross, North Gwinnett, and Peachtree Ridge perform their spectacular half-time shows. Support your local band by watching this time-honored tradition, only on GCPS TV. This 90-min. program airs Feb. 19-24 at 2 and 6:30 p.m.

“Shamu TV - Saving a Species: Animals in Crisis” Around the clock and across the globe, when the call for help comes in, SeaWorld and Busch Gardens rescue teams are there! It’s hard work requiring dedicated individuals pulling together to tackle whatever problems they face, and when the rescue involves an endangered species the stakes are even higher. Inspiring and amazing, these are the incredible stories of animals in peril and the people who save them. This 30-min. program airs Feb. 19-25 at 10:30 a.m.

“English...Yes, I Can! (Series 1)” English...Yes, I Can (Series 1) is a video telecourse designed to teach English literacy skills to adult learners. Series 1 is scheduled to air February 5-April 3 on GCPS TV. The 60-minute program airs Monday–Thursday at 9 p.m. and again at 1 a.m., and Sunday from 12 p.m. 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.
02/15/2007Seven GCPS students on their way to the White House (pdf)
02/12/2007Principals named for five elementary schools (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. 22 and 23, 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 19 is a student teacher holiday OR snow make-up day.

The following Gwinnett schools will hold Local School Council Meetings during February. Call the local school for the time and meeting place.
B.B. Harris Elementary2/27
Berkmar Middle2/27
Camp Creek Elementary2/23
Centerville Elementary2/21
Creekland Middle2/15
Dacula Elementary2/16
Dacula Middle2/20
Duluth High2/20
J.E. Richards Middle2/20
Kanoheda Elementary2/22
Mountain Park Elementary2/26
Parkview High2/27
Peachtree Elementary2/15
Pinckneyville Middle2/15
Rockbridge Elementary2/22
Suwanee Elementary2/26