News You Can Use - 09/26/2011

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
09/26/2011 - 10/02/2011

GCPS will host the annual high school Scholar’s Bowl competition at Central Gwinnett High on Sept. 24 at 8 a.m. The semi-finals will take place later that morning and the competition will conclude early in the afternoon. This year, GCPS will send the top two teams to WSB’s High Q competition. Participating varsity teams are from Archer, Berkmar , Brookwood, Central Gwinnett, Collins Hill, Duluth, Grayson, GSMST, Meadowcreek, Mountain View, Norcross, North Gwinnett, Parkview, Shiloh, and South Gwinnett high schools. Junior varsity teams are from Berkmar, Brookwood, Duluth, Grayson, GSMST, Mountain View, Norcross, and North Gwinnett high schools. For more information, call Brookwood High Teacher Michael Dana King, at 770-972-7642.

Peachtree Ridge High special education students earned the 2011 National Junior Master Gardener Group Service and Achievement award. The special group of young people achieved their goals while serving their community with enthusiasm and determination. Peachtree Ridge High’s Junior Master Gardner group has 16 members led by volunteer group leader Rosalie Tubre and teachers Carolyn Walters and Barbara Batten. The class rents a garden plot at the Suwanee community garden Harvest Farm. Students plant, harvest, and prepare dishes from the garden produce. By competing eight units of study and eight community service projects, these Peachtree Ridge High students earned Junior Master Gardener Certification in May 2011. The students will be recognized at the International Master Gardener Conference in Charleston, WV. For more information, call Carolyn Walters at 678-512-6082.

Britt Elementary fourth grade art student Sydney Saddler won 2nd place in the 4th grade category in the “Plains, Peanuts and a President” mini-poster contest sponsored by the Jimmy Carter NHS Education Program. Sydney was recognized with a certificate, and her artwork is on display in the Plains Museum. Marissa Yurko is Sydney Saddler’s art teacher at Britt Elementary. For more information, call 770-972-4500.

Rock Springs Elementary invites the community to the school’s first Science and Technology Night on Sept. 26, from 6:30-8 p.m. at the school. Participants will be traveling to a variety of engaging science sessions which teach about the earth, life, chemistry, and physical science content through hands-on activities. Students will be given the opportunity to build their own whirly birds, listen to their own heartbeats, race magnetic cars, observe snakes and spiders, and participate in other activities. The night is designed to inspire students and their families to explore the world of science and technology. The presenters are teachers and students from Stripling Elementary, McConnell Middle, Moore Middle, Radloff Middle, Snellville Middle, Berkmar High, and Collins Hill High. Other presenters include faculty members from Rock Springs Elementary and the Department of Federal and Special Programs. For more information, call 770-932-7474.

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 to view 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 email

The Duluth High chorus will perform the first concert of the school year on Oct. 2 at 7 p.m. Students will perform “Music from Around the World” in the auditorium. For more information, email Jean Ann Moale, Duluth Chorus Boosters Publicity member, at; or call the school.

Teachers from Beaver Ridge, Benefield, Chesney, Lawrenceville, Nesbit and Norcross elementary schools; Lilburn Middle; and the Buice School will be surprised on Oct. 4 at 10 a.m. with a visit from OfficeMax and “Adopt-A-Classroom” to commemorate the nationwide event “A Day Made Better.” Teachers were nominated and won $1,000 grant for classroom resources and supplies. News media representatives are invited to be part of the surprise announcement. They should coordinate a visit to any of the schools by calling the school district’s Department of Communication and Media Relations at 678-301-6020.

Jumpstart, The Pearson Foundation and Gwinnett County Public Schools will participate in Read for the Record on Oct. 6. The Pearson Foundation has provided books for every Pre-K and Kindergarten classroom to participate in the event. Parents and volunteers will read the story aloud to students. This year’s book is “Llama, Llama, Red Pajama,” an engaging story of rhyme and repetition. To learn more about Read for the Record, visit News media representatives are invited to be part of the event. They should coordinate a visit to a school by calling the school district’s Department of Communication and Media Relations at 678-301-6020.

Brookwood High Orchestra students will participate in a workshop with the Boston String Quartet on Oct. 19 and 20. During their two-day visit, students will engage in rehearsals, workshops, clinics, and roundtable discussions with musicians. This opportunity is provided to students by the Music Makers’ Foundation and other corporate sponsors of the Boston String Quartet. A culminating concert performance by both the Boston String Quartet and Brookwood High Orchestras will take place Oct. 20 at 6 p.m., 7 p.m., and 8 p.m. in the theater. Tickets are $15 and may be purchased in advance or at the door. For more information, call the school’s fine arts department at 678-639-3456.

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.

“Love That Book! Carmen at the Pet Shelter Join Carmen and her beloved dog George on the season premiere of “Love That Book!” Their adventure begins with a look at their favorite book “Dear Mrs. LaRue: Letters from Obedience School” and continues on to the Georgia SPCA where Carmen encounters a rather large mammal (think St. Bernard!). Media Specialist Kathy Schmidt introduces “Sea Monster’s First Day” as a cool, new book, and Gwinnett firefighter Ashley Smith shares her memories of a favorite oldie, but goodie, “Curious George.” This 15-min. program airs this week at 8 a.m., 10:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m.

“GCPS Focus
This month, GCPS Focus celebrates Gwinnett’s award-winning counselors, takes a closer look at the system’s charter schools, and checks out the options for school clubs and activities... join us for these stories and more on GCPS Focus - your news show about Gwinnett County Public Schools. This 30-min. program airs this week at 6:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m., 3:30 p.m., and 11 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.
09/21/2011Parsons ES media center on Ga.'s Exemplary list (pdf)
09/19/2011Georgia’s top counselors includes three from Gwinnett (pdf)
09/16/2011BOE names principals for Dyer ES and Meadowcreek HS (pdf)

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 15-October 15 is Hispanic Heritage Month.

October is computer Learning Month® and Crime prevention Month.

October 3 and 4 are Early Release days for elementary and middle schools for parent-teacher conferences.

October 9-15 is Fire Prevention Week.

October 10 is a Student Holiday and Planned Teacher Furlough Day.

October 10-14 is National School Lunch Week.

A regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., Oct. 20, 2011, at the Instructional Support Center (ISC), located at 437 Old Peachtree Rd. NW in Suwanee.

The following schools will hold School Council Dates in September. Call the local school for the time and location.
Annistown Elementary27-Sep
B.B. Harris Elementary29-Sep
Beaver Ridge Elementary29-Sep
Camp Creek Elementary30-Sep
G.H. Hopkins Elementary30-Sep
GIVE Center West29-Sep
J.G. Dyer Elementary28-Sep
R.L. Norton Elementary30-Sep
Shiloh High27-Sep
Starling Elementary30-Sep
Trip Elementary30-Sep
Walnut Grove Elementary29-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.

Junior Master Gardner I
    9/26, 10/3, 10/17, 10/24
An Astronauts Life: Be a Space Scientist for a Day
    10/1-10/22, 10/29
Touch a Tractor
    10/8, 10/9
Green Halloween Costume Swap
Moonlight Mondays
An Astronauts Life: Be a Space Scientist for a Day
Creatures of the Night
Haunted Night at the Museum
Fall Historic Bus Tour
Living in Space Exhibit