Archive for December 4, 2012

Finch Elementary Will Operate at Kennedy Middle School on December 5, 2012

December 4, 2012 

Finch Elementary School will again operate at the Kennedy Middle School building tomorrow, December 5, 2012 – 225 James P. Brawley Drive Atlanta, GA 30314. 
Transportation to School 
  • Students who normally ride the bus to FInch should take the bus from their normal bus stop; the bus will transport students to Kennedy Middle School.
  • Students who walk to school should walk to Finch, where there will be buses waiting to take them to Kennedy; buses will be at Finch from 7:30 a m until 8 a m.
  • Parents who drive their children to school can drive their children to Kennedy. In addition, parents have the option of driving their children to Finch, where there will be buses waiting to take students to Kennedy; buses will be at Finch from 7:30 a m until 8 a m.
Transportation from School 
  • Students who ride the bus home will be transported by school bus to their assigned bus stop, where they normally exit when going home.
  • Students who walk home will be transported by bus from Kennedy back to Finch, where they can walk home.
  • Students who are driven to school by their parents will be transported by school bus back to Finch, where they can be picked up by parents.
  • All busses will leave Kennedy after dismissal – 2:30 p.m. 
Thank you for your patience and cooperation. Safety and security for all students is our top priority.

December 4, 2012 at 9:52 pm Leave a comment

Associate Superintendent Steve Smith discusses Finch Elementary evacuation and carbon monoxide monitors with Soledad O’Brien

Steve Smith CNN

Steve Smith CNN

December 4, 2012 at 9:29 pm Leave a comment

Support APS Schools During the Barnes & Noble Book Fair

Reading books

Please support APS schools during the month of December at their Barnes & Noble in-store bookfairs at the Edgewood Retail District (217 Caroline Street Atlanta, GA 30307).

Educator discounts may be used on all eligible purchases during the book fair and Barnes & Noble members may use their membership discount on all eligible purchases. In-store supporters of the book fair must present a validbook fair voucher or mention participation in the book fair at the register prior to the transaction for their purchases.

You can shop in-store or online.

Online supporters shop, and are required to enter the valid book fair Event ID Number provided below in the designated field found on the payment page during checkout in order for their purchase to count towards the online book fair.

·December 8th: South Atlanta High School (Book fair Event ID Number = 10936375)

·December 9th: Grady High School (Book fair Event ID Number = 10879203)

·December 14th: Whitefoord Elementary School (Book fair Event ID Number = TBD)

·December 15th: Benteen Elementary School (Book fair Event ID Number = 10936367)

One fair will also be held at the Camp Creek Location:

December 8th: Young Middle School

Stay up to date on additional book fair events by visiting:

December 4, 2012 at 9:10 pm Leave a comment

APS Receives $3.4 Million in Federal E-rate Reimbursements

Atlanta Public Schools this week received $3.4 million in federal E-rate reimbursements.

Added to other E-rate dollars the district began receiving earlier in 2012, and reimbursements to date total $15.8 million. These funds are among the first received under the federal E-rate program since 2002, following an investigation that uncovered previous wrongdoing in the system’s handling of the program.

After strengthening internal operations, developing a comprehensive technology plan and negotiating with federal officials to restore the district’s standing in the program, APS will now qualify for millions of dollars under the Telecommunications Act of 1996. This law helps to increase student and community access to state-of-the-art services and technologies by allowing schools and libraries to purchase telecommunications and internet services at a discounted education rate or E-rate. The rate may be applied to purchases of phone service, email, web hosting and wiring but not computers, telephones or staff training.

Because E-rate funds are actually reimbursements for services the school system has already bought, the funds will be placed into APS’ general fund to be used to offset declining revenues as identified through the budget process.

Shown below is the math on the breakdown of APS E-rate reimbursements received since 2002:

$  3.4 million received in fiscal year 2012

+ $12.4 million received in fiscal year 2013 (including $3.4 million this week)

= $15.8 million in total E-rate funds received so far

December 4, 2012 at 9:06 pm Leave a comment

National Inclusive Schools Week: December 3–7, 2012

APS will join school districts and organizations around the country to celebrate Inclusive Schools Week that begins December 3.

The annual observance brings awareness to the work schools must do to ensure a quality education for all children, including students with special needs. This year’s Inclusive Schools Week occurs as our school system continues to revamp the special education department and strengthen inclusive practices taking place in every school. Inclusion is a districtwide priority that is part of our new five-year strategic plan and balanced scorecard. One way we are facilitating greater use of inclusive practices is by providing schools with ongoing training, monitoring and support for co-teaching. During co-teaching, a special education teacher shares instructional duties with a general education teacher so that students with disabilities can spend more time in a general education environment.

When meaningful inclusion occurs – from the application of the core curriculum to after-school activities – research shows that all students benefit.  For more information about the ways our schools will observe Inclusive Schools Week, parents and community members should contact their local school directly.

Inclusive Schools Flyer

December 4, 2012 at 9:03 pm 1 comment

Student Spotlight of The Week

Name: Sanlatorria Smith

Grade: 5th Grade

School: Kimberly Elementary

“Sanlatorria Smith is a pleasure to have in class, and she is a model student,” says Ms. Britton, Sanlatorria’s 5th grade teacher at L.O. Kimberly Elementary School. “She is kind to her classmates and has a glowing personality! Every teacher would love to have a student like Sanlatorria in their class.”

These descriptions of Sanlatorria are one of the many reasons why she shines at Kimberly Elementary. Each day Sanlatorria can be seen patrolling the halls of her school fulfilling her duties as a safety patrol. She is dedicated to taking her time and caring for the younger students in the school as she monitors them each morning on their way to class.

Sanlatorria’s peers recognize her qualities of leadership and responsibility. She has been elected by her classmates as their student council representative. Her membership in the Kiwanis “K-Kids” and Beta Clubs at school help to reinforce and strengthen her leadership skills. Her career goal is to be a lawyer.

“I want to help people who need help defending themselves,” she says.

Sanlatorria’s love for school and learning is evident in her daily classwork. She is on the Honor Roll at school for earning all A’s and B’s. She is very observant of things that go on in the class, and her teachers can count on her to follow through with any assignment she is given.

According to Sanlatorria, her favorite subject is reading. “I like to learn new things. I especially like mysteries and non-fiction books,” she explains.

Recently, Ms. Britton’s fifth grade class reenacted the debates of the 2012 Presidential Election. Sanlatorria served as the moderator for these debates. She prepared her statements and questions by researching the questions asked and statements made by the moderators at each of the debates. She then merged all of the information seamlessly for the L.O. Kimberly Debates.

L.O. Kimberly is very pleased and fortunate to have Sanlatorria as a member of the 5th grade class. She is definitely a “Shining Star”.

Name: Alexandria Santiago

Grade: 12th Grade

School: Carver School of Technology 

Alexandria Santiago is a bright, upbeat student who’s definitely going places in life. She is a senior at The Carver School of Technology and she has maintained honor roll status with a 3.6 grade point average during her entire high school career at Carver. She is also a member of the Honor Student Council.

Alexandria is the current S.G.A. President of The Carver School of Technology and she stated that she ran for office because she wanted to make a difference. Her school is indeed making a difference. Recently, the students at Carver won a $100,000.00 grant from State Farm Insurance for  Teen Safe Driving and the grant award ceremony was held at their school. Alexandria is also a graphic designer who builds websites. She also participates in community service projects such as raising money for leukemia.

Alexandria’s career goal is to become a mental health nurse. She is planning to attend college in-state and Agnes Scott College, Georgia State University and Valdosta State University are a few of the schools that she has applied to.

Screen Shot 2012-12-03 at 9.24.12 AMName: Robert Adams

Grade: 5th Grade

School: Burgess-Peterson Academy

Intelligent and well mannered Robert Adams meets Burgess Peterson Academy’s expectations for a model student. He sets the standards high for his classmates by striving to excel in all areas.  “I try to learn as much as I can from school so that I can go to college,” Robert says. “I want to be like my dad and be the best that I can be.”

Robert won 1st place for his class in this year’s science fair. His project was dedicated to George Washington Carver, because he not only planted peanuts, but also helped the southern economy and polio patients as well. His favorite subject is language arts, and he loves adverbs and adjectives. He always displays the best manners in the classroom, and finishes his homework in a timely manner.

“He really is a self-starter, hard working, and has great work ethics. He has good morals, a great character, and is a very nice young man,” says Michelle Johnson, 5th grade teacher. “I’m proud to have him in my class, and he is just a model student in every way.”

Name: Jordan Stone                                                       Jordan Stone

Grade: 5th Grade

School: Usher-Collier Heights Elementary

Jordan Stone loves science.  Figuring out why things work the way they do drives the fifth-grader, so no one was surprised when her inquisitive spirit led her to win first place in the state science fair last year.

Jordan watches the NASA channel regularly and wants to work for the organization one day.  Some nights, she finds herself gazing into the sky from her bedroom window, closely observing the activity—shooting stars, airplanes and the occasional unidentified flying object.

“I love mystery and learning about different spacecraft. And since I also like fixing broken technology, I want to repair spacecraft when I grow up.  I think NASA would be a good place to work.”

However, her concerns about the oxygen supply once she leaves the earth make Jordan stop short of saying she will pursue a career as an astronaut.  Instead, she is opting to stay on this planet—where she says she will always have air.

A positive attitude along with poise and confidence helped her win the spot for the school’s vice-president during a recent student government association election.  She is also a Junior Beta Club member, a cheerleader, Girl Scout, math club and dance team member.

“Jordan is definitely an outstanding student,” says Usher’s Junior Beta Club coordinator, Austine Parker-Giles.

“She is very responsible and she really cares about others. Her sense of duty to the school and to others is outstanding.  Jordan is a student with impeccable character.”

Jordan says she enjoyed the election process—which included active campaigning, student debates and speeches and voting via electronic ballot—and it motivated her to follow the national presidential election.

“It gave more meaning to what we learned in social studies.”

Ironically, Jordan says the one subject she always scores lowest in is social studies.  Since there is nothing analytical and no mysteries to solve in social studies—only facts to remember—she admits that it is hard for her to stay interested.

“But the teachers do an amazing job teaching the material,” says the young diplomat.

Jordan, who has written and illustrated an unpublished book, “The Lion Queen,” credits her parents for her academic success.

“My mother recommends that I read more so I can learn more; then I journal about what I read. If something upsets me, or I’m really happy about something, my parents tell me to write a poem or a funny rhyme about how I’m feeling.”

Jordan says her parents tell her what they expect from her and they push her to meet those expectations.

“The rest is up to me,” she says.

December 4, 2012 at 3:49 pm 1 comment

Grady’s The Southerner will be inducted in the NSPA Hall of Fame


Grady Journalists garnered many awards at the Journalism Education

Association/National Scholastic Press Association Fall National High School

Journalism Convention, which was held in San Antonio, Texas, Nov. 15-18.

The Southerner received a National Pacemaker Award at the NSPA awards

ceremony on Nov. 17. This is The Southerner’s eighth Pacemaker Award, widely

considered the Pulitzer Prize of high school journalism.  It also marks the

fourth time in school history that the Southerner has earned the Pacemaker

Award in consecutive years.


The Southerner also was the only publication inducted into the NSPA

All-American Hall of Fame this year.  The Hall of Fame recognizes

publications that receive All-American ratings for 10 of the past 11 years.

The Southerner placed fifth in the NSPA Best of Show Competition at the

convention. Grady News Now, Grady’s broadcast program, also placed fifth in

the Best of Show competition.


Grady journalists were earned awards in the JEA Write-Off competition, held

at the convention on Nov. 16. Jeffrey Cox and Justin Williams (broadcast

package) and Joe Lavine (sports writing) earned excellent ratings. Mary

Condolora (editorial writing), Jolie Jones (feature writing), Troy Kleber

(news writing) and Sofia Sifnaios (videography) earned honorable mention


Congratulations to the staffs of The Southerner and GNN and all of the young

journalists who competed at the convention.  Very special thanks to Kate

Carter, Thaddeus Roberts, Felecia Williams, and Dave Winter for the hard

work and dedication to the Grady journalism program.


Read The Southerner:

December 4, 2012 at 1:58 pm 1 comment

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