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					Week of January 19, 2009                                                                           Vol. 1 • Issue 38

     J.E.B. Stuart Elementary School has received the
2009 Governor’s Award for Educational Excellence, the
state’s highest performance honor under the Virginia
Index of Performance (VIP) incentive program. The
North Richmond school was one of 162 Virginia pub-
lic schools to earn the award.
     To receive the award, schools must meet all state
and federal achievement benchmarks for at least two
consecutive years. Also, schools must meet Governor
Tim Kaine’s achievement goals for elementary read-
ing, enrollment in Algebra I by eighth grade, enroll-
ment in college-level courses, attainment of advanced
diplomas and increased attainment of career and indus-
try certifications. Eligible schools must also particpate
in the Virginia Preschool Initiative.
    A number of other Richmond City schools earned
the Board of Education’s Excellence Award, the sec-
ond-tier honor in the VIP program. Richmond City
schools honored with this award include: Albert Hill
Middle, Amelia Street, Bellevue Elementary, Broad Rock Elementary, Clark Springs Elementary, Fairfield Court Elemen-
tary, Ginter Park Elementary, J.B. Fisher Elementary, Maymont Elementary, Miles Jones Elementary, Open High, Rich-
mond Community High, Southampton Elementary and William Fox Elementary.
    Finally, four Richmond City schools earned the Board’s Competence to Excellence Award, the third-tier honor in the
VIP Program. Richmond City schools recognized in this category include George Mason Elementary, J.L. Francis Elemen-
tary, Thomas Jefferson High and Westover Hills Elementary.

   The Martin Luther King Jr. Middle School PTA and the Virginia Credit Union will sponsor Financial Education 101 - a
workshop on how to manage money, create financial goals and save - Feb. 10 from 6–7 p.m. at MLK Middle School.
Parents, teachers and community members are invited to attend the workshop.

                                                       Richmond Public Schools
                                                       Public Information Office
                                                    301 North 9th Street, 14th Floor
                                                         Richmond, VA 23219
                                                  P: (804) 780-7100 F: (804) 780-6988
   Richmond Public Schools honored the life
and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. by
sponsoring two major events, both held at the
Arthur Ashe Center: the 19th Annual Martin
Luther King Jr. Drill Meet and the 31st
Annual Living the Dream Mass Meeting
    The all-day JROTC drill meet, held Jan.
17, featured 1,500 Junior ROTC cadets from
high schools located from New York to South
Carolina. Cadets spent the day performing
precision marching routines and other drills
as color guard units, platoons and squads com- Nearly 1,500 Junior ROTC cadets took part in this year’s 19th Annual MLK
peted for awards.                              Drill Meet. The cadets represented schools from New York to South Carolina.
    Richmond City Mayor Dwight C. Jones was the keynote speaker at the 31st Annual Living the Dream Mass Meeting
held Jan. 19. Other speakers included Assistant Superintendent Dr. Ronald Carey
School Board Chairwoman Chandra Smith, William Hicks, president of Living the
Dream, Inc., and Reverend Dr. Ricardo Brown, executive director-elect of Living the
Dream, Inc.
  This year’s theme – “A Dream Realized: Where to Now?” – was echoed by speakers
and performers alike, including several Richmond City students and schools. Among
the performers were Franklin Military Academy cadet Crystal Jones, who sang the
National Anthem, the Armstrong High School Choir and the Thomas Jefferson High
School Marching Band. Mya Patton, a student at Thomas Jefferson and the
Richmond Technical Center, delivered this year’s statement of purpose while John
Marshall senior Gabriel McDonnough introduced the event’s keynote speaker.
   Sandra Jones, a news reporter with WTVR-CBS TV6, was this year’s mistress of
ceremonies. The 31st Annual Living the Dream Mass Meeting was coordinated by
Reverend Willie Woodson, executive director of Living the Dream, Inc., and Felicia
Cosby, public information officer for Richmond Public Schools.

     The Thomas Jefferson High School Marching
Vikings brought home several awards from this year’s
National High Step Competition held earlier this year
in Greensboro, North Carolina. The two-day com-
petition was held on the campus of North Carolina
A&T University.
   The Marching Vikings captured first-place awards
in the drum line, majorettes, dancers, flags, general
effect and music competitions. Drum majors Sharon
Thomas and Celine Crawley earned third-place hon-
ors. In the Grand Champions category, the Thomas
Jefferson majorettes placed second in the finals com-
petition. Fayesha Toney serves as band director.

                                                     Richmond Public Schools
                                                     Public Information Office
                                                  301 North 9th Street, 14th Floor
                                                       Richmond, VA 23219
                                                P: (804) 780-7100 F: (804) 780-6988
    SCHOOL BOARD NOTES                                                                       UPCOMING EVENTS
√ Meetings scheduled for:                                                                √ National Mentoring Day
  Jan. 27, 2-6 p.m., Conference Room                                                        •Jan. 22
        (budget work session)                                                               •Various activities
  Jan. 28, 1 p.m., School Board Room                                                        •Details: 819-4382
        (student matters)                                                                √ Keeping Children in Our Community
  Jan. 29, 2-6 p.m., Conference Room                                                        •Jan. 27
        (budget work session)                                                               •East District Family Resource Center
                                                                                            •5:30-8:00 p.m.
                                                                                            •Details: 646-4519
     RPS faculty, staff and administrators are
                                                                                        RRHA TO MEET ABOUT
  invited to attend the VCU School of                                                   JACKSON WARD AND
  Education’s 5th Annual John S. Oehler Lec-                                            DOVE STREET PLAN
  ture for Educational Leadership. The title
  of this year’s workshop is “Cities and the                                          The Richmond Redevelopment and
  Education Imperative.” Dr. Nancy Zimpher,                                      Housing Authority (RRHA) will conclude
  president of the University of Cincinnati is                                   its planning process for the revitalization
  this year’s keynote speaker. Dr. Jo Lynne                                      of the North Jackson Ward community and
  DeMary, director of the Center for School Im-                                  the Dove Street Revitalization Area with
  provement, is this year’s respondent. The                                      two public meetings. The North Jackson
  presentation will take place Feb. 16 from                                      Ward meeting is set for Feb. 3 from 6–8
  1:30–3:00 p.m. at the VCU Student Com-                                         p.m. at the Calhoun Family Center. The
  mons, Ballroom B, at 907 Floyd Ave. For                                        meeting for Dove Street Revitalization will
  details, call 804-828-1309.                                                    take place Feb. 4 from 6–8 p.m. at Overby-
                                                                                 Sheppard Elementary School.

A final word from Superintendent Dr. Yvonne Brandon
      On Jan. 20, 2009, our new President began his tenure with a “Yes we can”
   approach to what government can accomplish. Indeed, President Barack Obama
   has fueled a new sense of hope among Americans. In Richmond Public Schools,
   we, too, have embraced the “Yes we can” attitude toward student achievement.
   Still, at all levels of government, our enthusiasm must be balanced by a very
   real economic crisis. So, along with our “Yes we can” spirit, let’s also remember
   that there’s work to be done. And we’ll do that, too, because we must.

Information for In Focus should be emailed to:

                                                       Richmond Public Schools
                                                       Public Information Office
                                                    301 North 9th Street, 14th Floor
                                                         Richmond, VA 23219
                                                  P: (804) 780-7100 F: (804) 780-6988