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

PCS Logo


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 2017-2018


August 25, 2017

Employee of the Week:
Please join in recognizing Mrs. Lisa Parker, Administrative Assistant at Gretna High 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/

A first grade teacher caught me last week and told me that she was working on beginning sounds with her students. When she asked one young student with what sound does the word cat begin, the student responded “meow.”

Eclipse Facts:

  • The last year a total solar eclipse swept the entire United States – 1918
  • The width of the total eclipse path – 60 to 70 miles
  • The last solar eclipse in the U.S. was experienced in Hawaii in 1991
  • The next total solar eclipse will be in 2019 south of the Equator in Chile and Argentina
  • The next total solar eclipse in the continental U.S. will occur on April 8, 2024
  • Two more total solar eclipses will occur over the continental U.S. before 2050, one on August 23, 2044 and one on August 12, 2045
  • An eclipse happens about every 12-18 months somewhere around the globe

ECLIPSE Shadows:

State News:
The Virginia Department of Education has been selected to receive funding under the State Personnel Development Grants Program (84.323A). This grant will be in the amount of $1,524,000.00 for the first budget period (10/01/2017 through 09/30/2018). It is anticipated that the grant will be for a total of 5 years. The project will increase achievement for students with disabilities by providing high quality professional development in evidence-based practices that are integrated and aligned into tiered systems of supports. It will also improve the fidelity of Virginia Tiered Systems of Supports (VTSS) implementation in the 25 new and 25 currently participating local educational agencies (LEAs) by increasing the knowledge, skills, and abilities of VTSS systems coaches and LEA coaches to provide coaching support. Finally, the project will increase academic, emotional, and social success of students with disabilities by developing the capacity of LEAs to develop and sustain aligned and integrated tiered systems of supports through ongoing coaching and learning.

School Board News:
The School Board of Pittsylvania County recognized Mrs. Paige Hines at its August 8, 2017 meeting for earning the distinction as the School Division’s Educator of the Year. She was presented an “Educator of the Year” watch which was donated by Herff Jones.

Standards of Learning Perfect Scores:
The school division had two hundred and forty-two (242) perfect scores earned by students on the Standards of Learning (SOL) assessments administered in 2016-2017.

Students taking the Virginia Studies SOL test in grade 4 earned the most perfect scores with 54 scoring 100%. Grade 4 students also earned the highest number (75) of perfect scores on the assessments. Across the grades, students earned the most perfect scores in social studies (70) with reading coming second with 46 perfect scores earned. Congratulations to our students and staff.

CyberCamp Participants Visit Virginia Tech:
Pittsylvania County students participating in the Cyber Camp visited Virginia Tech on Saturday, August 19, 2017. They were introduced to a new game programming platform, Game Changineer, which was a hit with the students. Dr. Michael Hsiao, the game developer, explained the game and taught the students this simple programming language. Dr. Asiao offered to schedule a visit for him to train teachers on this programming platform. STEM Academy teachers are considering introducing the Game Changineer programming to sixth grade students during their STEM visit.

Tunstall Middle School FFA State Convention:
Members of the Tunstall Middle School FFA chapter attended and competed at the 91st Virginia FFA State Convention from June 26-29. In the Agricultural Mechanics contest, Luke Mills placed second and received a plaque, medallion and ribbon. The team of Chaz Nickens, Bryer Kaimon, Luke Mills, and Austin Scearce placed eighth. In the Plant Science contest, Enming Song placed sixth and Eben Leigh placed ninth. The team of Chaz Nickens, Bryer Kaimon, Enming Song, and Eben Leigh placed fourth. In the Small Animal Care contest, Anna Ballenger placed eleventh. The team of Anna Ballenger, Madi Higgins, and Haley Gates placed eighth. Congratulations to all competitors on a job well done.

Educator Appreciation Day:

The Conservators Center, a wildlife conservancy located in Mebane, NC, has invited educators to an inaugural Educator Appreciation Day on September 22, 2017, from 6:00 pm - 8:00 p.m. This event takes place in the late evening hours when visitors can best experience roaring lions, howling wolves, and some unique animals many never knew existed!

Participants will learn about the Center’s education resources -- including popular field trip programs aligned with grade-level science curricula -- and will participate in an amazing tour of the park which is home to over 80 individual animals. The Center offers field trip tours for all age groups and can accommodate elementary, middle, high school, and college level curricula if requested when a tour is scheduled.

Educator Appreciation Day is FREE for licensed teachers and administrators in any public, private, or home school with a valid school ID.

Educators can register by email at fieldtrips@conservatorscenter.org with:

  • Name

  • Address

  • Phone number

  • Name of school and county

  • Number of attendees (number of teachers and administrators).

The deadline to register is September 9, 2017. If you have questions, you may contact, Michelle McKay, at michelle@conservatorscenter.org.

Incredible Years (IY) Training:
Pittsylvania County Schools will provide specialized training in the Incredible Years (IY) Teacher Classroom Management (TCM) program for the 2017-2018 school year. All division teachers in grades Pre-K - 2nd will participate. The workshop schedule is as follows:

Each of the 6 workshops will run from 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. in the ECC Training Lab at the Pittsylvania County School Board Office. Lunch will be on your own. An e-mail with additional information was sent to participants. Please contact Ms. Robin Haymore if you should have a question relating to this program.

Incredible Years for Parents: Attentive Parenting:
Parenting Program
The Attentive Parenting® program is a 6-session group-based “universal” parenting program. It can be offered to ALL parents to promote their children’s emotional regulation, social competence, problem solving, reading and school readiness.

A target group of 15 parents will meet in 6 weekly 2-hour sessions with a trained leader at Gretna Elementary School. Parents may enroll by completing an enrollment form and returning it to Gretna Elementary School by September 20, 2017. Classes will meet for six consecutive Mondays from 5:15 p.m. until 7:15 p.m. Dinner and child care will be provided. Dinner will be served beginning at 5:00 p.m.; however, participants who cannot arrive that early may eat during the lesson.

Chatham and Gretna Area Schools to Participate in Electricity Demand Response Event:
The second round of our energy management plan for the schools in the Chatham and Gretna areas will take place next week. To assist in times of high demand, the schools could be asked to turn down power usage.

On Thursday, August 31 from 2:15 p.m. until 4:00 p.m. the school division will be running an audit of the identified schools below to determine how well the schools can perform. (This is only for August 31, 2017, and the schools will be back on regular schedule starting on September 1, 2017.) The audit will be used to set the amount of the school system's payment for participating in the program. Last year, Pittsylvania County Schools received approximately $35,000. This money was used to pay for projects around all of the schools.

On Thursday, August 31, the air conditioning will be set to nighttime set points at 2:15 p.m. Only the air conditioning in office areas will come back on after 4:00 p.m. unless there is a specific need in other areas. Please notify Mr. Mike Hutson, Director of Maintenance & Facilities, if you should need air conditioning in other areas of your building after 4:00 p.m. on August 31.

Your participation and cooperation is greatly appreciated. The schools being audited are listed below.

Thursday, August 31, 2:15 - 4:00 PM EDT

  • Pittsylvania Schools – Gretna High School

  • Pittsylvania Schools – Chatham Middle School

  • Pittsylvania Schools – Gretna Middle School

  • Pittsylvania Schools – Chatham High School

  • Pittsylvania Schools – Gretna Elementary School

Please be reminded that this is a one-time event and will not happen again this school year unless there is an emergency (very high demand on the power company). During the five years of school division participation in this program, there have only been two emergency shutdowns.

Teachers for Tomorrow Student Perform Puppet and Book Show:

The Pittsylvania Career and Technical Center is proud to showcase the class of Virginia Teachers for Tomorrow students. The students in this class come from all four (4) Pittsylvania County High Schools, and the course is taught by Mrs. Donna Hutson. The course is designed to introduce students to the career of teaching through lesson planning, classroom shadowing while emphasizing the value of teaching every student every day.

The Virginia Teachers for Tomorrow class at the Career and Tech Center has been studying the topic of self- esteem. For their final project for the unit, the students worked in groups and created puppet shows or Big Books with the theme of self-esteem. The future teachers went to Chatham Middle School on August 24 to present the shows and enjoy treat bags. All students involved thoroughly enjoyed the show.


  • CyberCamp – STEM Academy, Saturday, August 26, 2017

  • School Board Agenda Planning Meeting – School Board Office, Thursday, August 31, 2017

  • Progress Reports Sent Home – Friday, September 1, 2017


  • August 20, 1911 – The first telegram was sent around the world in just 16.5 minutes.

  • August 21, 1959 – President Dwight D. Eisenhower signed a proclamation admitting Hawaii to the Union as the 50th state.

  • August 22, 1902 – Cadillac Motor Company began in Detroit.

  • August 24-25, 1814 – During the War of 1812, Washington, DC, was invaded by British forces that burned the White House.

  • August 25, 1944 – Paris was liberated.

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!


This site is supported solely by Pittsylvania County Schools:  www.pcs.k12.va.us  
Last update: 08/25/2017 04:00 PM