News You Can Use - 08/29/2011

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
08/29/2011 - 09/04/2011

Parkview High will host a Clubs and Activities Fair on Aug. 26 during lunch period. Students are encouraged to “PLUG- into Parkview” and explore the clubs and activities available to them as students attending the school. Participants will have the opportunity to win prizes. For more information, call Carla Hamilton, Parkview High assistant principal, at 770-921-2874.

Peachtree Ridge High Teacher Debbie McAfee from was selected to participate in the annual Reading and Scoring of the College Board’s Advanced Placement Examinations over the summer in English Language and Composition. For more information, call 678-957-3100.

Duncan Creek Elementary art student Brent Crader has had his work selected from more than 4,700 submissions nationwide to represent the state of Georgia in the VSA and CVS Caremark “All Kids Can CREATE” exhibition. The inclusive exhibition will feature the work of two artists per state and debuted at the Washington, D.C. Union Station over the summer before beginning a two-year tour to children’s museums across the country. Brent is the student of Art Teacher Jackie Ellett. His submission is titled “Dreaming Just Like Chagall.” for more information, contact Kelsey Acers, Kennedy Center Intern-VSA - The International Organization on Arts and Disability, at 202-628-2800, or visit

South Gwinnett High and Gwinnett County Public Schools have been awarded a three-year grant for a comprehensive after school program to support students. The grant funds support the FUTURE program that began as a successful partnership with South Gwinnett, three area churches, and several community organizations. The grant will support one hundred and fifty at-risk students each year for twelve hours a week in tutoring, credit recovery, graduation test requirements support, recreation, and skills development. Transportation home is part of the grant funding. The Grant award is $272,610 for the first year. For more information, call 770-972-4840.

GCPS winners of the 2011 Georgia Electric Membership Corporation (GEMC) Cooperative Spirit Sportsmanship Award are Mountain View High and Archer High. The award honors schools around the state that exhibit exceptional sportsmanship during competitive events. Georgia EMC is proud to sponsor the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) Cooperative Spirit Sportsmanship Award. For more information, call Mike Emery, Director of Athletics, Student Activities and Community Schools, at 678-301-7276.

The Teachers As Leaders Class of 2011-2012 has been announced by Teachers As Leaders, Inc. The Teachers As Leaders program is designed to provide teachers with cutting-edge leadership skills that will enhance student learning. Participants are introduced to a curriculum of leadership principles and provided opportunities to explore leadership skills through a series of retreats and program days that include meeting with community, state, and national leaders in both education and business. The program also includes a study group component that meets to discuss how each program relates to leadership. The teachers selected for the program will be challenged to expand and extend the pursuit of excellence in the classroom, the educational community, and the community-at-large for the purpose of improved instruction and individual student success. The following GCPS teachers have been accepted into this year’s class.
Brittany AarestadNorcross HighAshley KirklandChattahoochee Elementary
Nelldra AllenDuluth MiddleAnna LawrenceDacula Middle
Jennifer BahrBrookwood HighAmy LopezMulberry Elementary
Sharon BlackWalnut Grove ElementaryApril MitchellRadloff Middle
Mandi BurgessLovin ElementaryDr. Vickie NashArcado Elementary
Lindsey CafarellaPeachtree Ridge HighGary NeffPinckneyville Middle
Doug CallahanJones MiddleLisa NoelPartee Elementary
Shannon CarterBeaver Ridge ElementaryJill ReidMason Elementary
Mary ClellandRiverside ElementaryAmber RussellAnderson-Livsey Elementary
Jacquelyn DargonBenefield ElementaryLeslie SazeraBuford Middle School
Robin DavisNorth Gwinnett MiddleLeslie SheppardBuford Academy
Cappy DouglassShiloh HighMary SilerMinor Elementary
Mandy GoodwinLawrenceville ElementaryDonna StimpsonCentral Gwinnett High
Tarcida HernandezCreekland MiddleCandace SwordsShiloh Elementary
Venice HindsNorcross ElementaryLori VanBuskirkBerkeley Lake Elementary
Brenda HitchcockBethesda ElementaryMeaghan WagarParsons Elementary
Bernita Houston-CravenRosebud ElementaryKatie WalkerHarbins Elementary
Mandee JablonskiBerkmar MiddleLauren WhitingHopkins Elementary
Eve JonesB.B. Harris ElementaryGinger WhitleyCamp Creek Elementary
Rosalita KennedyJenkins ElementaryJohn WillisGwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology
Staci KinslerIvy Creek Elementary
The Gwinnett Chamber of Commerce recently kicked off the 27th class of Leadership Gwinnett which will train Gwinnett’s newest leaders in the business, civic, and cultural communities from August 2011 to May 2012. From the nearly 800 nominations received each year for the nine-month experience, Leadership Gwinnett alumni selected the final group of 40 based on work experience, accomplishments, community involvement, education and other information from their individual applications. The 2011–2012 Leadership Gwinnett Class includes the following GCPS employees: Greg LaHatte, director of broadcast and distance learning; Molly McAuliffe, Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology counselor; Ed Shaddix, North Gwinnett High principal; and Kendra Washington-Bass, assistant director of leadership development. Leadership Gwinnett Sustaining Partners, whose generous financial support helps to make the program possible, include Andersen, Tate & Carr, PC; Brand Banking Company, Brand Mortgage Group, Cisco, Georgia Gwinnett College, Gwinnett County Public Schools Foundation, Gwinnett Medical Center Foundation, King & Spalding, and McKenna Long & Aldridge, LLP.

Dacula High freshmen will learn the “Dacula Way” through an orientation program of sessions held during the first four weeks of school. Freshmen will hear from the principal, resource officer, and several assistant principals on topics ranging from getting involved and making their mark to understanding the damaging power of a zero averaged into their grades. In addition, these freshmen are introduced to some outstanding upperclassmen leaders, as well as enjoying the talents of the marching band and cheerleaders. For more information, contact Jeannie Hidalgo at 770-338-4767.

United Way Women’s Leadership Council in Gwinnett will honor Dr. Frances Davis, GCPS Chief Human Resources Officer, at the 8th Annual Legacy Awards on August 27 at the Gwinnett Marriott. Exemplary women will be honored for their Time, Talent, Treasure, and Legacy. For more information, email

Gwinnett County Public Schools educators will kick off Teaching American History with an event highlighting keynote speaker Ambassador Andrew Young on August 31 from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. at the historic courthouse in Lawrenceville. Educators who teach U.S. History have additional resources to make sure their students master the subject thanks to a $1.4 million grant the school system earned from the U.S. Department of Education. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan announced that GCPS is one of only four school districts in Georgia selected for the Teaching American History grant. The funding will support more than 150 high school social studies teachers as they work to raise the achievement of Gwinnett students. For more information, call Debbie Daniell, K-12 Social Studies Director, at 678-301-7028.

Oakland Meadow School will honor the lives of military personnel with a week-long event culminating with a “Patriot Day” celebration on Sept. 9 from 10 to 11 a.m. Faculty and staff members will focus on themes of patriotism, freedom, respect, diversity, flag etiquette, writings of what it means to be an American, books, videos, and history. Students will create a Freedom Wall and Freedom Fence at the school. Many branches of the service will attend along with the Mayor of Lawrenceville. For more information, call 770-513-6800.

Puckett’s Mill Elementary fine arts teachers are participating in an international “Pinwheels for Peace” installation ( Students are creating pinwheels to house feelings and thoughts on Peace. The pinwheels will be “planted” in the ground in conjunction with international peace day on Sept. 21. Students in each grade level will be taught a song inspired by the thought of peace. Students will sing the songs outside the school while installing the pinwheels throughout the day. After 1 p.m., more than 1,100 student/faculty pinwheels will be displayed in the front of the school. For more information, call Beau Pezoldt, teacher at 678-765-5110.

The Peachtree Ridge Foundation announces “Flicks for the Foundation”— a family movie night for Peachtree Ridge cluster schools. Movies will be shown on Sept. 30 on the high school practice field. Doors open at 5 p.m. and the movie begins at dusk. Guests can come early and stroll the silent auction booths filled with themed baskets donated by cluster schools and the Peachtree Ridge High booster clubs. Children can play in the bounce houses and families can enjoy dinner from the concession stand provided by the Touchdown Club. Donations of $5 per person will be accepted (children four and under are free). For more information contact Jane Denton, Executive Director at 770-495-5415 or

Georgia Congressman Rob Woodall (7th District) will speak on the Flat Tax and events in Washington, D.C., including the national debt, to Peachtree Ridge High Teacher Linda Brimmer’s Financial Literacy class on Oct. 21 from 8-9:30 a.m. For more information, contact Peachtree Ridge High at (678) 957-3100.

Pharr Elementary students will have a better understanding of the connection to the natural world by growing a garden. Over the summer the school contracted with a landscaping company to create raised gardens for growing fruits and vegetables. The gardens will be irrigated with a rain recovery system that stores rain from the cafeteria roof. Students will participate in the growing, care and eventual harvesting of the plants in the gardens. Pharr Elementary hopes to eventually grow enough produce to donate to a local food coop. For more information, call 770-985-0244.

Norcross High visual arts students recently hosted a visit from professional artists at Art Career Night. Architects, graphic designers, interior designer, photographers, web designer, and an animator came to Norcross High on Aug. 16 to show their portfolios in a joint meeting of the National Art Honor Society, Norcross High Art Club, and the La Voz Art Club. Students interacted with the professionals and discussed potential career pathways. For more information, call Barbara Willis, Norcross High visual arts teacher, at 770-448-3674.

“Going, Going, Faster - The Science of Speed” Students will have the opportunity to meet Indy and NASCAR drivers and follow them as they drive the race track and demonstrate Newton’s First Law. From the legendary oval track in Indianapolis, students will explore how technology is enhancing the ability to go faster and faster! This 60-min. program airs this week at 1 p.m.

“Gwinnett Prep Rally” Gwinnett County’s original high school sports television program, featuring high school sporting highlights from across the county, returns exclusively to GCPS TV this week. This 30-min. program airs Tuesday at 7 p.m. and 10:30 p.m., and Wed.-Fri. at 7:30 a.m., 7 p.m., and 10:30 p.m.

Spanish for Educators - Level 2” Spanish for Educators is a valuable language resource and learning opportunity provided by GCPS TV. This 10-part series, taught by Elisa Brown, assistant principal at Hopkins Elementary, 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 web site--

Visit the school system website at for the most current News Releases.
08/24/2011Georgia PTA highlights efforts of Gwinnett leaders
08/23/2011GCPS to receive Wallace Foundation Grant

Sign up to receive Gwinnett County Public Schools’ e-newsletter, GCPS eNews... 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.

September is Library Card Sign-up Month.

September 5 is Labor Day, a systemwide holiday.

September 11 is Patriots Day.

A regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., September 15, 2011, at the Instructional Support Center (ISC), located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. NW in Suwanee.

September 15-October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month.

September 17 is Citizenship Day.

September 17-23 is Constitution Week.

The following schools will hold School Council Dates in August and September. Call the local school for the time and location.
Benefield Elementary25-AugAlford Elementary16-Sep
Camp Creek Elementary26-AugAnnistown Elementary27-Sep
Chesney Elementary12-AugArcado Elementary12-Sep
Craig Elementary29-AugArcher High School19-Sep
Henry Partee Elementary24-AugB.B. Harris Elementary29-Sep
Jenkins Elementary29-AugBeaver Ridge Elementary29-Sep
Level Creek Elementary19-AugBerkmar Middle22-Sep
Lovin Elementary11-AugBethesda Elementary12-Sep
Mill Creek High16-AugBrookwood Elementary19-Sep
Norcross High11-AugBrookwood High20-Sep
Oakland School30-AugBurnette ES16-Sep
Peachtree Elementary26-AugCamp Creek Elementary30-Sep
Simpson Elementary26-AugCedar Hill Elementary8-Sep
W.J. Cooper Elementary16-AugCenterville Elementary9-Sep
Woodward Mill Elementary26-AugChattahoochee Elementary20-Sep
Chesney Elementary9-Sep
Collins Hill High20-Sep
Creekland Middle15-Sep
Dacula Middle20-Sep
Dr. M.H. Mason Jr. Elementary16-Sep
Duluth High20-Sep
Duluth Middle13-Sep
Duncan Creek Elementary21-Sep
Ferguson Elementary16-Sep
Fort Daniel Elementary2-Sep
Frank N. Osborne Middle2-Sep
G.H. Hopkins Elementary30-Sep
GIVE Center East20-Sep
GIVE Center West29-Sep
Glenn C. Jones Middle15-Sep
Grace Snell MS12-Sep
Grayson Elementary9-Sep
Grayson High16-Sep
Gwin Oaks Elementary2-Sep
Ivy Creek Elementary16-Sep
J.C. Magill Elementary2-Sep
J.E. Richards Middle26-Sep
J.G. Dyer Elementary28-Sep
Jackson Elementary8-Sep
Kanoheda Elementary10-Sep
Knight Elementary16-Sep
Lanier High20-Sep
Louise Radloff Middle15-Sep
Margaret Winn Holt Elementary1-Sep
McKendree Elementary2-Sep
Meadowcreek Elementary12-Sep
Monarch School23-Sep
Mountain Park Elementary19-Sep
Mountain View High School16-Sep
Mulberry Elementary14-Sep
Nesbit Elementary20-Sep
Norcross High8-Sep
North Gwinnett Middle15-Sep
Parsons Elementary1-Sep
Peachree Ridge High22-Sep
Pinckneyville Middle8-Sep
Puckett's Mill Elementary8-Sep
R.D. Head Elementary15-Sep
R.L. Norton Elementary30-Sep
Rebecca Minor Elementary22-Sep
Riverside Elementary13-Sep
Roberts Elementary9-Sep
Rockbridge Elementary13-Sep
Rosebud Elementary2-Sep
Shiloh High27-Sep
Shiloh Middle9-Sep
Simonton Elementary8-Sep
Starling Elementary30-Sep
Sugar Hill Elementary13-Sep
Summerour Middle8-Sep
Suwanee Elementary20-Sep
Sycamore Elementary16-Sep
T. Carl Buice School9-Sep
Trickum Middle13-Sep
Trip Elementary30-Sep
Twin Rivers Middle16-Sep
W.C. Britt Elementary13-Sep
Walnut Grove Elementary29-Sep
White Oak Elementary14-Sep

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.
Beauty on the WingSept. 3
Beauty on the WingSep 3, 10
Farmtastic Friday: All About BirdsSep 9
Grandparents Day TeaSep 10
Living In Space ExhibitSep 12, 13, 14, 15
Moon Light Monday: Harvest Moon HikeSep 12