Pittsylvania County Schools: 
A Great Place to Learn and Work!

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P.O. Box 232 • 39 Bank Street, SE 
Chatham, Virginia 24531  
Telephone:  (434) 432-2761 • 1-888-440-6520
Fax: (434) 432-9560


Superintendent's Weekly Wrap-Up




Superintendent's Weekly Wrap-Up

School Year 2016-2017

April 17, 2017

Employee of the Week:
Please join in recognizing Mrs. Pam Pruitt, Instructional Assistant at Tunstall Middle School, on her selection as Employee of the Week for Pittsylvania County Schools. Please click on the following link to find out what employees do to make this A Great Place to Learn and Work! http://www.pcs.k12.va.us/staff/employee-of-week/

Over the last two months, the Weekly Wrap-Up has featured the reports presented by Sam Nicholson, Student Representative to the School Board from Chatham High School, and Erin Mayhew, Student Representative to the School Board from Gretna High School. This week’s Wrap-Up highlights the Character Word of the Month presentation by Frank Blevins, Student Representative from Dan River High School.

Good afternoon, members of the School Board, Dr. Jones, Student Liaisons and guests.

The Character Word of the month for April is caring. The importance of caring in our school system is of the utmost. In order for our schools to create well-rounded people to send into the world when they have completed their time in the education system, not only do the teachers have to care about what they are teaching and the students that are being taught, but the students themselves must care about their future and how they will get there.

In the words of Anthony D’Angelo, “Without a sense of caring there can be no sense of community.” The Pittsylvania County community has done an outstanding job expressing its caring attributes. From donations to God’s Pit Crew and God’s Storehouse to fundraisers to help raise funds for valiant causes such as raising money for the family of a child suffering from ATRT. For all of these events, we have seen a variety of groups show uniformity in caring for a common cause. Humanity is brought together repetitively in times of need, and has never failed in overcoming hardships. With caring, determination, and willpower, people will always be willing and able to lift each other up by displaying kindness and concern for others.

Not only has our community as a whole shown how much they care, but our county schools have come together numerous times to express their caring qualities. The students and faculty have worked together promoting sporting events dedicated to charities, and just recently our girls’ soccer team came together and took over a restaurant to raise money for a good cause.

The famous anthropologist Margaret Mead stated, “Never believe that a few caring people can’t change the world. For indeed that’s all who ever have.” To elaborate, it only takes one righteous person, or rather, one righteous act to change someone’s life for the better. Whether it is setting up big charity events or just taking some old clothes to Goodwill, there is always something that you can do. Everyone in the community has to care for one another, no matter a person’s situation. They all are important.

Dyslexia Awareness Training:

Effective July 1, 2017, every person seeking initial licensure or renewal of a license shall complete awareness training, provided by VDOE, on the indicators of dyslexia, as that term is defined by the board pursuant to regulations, and the evidence-based interventions and accommodations for dyslexia. This module is accessible from PCs and Mac computers. Viewing on an iPad or smartphone requires the download of the free “mobile player.” Users should complete the module in one session and have access to a printer. Should you have questions or need additional information, please contact Mrs. Janet Hancock, Clerk of the Board, at (434) 432-2761 or janet.hancock@pcs.k12.va.us. Please click the link below to access the training module.


Pittsylvania County Students Score Big in SkillsUSA:

Please join me in congratulating Mrs. Angela Rigney, Director of Career and Technical Education and Principal of the Pittsylvania Career and Technical Center (PCTC), Mr. Justin Owen, Precision Machining Instructor at PCTC, other staff members at PCTC who assisted with the SkillsUSA competition, and students for their accomplishments at the SkillsUSA Precision Machining competition on Saturday, April 8, 2017.

Pictured from left to right: Mr. Justin Owen - PCTC Precision Machining Instructor, Mr. Jacob Bowles - 1st place Gold Medal, CNC Technician, Matthew Conner - 1st place Gold Medal, CNC Turning Specialist, Andrew Williams - 1st place Gold Medal, CNC Milling Specialist, Christopher Barrett - 1st place Gold Medal, Precision Machining Technology, and Mrs. Angela Rigney, Director of Career and Technical Education and Principal of PCTC

Jacob Bowles, Matthew Conner, and Andrew Williams will advance to the National SkillsUSA Championships this June in Louisville, Kentucky. The Precision Machining Technology contest stops at the State level.

County JROTC Complete Accreditation Reviews:

Report from Gretna High School – The Gretna High School JROTC underwent their JROTC Program for Accreditation (JPA) on Wednesday April 5, 2017. They received a 97.3 out of 100, which allowed them to maintain their Honor Unit with Distinction designation. The Hawk Battalion has owned this prestigious honor for the last ten years. The 4th Brigade out of Ft. Bragg, North Carolina conducts hundreds of JPAs each year on JROTC units across the Nation. Battalions must select ten (10) cadets’ portfolios to be evaluated. This year, all of the portfolios evaluated received a perfect score.

The inspectors, Mr. Robert Dawson and Mr. Erik Shay, stated, "This is the best group of LET 1’s and 2's we have seen in more than 400 visits." The LET 1’s and 2’s have only been in the program for one and two years, respectively, and are generally freshmen and sophomores. The LET 1’s and 2’s who were inspected were: Trinity Barksdale, India Patterson, Annalissia McClain, Taylor Boone, Emma Bruhn and Jakayla Bennett. Emma Bruhn and Taylor Boone were recognized by the 4th Brigade team with a special military coin for their outstanding performance. Other cadets who were recognized were: Brandon Waller, the Battalion Commander, Brandon King, the Battalion Command Sergeant Major, and Chris Boley, the Battalion Operation and Training Officer.

During the inspection, the Cadets gave a briefing on a Service Learning Project and a Continuous Improvement Plan they had completed. Although the cadets had performed a food can drive in which they collected over 1,000 cans for the local Gretna Food Bank, they selected the Blood Drive they conducted with American Red Cross. The cadets collected thirty-five (35) units of blood which allowed them to receive $250 in college scholarship monies. Mr. Bill Johnson, a representative from the American Red Cross, was present at the inspection. He had been impressed with the Cadets during the Blood Drive and wanted to express how efficiently the Drive was handled. He told the inspectors, "I was more than impressed with how well the JROTC performed this, they had a mission, came up with a great game plan, and even planned for shortfalls. This is one of the best I have been involved with in my many years doing this.” Mr. Johnson has requested the JROTC to run a Blood Drive again in the fall and spring. The cadets chose to improve their physical fitness as the continuous improvement plan, using the school mission and vision statement as part of their plan.

Major Herbert Daniel, the Senior Army Instructor, had to produce a portfolio as well. He scored a perfect 30 out of 30. He has also been selected as the "Three Into One” Community Project - 2017 Teacher of the Year. He was recognized with this honor at the annual Minority Business Awards Banquet.

Super Saturday Event Held at STEM Academy:

More than eighty elementary and middle school students attended the Super Saturday activity at the STEM Academy on Saturday, April 8, 2017. The students were excited when they arrived and left inspired by what they learned. I would like to thank Ms. Teresa Petty, Assistant Superintendent for Instruction, Mr. Cedric Hairston, Supervisor of Specialty Curricula Areas, Ms. Deborah Powell, Principal of the Regional Alternative School and STEM Academy, and each teacher and staff member who made this day such a success for the students.

Pittsylvania County Elementary Students Participate in 2nd Annual STEM Showcase Event at the Virginia Museum of Natural History:

The Southwestern Piedmont STEM Education Collaborative (SPSEC) celebrated the achievements of area elementary school students during the 2nd annual STEM Showcase at the Virginia Museum of Natural History on Saturday, April 8, 2017. The event provided an opportunity for regional students in 3rd through 5th grades to showcase their STEM-related projects to the public. Students from Franklin County Schools, Henry County Schools, Martinsville City Schools, Patrick County Schools, and Pittsylvania County Schools participated.

Sydney Brown, Education Coordinator at the Virginia Museum of Natural History, said, "The STEM Showcase recognizes exceptional science and STEM-related projects in a public setting, while also highlighting the importance of STEM literacy within our region." Students from each elementary school in the Division participated with over 100 students from the neighboring counties.

This activity is supported by the followings companies and organizations: AmeriCorps - Dan River Year, Arconic, Eastman, First Piedmont Corporation, Franklin County Public Schools, Henry County Public Schools, Institute for Advanced Learning and Research, Martinsville City Public Schools, National Society of Black Engineers, New College Institute, Patrick County Public Schools, Patrick Henry Community College, Piedmont Governor’s School, Pittsylvania County Public Schools, Reynolds Homestead, Virginia Museum of Natural History, and Virginia Tech.

Ms. Elizabeth Craig, Director of Middle and Secondary Education and Lead Director of Science, coordinated this activity and represented Pittsylvania County Schools at this event.

Brosville SOL and MAP Pep Rally:

At Brosville Elementary School, the motto for this year's SOL test is "Just Keep Swimming!" During the SOL pep rally, students learned important test taking strategies and were pumped up to do their best on the test. Third, fourth, and fifth grade students performed a cheer, and the teachers even recorded a mannequin challenge video! Students who had scored 500 or better on last year's tests were recognized and given a special reception with their parents after the pep rally.

Southside Elementary School Pep Rally:

Teachers and staff at Southside Elementary School have diligently worked to prepare students in grades 3-5 for the Virginia Standards of Learning (SOL) tests. With hopes of motivating students to "Rock the Test," Pre-Kindergarten, 1st and 2nd grade teachers and students filled the school with encouraging posters and positive slogans. Southside students were excited to be a part of the annual SOL Pep Rally to promote success for upcoming testing.

Principal's Taxi:

Southside Elementary School is proud to recognize Taylor Wingfield as the winner of the Principal Taxi ride. During one of the school's biggest fundraisers (selling chocolate bars), students were informed that the student who sold the most candy bars would receive a personal ride in the Principal's chair. Taylor was escorted into the Pep Rally as well as to her class in style.

VSBA Art Contest 2017 - Division Entries & Winners:

Please join me in congratulating the following students for their excellent artwork submissions. Each represented his or her school extremely well in the Virginia School Boards Association (VSBA) art contest. The artwork of the winner from each level, elementary, middle and high, will advance to the Regional contest on April 25, 2017.

Gretna Elementary School VSBA Art Contest:

The Gretna Elementary School students participate in the VSBA Art Contest. The 2017 winners for Gretna Elementary School were Ava Wright, a second grader, and Chase Fielder, a fourth grader. Ava's picture is entitled "Forest Friends." She used colored pencils on paper for this piece. Chase's picture is entitled "Desert Fire Flower.” He used colored pencils on paper for his artwork.

BETA Induction at Gretna Elementary School:

On Friday, April 7, 2017, the fifth grade students at Gretna Elementary School were inducted into the BETA Club.

Twin Springs Elementary School Spelling Bee:

Recently, the third, fourth, and fifth grade students at Twin Springs Elementary School participated in the Scripps National Spelling Bee. The students were given words to spell from materials prepared by the Scripps National Spelling Bee Program. Students displayed knowledge learned throughout their school experience while competing for top honors. Andrew Mitchell and Shawn Jamison, both fifth graders, emerged as the school champions. The following students also earned their way into the final round of the spelling bee: Anne Russell, Azam Khan, Tracee Saunders, Nicole Walker, Carleigh Strader, Kelsten Hudson, Amber Bryant, Sawyer Hankins, Jonathan Waller, Ceilidh Hicks, Ebonee Linder, Giuseppe Carannante, Kayla Hamlett, Amaiya Price, Ashlynn Price, and Katelyn Brooks. Andrew and Shawn were invited to participate in the Danville Area Spelling Bee which was held at Averett University on Saturday, March 18, 2017.


  • April Character Word of the Month – Caring

  • Holiday, Monday, April 17, 2017

  • Report Cards Distributed, Tuesday, April 18, 2017

  • Media Relations Committee Meeting, Wednesday, April 19, 2017, @ 3:30 p.m., School Board Office

  • Advisory Council for Minority Concerns meeting, Thursday, April 20, 2017, @ 3:00 p.m., School Board Office

  • Small Business Idea Fair – April 20, 2017, @ Tunstall High School, 6:00 p.m.

  • Summer Piedmont Regional Governor’s School Drama Audition, Saturday, April 22, 2017, @ 10:00 a.m., Chatham High School

  • Family Life Education

    • Dan River High School
      Grade 9 April 26-28, 2017
      Grade 10 April 24-25, 2017

    • Tunstall High School
      Grade 9 April 18-20, 2017
      Grade 10 April 10-13, 2017

  • PowerSchool Assessment and Analytics Posttests, March 28 – May 25, 2017

  • Spring Non-Writing SOL Testing (EL & MS), April 19 – May 16, 2017
    Spring Non-Writing SOL Testing (HS), April 26 – May 23, 2017

  • April is:

    • School Library Month

    • Mathematics Awareness Month

    • Autism Awareness Month

    • National Poetry Month

    • Keep America Beautiful Month

Please send media requests to: http://www.pcs.k12.va.us/media/.  This may be (1) to request media presence on site to cover an upcoming event or (2) to request media coverage (without media on site) of an upcoming event or (3) to report news from a past event.  Thank you for identifying the great things happening in the schools!

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Last update: Tuesday, April 18, 2017 11:32 AM