Superintendent's Report
April 20, 2004

Mr. Chairman, members of the Board, citizens of our community, I’m pleased to share some of the activities that have recently taken place in our school system and just a few of the accomplishments of our students and staff.

The third annual Student Food Show was recently sponsored by our Office of Food Services in the Landstown High cafeteria. More that 300 students, parents, and community leaders were asked to provide input on a variety of food products that were being considered for our school cafeterias next school year. Nearly 100 products, ranging from fish filets to fruit juices, were screened and rated by participants. Their ratings will help to determine the final items selected.

Representatives from nearly ninety businesses and school departments were recognized for their willingness to host our students as employees at the 35th Cooperative Office Education Employer Appreciation Luncheon held at the Doubletree Hotel. The event, coordinated by the Office of Technical and Career Education, provided an opportunity for students to present their employers with certificates of appreciation.

Essays written by thirteen VBCPS students were featured in the new book, A Tribute to Military Families: Letters of Thanks from Our Nations’s Children, published by Sears, Roebuck and Company and the National Military Family Association.

Bayside High recently celebrated the school’s 40th anniversary with an event that brought back graduates of the school and engaged current students, staff and the community. The day included an historical slide show with anecdotes about each decade, and school heritage information for teachers to incorporate into lesson plans. Dean Hering, BHS class of 1981 and now President of Netcentrics, served as the keynote speaker at a student assembly.

The Annual Alan Basnight Memorial School Bus Road-e-o was held on Saturday, April 3 at the Glenwood Bus Garage. The event, designed to increase awareness of road safety, included a written test for drivers, and participation in maneuvers such as right turn, stop line, and student pick up.

On April 3rd, our Department of Curriculum and Instruction hosted a Spring conference that was attended by more than 600 educators. “Destination: Student Achievement” as the event was themed, provided opportunities for staff to earn professional development points and to learn from nationally known speakers and presenters such as Richard Lavoie and Kay Tolliver.

To begin what is nationally recognized as “Volunteer Appreciation Week”, our school system hosted our 15th annual Volunteer of the Year Dinner last night at Salem Middle School. Eighty-nine outstanding volunteers were recognized for their service to public education in Virginia Beach. From initiating “Wee Deliver” in-school postal systems in 19 elementary schools, to developing “Knee Deep in the Chesapeake” school-wide biology and conservation programs, this year’s volunteers of the year were shining examples of volunteeism that adds value to our schools.

Several congratulations are in order this evening. . .

Hats off to two eighth grade students from Bayside Middle School who have won top honors in the Virginia Middle School Association Art Contest. Arynn Easom and Richard Pablo, students in Susan Carden’s advanced art class, researched famous Americans before creating their entries for the competition, which had a “Patriots” theme.

Congratulations to Alice Olenik, school office associate at Plaza Middle School, who was recently honored as a “volunteer of the year” by the Virginia Beach Rotary Club for her exemplary service to our schools and PTAs.

Kudos to Emma Dorrington, a fifth grade teacher at Christopher Farms Elementary, who was selected as the Visiting International Faculty Ambassador of the Year for Virginia.

Congratulations to Kingston Elementary for recently earning recognition as a Parent Involvement School of Excellence from the National PTA.

And, hats off to NJROTC Cadet Robert Schmid, Salem High School, who has been recognized as the Virginia Society of the Sons of the American Revolution “Cadet of the Year”. Cadet Schmid is the Company Operations Officer for the Salem High School NJROTC Unit.

Mr. Chairman, this concludes my report for this evening.