for those who teach and those who support teachers
November 4, 2022
Coffee with Calvin: GCPS Teacher of the Year
In this episode, Dr. Watts sits down for part one of a two-part conversation with the six GCPS Teacher of the Year finalists.
Watch the Teacher of the Year Awards Ceremony starting at 6:00 p.m. on November 10. It will be available on the GCPS TV app on Apple, Android, Amazon Fire, and Roku devices, and on the GCPS TV webpage at gcpstv.org.
The GCPS Literacy Council Needs You
Gwinnett County Public Schools (GCPS) is requesting volunteers to join the GCPS Literacy Advisory Council. This Council will function as a collaboration hub to unpack PK-12 literacy initiatives, review student learning and program implementation data, participate in problem-solving inquiry cycles, and provide annual recommendations to the GCPS team regarding our literacy performance. If you are interested in volunteering to join the Gwinnett County Public Schools Literacy Advisory Council, please complete the survey expressing your commitment to leading this work by 6 p.m. on November 9, 2022. Learn more about this advisory council and complete the survey today!
Meals are available on Tuesday, November 8, a scheduled Digital Learning Day
Families should expect buses to run their routes from approximately 10:45 a.m. to noon, beginning at the first stops on the route. Learn more about School Nutrition and meals on November 8.
North Gwinnett High School Addition Breaks Ground
Included in the 2022-2027 eSPLOST Plan, North Gwinnett High School will receive a new addition, scheduled to be open in August of 2023. The new three-story addition will add an additional 25 rooms and have capacity for an additional 500 students. This will increase the school’s capacity to 3,125 students. Within the new classrooms will be 19 classrooms, four science classrooms, one band room, and one health lab. There also will be a small renovation project inside of the existing building. Additionally, a small renovation project inside of the existing building will include an expanded band room.
National School Psychology Week 2022
During the week of November 7-11, 2022, schools throughout the country will celebrate National School Psychology Week (NSPW) to highlight the important work school psychologists do to help students thrive. This year's theme, "Together We Shine", is derived from how we see hope after several challenging years. We have all faced difficulties created by the pandemic, social injustice and inequity, economic stress, and challenges to mental and physical health. For some, it has been a time of real darkness, and finding light is critical to building resilience and hope. Learn more about all that our school psychologists and school staff do to promote positive change in GCPS.
A Focus on Self-Care: 3 Ways to Recharge and Refuel Your Energy Level
Feel like you're running on empty? As we close out the first semester, there is a good chance that your energy levels are running low and may be impacting everything else in your life. When you are feeling fatigued, stressed-out, impatient, tired, or unmotivated, your brain is sending you a clear message: YOU ARE OUT OF FUEL! Your battery is dangerously low. Your energy levels have a profound effect on the way you think; therefore, we must remember to practice self-care. With competing priorities, our lives are so busy that we often don’t even consider taking a moment for ourselves and eventually, we burn out. At the very least, we need a mental “getaway”! This does not need to be an elaborate vacation or expensive escape. Here are a few simple ways to recharge your internal battery—without breaking the bank.
- Read a Book: Pick something light and relaxing to read. Skim through a magazine or a cookbook for fun ideas.
- Color: Coloring mandalas helps to relieve stress and increase focus while exercising the brain and expressing creativity.
- Exercise: Exercise can help boost your mood and keep your emotions in check. There are free exercise videos on YouTube. You can go for a walk, run, or dance around your living room to your favorite playlist.
Last Day for Open Enrollment!
The window for enrolling in the State Health Benefit Plan and accessing GCPS’ Online Benefits closes at 11:59 p.m. on Friday, November 4. Eligible employees currently enrolled or seeking to enroll in health insurance should go to the State Health Benefit Plan (SHBP) website. The GCPS Online Benefits System is available through the Employee Portal.
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Have you recently left yourself a note to remember to send an email on a specific day and time? You can schedule that email ahead of time! Complete the task of sending an email when you are thinking about it, and have it sent at the correct time to the recipient. Click here to learn how.
Fire Marshal Season is Upon Us!
Each year, every Gwinnett County public school is inspected by the Gwinnett County Fire Department Fire Marshals. The purpose of the inspections is to ensure that students, staff, and visitors in our schools are afforded a fire-safe environment. The inspections are typically conducted by the Deputy Fire Marshal. They work with each school’s administration to perform the inspection in a timely manner, and generate a comprehensive report listing any deficiencies found.
The Gwinnett County Fire Marshal’s website provides a School Fire Safety Checklist to assist schools in doing a self-inspection, prior to the Fire Marshal arriving. Some items that are on the checklist include:
- Fire Safety and Evacuation Plans.
- All exits are free of obstructions and inspected daily.
- Fire department access roads are clear.
- Address numbers are visible from the road.
- Fire rated doors with self-closing devices are not secured in the open position.
- Combustible materials are not stored in boiler, mechanical, or electrical equipment rooms.
- Artwork and teaching materials are permitted to be attached directly to the walls and do not exceed 50% of the wall area, with an approved sprinkler system.
Our school inspections have begun and they are on their way to every school earning a passing score.
Georgia Swarm Education Program
Georgia Swarm is a professional lacrosse league that would like to partner with some of our middle schools to promote interest and provide education on the game of lacrosse. The program length is 45-60 minutes, and they plan to send Brendan Bomberry, Swarm forward, to lead the program at Middle Schools on Thursdays or Fridays before a home game. Participation in this event is optional for schools.
Interested schools should contact Gwen Jones, Manager, Lacrosse Operations and Community Affairs, at 470-419-6251 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Click here to view the Georgia Swarm's game schedule.
Election Day is Tuesday, November 8
Local, state, and national races are on the ballot this fall. You can go to the polls on election day on Tuesday, November 8. Find information about your up-to-date registration status and polling location here. Some precincts have changed, so be sure to check before you go!
Looking Ahead in GCPS...
- Keep Connected with news from GCPS TV… the next episode airs November 11!
- The next regular Board meeting is November 17. (Online, find links to sign up for the public comment sections of the meeting.)
- Watch for the next issue of GCPS Links on November 18!