The following are highlights of the June 15, 2017, meeting of the Gwinnett County Board of Education (BOE). Board members present included Chairman Louise Radloff, Vice Chairman Carole Boyce, Daniel Seckinger, Dr. Mary Kay Murphy, and Dr. Robert McClure. The official minutes of the meeting will be approved by the Board at its next monthly meeting.
Board salutes staff, students, and schools on recent honors
- School Board members recognized nine graduating seniors on their 13 years of perfect school attendance (grades K-12). The honorees were Olivia Amyette of Archer High School; Verrell Sayles of Duluth High School; Mark Ademisoye of Gwinnett School of Mathematics, Science, and Technology; Zakiyyah Anderson of Lanier High School; Mackenzie Roach of Mill Creek High School; Benjamin Kotey of Norcross High School; Rachel Bright of Peachtree Ridge High School; Dongju Son of Peachtree Ridge High School; and Ayanna Keira Symone Gash of Shiloh High School.
- The Gwinnett County Board of Education congratulated the Meadowcreek High School Boys Soccer Team on winning the 2017 AAAAAAA state championship. This is the soccer program's first state title. Eight team members were on hand for tonight's recognition. Accompanying the members of the team were Principal Dr. Tommy Welch, Activities Director Dr. Lashawn Smith, Head Coach Tyler LaFleur, Assistant Coaches Brent Evans, Alejandro Casillas, and Diego Casillas, and Community Outreach Coordinator Lynnette Aponte.
Gwinnett School Board names new school in Norcross Cluster… the Duke STEM High School
In August of 2018, Gwinnett County Public Schools will open a new theme school in the Norcross Cluster to relieve Norcross High School. Dr. Steve Flynt, associate superintendent for School Improvement and Operations, reviewed the district's process for naming theme/specialty schools. The process calls for a committee of administrative staff to develop a list of recommended names for the theme or specialty school and to submit that name to the CEO/Superintendent who then makes a recommendation to the Board of Education. In making its recommendation to the superintendent, the committee considers names related to the theme or specialty, individuals who have made a significant social contribution, names of communities served by the school, roads, landmarks, or geographical locations in the proximity of the school. Taking all of this into consideration, the committee and superintendent have recommended and the Gwinnett County Board of Education has approved the name of the new theme high school in the Norcross Cluster as the Duke STEM High School. The school is named after Paul A. Duke, a real estate developer who founded Peachtree Corners Inc., and the planned community of the same name. This visionary leader, who passed away in 2009, was known as the "Father of Peachtree Corners" and was one of the organizers of Technology Park. The new high school is located at 5850 Peachtree Industrial Boulevard in Norcross.
BOE requests revisions to start-up charter school petition
This spring, one charter petition was submitted to Gwinnett County Public Schools and reviewed by the Gwinnett Charter School Review Committee. The Yi Hwang Academy of Philosophy, Art, and Science submitted an application with a proposed five-year charter term beginning with the 2018-19 school year and running through June 2023. The school's stated mission is to provide Korean-English dual language immersion to students in grades K-5 with a STEAM education approach. The school's projected enrollment is 200 students in year one, growing to 900 students in year five. As there were a number of outstanding questions and areas of concerns regarding the application, the Board of Education has voted to ask the petitioners to revise and resubmit their application within 30 days.
Board continues partnership with Junior Achievement of Georgia
In December 2015, the Gwinnett County Board of Education signed a Memorandum of Agreement with Junior Achievement of Georgia partnering to establish the Junior Achievement Academy at Norcross High School for the 2016-17 school year. At tonight's meeting, the School Board renewed the agreement, allowing for the continuation of this academy program at Norcross High School and the expansion of the program to 10th grade this coming year. The term of the renewal agreement would be July 1, 2017, until June 30, 2022.
Board approves "Units of Study" instructional materials for middle schools
In the spring of 2015, GCPS adopted the K-5 Units of Study in Opinion, Narrative, and Informational Writing as a supplemental resource to support the district's language arts Academic, Knowledge, and Skills (AKS) curriculum. This past school year, middle school teachers and principals requested an expansion of the adoption to include grades 6-8 because of the improvement in the quality of elementary school writing with the use of the new units of study. These resources support the reciprocal connections between thinking, writing, and reading. The Board approved the purchase of the Units of Study in Writing Middle School Teacher Resource Kits for all district middle school teachers at a cost of $102,000.
Citizens addressing the Board
- Tamara Ashley
- Theodore J Murphy
- Sasha Ashley
- Sophia Ashley
- Jaime Winfree
- Tommy Scribbins
- Robin Mauck