North Atlanta High School golf teams have successful showing at 2014 State Golf Championship

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North Atlanta High School’s boys and girls golf teams competed in the 2014 State Golf Championship in Augusta, GA this May.

After breaking one school record earlier this year with a 311 score, North Atlanta’s boys team bolstered a new school record by scoring 303 in the State Championship. They finished 5th overall in the state. Freshman Winston Meshad shot a 68. This is the second best score in the state, which included all classifications.

North Atlanta Golf Head Coach Kerry Sarden shared how hard they worked to prepare for the state championship, “We created a golf schedule full of tournaments to prepare us for the region and the state. Our goal was to be the best NAHS team ever,” said Sarden. “It’s so gratifying to set a goal and accomplish it.”

Coach Sarden said the leadership from their team Captain Taylor Walstrum and senior Turner Hume was outstanding. He expressed that he was proud of his seniors and the overall effort of the team and that he looks forward to a bright future.

The girl’s team finished 12th overall in the state led by Elizabeth Ray shooting the lowest score for North Atlanta.

Visit for more information.

June 29, 2014 at 11:24 am Leave a comment

Washington High students mentored by Marshall Law students during 2nd annual Street Law Mock Trial


Street Law teaches practical law to laypersons using interactive teaching methodologies. It empowers youth to use their knowledge to solve problems, better their communities, and become active and knowledgeable participants in society.

This April, Booker T. Washington High School  students from Ms. Carrie Dean’s Legal Environment of Business class participated in the 2nd annual Street Law Mock Trial.  A partnership between the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia and Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School, the event was held at the United States Federal Courthouse.

The mock trial presentation was a culmination of intense bi-weekly meetings between Marshall Law students and Washington students.

Presiding over the mock trial was  The Honorable Timothy C. Batten, Sr., United States District Court Judge.

Washington High School students argued the mock case of State of Georgia versus Daniel Capulet.

The fictitious Mr. Capulet was indicted for murder, felony murder, and aggravated assault, for the 2011 shooting of the equally fictitious Philip Newton.  Although students gave compelling arguments and participated in a spirited debate, the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict.  Judge Batten asked the participants to retry the case again next school year.

Congratulations to Washington students Aklima Khondoker, Alexander Silpa, Allison Lawrence, Courtney Gilkinson, Ellakisha O’Kelley, Emily Napier, Erin King, Eugenia Wallace, Gina Smith, Jackie Tyo, Hannah Mitchell, Jason Ross, Jaye Cole, Jeremy Yakle, Mary Snyder, Michael Roth, Miguel Barboza Jr., Monique Milner, Oluwasegun Adefope, Rebecca Palmer, Sunnita Blount, Jasmine Rowan and Marcus Dickerson on a job well done.

Booker T. Washington High School in Atlanta is well-known for its famous alumni, including those in the fields of law, politics and government.  Former Georgia State Senator and attorney Leroy Johnson, former Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Louis Wade Sullivan and many others sharpened their knowledge of civics and debate while students at the historic school.

 About the Street Law Program:  The Street Law program teaches practical law to laypersons using interactive teaching methodologies.  It empowers youth to use their knowledge to solve problems, better their communities, and become active and knowledgeable participants in society.

About John Marshall Law School:  Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School (AJMLS) provides the opportunity for legal education to both traditional and non-traditional students who show promise of making positive contributions to the profession, legal system or society. We are dedicated to preparing highly skilled, ethical, and professional lawyers who possess a strong social conscience.

AJMLS students and recent graduates worked the entire spring semester teaching practical legal courses and preparing high school students for the mock trial.   For more information on Street Law at Atlanta’s John Marshall Law School, contact the Office of Pro Bono and Experiential Learning at or


Topics studied in preperation for the mock trial included Juvenile Justice, Crimes and Consequences, Cyber bullying and Sexting and the Civil Rights Movement.


The curriculum for Washington High, developed by Bridgett Ortega from the Office of Pro Bono and Experiential Learning at John Marshall Law School, was fine-tuned in 2014 to include more interactive activities.

Civil Disobedience was added to the 2014 curriculum and included a showing of the award-winning film The Children’s March – a documentary on how the youth of Birmingham Alabama accelerated the demise of southern segregation.


June 28, 2014 at 12:19 pm Leave a comment

APS Health and Wellness Symposium addresses tough issues and receives feedback from district teens

Prior to departing for summer break, Atlanta Public Schools’ Office of Career, Technical and Agricultural Education hosted its annual Health and Wellness Symposium for students enrolled in healthcare science pathways. Over 150 students from five high schools attended the event: Carver School of Health Science & Research, Coretta Scott King Young Women’s Leadership Academy, Mays High School, South Atlanta School of Health & Medical Science, and Therrell School of Health Science & Research. The purpose of the event was to inform attendees of health issues that are crippling the community, encourage healthier lifestyles and expose students to careers related to healthcare. This was the fifth year of the event.

The symposium provided six breakout sessions facilitated by representatives from local health organizations. Topics included: prevention of drug and alcohol use, teen pregnancy, diabetes, and suicide prevention. The symposium concluded with a panel discussion entitled, “The Effects of Violence on the Health of the Community.”

Dr. Omar Danner, Associate Professor of Surgery at Morehouse School of Medicine; Chief Marquenta Sands of Atlanta Public Schools, and Officer Dwayne Hilton of the Atlanta Police Department served as panelists and as a result of the panel discussion and the input from students, Chief Sands and Dr. Danner are planning to host other events to address violence in the community.

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June 27, 2014 at 7:17 pm Leave a comment

APS approves pay increase for FY15

Atlanta Public Schools has approved a cost of living pay increase for full-time  APS employees during the FY2015 budget year which runs from July 1, 2014 through June 30, 2015.

Effective July 1, compensation for full-time APS employees will be impacted as follows:

  • APS employees hired during FY 2014 will receive a one-time bonus of 1 percent up to a maximum of $500
  • APS employees hired FY 2013 – 1 percent raise
  • APS employees hired FY 2012 – 2 percent raise
  • APS employees hired FY 2011 – 3 percent raise
  • APS employees hired FY 2010 – 4 percent raise; and
  • APS employees hired FY 2009 or earlier – 5 percent raise

For employees whose employment ended with the district and have returned, their pay increases will be based on their adjusted start date. For example, if an employee departed the district in 2002, but returned in 2012, the employee would receive a 2 percent increase.

“Our commitment was to closing the gap created by five years of frozen wages for employees,” said APS Superintendent Erroll B. Davis, Jr. “The purpose of the differentiated pay increase is to reward employees who have stayed committed to APS under challenging circumstances.”

June 27, 2014 at 7:11 pm Leave a comment

One day left for centralized late registration

By Leslie Rivera, Communications Officer

There is still time, if your busy family life just happened to prevent you from registering your child for another year at Atlanta Public Schools.

The APS Centralized Summer Center for Late Registration will be open Thursday, June 26 at Crim Open Campus High School at 256 Clifton Road SE in Atlanta.

Lynn Lopes, who is the mother of a rising eighth-grader at Sutton Middle School wrapped up her registration in about five minutes by using the “stop and drop” table. “ This was very convenient. I’m very grateful you had the drop-off location. I already had my paperwork completed and notarized. So this made it very easy to be able to just it drop off.” Lopes said.

The “stop and drop” table also made it easy for Sutton Middle School student Caroline Tuemler. The rising eighth-grader took time from her beach vacation and family visits to drop off her remaining paperwork at the Centralized Summer Center.

“It’s very quick and painless”, said Kristal Carter, Secretary at Parkside Elementary. Carter encourages parents to come out but also reminds them to be prepared. Parents can access all of the necessary paperwork on the APS website.

For parents who need copies or a notary, the Centralized Summer Center offers that option too at no cost. The registration process takes about 20-25 minutes from start to finish. Returning students need proof of residence in the form of a lease or mortgage statement and a Georgia Power bill along with two additional pieces of mail. There is an affidavit and demographic sheet that must also be completed.

Students new to APS will require an original birth certificate and the completed new enrollment packet, which can be found on the APS website. Students coming from another district must also provide a copy of their last report card.

There will also be a Centralized Summer Center for new student enrollment beginning July 7 at the Center for Learning and Leadership at 130 Trinity Avenue in Atlanta.

Once a student is enrolled in APS, parents can confirm their plans to return to the district every year during spring registration. Sutton Middle School parent Lynn Lopes offered this recommendation to parents, “if you can get it done before the school year lets out in the spring, it’s the easiest, but this was the second easiest way to do it”.

June 25, 2014 at 6:45 pm Leave a comment

APS awarded $35,000 to improve library book collections

This spring, Media Specialists at seven Atlanta Public Schools received grants from the Laura Bush Foundation for America’s Libraries to expand, update and diversify their schools’ library book collections.

APS was awarded more than any other district in Georgia. The Foundation announced last month that 219 school libraries were chosen to receive grants totaling more than $1 million dollars this year.

Here is the list of this year’s grant-winning Atlanta Public Schools and their Media Specialists. Each will each receive $5,000.

The grants are funded through donations to the Laura Bush Foundation from individuals, corporations and foundations.

June 24, 2014 at 11:49 am Leave a comment

The Atlanta Board of Education releases financial details and a list of corporate donors supporting the current APS leadership transition team

Last week, the Atlanta Board of Education reported that to date, nearly $350,00 has been committed to the Atlanta Public Schools Improvement Fund to support the current APS leadership transition. With funds being managed by The Community Foundation for Greater Atlanta, corporate donors have committed $200,000 to support the Atlanta Public Schools’ incoming superintendent Dr. Meria Carstarphen’s transition team; in combination with $147,000 previously raised to support the APS strategic leadership initiatives.

In a press release sent out by the Atlanta Board of Education last Thursday, Board Chairman Courtney English stated “As a Board, we wanted to ensure that Dr. Carstarphen could get to work right away, and she also wanted to get started with the transition. It was important that she was able to get familiar with our schools, the communities, and the employees of the district. She also has had a chance to understand the needs and opportunities that exist and plan for what has to be done. Deciding to set-up a separate fund was a good one. We promised to share details of the funding and its use, and this is our first report.”

A group of Atlanta corporate donors have committed to the campaign with amounts ranging from $10,000- $25,000.

See the list of donors below:

AGL Resources

Bank of America

Delta Airlines

Emory Healthcare

Georgia Pacific

Georgia Power Company



The Coca-Cola Company

Dr. Carstarphen’s compensation for the transition period and a directed strategic review of major functions within the school system was outlined in the April Transaction Services Agreement. Since then, extensive examination of the system’s legal, communication, human resources, financial and academic departments, as well as a review of Georgia polices and laws, and continued meetings with community stakeholders has taken place. There has also been a large-scale effort to recruit and appoint applicants for school principal and essential leadership vacancies that existed.

As of June 2nd, the school board has approved the hiring of eight new employees to join the incoming Superintendents leadership team. These members will manage functional areas including curriculum and instruction, accountability, communications and human resources. The cost for these functions and other administrative activities related to the transition are also included in expenses paid by for by the fund. Current Atlanta Public Schools Superintendent, Errol B. Davis, and his senior leaders have worked closely with Dr. Carstarphen throughout the process to ensure a smooth transition.


June 24, 2014 at 11:42 am Leave a comment

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