Randolph Elementary “Space Tamales” are Lego Robotics State Champions

P R E S S   R E L E A S E

Date: December 4, 2018 — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Mr. Andrew R. Armstrong, Executive Director of Business Operations  aarmstrong@glnd.k12.va.us  |  (804) 332 0965  |  @glndschools www.goochlandschools.org

The Randolph Elementary School Lego Robotics Team, the “Space Tamales”, took home first place at this weekend’s state championship competition for the First Lego League.  The competition took place in Harrisonburg, Virginia.

The team’s innovation was the Space Tamale Blanket, a design that used hydrogen rich recyclables such as styrofoam and polyethylene to protect astronauts from galactic cosmic rays.  The team’s work also led to the development of applications that could protect pilots and flight attendants.

Coaches Sherrill Kaufmann, Randolph Elementary School gifted resource teacher, and Sean DeArras were joined by mentors Ann DeArras and RES teacher Johanna Schmeichel.  Team members include Brogan Boyle, Caroline Lohr, Kyranna Stratiou, Jesus Gonzalez, Edwin Ramirez, Johnny Vega, Armando Baltazar, and Joshua Gaskill.

Coach Sherrill Kaufmann is proud of this accomplishment, the culmination of months of work.  “This has been a labor of love for all of us-coaches, students, and their families.  We are excited to be recognized, but the teamwork, the innovation, and the creativity have been the real reward.”

The Space Tamales have been approached about sharing their project at the national level.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Krystle Demas Recognized as Tech Coach of the Year by VSTE

P R E S S   R E L E A S E

Date: December 3, 2018 — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Dr. Andrew R. Armstrong, Executive Director of Business Operations  aarmstrong@glnd.k12.va.us  |  (804) 332 0965  |  @glndschools www.goochlandschools.org

At today’s annual conference of VSTE, the Virginia Society of Technology in Education, Goochland County Public Schools Instructional Technology Coach Mrs. Krystle Demas was recognized as a “tech coach of the year” for 2018.  VSTE is the state’s largest technology and education professional organization and operates as a chapter of the International Society for Technology in Education. VSTE recognized three individuals from among tech coaches in Virginia at its awards program.

Mrs. Demas serves as an Instructional Technology Coach at Randolph and Goochland Elementary Schools and was nominated for her dedication to improvement of student outcomes, support of teachers, and her work to maximize the potential of others through her positivity. She was named Goochland’s employee of the year last spring and was also selected as a presenter at this year’s VSTE conference. Mrs. Demas was part of the team at RES recognized for the G21 Gold Award in August.

“It’s an incredibly humbling experience to be recognized by VSTE as one of the top tech coaches across the state,” said Mrs. Demas. “I feel fortunate to work with a dedicated team in Goochland and with so many incredible teachers across two schools.”

Dr. Jeremy Raley, Superintendent, congratulated Mrs. Demas on her recognition.  “We are so fortunate in Goochland to have Mrs. Demas on our team.  She is a perfect example of the value our staff brings to the experience of our students and how that distinguishes our division.”

Goochland County Public Schools employs 4 full time Instructional Technology Coaches to support teachers and students in creating engaging instructional experiences.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Goochland Middle School Principal Jennifer Rucker Promoted to Coordinator of Professional Development in Chesterfield County Public Schools

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: GOOCHLAND, VA – October 10, 2018

Contact: Mr. Andrew R. Armstrong, Executive Director of Business Operations

aarmstrong@glnd.k12.va.us | (804) 332 0965 | @glndschools  www.goochlandschools.org

At their monthly meeting yesterday, October 9, the Goochland County School Board accepted the resignation of Mrs. Jennifer Rucker, principal of Goochland Middle School.  Mrs. Rucker has served as the principal of GMS since 2012, having arrived to Goochland after tenures as a school counseling director in Henrico County Public Schools and assistant principal in Charlottesville City Schools.

Mrs. Rucker will become the new Coordinator of Professional Development for Chesterfield County Public Schools, where she will work with staff to perform a variety of duties, including the implementation of leadership development,  division-wide events, and staffing for the CCPS Department of Professional Development.

Mrs. Rucker has led the transformation of Goochland Middle School, a school that has been recognized as a National School to Watch and Apple Distinguished School, during her tenure.  She is appreciative of the support of the GMS community during her term as principal. “There is nowhere I would have rather been a principal than here at Goochland Middle School. The students, families, teachers, staff, and leaders at GMS and in our division have supported our commitment to deeper learning, a safe school environment, and fulfilling our mission to maximize the potential of every learner.  I am excited for this opportunity to grow in Chesterfield, and wish the best to GCPS!”

Mrs. Rucker will serve as principal of GMS through October 19, at which point Mrs. Amie Potter, current GMS assistant principal, will begin in the role of interim principal.  Mr. Patrick Gordon, current GMS math teacher, will assume the role of interim assistant principal.

GCPS will begin recruiting for the new principal of GMS in the coming weeks.  All GCPS job opportunities can be found at www.goochlandschools.org/jobs  

 

GCPS Celebrates Farm to Table and National School Lunch Weeks in October

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: GOOCHLAND, VA – October 1, 2018

Contact: Mr. Andrew R. Armstrong, Executive Director of Business Operations

aarmstrong@glnd.k12.va.us | (804) 332 0965 | @glndschools www.goochlandschools.org

This week Goochland County Public Schools will join divisions across the Commonwealth and the nation to celebrate the work of our School Nutrition Services with “Farm to School” week this week, October 1 through 5, and National School Lunch Week October 15 through 19.

This Thursday, October 4, Goochland Middle and High Schools will serve their locally sourced menu consisting of local beef, chicken, lettuce, broccoli, gala apples, and grapes.  Our Goochland Technical Center Culinary Arts students will be on hand to distribute samples of Virginia foods, and the Center for Rural Culture will have an information table to educate about local foods.

Goochland County Public Schools Nutrition Services works regularly with local and regional vendors to provide healthy and popular options to students.  In the past two years, locally sourced ingredients have been integrated into several regular offerings, the weekly “my way café” has been a popular choice for students who want to customize their meal, and this year’s offering of freshly-made personal pizzas has proven another popular option for students.  Lisa Landrum, Supervisor of GCPS Nutrition Services, is proud of the work of her staff on behalf of the students of Goochland County.  “We are proud to serve our students and extend the innovation and excellence of Goochland County Public Schools into our school nutrition program.  Our staff is committed to providing our students with healthy and delicious meals to fuel them for learning every day.”

You can learn more about GCPS Nutrition Services and see the weekly menu at http://goochlandschools.org/about-goochland/nutrition-services/.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

All Goochland County Public Schools Accredited Under the Revised VDOE Accreditation Standards

P R E S S   R E L E A S E

Date: September 28, 2018 — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Mr. Andrew R. Armstrong, Executive Director of Business Operations  aarmstrong@glnd.k12.va.us  | (804) 332 0965  | @glndschools  www.goochlandschools.org

Yesterday the Virginia Department of Education released accreditation ratings for all schools and school divisions of the Commonwealth under the newly created school accreditation standards.  An overview of Virginia results and an explanation of the newly revised accreditation standards can be found at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/news/news_releases/2018/09-sep27.shtml.  

These accreditation ratings are based on the results of the 2018 Standards of Learning tests, and are designed to assess school performance based on school quality indicators for academic achievement, achievement gaps, and student engagement and outcomes.  

92% of Virginia schools were accredited for 2018-2019, and all five Goochland schools are among those accredited schools.  Detailed information about school and division accreditation ratings can be found at http://schoolquality.virginia.gov/.  

Goochland County Public Schools exceeded the state average for student performance in math, science, and reading, and students with disabilities and black students met or exceeded the state average in the same content areas.  GCPS also exceeded the state average for kindergarten students meeting literacy benchmarks.

This represents more than a decade in which all GCPS schools have been accredited at the highest level designated the Virginia Department of Education, a distinction shared with only a handful of Virginia school divisions.  

This distinction is now determined by both traditional achievement measures as used in the previous accreditation system and the added criteria assessing school performance by individual subgroups and student engagement.  School leaders credit Goochland’s pursuit of innovation, growth, and engagement before test results in all classrooms as the source of success. “The new accreditation ratings validate our work to go further than overall ratings and to identify and improve outcomes for all of our students,” said Dr. Jeremy Raley, Superintendent. “The work of our teachers and staff has distinguished us in the Commonwealth and beyond, and we will continue to identify the areas where we can still improve and maximize the potential of every learner in Goochland County Public Schools.”  

Highlights from the division’s Spring 2018 SOL results include:  

  • Goochland students outperformed the Virginia state average in SOL pass percentage in all four core academic areas: reading, math, social studies, and science
  • Goochland’s reading scores ranked thirteenth in the state out of the 132 school divisions in the Commonwealth and second in the region
  • Goochland’s math scores also ranked thirteenth in the state and first in the region

Dr. Stephen Geyer, Assistant Superintendent of Instruction, described Goochland’s focus on a balanced approach to instruction and assessment as a key to the division’s success.  “Every child’s learning is important, and that requires our instructional program to be balanced. Students need direct instruction. They also need opportunities to explore what interests them.  Students need to work collaboratively with their peers. They also need opportunities to demonstrate their learning independently. It’s this kind of balance across our entire division that prepares our students for success.  Even more important, we have the most talented, caring teachers anywhere – and it’s their dedication that makes our school community shine.”

 

GCPS Projected to be 100% Accredited Based on VDOE Release of 2018 State Testing Data

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: GOOCHLAND, VA – AUGUST 23, 2018

Contact: Mr. Andrew R. Armstrong, Executive Director of Business Operations

aarmstrong@glnd.k12.va.us | (804) 556 5605 | @glndschools www.goochlandschools.org

Goochland County Public Schools State Testing Results Project Full State Accreditation in 100% of its Schools Under Revised Standards

The Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) released official results of 2018 state testing yesterday, and Goochland continues to shine.  Virginia public schools administer 29 state assessments each year based on the Commonwealth’s Standards of Learning (SOL).  The results of these assessments are now considered in conjunction with additional criteria to determine the accreditation status of Virginia schools.  Beginning with the ratings for 2018-2019, to be announced on September 27, schools under the new accountability system will be scored on multiple school quality indicators as performing at one of three levels: Level One (at or above standard), Level Two (near standard or improving) or Level Three (below standard).  Schools will also be evaluated on progress in closing achievement gaps in English and mathematics, raising overall achievement in science and reducing chronic absenteeism. High schools will be evaluated on their success in raising graduation rates and reducing dropout rates.  These revisions are designed to provide a more comprehensive view of school quality, place increased on emphasis on closing achievement gaps and encourage continuous improvement for all schools.

“The revised accreditation system is a significant improvement and will provide a more holistic evaluation of school quality,” said Dr. James Lane, former Goochland superintendent and current Virginia Superintendent of Public Instruction. “It includes multiple factors to comprehensively evaluate Virginia’s schools, requires continuous improvement for every school, shines a light on the needs of all students and ensures tailored and effective support for schools needing assistance. Our ultimate goal is for every Virginia student to attend a school that maximizes their potential.”

Score data indicates that GCPS continues to shine both in the region and in the Commonwealth, with Goochland’s pass rates outpacing state averages by a comfortable margin:

State Test Virginia Goochland
Reading 79% 85%
Math 77% 85%
Science 81% 86%
History 84% 92%

Goochland remains one of just a handful of school divisions in Virginia to have all of its schools meet full accreditation standards each of the last eleven years.  Despite the school division’s exceptionally strong overall results, team members remain committed to elevating expectations and implementing innovative programming for all students.  “While we certainly have a lot to celebrate, we face the same challenges that most school divisions across the state and nation face when it comes to achievement gaps for our students with disabilities and our African American students,” said Dr. Jeremy Raley, Superintendent.  “We have made some great progress in these areas, especially recently, but we have more work to do.  We are committed to closing these gaps, while continuing to raise the bar for every student.”

The school division plans to present its annual comprehensive data report to the School Board at its September public meeting.

Goochland County Public Schools Awarded the VDOE Distinguished Achievement Award

P R E S S   R E L E A S E

Date: June 28, 2018 — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Mr. Andrew R. Armstrong, Executive Director of Business Operations  aarmstrong@glnd.k12.va.us  | (804) 332 0965  | @glndschools www.goochlandschools.org

Governor Ralph Northam and the state Board of Education announced yesterday that 349 schools and 16 school divisions earned 2018 Virginia Index of Performance (VIP) awards for advanced learning and achievement. The VIP program recognizes schools and divisions that exceed state and federal accountability standards and achieve excellence goals established by the Governor and the Board of Education.  Goochland County Public Schools was recognized as one of the 15 divisions earning the 2018 Board of Education Distinguished Achievement Award for its 2016-2017 student achievement.

“The teachers, principals and support staff in these schools share a commitment to academic excellence and meeting the needs of every learner,” said Governor Northam.  “I congratulate our educators, school administrators, and the students of these great schools for achieving the Commonwealth’s highest award for schoolwide excellence.”

Goochland County Public Schools, in addition to meeting Virginia SOL accreditation benchmarks with fully accredited status for all schools for over ten consecutive years, has made instructional innovation, engaging curriculum, recruitment and retention of quality personnel, and significant capital planning to support quality instruction areas of focus under the leadership of the current School Board and Superintendent, Dr. Jeremy Raley.  

“Our results are strong, we have a lot to be proud of,” said Dr. Steve Geyer, Assistant Superintendent of Instruction.  “I often get asked by colleagues across the state what makes our instructional program so successful. My response is always the same, ‘It’s our people.’

Geyer added, “We have great kids and families – and we have the most dedicated, talented, caring educators anywhere. It’s their hard work every single day that’s at the center of our division’s success.”

The Goochland County Public Schools mission is to maximize the potential of every learner.  Read more about the 2018 Virginia Department of Education VIP Awards at http://www.doe.virginia.gov/news/news_releases/2018/06-jun27-gov.shtml

 

 

 

 

GCPS Hosts Summer Meals and Enrichment at BES for all County Children

Date: June 21, 2018 — FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Contact: Mr. Andrew R. Armstrong, Executive Director of Business Operations  aarmstrong@glnd.k12.va.us 

Byrd Elementary Hosts Summer Free Meals and Fun Program

Beginning next Monday, July 2, Goochland County Public Schools, with the support of the USDA, will provide free meals for kids and family enrichment activities at Byrd Elementary School, Monday through Thursday from 11:00 a.m. until 1:00 p.m.  The program will be closed on July 4 and 5 for the holiday.

All Goochland families from all schools with children ages 4-18 are welcomed to participate.  Transportation will be provided at the following locations and times:

  • 9:50 AM -OLD COLUMBIA RD & RAVENWOOD RD
  • 10:20 AM – Mt. Gilead Baptist Church / 4768 Shannon Hill Road
  • 10:30 AM – Damore’s Store / 4814 Broad Street RD
  • 10:35 AM – Post Office-Hadensville
  • 10:45 AM – Chapel Hill Rd. and Riddles Bridge Rd
  • 10:55 AM – New Market on corner / VA-6 & Hadensville-Fife Rd
  • 11:00 AM – Byrd Elementary School

In addition to free meals for children, parents may purchase a meal and participate in special activities to enrich their child’s school experience.  See more details here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1Rzh2ujkOT1uCaDPKb6pCkYLKidpi27XE/view?usp=sharing

Goochland County Public Schools is excited to support our students’ wellness and academic needs this summer through this program.  For any questions, contact School Nutrition Supervisor Ms. Lisa Landrum at 804-556-5604 or llandrum@glnd.k12.va.us

Mr. Vernon Fleming Appointed Interim District 3 School Board Representative

On Wednesday, May 30, during a special meeting of the Goochland County School Board, Mr. Vernon Fleming was appointed interim representative for District 3, replacing Mr. John L. Lumpkins, Jr., who began his interim term on the Goochland Board of Supervisors on May 1.  

Mr. Fleming is a native of the area, having grown up adjacent to Goochland in Louisa County and having attended Louisa County Public Schools .  He and his wife are parents to six children, including two current students in Goochland County Public Schools. He currently serves in a leadership role at Performance Food Group, the latest position in a career spent in large corporations.  Before and during his career in the business world, Mr. Fleming served for twenty years in the United States Army, retiring as a Lieutenant Colonel. During his Army career, Mr. Fleming served as an associate professor of Military Science at the College of William and Mary.  

In the Goochland community, Mr. Fleming has maintained active roles in his church, on the Board of the Directors of the Goochland Historical Society, and on the Board of Directors of the Shady Grove Rosenwald School.  He has served as District Chairman of the Boy Scouts of America and as a Big Brother in the Big Brothers/Big Sisters of Greater Richmond.

Mr. Fleming is eager to serve the Goochland community through his work on the School Board, to include “ensuring schools are adequately funded and properly staffed with qualified administrators and teachers, and doing everything possible to provide a quality and inspiring educational experience for OUR children.”

Mr. Fleming will be sworn in on Friday, June 1, at the Goochland Office of the Circuit Court Clerk.  “Mr. Fleming clearly has a passion for children and for service to his community,” said Mr. John D. Wright, Chair of the Goochland School Board. “We are excited to add his skills and perspective to our board.”

 

Distinguished Guests, Families, and Staff Gather to Recognize Goochland CTE and Military Signees

On Tuesday, May 29, 7th Congressional District Representative Dave Brat joined Dr. Jeremy Raley, Superintendent, Mr. Bruce Watson, Director of Career and Technical Education, and students, teachers, families, and community business and military representatives to recognize Goochland High Class of 2018 seniors who are transitioning directly into the workforce and the military.  Among the destinations for GHS seniors are Carter Machinery, Luck Stone, Newport News Shipbuilding, the United States Marine Corps, and the United States Navy.

Representative Brat addresses the students at the signing ceremony

Representative Brat congratulated the students, noting their achievements are part of a greater movement to make schools more engaging and our country more competitive through developing students with skills in trades and the workforce.  Mr. Michael Verrastro, Heavy Equipment instructor, Mr. Tim Greenway, CTE chair and carpentry instructor, and Lt. Col. Kevin Williams, MCJROTC instructor, recognized each student for their individual accomplishments.

“Our students have taken advantage of the engaging classroom experience and variety of offerings in our schools with the added bonus of hours of practical, on the job experience,” said Mr. Christopher Collier, principal of Goochland High School.  “We are so proud of our students who are joining the workforce and entering lucrative and engaging fields as well as those who are answering the call of duty for our country. We want to make this even bigger next year.”

Goochland High School and Goochland Technical Center have nurtured a growing MCJROTC program and a variety of CTE programs, including heavy equipment, carpentry, nursing, culinary arts, and veterinary technician programs.  Students from all academic backgrounds participate in GCPS Career and Technical Education programming.