News You Can Use - 11/19/2007

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
11/19/2007 - 11/29/2007

Note: GCPS schools will be closed Nov. 21-23 for Thanksgiving Break, students return Nov. 26. The next News You Can Use… will be distributed Nov. 29.

In keeping with America Recycles Week, Arcado Elementary’s Green Team has been collecting used tennis shoes and gently used soccer gear. The shoes will be counted and transported to Nike Town to be recycled into playgrounds for underprivileged children. For more information, call Teacher Kathy A. Dean at 770-925-2100.

J.P. McConnell Middle will host a Holiday Bazaar on Nov. 17 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Shoppers may purchase handmade student ornaments, crafts, one-of-a-kind items, and food. For more information, email Teresa Mistretta at, or call 770-318-4702.

The Duluth High Co-Ed Varsity Competition Cheerleading CLAW Squad won the 2007 Georgia High School State Cheerleading Championship for the third time. The squad was also named 2007 National Team of the Year by Cheer Ltc. and 2007 Georgia Team of the Year by the Georgia Cheerleading Coaches Association. For more information, call Coach Lindsay Norcom at 770-364-6796 or

GCPS had a total of 66 winners at Regional Scholastic Art Competition. Of those, 23 Gold Key winners will go on to national competition. Students earned 24 Silver Key awards and 19 Honorable Mention awards. For more information, visit For a complete list of winning students call Sue Peterson at 678-301-6020.

Six GCPS teachers were nominated for Georgia High School Art Teacher of the Year. Karen Campbell of Collins Hill High, Alexandra Kates of Parkview High, Devi Knapp of Rock Springs Elementary, Mike Lasseter of Mill Creek High, Lauren Phillips of Norcross Elementary, and Marcy Williams of Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology were all nominated for this prestigious award. For more information, call the school.

Duluth High Science Olympiad team finished 4th competing against 14 other teams at the Westminster Invitational. The following students received medals finishing 1st, 2nd, or 3rd in their events: Jimmy Cai, Stephen Cox, Harrison Falk, Alice Li, Albert Liao, Silki Modi, Darryl Vanover, and Serena Zhang. For more information, call Media Specialist Dr. Marsha Hunter at 770-232-3336.

Duncan Creek Elementary will host the school’s 5th annual Turkey Trot on Nov. 19 at 4 p.m. Fifth-grade students will run through a course around the school. Top runners will receive prizes for Thanksgiving dinner-- Turkey, ham, pumpkin pies etc. For more information, call 678-714-5800.

The Duluth High Future Business Leaders of America (FBLA) is teaming with 11-Alive’s Can-a-thon to collect donations for the Atlanta Food Bank through Nov. 20. FBLA has set a goal of collecting 2,000 non-perishable food items. A pizza party will be donated to the class collecting the most cans. For more information, call 770-476-5206.

Patrick Elementary will host a Polar Express night for the community on Dec. 6 from 6:30 to 8 p.m. Staff members will read holiday stories, cookies and milk will be served, and the chorus will perform carols. Families are invited to bring their children dressed in winter pajamas. For more information, call 678-765-5260.

Principal Betty Ann Schoeneck of Shiloh Elementary will play ‘Mother Ginger’ in the “Nutcracker” at the Gwinnett Ballet on Dec. 7 at 11:45 a.m. The Shiloh Elementary chorus will be in attendance at the performance. For more information, call 770-985-6883.

The Peachtree Ridge High Roaring Lions Marching Band had a successful competition season.
--- During the 8th Annual Eagles Nest Invitational competition, the band received superior ratings for Percussion, Colorguard, Drum Major, and Band. Drum Majors Daniel Kosmala, Kyle Pate, and Sade Seaborne received Best in Class as did the Woodwinds. The Lions placed 3rd in Class AAAA. The Band also was awarded 2nd runner-up Grand Champion at the Invitational.
--- The Roaring Lions received Superior ratings at the McEachern Marching Festival in Powder Springs. The Guard and Drum Majors received 1st place and Percussion and Band received 2nd place in class AAAA. The Guard and Drum Majors were named Champions in class AAA/AAAA combined.
--- At the annual Greater Atlanta Marching Festival in Rockdale County, the band received Superior ratings in all categories, Drum Major, Color Guard, Percussion and Band. The Roaring Lions also received 1st place in Class AAAA for Drum Major, Color Guard, Percussion and Band. In addition, the Peachtree Ridge Lions were awarded the Gold Division Grand Champion Award in Band, Percussion and Color Guard.
--- The 27th Annual Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Christmas Parade extended an invitation to the Peachtree Ridge Roaring Lions Marching Band to perform in the parade on Dec. 1. For more information, call Giesela Zavodny of the Booster’s Club at 770-476-1299, or email or visit

The Duluth High Students Against Drunk Driving (SADD) sponsored a Teens in the Driver Seat (TDS) event at the school. Results of a teen survey and a plan of action were discussed at the school. For more information, call 770-476-5206 or visit the TDS web site

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.-Fri. from 9:30 a.m. to 1 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.

Dec. 1, noon to 4 p.m., Science with Santa, $12.00 per child, $8.00 per adult (13 and over), advanced registration required
Join Santa and his “elves” for this unique holiday celebration! Fun games, prizes and special activities in Santa’s Secret Lab. Call 770-904-3500 for reservations, limited to the first 300 children. The cost is $15 per child and $10 per adult at the door.

Dec. 8, 1 to 3 p.m., Great Gift Idea-Beeswax Ornaments, $20 per participant
Using natural beeswax, we will melt, pour, and form ornaments to decorate and scent your house. During hardening time students will learn about beeswax, its uses, and enjoy some natural honey with crackers. Limited to 10 students ages 12 and up. Please pre-register for this event by
December 1.

Dec. 8, 3 to 3:45 p.m. Where’s the North Pole? Free with paid admission
Join GEHC staff in learning how to make a homemade compass. Can you find the North Pole? This activity is appropriate for young scientists.

Dec. 15, 3 p.m., Back-to-Basics Bird Feeder, family activity, $5 per family
Make your own bird feeder for feathered friends to enjoy during winter. GEHC staff will help you assemble them and participants will receive a free poster.

Dec. 15, 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Adopt-A-Stream Introduction/Chemical Monitoring Workshop, free
Have you ever wondered what might be lurking in your nearby stream? Find out about the creepy crawly critters that live in streams and indicate water quality. If you care about your streams you will want to be here. Bring your lunch, boots if you have them, and call 770-904-3505 to register.

“GCPS 2007-08 Teacher of the Year Awards Ceremony” Join GCPS TV for a special presentation of the 2007-08 Gwinnett County Teacher of the Year TOTY awards ceremony. Program highlights include award presentations to the local winners, “A Glimpse of Excellence” video honoring the six TOTY finalists, and the announcement of the level winners and the Gwinnett County TOTY. This 2-hour program airs Nov. 29-Dec. 2 at 8 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 GCPS TV original series airs in hour-long segments at 11 a.m. and 8 p.m. Monday - Sunday, through Jan. 6 (a new class will air each week, beginning on Monday).

“English...Yes, I Can! (Series 1)” This video telecourse is designed to teach English literacy skills to adult learners. Series 1 is scheduled to air through Dec. 25 on GCPS TV. This 60-minute program airs Mon.–Thurs. at 9 p.m. and again at 1 a.m., and Sunday from 12 p.m. to 4 p.m.

Tune in to Gwinnett County Public Schools’ educational access channel for education programs and information. TV cable channels and providers include: AT&T on Channel 21, Charter on Channel 22, and Comcast on Channel 24 & 26. For more information, call the GCPS Broadcast and Distance Learning Department at 678-301-7800, or e-mail A list of this week’s programming may be found on the GCPS web site--

Sign up to receive Gwinnett County Public Schools’ e-newsletter... a quick, easy way to learn more about Georgia’s largest school system. In this newsletter, you’ll find stories on teaching and learning, school leadership and governance, and the partnerships that make Gwinnett County Public Schools successful. Go to the school system’s homepage for sign-up information ( and to check out the e-News archives.

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

Nov. 18-24 is National Family Week.

Nov. 21-23 are Thanksgiving holidays for schools (other GCPS locations Nov. 22-23.)

Dec. 3-20 is the Georgia End-of-Course Test Window.

The next regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., Dec. 13, 2006, at the Instructional Support Center, located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. N.W. in Suwanee.

Early release for high school exams is Dec. 18-20.

The following Gwinnett schools will hold Local School Council Meetings during Nov. and Dec. Call the local school for the time and meeting place.
B.B. Harris Elementary
Annistown Elementary
Berkeley Lake Elementary
Brookwood High
Brookwood Elementary
Camp Creek Elementary
Centerville Elementary
Dacula High
Collins Hill High
Fort Daniel Elementary
Creekland Middle
Glenn C. Jones Middle
Dacula Middle
Ivy Creek Elementary
Fort Daniel Elementary
Kanoheda Elementary
Freeman's Mill Elementary
Mill Creek High
Harbins Elementary
Norcross Elementary
J.E. Richards Middle
Patrick Elementary
J.G. Dyer Elementary
R.L. Norton Elementary
Louise Radloff Middle
Riverside Elementary
Lovin Elementary
Rock Springs Elementary
Meadowcreek Elementary
Rockbridge Elementary
Mountain Park Elementary
Suwanee Elementary
North Gwinnett High
Sweetwater Middle
Oakland School
Parkview High
Parsons Elementary
Pinckneyville Middle
Rebecca Minor Elementary
Simpson Elementary
Sugar Hill Elementary
Sycamore Elementary
Trickum Middle
W.C. Britt Elementary
Walnut Grove Elementary