Inside ACPS - Amelia County Public Schools by wuyunqing


									                           Inside ACPS
                                                                        December 2007

                            Competent to Competitive
        The Amelia County Public Schools has become a very competent public
school division at delivering the basic “Virginia Curriculum” as measured by the
SOL assessments. Teachers, students and parents are to be congratulated for
their commitment to successfully achieving the Standards of Learning (SOLs).
However, meeting state and federal standards are the first necessary steps in a
relevant and meaningful education in the 21st century.
        The question before the community as presented through the confer-
ences is, will the basic Virginia curriculum result in our children being able to com-
pete later in the 21st Century? To adequately answer the question a series of free
community conferences were offered to parents and the public.

                                          21st Century Parent/Community
                                          Curriculum Steering Committee
                                             On the evening of December 3, 2007,
                                     thirteen parents and community members at-
                                     tended the first meeting of the 21st Century
                                     Parent/Community Curriculum Steering Com-
                                     mittee that will help guide the Amelia County
                                     Public Schools in preparing for 21st Century
                                     The guest speaker for the evening was Mr.
   Mr. Paul Nichols sharing some     Paul Nichols, President of Virginia Advanced
   enlightening facts about global   Studies Strategies, which is a non-profit corpo-
         education changes.          ration that assists schools in seeking higher

His discussion focused around the research relat-           “We must invest in
ing to 21st Century skills that stress higher rigor,   students if we want to sus-
and curriculum relevance that demonstrates rela-         tain economic growth.”
tionships to career paths and a student’s future.
       The committee will meet again in early              Dr. Zhang, Chinese
January and will break-out by school to start to       Vice Minister of Education
discuss ideas and develop recommendations.
                         First Community Conference
                                 Economics                                                                   Winter Advisory

       The first community conference examined future economic projects. Dr.                     In the case of school closings for inclement
Rodriguez, an economics professor from the University of Virginia, described eco-                 weather, you may receive information by:
nomic projection techniques and then looked into the economic future to the year
2050. Most adults will probably not be working in the world of 2050, but our children          Instant Alert:             Home Phone, Cell Phone, Email
and grandchildren will.                                                                        Local News Stations:       WTVR - 6, WRIC - 8 & WWBT - 12
                                                                                               Radio Stations:            National Public Radio - 88.9 FM
       Barring any unforeseen catastrophic natural or political events, economic                                          WRVA, WFLO, WSVS, WCVE
trends are that China will be the largest economy, followed by the United States, and
India. The United States should retain the greatest per capita income of any nation,
but the relative size of our economy would be comparable to other nations. Rising
economic powers like China see education as a competitive strategy for economic

        The nature of competition is changing as we
move into the 21st Century. People can compete on
a global basis without leaving home. Any part of a
                                                                                                                        Upcoming Events
job that can be digitized can be placed on the inter-
net and performed any place in the world. Jobs will                                            11            School Board Meeting, High School, 1:30—Student Recogni-
globally go to the best provider. Many warrantee                                               tion
and service support information call centers are al-                                           18            Winter Band and Chorus Concert, High School, 7:30 PM
ready in India.                                                                                19            12:30 Dismissal – Winter Break Begins

       According to Thomas J. Friedman, in 2005,                                               3             School Resumes
roughly 400,000 U.S, tax returns were prepared by                                              8             School Board Meeting, SBO, 6:30 PM—Budget Public Hear-
Indian accountants via the internet. Some medical                                              ing
laboratory reporting and software engineering are                                              15, 16, 17    Exams (2 PM Dismissal)
being performed off-shore via the internet. Even                                               17            End of 2nd Quarter
educational tutorial services can be obtained from                                             18            Teacher Workday – Students Do Not Report
India via the internet.                                     Dr. Peter Rodriguez explains to    21            Holiday – Students Do Not Report
                                                            the audience the future economic   25            Report Cards Issued
                                                            outlook and its impact on educa-
        The trend of unbundling traditional white
collar professional jobs for competition digitally in the
                                                                                                     Have a Happy and Safe Holiday!
global market has already started.

                                              2                                                                                       7
   2008 Amelia County School                            Mrs. V. Kay Fletcher                                        Second Community Conference
             Board                                    Amelia County School Board                                            Competition
                                                       District 4 Representative
         Catherine Wilkinson                                                                         The second community conference featured Weldon “Skip” Hall, Amelia County
               District I                       “In January of 2000 when I began serving
                                                                                              Board of Supervisors District II Representative; Dr. David Alexander, Professor and De-
                                                on the School Board, I really had no idea
                                                                                              partment Head of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies at Virginia Tech; Diane
             Damon Moyer                         what I was getting myself into. Over the
                                                                                              (Yadan) Wang and Sarah (Mo) Yun, Virginia Tech graduate students; Lyle Patzkowsky,
               District 2                         past eight years, I learned a great deal    Baltimore County Public Schools Assistant Superintendent; Debbie Matusky, Coordinator
                                                          about public education.             of the Baltimore County Public Schools Student Exchange Program; and Katrina Rigby
          Henry Featherston                                                                   and Dustin Natte, a senior and a junior at Dulaney High School in Baltimore County.
              District 3                            The opportunity to work with three
                                                different superintendents and nine Board
                                                      members has been rewarding.
                                                                                                      In the second community conference, it was stated that China has more top of the
            Gary Lunsford                                                                     class (top 25%) students than we have total students in all American schools. Students in
              District 4                                                                      China take English starting in elementary school. It has been projected that by 2010,
                                                 As I begin to serve in a new capacity on
                                                                                              China will be the largest English speaking country in the world. Students in China
            Ruby L. Dillard                     the Board of Supervisors, I look forward to   take a one-time exam to determine if they will
              District 5                          taking the experience I’ve gained as a      move from grade nine to grade ten. Only about
                                                     School Board member with me.             33% of elementary students move on to high
                                                I plan to remain involved in Amelia County
     Dr. Beatrice Clark-Booker
                                                         Public Schools through my
     Amelia County School Board
                                                           children’s activities and
                                                                                                      Again at the end of high school, students
       District I Representative                                                              take a one-time exam to determine if they will go
                                                            through volunteering.”
                                                                                              to college. Only about 33% of the high school
        Dr.    Beatrice     Clark-Booker                                                      students go on to college. Chinese parents sup-
                                                       Feel free to keep in touch.”           port their children with their evening homework
leaves the Amelia County School Board
after eight years of service.                                                                 and/or private evening classes.

        As her service to the Board                                                                  Top Chinese students are honored not             3rd Graders learn English in their
                                                “Cannot use yesterday’s skills to com-                                                                 school’s Language Lab in China
ends, Dr. Booker says, “It has been my                                                        just by the school and community but also by their
                                                     pete in tomorrow’s world.”
joy to serve the Amelia County School                                                         peers. Education is viewed as a strategy for indi-
Board for the past eight years.                                                               vidual economic prosperity and economic development. A photograph of a Chinese
                                                “Diplomatic skills… and respect in an         school with the English words on the outside of the school sums up their perspective,
                                                       interdependent world.”                 “Behave Well and Study Hard”. The Chinese are working hard to become competitive in
       The job that the Board does in
working with the Superintendent, the                                                          the global market: the same market that many of our children will be competing in, in their
                                                 “All students must be internationally        future.
entire school system, community and
parents is tremendous.
                                                 “Do in our time what is necessary to
 I will continue to be available to serve                                                                        “Industry is the father; education is the mother.”
                                                    prepare them for their time.”
       this county and our children.”                                                                         Luo, Xiaoming, Vice President, China Geely Automobile Group

                                            6                                                                                              3
                                                  The Journey Has Begun
                                                                                                                                            Amelia County Public Schools
                                                                                                                                                    2007-2008 DIVISION GOALS

        The Amelia County Public Schools has already started the journey of raising                                                    Institutionalize the Amelia Learning Process and PDSA
                                                                                                                                         cycle to achieve above 80% student SOL success;
standards. The elementary reading program has been redesigned to work toward the                                                       maintain full state accreditation and full AYP compliance
School Board’s goal of ensuring that all students enter the third grade on or above                                                                           in all schools.
grade level in reading and then continue to improve. The results are very encourag-                                                    Improve the primary reading program so that all students
ing. Based upon the Virginia Department of Education’s 2006-2007 report card data                                                        read above or on-grade level upon entering the third
for the greater Richmond area, Amelia’s third grade reading scores are at the top. See                                                                          grade
graph.                                                                                                                                      and maintain above or on-grade level reading
                                                                                                                                                       in grades 3 through 12.
             3rd Grade SOL Reading Results                                                                                                  Strive to meet identified parental expectations

                                                                                                           In addition, a complete         and improve parent satisfaction in each school.
                                                                                                    review of our K-12 mathematics     Engage the community in a conversation about moving
                                                                                                    curriculum has been launched.        the school system from curriculum competence to
                                                                                                                                        preparing students for future career competitiveness.

                                                                                                    Consideration will be given to
                                                                                                    increasing rigor in elementary            Continue to reduce special education
                                                                                                    mathematics, providing algebra             over-representation in all schools.
                                                                                                    sooner and to more students,

                                                                                                    and offering more advanced and                                                                                 High School students dress in pink
                                                                                                    higher mathematics electives at                                                                                          in support of
                                                                                                    the high school.                                                                                                  Breast Cancer Awareness.

                                                                                                    Along with increased rigor, the
                                                                                                    issue of student and parental

                                                                                                    responsibility also needs to be
                                                                                                    addressed. The School Board is
                                                                                                    considering a revision to its

                                                                                                    Promotion and Retention Pol-
                                                                                                    icy—IKE, at its December School
                                                                                                    Board meeting. A revision to the
                                                                                                    Reading Regulation IGA-R is







                                                                                                    under review. The policy and the                                                                       2
                                                                                                    regulation can be viewed on the
                                                                                                    School website:
                                                                                                                                               In honor of Veteran’s Day, Amelia
                                                                                                                                             County Middle School students collect                             Elementary students engaged in learning
The journey from competent to competitive is a community journey.                                                   The Amelia               donations to send to our troops in Iraq.                                  during summer school.
educators stand ready for the journey.

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