News You Can Use - 10/27/2003

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
10/27/2003 - 11/02/2003

Oct. 25 is Make A Difference Day and students at Alton C. Crews Middle will do just that from 9 a.m. to noon, as they clean the campus, nature trail, and butterfly garden at the school. Community members are invited to drop off nonperishable food items, winter coats, and pet supplies for distribution to community organizations. Alton C. Crews Middle also adopted Old Snellville Highway and the first cleanup day is scheduled for Oct. 25. For more information, call Pam Dietz, community outreach chairperson, at 770-736-0423 or send an email to

J.C. Magill Elementary is holding an Outdoor Classroom Workday on Oct. 25, from 8 a.m. to noon. Students and parents are invited to work on the outdoor nature trail, gardens, pond, and wildlife habitat. Volunteers should bring their own tools. The event will be canceled if it is raining. For more information, call Debbie Riley at 770-554-1030.

Debi West of Rock Springs Elementary will serve as president for the Georgia Art Education Association (GAEA) and Southeastern Vice President-elect for the National Art Education Association. For more information call Ms. West at 770-932-7474.

Debi West of Rock Springs Elementary and Lauren Phillips of Norcross Elementary showed art accepted in the GAEA Juried Member’s Exhibit, highlighted by a reception Oct. 16 at the Lyndon House in Athens. For more information call Debi West at 770-932-7474.

The GAEA Professional Development Fall Conference was held Oct. 18 and 19, in Athens. The following GCPS teachers presented at the conference: Jackie Ellett, Duncan Creek Elementary; Letha Kelly and Christi Umans, both of Grayson Elementary; Patricia Spencer, Harmony Elementary; Marcy Williams, Grayson High; Alice Murphy, Lilburn Elementary; Sue Grigalunas, J.C. Magill Elementary; Lauren Phillips, Norcross Elementary; Devra Knapp and Debi West both of Rock Springs Elementary; and Karen Heid of Rock Springs was a conference coordinator. For more information, to the GAEA Web site at

Kiera Nelson of South Gwinnett High is the grand prize winner of the Gwinnett County Public Library’s Teen Read Week Poetry Contest. From among the approximately 560 entries, judges selected 12 runners-up. Kiera’s poetry will be posted on the library Web site at For more information, call Cindy Murphy with the county library system at 770-822-5333.

Iris Harris of Bethesda Elementary will be included in Who’s Who in American Education for her outstanding achievements as an educator. Ms. Harris’ achievements include National Aerospace Education Teacher of the Year, Christa McAuliffe Fellow, Alabama Aerospace Education Coordinator, Gwinnett County Teachers as Leaders member, and Bethesda Elementary Teacher of the Year finalist. For more information, call Principal Nancy Morrison at 770-921-2000.

Dr. J.C. Magill Elementary will sponsor its annual Walk-A-Thon on Oct. 30-31 during the school day. Proceeds will benefit the Care Team at the school. For more information, call Debbie Riley at 770-554-1030.

The media center at Creekland Middle will be the site for an Open House on Oct. 28 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. sponsored by the state Department of Education (DOE.) The DOE recognized Creekland as the 2003 Exemplary Middle School Media Program. For more information, call Louise Scott at 770-337-4830 or e-mail

Point Park College will hold auditions at Brookwood High on Nov. 3 for scholarships for summer dance intensive and for those seniors interested in majoring at Point Park College in dance, musical theater, theater, or technical theater. For more information, call Anna D'Antonio at 770-972-7642.

North Gwinnett High is one of four schools in Georgia selected to participate in the “PEN/Faulkner Writers in the Schools” program. The prestigious program will bring Yolanda Young to North Gwinnett on Oct. 27 to celebrate words and to share secrets about her acclaimed autobiography “On Our Way To Beautiful.” For more information, call John Bush at 770-945-9558.

The T. Carl Buice Center faculty and staff will host the annual Fall Festival on Oct. 28 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the school. Activities will be geared for the preschool child and will include games, a cakewalk, hayride, and garden tours. Food will be available for purchase. All preschool children are welcome to come dressed as their favorite nonscary character. For more information, call Jane Kablaoui at 770-271-5102.

Knight Elementary parents are invited to attend any of the 30-minute sessions for NCSLearn Parent Training which will be held Nov. 12 and Nov. 13. Session times are 1 p.m., 1:30 p.m., 2 p.m., 2:30 p.m., and 3 p.m. The NCSLearn computer programs include language arts and math activities for pre-K-8th grade students. Attendance is required to checkout the software. To reserve a space in the training, email Dr. Bernice Parrott at

Berkmar High is honoring U.S. service men and women by celebrating Patriot Pride Night on Nov. 11. A reception featuring student artwork will begin at 6 p.m., followed by a USO show at 7 p.m., featuring performances by the Berkmar High drama club, orchestra, and band. There is no charge for this special Veterans Day event. For more information, call the school at 770-921-3636.

Brookwood High is sponsoring the 13th Annual Arts and Crafts Festival at the school on Nov. 8 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. More than 100 crafters will display a variety of handmade items for sale. Proceeds from the festival will benefit the Brookwood High basketball program. For more information, call 770-972-7642.

The Gwinnett Extension Service and Gwinnett County Council of PTAs will sponsor “Growing Up and Understanding It.” The program is designed for parents to attend with their children ages 9-13. The program “For Girls” is offered Oct. 29. The program “For Boys” is offered Oct. 30. Subjects to be covered include basic physical and emotional aspects of human growth and development; puberty facts and misconceptions; and hygiene, exercise, and taking proper care of oneself. Sessions will be held at the Gwinnett Justice and Administration Center Auditorium, located at 75 Langley Dr. in Lawrenceville, from 7 to 9 p.m. Reservations are required. For more information and to make a reservation, call 678-377-4010.

Parents, staff, and community members are invited to review and to provide input on proposed curriculum materials. This review covers instructional materials for grades 6–8 language arts, grades K–8 health and physical education, and three high school electives. The review will run through Nov. 7. All materials may be reviewed at the following locations and times:
Buchanan HS of Technology: Monday–Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.; Saturdays on Oct. 25, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.; and Oct. 28, 5 to 8 p.m. Buchanan HS of Technology is located at 2595 Beaver Ruin Rd. in Norcross (770-326-8000).
Lawrenceville East: Monday–Friday, 7:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.; Saturdays on Oct. 18 and 25, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. and Oct. 28, 5 to 8 p.m. Lawrenceville East is located at 723 Hi-Hope Rd. in Lawrenceville (770-338-4832).
For more about the review process, contact Lisa Burleson 770-338-4832.

Tune into Gwinnett County Public Schools educational access channel for “GCPS Focus” this week (Oct. 27-Nov. 2). The show airs at 6:30 a.m., 8:30 a.m., 10:30 a.m., 3:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m., 11 p.m., and midnight each day. “In Five,” a five-minute news update, airs at 7 a.m., 3 p.m., 5 p.m., and 10 p.m. daily. GCPS TV cable channels and providers include:
Ÿ Adelphia on Channel 20 (or Channel 97 without converter)
Ÿ Comcast on Channel 24
Ÿ BellSouth Entertainment on Channel 21
Ÿ Charter Communications on Channel 22
For more information, call the GCPS Broadcast and Distance Learning Department at 678-985-5233, or send an email to A list of this week’s programming may be found on the GCPS website--

As an extension to Bethesda Elementary’s Red Ribbon Week celebration, Tyrone “Hollywood” Brown, a ten-year veteran of the Harlem Globetrotters will visit the school on Nov. 5. Hollywood will perform tricks and teach a few basketball moves to some of the kids, followed by a motivational talk. For more information, call Carol Lane at 770-921-2000.

Lawrenceville Elementary business partner Gwinnett Health System will visit students and staff during the week of Nov. 3 as part of the Junior Achievement Program. Students will be taught the basics of city planning and business structures through hands-on experiences. For more information, call Lawanna Caudle at 770-513-6744.

Knight Elementary will celebrate Red Ribbon Week with the patriotic theme “United We Stand for a Drug-Free Land.” Activities throughout the week of Oct. 27-31 include dressing in red, white, and blue, a Pledge Day, and dress-up days. For more information, call Dr. Bernice Parrott at 770-921-2400.

On Oct. 24, Caron Burnette’s and Kathy Yeager’s kindergarten classes hosted a charity Butterfly Ball at Suwanee Elementary as part of the Great Days of Service 2003. The students brought bath and beauty products for the Foster Children's Foundation, Inc. The students read books, made decorations, and earned money doing chores at home to buy the bath and beauty products for the charity. For more information, call Ms. Burnette at 770-945-5763.

During the month of October, Dr. M.H. Mason Jr. Elementary’s PTA Reading and Literacy Committee is hosting a red-eared slider turtle in the Zoo Library. Storybooks with turtle characters and nonfiction books on turtles are on display. Each month, a different animal will be on display in the Zoo Library. For more information, call Sheryl Croy at 770-623-4815.

The televised beginning English class for adult learners, called “English… Yes, I Can!” airs hour-long segments Monday through Thursday through Dec. 2. (The shows will be aired at 9 p.m. and at 1 a.m. later the same night. Weekly shows will be run again as a four-hour block on Sundays.) Schools or community members interested in the “English... Yes, I Can!” video set should contact Kolinda Scialabba by phone at 678-985-5228. For more information, visit

Red Ribbon Week begins Oct. 27.

Oct. 28 is Norcross High college information night.

North Gwinnett High is holding a financial aid workshop Nov. 4.

Nov. 8 is the certified teacher job fair at Berkmar High.

Nov. 9-15 is School Psychology Week in Georgia.

Nov. 10-16 is Youth Appreciation Week.

Nov. 12 and 13 are early release days for GCPS elementary and middle schools.

The next regular meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education will be held at 7 p.m., Nov. 13, 2003, at Lawrenceville East, located at 723 Hi-Hope Road in Lawrenceville. Prior to the regular meeting, a public forum will be held at 6:30 p.m. to allow persons not on the agenda an opportunity to address the Board.

Nov. 16-22 is American Education week.

Nov. 17-23 is National Children’s Book Week.

Nov. 19 is Education Support Professionals Day.

Nov. 20 is National Parental Involvement Day.

The following Gwinnett schools will hold Local School Council Meetings during Oct. and Nov. Call the local school for the time and meeting place.