Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Chamblee Middle School Principal To Retire October 31st

"After 33 years with the DCSD, Ms. Jackson is calling it quits. I have mixed emotions about it, because I love Chamblee Middle School, my teachers, my parents, and our wonderful kids so very much. I cannot imagine my life without them. However, it's time for me to start this new chapter and journey in my life, and I am anxious and excited about that. I know that He has many things for me to experience and ways to grow spiritually. I have promised the foundation that I will still be available to serve on a committee or in whatever capacity they need me, so it's not like I am really gone. Our school council has already met with our area Superintendent, Ms. Cynthia Brictson, to discuss a suitable replacement for me. They will seek survey input from the community, teachers, and students in the principal search process. My hope is that my replacement will be found before I leave on 10/31/14; so that, he/she can shadow me for a few days. I am also saving everything to a flash drive that the new principal might need. If a suitable replacement is not found by the time I leave, then I have been assured that an interim principal will be placed here until an appropriate replacement can be found. Please also know that I have been blessed with three extraordinary Assistant Principals (Mr. Childs, Dr. Briggs, and Mrs. Cromer-Nunn) who are very capable of running this building in my absence. Between them, Mr. Trice, my extraordinary counseling department, and our awesome teachers, everything will be fine.
You have my commitment that I will do everything in my power to make sure that the transition from the "old" CMS principal to the "new" CMS principal will go smoothly for all CMS stakeholders. We have a good thing going here at CMS. We want our standard of excellence to continue. I am confident that will happen. Thank you for the opportunity to serve as your principal since April 2006 and the opportunity to work with your incredible kids."

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

DeKalb County Schools Test Calendar 2014-2015

Seriously, is there any room for instruction, especially at the High School Level.  Are the Mid-Month EOC Assessments required by the GADOE or another one of Morcease Beasley's ideas?

Dunwoody High School Freshman Bridge
Registration & Agenda

All incoming Dunwoody High School 9th graders, class of 2018 Wildcats, are invited to attend our freshmen orientation on Thursday, July 31, 2014 from 8:00 am to 2:00 pm.

 · Get to know your way around the school
 · Meet new friends
 · Set academic goals
 · Learn fun facts about former Wildcats
 · Learn all about that “Wildcat Pride” 

**Lunch will be provided**

RSVP at if your student plans to attend Summer Bridge.

Agenda for Freshman Bridge:

8:00 a.m. - 8:30 a.m. Administrative Welcome - Students will report to the Auditorium.

8:00 a.m.- 10:00 a.m. All parents of students attending summer bridge will report to the cafeteria for registration* (Parents must bring proof of residency: current lease, mortgage, Georgia Power or gas bill. Parents can also buy spirit wear, pay PTSO dues, lock, etc.)

*Rising freshmen not attending summer bridge will register for school on August 7th from 2:00 p.m.- 4:00 p.m.

8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. Breakout sessions

11:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Lunch (students)- Cafeteria

12:00 p.m. - 12:30 p.m. Presentation (Herff Jones Rep)- Auditorium

12:30 p.m. - 1:15 p.m. Spirit Video- Auditorium

1:15 p.m. - 2:00 p.m. Coaches/Sponsors/schedules- Auditorium

2:00 p.m.  Parents return to pick up students from Auditorium Lobby.   

***Spirit Wear will also be available to purchase in the auditorium lobby after the Summer Bridge Program.

***Locks will be purchased during summer bridge, but locker assignments will occur on the first day of school during homeroom.

Welcome Class of 2018!

Please forward to any families with rising 9th graders

Monday, July 28, 2014

Dunwoody High School Registration Packet
and Information Now Available

2014-2015 Dunwoody High School Open House (Registration Day)Thursday, August 7, 2014

Click here for 2014 - 2015 Dunwoody HS Registration Packet.

Registration for students new to DeKalb County School District (all grade levels) 9:00 a.m.-12:00 noon and 2:00-4:00 p.m. in the Library Media Center

Registration for returning students is as follows:

Rising 9th grade students from PCMS and rising 10th grade students: 2:00-4:00 p.m. (registration begins in the cafeteria)

Rising 11th and 12th grade students: 4:30-6:30 p.m. (registration begins in the cafeteria)

Please click here for information regarding proof of residency & immunization documentation.

Dunwoody Elementary School Tiger Talk
and Registration Information

Are you a new parent to Dunwoody Elementary School? Do you receive our weekly e-newsletter, Tiger Talk? If not, then go to the Dunwoody PTO website at: and sign up to "Join our Mailing List." Tiger Talk is the best way to receive information about Dunwoody Elementary School and the PTO. Tiger Talk is sent out on Sunday with information from the Principal, faculty, and the PTO. Don't miss out on any important dates or events. Go to and sign up for Tiger Talk!

Dunwoody Elementary School's Registration Day is Wednesday, August 6th, 2014 from 7:30-12:30pm. Please visit the PTO's website and sign-up for Tiger Talk to receive important information regarding this year's electronic registration. Please contact PTO Co-Presidents, Amanda Rountree ( or Jennifer Fenmore ( with any questions.

Kingsley Charter Elementary School
Open House and Fast Pass Registration

The Kingsley office will be open from 9am - 2pm from July 21-24 and July 28-Aug 1st.  Parents may bring in registration documents and proof of residency during these hours.  By providing this "Fast Pass" service to you, the long lines at Open House, scheduled for August 8th, will hopefully be diminished.  We would like to dedicate August 8th as a day to meet your child's teacher. As an incentive to register early, you can find out who your child's teacher will be for the 2014-15 school year.

All parents who receive a fast pass are still strongly encouraged to attend Open House, as there are still many items to take care of with your classroom teacher. Our goal for fast pass is to decrease the wait time experienced during Open House.

Documents needed for returning students to register:

  • Proof of residence:  Mortgage statement or signed lease of residence with parent name listed
  • Recent (within the past 30 days) utility bill with parents name listed (cannot accept phone or cable bill)

**If you are a NEW student to Kingsley, please visit DeKalb County's website HERE for documents need to register.  Parents, if you know of a NEW student coming to Kingsley next year, please encourage them to preregister so we have an accurate number of students and staff BEFORE school starts!!

On August 8th, please be prepared to sign up for volunteer opportunities in the classroom and to shop for brand new Kingsley spirit wear.   Gently used school uniforms will also be on sale.  An eblast will be sent prior to registration with all the volunteer opportunities needed throughout the 2014-15 school year!

Also, remember to support the Kingsley Charter Council.  Your donations have helped provide iPads for technology integration for our 4th and 5th grade classes, and have provided support for our 3-year writing program plan.  The students of Kingsley thank you for your investment in their future.

Peachtree Charter Middle School Items of Interest
Registration & Volunteer Sign Up

1.  Rising 6th Grade Families, click here to signup for PCMS eNews.

2.  Click here for information on the Summer Bridge for Rising 6th Grade Students.

3.  Volunteers are needed for registration: 
    6th Grade Registration - Thursday, July 31
    7th & 8th Grade Registration - Wednesday, August 6

    Click on the links below to sign up.

    6th Grade Registration Day, 7/31:

    Help us Post 6th Grade Registration Payments, 8/1:

    7th & 8th Grade Registration Day, 8/6:

    Help Post 7th and 8th Grade Registration Payments, 8/7:

    Any questions? Contact Registration Co-Chairs: Jenny Troha, or Wendy Reinstein,

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Dunwoody Schoool Cluster Student Growth Model Data

**Updated with Excel Spreadsheet containing Dunwoody Cluster Subgroup Data.**

I have created an Excel Spreadsheet which contains the school level data reported by subgroup.  Click here to view that spreadsheet. For some reason, the spreadsheet loads more efficiently via Google Chrone.  Reminder these results are from the 2012-2013 school year. 

The Georgia Department of Education today released its Student Growth Model, the metric that will help educators, parents, and other stakeholders better understand and analyze the progress students make year to year. 

The department is also releasing a web tool, located at, which will allow parents and members of the public to view visualized student-growth data.  Beware the bubbles!!!
  • Use the Search box to find your district, or click using the list provided. 
  • Click once on the model to choose the district.  
  • Double-Click twice on the district for a list of schools.
  • Use the Search box to find your school. 
  • Use the Pull Down options to enter data display options.
  • Toggle over the bubble to view data for the option chosen under "Perspective".

This data is based on the 2013 school year (CRCT for ES/MS Students and EOCT for HS students). Data reflecting 2014 school year student progress will be available in late fall. 

School and district growth scores are based on what are called “student growth percentiles.” Essentially, student growth percentiles are calculated for each student in each tested subject by comparing his or her standardized test scores at the end of one year to the performance of other students who had similar test scores to him or her in the past.

Schools and districts are given a “median growth percentile” that offers a sense of how much a typical student at the school grew in a year compared to his or her academic peers

The growth model uses two years of prior test data as pretest scores (one year is used when two years are not available). For example, growth percentiles for 5th-grade students on the 5th-grade CRCT are generated using 3rd and 4th grade CRCT results as priors.

To be honest, the amount of data is overwhelming.  Unless you love data, and I do not, you could spend hours reviewing and attempting to comprehend all of the data.  My assumptions could also be wrong. The massive amounts of documentation provided by the GADOE are many times unclear.

I used the AJC's tool to report the Dunwoody school cluster data.  Click here for the AJC database.   As time permits, I may summarize the data by subgroup.  

Click here to see Frequently Asked questions as provided by the GADOE.

Definition of "Academic Peer":  Academic peers are students enrolled in the same grade and content area or EOCT course statewide with similar prior academic achievement (academic history). In other words, they are students that had the same scores on prior state assessments. There are potentially thousands of academic peer groups – as many as there are prior score combinations. Students can be in different academic peer groups across subject areas and peer groups can change from year to year based on the most recent prior scores.

Peachtree Charter Middle School/Dunwoody High School
Volleyball Tryout Information


There will be an open gym for girls trying out for girl's volleyball on July 28th and 30th, from 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM.

Click here to sign up for Open Gym.

Tryouts will be August 2, from 9:00 AM - 12:00 PM and August 3, from 12:00 PM - 3:00 PM. Girls must be present on these days and must have a current physical on the DeKalb County School System's form. No Exceptions! 
Download the form here:

For more information click here to access the Peachtree MS Volleyball website.

Dunwoody HS

Tryouts for the Varsity and Junior Varsity Volleyball teams will be held on August 1 from 4 - 6:30.

All rising 8th - 12th graders in the Dunwoody High School attendance area are eligible to tryout and welcome to attend these Open Gym sessions.

Players will NOT be able to tryout if they do not have a DeKalb County Physical form signed by a doctor within the last 12 months from August 1, 2014.  Download the form here:

Open Gym Training Sessions:

There will be pre-tryout training sessions on the following dates: 
Monday - Thursday July 28-31 from 4-6 pm at the DHS gym.

Friday, Aug. 1, 4:00 - 6:30   Dunwoody High School
Note: Parents are not allowed in the gym for tryouts.

Mandatory Team and Parent Meeting
Saturday, Aug. 2, 9:00-11:00  at Peachtree Charter Middle School

Practices before school starts
Mon, Tues, Wed*, Thurs*, Fri  Aug. 3-7 4:30 - 7:00 Dunwoody High School
* May have to be cancelled or moved to alternate location due to registration.

Practice Schedule
Practices will be from 4:30 - 7:00 Monday through Friday.

For more information click here to access the Dunwoody HS Volleyball website.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Dual Accreditation Begins This Fall for
DeKalb County High Schools
Update from Dunwoody City Council Member Terry Nall

This is why my quest for dual accreditation for all DeKalb County high schools was so important. We cannot risk all of our accreditation on SACS alone. Our graduating students must graduate from an accredited high school. Dual accreditation (a second accreditation via Georgia Accrediting Commission) provides this safety net. Our school board approved dual accreditation beginning this Fall. I hope all of the school councils keep tabs on the progress at their respective high schools.
Terry Nall
Dunwoody City Council Member (At Large)
Cell: (404) 915-6693

Accreditation agency keeps DeKalb at “warned” level
By Ty Tagami
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

The DeKalb County School District has made “material progress” addressing the concerns of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, but the organization did not restore full accreditation after a recent monitoring visit.

SACS will keep DeKalb’s accreditation at the “warned” level, a couple of notches below full accreditation, says a July 2 report by the organization that DeKalb released Friday.

Click here to read the remainder of the AJC article.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Primrose School of Dunwoody Family of the Month
The Hill Family

Meet Our Family of the Month

A Trusted Partnership with Parents

Primrose School of Dunwoody selects the Hill family as the Family of the Month for July!
The Hill family shares their Primrose experience:
“We are the Hill Family (Brad, Kristi, Ford and Gray).  We have been part of Primrose for over four years, having started at Primrose Smyrna and then joining Primrose Dunwoody two years ago.  Ford, 4.5, is in Preschool 2 and loves coming to school every day.  His favorite part of Primrose is the special events, from holiday parties to the Spring Fling to Inflatables Day.  Ford begs us to bring a book to school each day, and we are very pleased knowing that he is encouraged to read so much at school, even when he brings the longest book he owns!  Gray, 15 months, is in the Infant class and lights up when he enters the school each day.   The Infant room teachers have been wonderful, as they have worked very diligently with Gray on learning to eat table foods, in addition to sitting up, crawling, and talking.  We have been very happy with the Primrose curriculum and feel confident that our little boys are in the best environment possible!”

Congratulations to the Hill family!
To learn more about our Trusted Partnership with Parents, stop by our school campus at 5050 Nandina Lane in Dunwoody, visit or call 770.396.8266 to schedule a tour.

Primrose School of Dunwoody Teacher of the Month
Ms. Fernandez

Get to Know the Apple of Our Eye

Celebrating Teachers All Year Long!


Primrose School of Dunwoody selects Ms. Hernandez as the Teacher of the Month for July!
Ms. Hernandez shares her Primrose experience:
“Hello! I was born in Mexico and I have been living in the United States for 23 years. I lived in Texas for 9 years and then I moved to Georgia. I have been in Georgia for the last 13 years. I have 3 beautiful children: Carmen (19), Isaac (16) and Karina (12).
I have been working with children for over 10 years and I have been at the Primrose School of Dunwoody for nearly 7 years. I love working in the Prekindergarten classroom. I enjoy watching the children grow in every area of the curriculum and seeing them progress towards Kindergarten. They make me smile every day.
Thank you, Primrose, for giving me the opportunity to see all the children grow and to be a part of their life.”

Congratulations to Ms. Hernandez!
To learn more about the great teachers at Primrose School of Dunwoody, stop by our school campus at 5050 Nandina Lane in Dunwoody.  To schedule a tour, visit or call 770.396.8266.

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

DeKalb County Schools/State of GA EOCT Scores

The Georgia Department of Education has released the District Level EOCT scores.  The school-level results will be released no later than July 30th.  

This is the final year for the EOCT, which will be replaced by the Georgia Milestones Assesment EOC's next school year.  Good luck to the students taking the EOC's in December - taking a test which has not yet even been created!!!  

Note:  GPS Geometry and Math II will not be part of the Georgia Milestones Assessment program.

Friday, July 11, 2014

Dunwoody High School Men's Lacrosse Names Michael Sopko As Head Coach

The Dunwoody High School Men's Lacrosse team announced today that Michael Sopko has been named Head Coach. From the Press Release:

"Michael comes to us with a long history of success as both a player and coach. Michael has spent the past two years as Head Lacrosse Coach at Chattahoochee High School and in both years they qualified for the State Playoffs making it as far as the Quarterfinals in 2013." 

Not only has Coach Sopko been named head coach he has also agreed to a teaching position at Dunwoody HS.  

"In even better news, Michael has also agreed to become a teacher at Dunwoody High School as well.....In 2013, he was nominated for Chattahoochee High School’s Teacher of the Year.
Click here to read the entire Press Release from the Dunwoody High School Men's Lacrosse program. 

Cross Keys Foundation's Little Free Library Program
Needs Books

The Cross Keys Foundation’s Little Free Library program is always in need of new and gently-used children’s books. In order to meet the needs of all literacy levels, we stock the Libraries with:

• Board books for babies and toddlers
• Picture books with a few words
• Story books
• Early reader chapter books
• Chapter books serving students in grades 3-8
• Non-fiction

If you would like to donate books, please click here to contact the LFL Warehouse Manager to make arrangements to drop off your donation.

Dunwoody High School Items of Interest
Freshman Bridge & Back to School Breakfast


1.  Rising 9th Grade Families, click here to signup for DHSNews.

2.   Email to register for Freshman Summer Bridge for Rising 9th Grade Students on Thursday, July 31st.

3.  Volunteers are needed for back to school breakfast on August 4th. Click here to sign up.

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Dunwoody School Cluster CRCT Scores

The school level CRCT scores have been released by the GA Dept. of Education.  This is the final year for the CRCT, which will be replaced in the 2014-2015 school year with the Georgia Milestones, End-of-Grade tests. According to the GA DOE, "The new testing system is one consistent program across grades 3-12, rather than a series of  individual tests. It will include open-ended questions to better gauge students’ content mastery and, with some exceptions for special education students with specific testing accommodations, will be administered entirely online by the fifth year of implementation."

Click on the "Click Here to Read More" tab below to view the Dunwoody Cluster CRCT Scores.

Update:  Stan Jester has posted on his blog the rankings of the 83 DCSS elementary schools by combined CRCT scores.  Vanderlyn and Austin are 3rd and 4th respectively, right on the heels of the magnet progams at Wadsworth and Kittredge.  Dunwoody ES ranks 8th; Chesnut 19th; Kingsley 33rd; Hightower 37th; Click here to view Stan's rankings.

Click here to view all CRCT scores via the GA DOE website.

Click here to view the 2012-2013 Dunwoody Cluster CRCT scores.

Click here to download the CRCT Score Presentation presented on the next page.

Monday, July 7, 2014

Dunwoody School Cluster Personnel Losses as of 6-17-14

Today is the July meeting of the DeKalb Board of Education.  

At 2:00 the Work Session commences in the J. David Williamson Board Room. Click here for the Agenda. At 5:45, there will be the Community Input Session, followed by the 3rd Millage Rate Hearing.  At 7:00, the Business Meeting begins.  Click here to view that agenda.

This month's Human Resources report also begins to reflect the resignation of teachers and other staff members.  Click here to view the July HR Report.  As you can see from the page below, through June 16, 2014, there have been 490 teacher resignations.  In reviewing the report, I have noticed a couple of teachers that have left and are not listed.  Not surprising, though....

I have summarized below the Dunwoody school cluster personnel losses as listed on the report through 6/17/14. I was sad to see Lorraine Connor, long-time Social Studies teacher at PCMS, on the list - another excellent teacher gone.

Primrose School of Dunwoody Students Celebrate
Fourth of July

In anticipation of Independence Day, some of our nation’s youngest and brightest are showing their patriotic pride and sharing their own thoughts on citizenship and patriotism. Primrose School of Dunwoody’s students commemorated the Fourth of July at their annual Red, White and Blue Celebration on Thursday, July 3rd. Not only did students have fun parading around with hand-made patriotic arts and crafts, but they have been engaged in classroom activities teaching the importance of citizenship and patriotism.
Students learn about teamwork, cooperation and following rules as “citizens” of the school and classroom.  They also learn about citizenship through activities and books.  The citizenship program is part of Primrose Schools Balanced Learning® System which blends academics, play and character development.
As another way to celebrate patriotic pride and our country’s independence, students were asked to share their perspective on citizenship:
“What does it mean to be a good citizen?”

“To take care of our country.” - Abby

“To take care of the animals in the wild.” - Keegan

“Friendship.” - Ella

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Primrose School of Dunwoody Summer Camper
Visit Fernbank Museum of Natural History

Fernbank: Jr. Summer Campers-  Jacob Daniel and Caroline 

The summer campers at the Primrose School of Dunwoody visited the Fernbank Museum of Natural History as part of their weekly camp theme, "Midnight at the Museum."  During this week the students have been exploring Egyptian Hieroglyphics, dinosaur skeletons, mementos from major events in history, etc. on their trips to local museums and more!

To learn more about Camp Primrose and the other great programs at the Primrose School of Dunwoody, stop by our school campus at 5050 Nandina Lane in Dunwoody, contact us online or call 770.396.8266 to schedule a tour.