Better Together

News from the Clarke County School District • 12/17/21

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As we wind down the calendar year, I wish to thank everyone for their extraordinary efforts and flexibility these past few months. I am blessed and humbled to have served this community, alongside our school and district leaders, who collectively rose above a never-ending stream of challenges to educate, nurture and support our students.


We are encouraged by the community’s response to COVID vaccination efforts – the majority of our staff have received at least two doses, and we were pleased to host clinics in our schools for students. The Department of Health continues to offer vaccines. Over the upcoming winter break, in conjunction with community health partners, the district will monitor COVID cases in our region. When we return to school on January 6, 2022, masking, social distancing, and precautionary quarantines will remain in place. We will continue to update the community on any changes to school operations.


I wish peace, love, and joy for all of us this holiday season and look toward a new year full of promise and hope.


Xernona Thomas

Superintendent

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ACCA Applications

The Athens Community Career Academy is now accepting applications for the 2022-23 school year. Rising 10th, 11th, and 12th-grade students can apply now!


Our Career Academy, located on the historic H.T. Edwards Campus, was founded in 2011 and offers a unique and innovative environment for high school students in the Clarke County School District. Our program offers career-focused, college-level courses at no cost to students through an established partnership with Athens Technical College. Our facilities provide state-of-the-art electronic classrooms, a student-managed cafe, and a food court for students to study, work on group projects, and socialize. Our program offerings include engineering, nursing, criminal justice, early childhood education, accounting, cosmetology, and much more! Visit bit.ly/accacourses22 to read more about our pathways.


To Enroll:

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CMS Students Get in the Holiday Spirit

Community Donations Stock the 2021 Holiday Market


This week, every student at Clarke Middle School had the opportunity to enter the school greenhouse, now decked out as the 2021 Holiday Market, to select gifts for their families. This special celebration, coordinated by the CMS Gifted Team and other volunteers, featured a letter-writing station where students wrote holiday cards to family members, an outdoor game area, and special treats, including hot chocolate. Community contributions enabled every student to participate, free of charge -- instead of using money to "buy" items, students used merits they earned throughout the first semester.

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We Want Your Input -- Send Us Your Idea!

The Clarke County School District is currently in the process of renewing our Charter System Contract and would love your input! We are asking all our stakeholders -- LSGT members, principals, BOE members, parents, and community partners -- to provide input for an innovative district idea.


Please click here to submit an idea. Have questions about CCSD's Charter System Contract? Contact Stephen L. Nobles, Governance & Flexibility Specialist.

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Apply Now for CCSD's Volunteer Instructional Leadership Academy

VILLA (Volunteer Instructional Leadership Learning Academy) is a new program developed by the Georgia School Boards Association, offering CCSD parents the opportunity to learn about CCSD operations, budgeting, history, school law, technology, and curriculum. Some of the topics in this six-course program include:

  • CCSD’s governance model and the role of School Board Members;
  • The School Board’s strategic priorities and day-to-day operations;
  • Discussions regarding curriculum, instruction, finance, and human resources;
  • Visits to elementary, middle, and high school and District offices.


If you are interested in participating, please complete this form. If you have any questions, contact:

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Trauma Webinar & Resources for Families

The holidays can be very stressful -- but even more so for children, teens, and families who have experienced trauma. Caron Hope, CCSD's Trauma-Informed Specialist, recorded an informational webinar about trauma, how to support children and teens, and CCSD's initiatives around trauma-informed schools and the resources available to families. Click here to watch the webinar.

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Nominate an Employee for Recognition

The “Employee of the Month” program recognizes and rewards staff members for their service and dedication to the students and families of CCSD. Anyone -- parents/guardians, staff, students, and community members can nominate an employee. The Athens Area Chamber of Commerce and local businesses generously provide a fantastic assortment of services and gift cards. Please click here to submit a nomination.
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CCSD Science & Engineering Fair

The CCSD Science and Engineering Fair will be held Saturday, January 8, at Hilsman Middle School. Students in grades 6-12 will be showcasing their projects for judging and public viewing.


Students and families are invited to explore science exhibits from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. The awards presentation will occur at 12:00 p.m.

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Cheer on the Dawgs! UGA Basketball Ticket Offer!

UGA Men's Basketball invites employees, students, and families to attend the UGA Men's Basketball games over Winter Break at a discounted rate of just $5 per person. Click here to visit the UGA Athletics ticket website and enter the promo code WINTER for the discounted ticket price.

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BOE News

The Clarke County Board of Education welcomes community feedback. Here are ways you can share your voice:

  • Contact BOE Members: Click here to view a list of the BOE members and their contact information.
  • Attend a Meeting: Next regular meeting is Thursday, January 20 at 6:00 p.m. (in-person and broadcast on the CCSD YouTube channel).
  • Board Briefs: Click to read the "Board Brief" overview from each meeting.
  • Public Comments: Click here for information on how to sign-up to speak at a regular BOE meeting.
  • Review Policies for Review: View and comment on district policies pending public review.
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Get Comfortable Grant - Request for Proposals

With guidance from their Get Comfortable Advisory Council, Creature Comforts Brewing selected literacy as the multi-year impact area for the Get Comfortable campaign, focusing specifically on 3rd-grade reading proficiency as the metric of success.


For the 2022 school year, the pilot program will serve the scholars and families at H. B. Stroud Elementary. Creature Comforts will provide volunteers, time, and financial resources, ultimately hoping to achieve a proof of concept for the strategy -- and eventually, roll out programs community-wide.


Creature Comforts Brewing is looking for partners to join them. If your agency wishes to be considered as a 2022 Get Comfortable recipient, please submit this RFP by December 20 at 5:00 p.m. If you have questions about this program or the RFP, contact Ally Hellenga at a.hellenga@ccbeerco.com.

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