Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Congratulations to PCMS Student, Regan Matthews

 2013 Healthy Lunchtime Challenge Winner

Congratulations to Regan Matthews, a rising seventh-grader at Peachtree Charter Middle. Regan was the Georgia winner of the this year's Healthy Lunchtime Challenge for her Sweet Potato Turkey Sliders.

As you may recall, Regan's sister Hayley was last year's winner from the State of Georgia. Reagan, along with all the other State winners will attend the second annual Kids' "State Dinner" hosted by First Lady Michelle Obama at the White House on July 9th.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Dunwoody's Travis Byrd Wins

Georgia Jr Golf Championship

ROCKY FACE, Ga. – Marcus Byrd of Dunwoody made his par putt on the final hole at The Farm to clinch the 48th annual Georgia Junior Championship with a 1-under-par 215 score. Although Byrd posted a 2-over-par 74 in Wednesday's final round, he is the only player to finish the 54-hole competition under par overall.

Three players tied for runner-up honors at even-par 216, including Jack Larkin, Jr., of Atlanta (72-75-69), Tye Waller of Griffin (71-75-70) and Ryan Stachler of Alpharetta (68-75-73). If Byrd had missed his putt for par on the final hole, a four-man playoff would have resulted. Instead, the Dunwoody High School student put the ball in the hole and walked off the green as the champion.

Click here to read the remainder of the article.

Click here to read an article from the Dalton Daily Citizen.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Atlanta Magazine Article:

And now from DeKalb, some non-news on schools

Ignore the rumors; teachers aren’t quitting the embattled system

I wish I had a laugh track to post.  In spite of the PR fluff of this article, it does appear as if Teachers are fleeing DeKalb Schools.  After Monday night's BOE meeting, the DCSS PATS Employment portal was flooded with newly posted teacher openings. Were Thurmond and Ward-Smith hiding the real truth from the BOE?  Looks that way to me.

A couple of quotes struck me as a play on words:

I think it would be good for the public to know the actual percentage of employees who are remaining in the district,” prompted interim superintendent Michael Thurmond.

"Yes, sir. Ninety-six percent of the employees who were offered contracts signed and returned them,” Ward-Smith said"  -This statement says 96% of the employees, not teachers - so which is it employees or teachers??  I would also like to ask Joyce Morley exactly how many teachers have return to DeKalb schools and who those teachers are.

This morning I took at look at the job openings in DeKalb Schools (and notice the date the jobs were posted).  Click here to go the PATS system.  I usually choose the "By Locations" tab on the right-hand side of the screen.  It was absolutely scary.  There are some schools with tremendous amount of teachers openings and Thurmond and Ms. Ward-Smith are crowing about their retention rate? 

Click here to read the enter Atlanta Magazine article.

Tuesday, June 4, 2013


Dual Accreditation Update from Terry Nall

Dual accreditation for all DeKalb County high schools by GAC was discussed this afternoon during the DeKalb BOE "Committee of the Whole" segment.  A representative from GAC was present and answered questions directly from BOE members.  Following the discussions, the proposal was modified to extend the GAC on-site work to January-February 2014 in time for the March 2014 GAC Board meeting.  The effective date of that March 2014 GAC accreditation decision would be retroactive to July 1, 2013.

This revised approach was viewed as a more reasonable timeline due to the SACS work plan that will be carried out during June-December 2013.  Key DCSD administrators expressed support for GAC dual accreditation provided that the preparation work and on-site visits were outside the June-December 2013 time period.

The modified proposal for dual accreditation is now expected for BOE vote at its July 1 meeting.  While I'm disappointed dual accreditation was not approved and implemented when it was first requested earlier this year, this revised timeline represents the best compromise for its approval as a direct benefit to our countywide students.  A special "thank you" goes to the proposal co-sponsors:  John Coleman, Marshall Orson, Karen Carter, and Michael Erwin.

Terry Nall
Dunwoody City Council Member (At Large)
Cell:  (404) 915-6693

Monday, June 3, 2013

Growing Carrots, Character and Community:

Peachtree Charter Middle School’s

Budding Living Classroom

A nice article about the PCMS Garden from Perimeter North Lifestyle:

Article by Loryane Bryan

There is something inherently delightful and magical about gardening. You add seeds and water to soil and sunshine, and within a few weeks you are harvesting delicious, nutritious food.  But beyond the botany and science, there is often an even more amazing alchemy in play. The sowing of seeds and working of the soil has a way of nurturing imagination, building character and forging a community. At Peachtree Charter Middle School, Coach Larry Burdette’s vision of an onsite garden is wondrously becoming a reality. A 4,800 square foot organic garden called the Living Classroom is thriving on a once-barren, sun-drenched field, thanks to the support of community volunteers and local businesses.

“Just about every day another piece of the puzzle amazingly falls into place,” says Shari Clark, a parent volunteer heading up the project. “It’s interesting to see how the pieces come together. The school is nestled in an active community that seems to look for needs to fill. When we broke ground in February, 19 Boy Scouts came out and built the raised beds. When a nearby neighbor saw what was going on, he came over, gave us a donation and arranged for his father to help keep the garden watered during the summer.”
Local volunteers include garden club members and their families, local Boy Scout and Girl Scout troops, and members of All Saints Catholic Church Knights of Columbus, who built the fence for the garden. A local award-winning garden design and installation company, Alex Smith Garden Design Ltd., graded the garden area and laid out the beds. Family sponsors contributed $1290, and local businesses, which include Dunwoody Homeowners Association, Dunwoody Nature Center, Alex Smith Garden Design Ltd. and the Dunwoody Women’s Club, contributed more than $4,000. Farm Burger contributed T-shirts and coupons to the 51 volunteers who pitched in for the kick-off workday. PCMS is working with a high school student-led enterprise called Grow Dunwoody, which helps bridge the garden experience and its academic benefits from elementary school through middle school and on to high school.

Click here to read the remainder of the article.