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 2017-2018

 

September 29, 2017

Employee of the Week: 
Please join in recognizing Ms. Sylvia Foster, Teacher Aide at Brosville Elementary 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/

Union Hall Elementary School Earns Blue Ribbon School Honors:



Union Hall Elementary School has been designated as an Exemplary High Performing School for 2017 by U. S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos. The school is one of 342 schools in the nation and one of 7 schools from Virginia to be recognized as a National Blue Ribbon School for 2017.

Representatives from the school will attend an awards ceremony on Monday, November 6, and Tuesday, November 7, 2017. Ceremonial events and activities begin the afternoon of Monday, November 6, and culminate in the awards lunch and presentation on Tuesday, November 7, 2017.

Please join me in congratulating the administration, faculty and staff at Union Hall Elementary School! Union Hall Elementary School joins Mt. Airy Elementary School (2003) and Tunstall High School (2016) as National Blue Ribbon Schools.

State News: Virginia On-Time Graduation Steady at 91 Percent

Greater than ninety percent of the students in Virginia who entered the ninth grade in 2013 earned a diploma within four years and more than half graduated from high school with an Advanced Diploma.  Of the 95,348 students in the class of 2017, 91.1 percent earned a Board of Education-approved diploma, compared with 91.3 percent of the 2016 cohort. The dropout rate for the class of 2017 was 5.8 percent, compared with 5.3 percent for the previous graduating class.

on time graduation

In this cohort of students:

  • 49,771 (52.2 percent) earned an Advanced Studies Diploma (including International Baccalaureate).
  • 34,413 (36.1 percent) earned a Standard Diploma.
  • 2,704 (2.8 percent) earned a Special Diploma or Modified Standard Diploma.
  • 943 (1 percent) earned a GED.
  • 5,529 (5.8 percent) dropped out.

Special Diplomas and Modified Standard Diplomas are available only to students with disabilities. Students who earn GED certificates or complete high school without earning a diploma are not included as graduates in calculating graduation rates.

class2017

The graduation rates and dropout rates for major student racial, ethnic and socioeconomic groups are as follows:

  • 96.9 percent of Asian students graduated, and 1.9 percent dropped out.
  • 88.4 percent of black students graduated, and 6.8 percent dropped out.
  • 86.5 percent of economically disadvantaged students graduated, and 8.5 percent dropped out.
  • 73.8 percent of English learners graduated, and 23.6 percent dropped out.
  • 81.1 percent of Hispanic students graduated, and 16 percent dropped out.
  • 87.1 percent of students with disabilities graduated, and 10.5 percent dropped out.
  • 94 percent of white students graduated, and 3.4 percent dropped out.

Of Virginia’s 330 high schools with reportable graduation rates, 193 achieved graduation rates equal to or higher than the State rate of 91.1 percent. The dropout rates of 214 high schools were equal to or lower than the Statewide rate of 5.8 percent.

Virginia Students Best National Peers on SAT:

National SAT results were recently released and Virginia’s 2017 public high school seniors outperformed their national peers in reading, writing and mathematics. The College Board revised the college admissions test last year to better align the assessment with content students actually learn in high school and skills and knowledge identified as important to success in college.

Seniors from Virginia outscored other 12th graders across the nation as follows:

  • Virginia’s public school mean score of 558 on the reading and writing section was 31 points higher than the national mean for public school students.

  • Virginia’s public school mean score in mathematics of 538 was 21 points higher.

  • Virginia’s public school total mean score of 1095 was 51 points higher.

Last year, sixty-three percent of Virginia’s public school graduates took the SAT.  The SAT is considered a key indicator of the effectiveness of schools in preparing students for the first year of college.      

2017 Virginia & National Public School Mean SAT Scores

Group

Overall

Reading & Writing

Mathematics

Virginia

Nation

Virginia

Nation

Virginia

Nation

All

1095

1044

558

527

538

517

Asian

1200

1151

593

564

607

587

Black

958

931

491

475

467

456

Hispanic

1057

979

538

495

518

484

White

1146

1110

584

561

561

549

Of the 51,613 Virginia public schools 2017 graduates who took the SAT, 52 percent met or exceeded the SAT’s college-readiness benchmarks in both reading and writing, and mathematics.

Nationwide, 43 percent of SAT takers met the readiness standard on both sections of the test. 

The 2017 SAT Virginia All-Schools Mean SAT Scores table below includes the performance of private, parochial and home-schooled students, as well as public high school seniors.

2017 Virginia & National All-Schools Mean SAT Scores

Group

Overall

Reading & Writing

Mathematics

Virginia

Nation

Virginia

Nation

Virginia

Nation

All

1102

1060

561

533

541

527

Asian

1202

1181

590

569

611

612

Black

962

941

493

479

469

462

Hispanic

1063

990

542

500

521

489

White

1149

1118

586

565

562

553

October is Virginia School Boards Association Bullying Prevention Month:
Childhood bullying can cause school absenteeism, mental and physical stress, poor school performance, and poor self-esteem.  Statistics indicate that 160,000 students in the United States miss school each day as a result of being bullied.  I thank you for the role you play each day providing a positive climate for children in your classrooms and schools and on your buses and playgrounds.  When adults take a stand against bullying, bullying ends.    

Division News:

Career Fair:
The Olde Dominion Agriculture Complex hosted the 2017 Career Choice expo on September 27 and 28, 2017. Career ChoICE exposes students to career opportunities available in this area and provides them with hands-on activities and demonstrations by representatives of area businesses and agencies that ignite their imaginations. Career ChoICE showcases existing job opportunities in this region and gives students a clear picture of the skills needed, education levels required and the salaries they may expect.This event is an intentional effort to build a pipeline of students in strategic sectors that are aligned with economic development interests.

Programs from PCTC that participated in the Expo this year and pictured above are: Cosmetology, Criminal Justice, Culinary Arts, Teachers for Tomorrow, and Industrial Maintenance-Electrician

Tunstall High School Congratulates 2016-2017 Gold Star Teachers:

“It is my pleasure to congratulate Mrs. Kristal Harris, Mr. Matthew Beard and Mrs. Elizabeth Goard for receiving the award of W!SE Gold Star Teacher.  This is an outstanding accomplishment and another source of Trojan PRIDE!  Thank you for your contributions and your dedication to our students, our school and our community!  Job Well Done!”  Brian Boles, Principal

To be considered for the Gold Star award, a teacher must achieve a 93% pass rate in at least one of their classes on either the Fall 2016 or Spring 2017 W!SE Financial Literacy Certification Test.

International Dot Day:
Tunstall Middle School Assistant Principal Ms. Kenya Gravely challenged the staff to surprise the students by wearing polka dots for International Dot Day on Friday, September 15. This celebration is based on the children's book "The Dot" by Peter H. Reynolds. All students were read the book. The premise of the day was - Just make a mark and see where it takes you. The Art teacher, Mr. Joseph Ludeman, made Dot Art in class and also had a Dot-Off with the Librarian, Mrs. Ashley Barker. He had Mario and Luigi, and Mrs. Barker sported PacMan for decorations. Also, students had their own special dots where some wrote what they wanted to be, other grades wrote special qualities on each student's dot, and some drew their picture of "How they would make their Mark on the World!" Dots.  Students' art is now displayed throughout the school to show how Tunstall Titans will make their mark daily and in the future!

Chatham Middle School Gives Back:
Chatham Middle School completed two major service projects so far this school year. Our FFA partnered with the entire school to collect over 2000 pounds of water for God's Pit Crew to assist with hurricane relief.

Chatham Middle School also completed a Claire Parker Foundation Fundraiser in honor of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month. Students received donations and pledges equaling $4,421.05. All money will assist families affected by pediatric cancers.

October 2-6 is Virginia Farm to School Week
The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) is encouraging schools, businesses and community members across the Commonwealth to celebrate Virginia Farm to School Week, October 2-6.  The farm-to-school program helps connect schools with local food producers to purchase fresh, healthy food items for availability in school cafeterias and at early childhood education centers.

The Virginia Farm to School Week coincides with National Farm to School Month. In 2010, Congress declared October National Farm to School Month, recognizing the important role farm to school plays in promoting well-being among children and strong local economies.  Over the past decade, the farm-to-school movement has grown, reaching millions of students across the United States.  From school gardens and farm field trips to local food on cafeteria trays, farm-to-school practices provide opportunities for students to learn where food comes from and to make healthier eating choices while creating new markets for local and regional farmers.

SchoolMessenger Calls to be Translated into Spanish:
Beginning on Tuesday, September 26, 2017, automated attendance calls were translated for all Spanish speaking families when students are absent.  SchoolMessenger determines which students to translate based on the Home Language Code field on the State page in PowerSchool.  Please join me in thanking Ms. Ashley Clowers, Analyst, for working with SchoolMessenger to make this happen.

MARK YOUR CALENDARS:

  • Character Word of the Month: Honesty

  • October is VSBA Bullying Prevention Month

  • Farm to School Week – October 2-6, 2017

  • School Board Disciplinary Committee Meeting, Monday, October 2, 2017, School Board Office @ 6:00 p.m.

  • Concussion Management Team Meeting, Friday, October 6, 2017, School Board Office, 9:00 a.m.

  • Robotics Showdown, Saturday, October 7, 2017, Tunstall High School

Family Life
Southside Elementary School
Grades 4 & 5 October 2-6

Chatham Elementary School
Grade 4 October 10-13 (p.m.)
Grade 5 October 10-13 (p.m.) 16 (p.m.)

Chatham Middle School
Grades 6-8 October 18-20, 23-27

Union Hall Elementary School
Grade 4 October 10-13
Grade 5 October 10-13, 16

WHAT HAPPENED THIS WEEK IN HISTORY?  

October 2, 1950
The comic strip Peanuts, by Charles M. Schultz, makes its first appearance in newspapers.

October 3,1985
The Space Shuttle Atlantis makes its maiden flight.

October 3, 1964
Scientists announce findings that smoking can cause cancer.

October 4,1957
Sputnik 1, the first man-made satellite, is launched, beginning the “space race.” The satellite, built by Valentin Glushko, weighed 184 pounds and was launched by a converted Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM). Sputnik orbited the earth every 96 minutes at a maximum height of 584 miles. In 1958, it reentered the earth’s atmosphere and burned up.


October 5,1947
US President Harry S Truman delivers the first televised White House address.


October 6,1846
George Westinghouse, a prolific inventor holding over 100 patents on creations including air brakes for trains was born.


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Last update: 09/29/2017 01:42 PM