News You Can Use - 03/21/2011

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
03/21/2011 - 03/27/2011

GCPS will hold a Transition Fair on March 19 from 9 a.m. to 1:15 p.m. at Peachtree Ridge High for students with disabilities, their families, and educators. This event will provide information about services and resources to help prepare students transitioning from the school system. Students and families will have the opportunity to meet with local agency representatives to discuss and research the options available as they transition to post-school activities and employment. In addition, participants may attend breakout sessions to learn more about topics such as Medicaid Waivers, Social Security Benefits, Estate Planning and Guardianship, Vocational Rehabilitation Services, Assistive Technology, and Vocational and Community Programs. For more information call Middle and High Schools Program Coach Alison Vernon or Community Skills Program Coach Tamra King at 678-301-7121.

Gwinnett County parents and students are invited to attend a Spring Fling through the Grayson Technical Education Program on March 19 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. in the Grayson Technical Building. Events will include games, raffles, prizes, and crafts. The local community, interested GCPS students, and families are invited to attend. Experience hands-on application of innovative programs and meet the highly skilled and industry-certified faculty. For more information, visit

The Norcross High Girls Basketball team won a second consecutive AAAAA state championship and the Norcross High Boys Basketball team won a fourth AAAAA state championship. It is the 4th win in the last six years for the boys’ team. This is the first time since 1958 that two teams from the same school have won the state title in AAAAA classification. For more information, call Mike Emery, director of athletics, activities, and community schools, at 678-301-7276.

Five Sweetwater Middle students have been selected for the TV show pilot for “Pro Fitness for Kids”. The show was created and is being produced by 9 Dragons Productions producer Devin Eggleston who visited the school to speak to the Cinema Club about careers in the film and video industry. Mr. Eggleston is a professional cinematographer for Turner, Fox and ESPN Sports, and Executive Producer of “Pro Fitness for Kids.” The winning students are Asia Brown, Charbel Gerges, Elio Gerges, Lauren Kim, and Carla Rios. For more information, call Teacher Keith Hampton at 770-923-4131.

The State Superintendent of Education Dr. John Barge will visit Simpson Elementary on March 23 at 9:45 a.m. and Parkview High on March 21 at 10:30 a.m. to present the Georgia School of Excellence Award to each school. For more information, call the school.

Congressman Rob Woodall will hold a town hall meeting with Parkview High students on March 23 from 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. For more information, call 770-921-2874.

The South Gwinnett Cluster Title I schools will host a “What to do this Summer--Be There Fair” for families on March 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Snellville Middle. There is no charge for the event. Information will be presented during three information sessions on Cyberbullying, Testing Prep, Gang Awareness, and other topics for parents. Community groups will provide information about summer activities available in Snellville and Gwinnett County. Entertainment will be provided by the music and dance programs from Britt Elementary, Norton Elementary, Rosebud Elementary, and Snellville Middle. Lunch will be served and childcare is provided. This program is sponsored by the GCPS Title I Program and the South Gwinnett Cluster Title I schools. For more information, call Britt Elementary, Norton Elementary, Rosebud Elementary, or Snellville Middle.

Norcross Elementary will host the annual Montage and Empty Bowls program on March 28 at 5:30 p.m. in the gym. Art students have worked throughout the year to create ceramic bowls. The handcrafted bowls, along with a serving of ice cream, will be available for purchase. Proceeds will benefit the Norcross food bank. Entertainment at the event will include performances by the chorus, a song and dance performance, reading musical rhythms, a parachute routine, PE student performances, and a display of student artwork. For more information, call Art Teacher Bobbie Adamczyk at 770-448-2188.

Trickum Middle 8th grade gifted language arts students have embarked on a mission to research and learn about human rights issues around the world. Students will share this knowledge at the 2nd annual “Messages to Humanity” museum. Students will act as curators of the museum giving tours to students on March 28. On March 29 the museum will remain open into the evening for parents and community members to experienceNight at the Museum.” For more information, call Debra Moody or Cathy Alexander at 770-931-5650.

The Dacula Cluster schools will present a Choral Concert on April 12 at 7:30 p.m. at Hebron Baptist Church in Dacula. This is the fourth year for community member to enjoy an evening of music performed by the Dacula Cluster schools. For more information, call Beth Warzon, Alcovy Elementary music teacher at 678-376-8500.

The Peachtree Ridge Cluster Schools along with the Peachtree Ridge Foundation will team up with the Gwinnett Braves for Ridge Night at Cool Ray Field on April 28. Game time is 7:05 p.m. Tickets may be purchased at all schools beginning March 25 for $12. Proceeds will benefit Relay For Life. For more information contact Jane Denton at or

The artwork of GCPS’ many talented students has been displayed during Tapestry 2011. The remaining event will be held at the Instructional Support Center (ISC) with a reception on March 22 at 6 p.m. The exhibit includes pottery, paintings, jewelry, etc. For more information, call the Fine Arts Office at 678-301-7004.
Tapestry Week 3 (March 22-29)
The following clusters/schools will exhibit student work during Tapestry Week 3: the Archer, Berkmar, Brookwood, Central Gwinnett, Duluth, and Grayson cluster; including the Grayson High Technical Education Program.
· Reception: March 22, 6-7:30 p.m.
Exhibit hours are 7 a.m.-8 p.m. during the week, 7 a.m.-4 p.m. on Saturdays, and 1-6 p.m. on Sundays.

Beginning in August of 2011, Gwinnett County Public Schools will offer students a new way to earn a diploma… online through Gwinnett Online Campus. Registration for the new school is ongoing and has been extended through March 31, 2011. Registration materials and information about the online high school and online learning can be found on the district website and at

Grayson High School Technical Education Program, housed on the Grayson High campus, is currently accepting application for classes in 2011-12. For more information and an application, visit

Maxwell High School of Technology offers exciting, innovative courses of study for all students in Gwinnett County. Maxwell High School of Technology is currently registering students for classes in 2011-12. Maxwell is recognized as one of the premier career and technical high schools in Georgia. Visit for more information and to register.

White Oak Elementary and Lanier High celebrated “No Place for Hate” week in collaboration with the Anti-Defamation League. The “No Place for Hate” program is geared toward giving students an opportunity to understand the damaging impact that bullying and prejudice have on individuals as well as the social fabric of schools. The initiative brought together the Lanier and White Oak communities to stop all forms of bias and bullying and foster a culture of respect and learning. For more information, contact Counselor Jennifer Diaz at or at 678-546-5539.

“ArtStage: 2011 GCPS County Dance Day Performance” This year’s County Dance Day event features the performances of talented student dancers from across the county. Twelve high schools and more than 200 dancers are represented in the broadcast. Dance routines included in the program range from ballet to modern dance, jazz, lyrical, hip hop and ballroom. This 60-minute program airs this week at 2 p.m. and 8 p.m.

“Love That Book: Carmen at the Library and Carmen at the Bookstore” Join GCPS TV for a special double feature of “Love That Book” with back-to-back episodes of Carmen at the Library and Carmen at the Bookstore. This 30-minute program airs March 21-27 at 10:30 a.m. and 7:30 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, 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--

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.

Visit the school system website at the most current News Releases.
03/18/2011Veteran GCPS principals to lead Chesney ES and Taylor ES (pdf)
03/14/2011GCPS schedules remaining make-up days for days missed during January storm (pdf)
03/09/2011Gwinnett BOE holds annual Area Board Meetings (pdf)
03/07/2011Special needs students to learn about post K-12 opportunities (pdf)

The schedule is set for the Gwinnett County Board of Education annual Area Board Meetings, a time of year when School Board members meet in their local districts. These meetings, which are in addition to the regular monthly Board meeting, are an opportunity for the five Board members to meet in their district, share information, and hear from their local constituents. The program includes CEO/Superintendent J. Alvin Wilbanks’ annual update on the state of the school district, which focuses on the system’s accomplishments, challenges, and continuous efforts to raise student achievement. The Area Board Meetings are held by School Board district, but the public is invited to attend any of the meetings. All Area Board Meetings begin at 7 p.m. in the host school’s theater. Refreshments will be served at 6:30 p.m.
March 29-- District II --- Hosted by Board member Daniel D. Seckinger at Lanier High.
District II represents all or part of the Collins Hill, Lanier, Mill Creek, Mountain View, North Gwinnett, and Peachtree Ridge clusters, including Buice School.
March 31-- District III --- Hosted by Board member Dr. Mary Kay Murphy at Norcross High.
District III includes all or part of the Duluth, Norcross, and Peachtree Ridge clusters, including GIVE Center West, Gwinnett Online Campus, and Monarch School.
April 12-- District IV --- Hosted by Board Chairman Dr. Robert McClure at Brookwood High.
District IV includes all or part of the Berkmar, Brookwood, Central Gwinnett, Grayson, Parkview, Shiloh, and South Gwinnett clusters.
April 14-- District V --- Hosted by Board Vice Chairman Louise Radloff at Berkmar High.
District V includes all or portions of the Berkmar, Brookwood, Meadowcreek, and Parkview clusters.
April 19-- District I --- Hosted by Board member Carole Boyce at Grayson High.
District I includes all or portions of the Berkmar; Brookwood; Central Gwinnett; Collins Hill; Dacula; Grayson; Meadowcreek, Mill Creek, Mountain View, and South Gwinnett clusters; including GIVE Center East; Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology; Hooper Renwick School; Maxwell High School of Technology; Oakland Meadow School; and Phoenix High.

March is Music in Our schools Month, National Nutrition Month, and Youth Art Month.

The Georgia Writing Evaluation Window for 3rd graders is scheduled for March 21-April 1.

The Georgia High School Graduation Tests for 11th graders is scheduled for March 28-31.

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

April 2 is International Children’s Book Day.

April 4-8 is Spring Break (school holidays).

April 8 is a systemwide spring holiday for GCPS. All locations will be closed.

A regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., April 21, 2011, at the Instructional Support Center (ISC), located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. NW in Suwanee.

April 22 is a snow make-up day— school in session.

The following schools will hold School Council meetings in March. Call the local school for the time and location.
Archer High School
Buice School
Burnette ES
Camp Creek Elementary
Chattahoochee Elementary
Creekland Middle
Dacula High
Duluth High
Duluth Middle
Duncan Creek Elementary
Dyer Elementary
Harmony Elementary
Harris Elementary
Jones Middle
Lanier High
Level Creek Elementary
Lilburn Middle
McKendree Elementary
North Gwinnett Middle
Norton Elementary
Parkview High
Parsons Elementary
Patrick Elementary
Peachree Ridge High
Pinckneyville Middle
Puckett's Mill Elementary
Richard Hull Middle
Riverside Elementary
Rock Springs Elementary
Simpson Elementary
Stripling Elementary
Sugar Hill Elementary
Summerour Middle
Suwanee Elementary
Sycamore Elementary
Trickum Middle

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.

-Traveling Exhibit
March 21, 22, 23, 24, 25 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
March 22, 23, 1:30 to 3:30 p.m.
March 23, 10 a.m. to noon
March 23, 10 a.m. to noon
March 25, 10 a.m. to noon