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June 2024 News & Highlights: Last Week of School Edition!

Posted Date: 6/05/24 (5:25 PM)

Wednesday, June 5, 2024

A Word From Dr. Gurley 

Dear Cville Schools community –

I want to say happy "This should be principals week." During this last week of school, we can't say thank you enough to our school leaders and the staffs they lead. So please join me in a quick thank-you to the following:

  • Burnley-Moran: Dr. Korab, thank you for taking our new principals under your wing and extending care to them, even as we continue to extend care to you and your family.
  • Clark: Ms. Johnson, I admire how you think about the "whole child" and the "whole community."
  • Greenbrier: Mrs. Fricke, keep innovating and thinking outside the box!
  • Jackson-Via: Dr. Malone, your stewardship of Jackson-Via made you an easy choice to be the next leader at CHS!
  • Johnson: Ms. Mickens, thanks for stepping into this role in August. You listen and lead with care and competence.  
  • Venable: Ms. Beverly, I appreciate how you keep both the energy and advocacy on "10"!
  • Walker: Dr. Thompson, thank you for moving over to Walker. Under your leadership, that school will finish out strong, with a spirit of both learning and fun!
  • Buford: Mr. Jordan, thanks for providing such steady leadership as we work toward a newly expanded and renovated Charlottesville Middle School. I am so happy when you say that the loudest thing at your school this year was the construction.
  • CHS: Mr. Leatherwood and Dr. (Denise) Johnson, thanks for stepping in at CHS, a school that I know is dear to both of your hearts. Given the challenges the school faced in the fall, I am doubly delighted by how much there is to celebrate as we end the year (read on below for champions, world record-setters, scholarship-winners, and so much more). Thanks for reminding us of all the great people and programs at CHS.
  • CATEC: Dr. Heltz, you have done such a good job heading up CATEC's smooth transition into the Cville Schools family. And thanks for coordinating career and technical education at CCS next year!
  • Hospital Education: Mr. (Eric) Johnson, you have been such a vital part of Charlottesville for so long. Thanks for being an ambassador to families who come here in a time of great need.
  • LMA: Dr. Trotter, we appreciate how smoothly you stepped into leadership at Lugo-McGinness in July and then didn't bat an eye when we asked you to double up and create Knight School. We see the love, creativity, and support that are a hallmark of our CCS alternative programs.
Want to say your own thank-yous? It's a busy time of year, but that bus driver or custodian or teacher or administrator or instructional assistant or nutritional staff or CSA or school secretary (and so many other staff members) would appreciate a quick word of appreciation for you or your student. Have a great summer!

Dr. G

Cheer on Your Black Knights

Boys Tennis flyer: State Finals Here We Come with gameday info for 6/6

Boys Tennis in State Final on Thursday

CHS Boys Tennis will compete in the state championship on Thursday after what has already been a historic run and a regional championship. This is the first CHS state-qualifying team in 37 years! 
Boys soccer flyer "State Qtr Final" with gameday info for 6/7

Boys Soccer in State Semis on Friday

CHS Boys Soccer has moved on to the state semis -- this is their third year in a row qualifying for the final four!

See the CHS section below for more, including state champ Elaina Pierce!

This Friday, June 7, is the last day of school! All schools will utilize the following early dismissal times:

  • Elementary (includes PreK): 12 pm

  • Walker and Buford:  12:45 pm

  • CHS: 1:40 pm

  • Lugo-McGinness Academy: 11:30 am

Find next year's calendar here (school starts AUGUST 14)!  Printable PDF |  Google academic calendar |  iCal format

portion of 24-25 academic calendar



Looking Ahead to Summer: A List of Opportunities for Our Students

Looking for camps, internships, or other learning opportunities? We have compiled a listing of opportunities that our partners have shared with us. These offerings are run by the schools, the City, or our program partners, and the activities are free, financially accessible, or offer scholarships. Is something missing? Please let us know in the comments!  Find the listing here!

Words: Hello Summer; background is colorful stripes
Virginia "Sun Bucks" logo

Free Summer Meals, Plus Virginia SUN Bucks

Free summer meals are available to young people age 18 and younger at our summer school locations (CHS, Walker, and Greenbrier). Students not enrolled in summer school can receive a meal by visiting the school’s front desk between 11 am-12 pm, Monday through Thursday.

Additionally, a new program from the Virginia Department of Social Services will provide $120 in grocery money per eligible child this summer for qualifying families. Visit the Virginia SUN Bucks website beginning July 1 to learn more.  And spread the word!

Standards of Learning Parent/Guardian Reports Went Out Today Via ParentSquare
This afternoon, we sent personalized reports for each child to the authorized parents/guardians using ParentSquare. The Virginia Department of Education developed these reports to provide families additional information about their child's performance this year in a clear and accessible format. 

Reminder! Charlottesville Schools Offers Mental Wellness Supports for Staff, Students, and Families

Summer can bring special challenges for families as routines shift. Our division partners with Care Solace, a service that helps students/staff and their families find and make appointments with mental health and substance use providers. This confidential service is free to CCS staff, students, and their families.

Summer Hours: All Buildings Closed on Fridays

From Monday, June 10 through Thursday, July 25, CCS employees will work a 4-day, 10-hour per day workweek, with all schools and offices closed on Fridays. (A 5-day workweek resumes Monday, July 29).


Re-Register for Fall (Request the Bus, Update Your Info, etc.)

School Mint logo
illustration of checklist

 Other Back-to-School Items:


Reminder: New School Names Begin This Fall at Trailblazer (Venable) and Summit (Clark)

School name changes that the School Board approved last year will go into effect this fall. Clark Elementary will be Summit Elementary. Venable Elementary will be Trailblazer Elementary. CATEC will receive a slight name adjustment (to Charlottesville Area Technical Education Center). Learn more here.

Young Magicians at Jackson-Via talent show
Johnson class learning about Memorial Day
Venable students high-fiving Virginia baseball team

  • Above Left: Jackson-Via's year-end talent show was "magical"!
  • Above Middle: Johnson fourth graders learned about Memorial Day from a class parent.
  • Above Right: Venable students sang the national anthem for a recent UVA Baseball game. Watch the video here!

Walker students playing with John D'Earth

Above: Walker students enjoyed the last morning jam session of the school year with renowned jazz artist John D'Earth.

Buford graduation

AboveBuford 8th graders celebrated their promotion to high school this week. Congratulations, future Black Knights!

BME artist at field day
Dr. Gurley visiting Clark School
Greenbrier students crossing a river

  • Above Left: If you don't have Field Day, is it even the end of school? Burnley-Moran students enjoyed everything from the dunk tank to the art station!
  • Above Middle: Dr. Gurley and Clark Bees say "peace out" to this school year.  
  • Above Right: As part of our continued partnership with Wildrock, first graders at Greenbrier enjoyed nature-inspired learning and play.

We'll start with Virginia High School League competitors. Remember,  the boys' tennis and soccer seasons are still unfolding, and we have one state championship already in the books:
  • Congrats to Elaina Pierce, track and field state champion in the 1600M!  Elaina (shown below left with her school-record-setting relay teammates; she's on the far left) also claimed 2nd in the 800M. In addition, a number of other CHS athletes took 2nd (Nulia Obiorah in triple jump and boys relays in both 4x400 and 4x800). Many other CHS athletes competed and excelled at states. The boys team finished 6th and the girls, 7th.
  • Senior Maggie Heaphy was recognized for her contributions to CHS baseball and the school itself. Read The Daily Progress article here. See Maggie below (center in center pic) at CHS "Decision Day" event.
  • Baseball had a strong season, including a no-hitter by senior Malachi Paschal and a post-season upset of the #1 seed.
  • CHS filmmakers competed at the VHSL Film Festival with two qualifying films and came away with the "Audience Choice" award in the PSA category. Breaking Eighty (Narrative Category) was submitted by Solly Goluboff-Schragger, Cate Slaughter, and Murray Susen. The award-winning PSA was Digital Footprint, created by Sephira Ainsworth, Penelope Craghead-Way, August Green, Molly Hicks, Solly Goluboff-Schragger, and Will Jones. CHS filmmakers Penelope, Solly, Will, and Spencer Boggs are pictured below at right.
CHS girls' 4x400 school record-setters
Quels Allen, Maggie Heaphy, Vaidhya Nathan
CHS filmmakers at state tourney

Now moving on to other recent CHS highlights:
  • The BACON Drone Club is the Northeast US champion of the Aerial Drone Competition, with two students setting WORLD records! Juniors Jakob Weder and River Lewis set new marks in Skills Piloting and Autonomous Flight. See NBC29 story here & photo, below left.
  • Congrats to the 10 (!!) students who earned places in the Virginia Governor's School this summer: Aurora Adamson, Spanish; Alexandra Blank, Medical and Health Sciences; Hazel Conklin, Latin; Lillian Curtis, Latin; Gabe Damiani, Math, Science, and Technology; Celia Deveaux, Math, Science, and Technology; Mohammad Haidari, Agriculture; Vinnie Jones, German; Marin Pohl, Japanese; Elle Polifka, Instrumental Music.
  • CHS was just named among the Top 100 US high schools for excellent student performance on the W!SE Foundation's Financial Literacy Exam, which CHS students take as part of the required economics and personal finance course.
  • Dr. Justin Malone shared his priorities as incoming CHS principal with NBC29.
  • Five CHS seniors launched their new career at CATEC's employment signing ceremony. Taher Aman will be working with Flow Audi; Danny Galindo de la Rosa (Flow Volkswagen; he's shown below); Jamonnie Johnson (The Laurels of Charlottesville); Asia Nelson (Commonwise Home Care); and Brandon Martin (Fry’s Spring Beach Club).
  • The Auto Service Tech program at CATEC recently earned recognition from the Virginia Department of Education, receiving the Region 5 "Creating Excellence" award. Congratulations to instructor Matt Richardson.
  • Shout-out to the CHS alternative learning programs of Lugo-McGinness Academy, WALK, and the still-new Knight School. We appreciate all the different avenues and supports that our staff provide so students can succeed. Find a great profile of LMA and Knight School in Cville Weekly. Also, see the cornhole set that CHS Carpentry completer Nick Hamilton made to support the CHS WALK program.
  • Congratulations to all our seniors for their many accolades and scholarships. A few examples:
    • Greg and Elizabeth Allen Opportunity Scholarships, supporting students with $10,000 a year for four years of college: Zohra Aman, Myleisha April-Renee Bolden, Homa Ikhlassi, Muskon Sultan
    • 100 Black Men of Central Virginia Scholarship: Myleisha April-Renee Bolden, Troy Haws Edward Brown Jr., Wendell Lewis Carr II, Jesse Jordan Turner III
    • Elmo Foundation Scholarship winners: Laine Carter, Hayley Gladden, Martin Logan, Jason Marshman, Abas Noor, and John Proulx.
    • Seniors in the AVID program earned more than $1,000,000 in scholarships!
  • CHS Graduation is tomorrow night at Ting Pavilion! Our students are moving onto their next chapters, whether that is college, careers, gap years, military service, or continuing their education in our Parkside Program. Want to get a glimpse of where they're going? Check out these Decision Day photos by CHS photography teacher Rachel Z. Wilson, or the Instagram account @chs24destinations. Want to watch graduation? Find it tomorrow at 7 pm via Boxcast, on the @CvilleSchools Facebook page, on the Cville Communications YouTube channel, or on Charlottesville Education Channel 14 on Comcast Cable.

Drone champions
CATEC Signing Ceremony
Soon-to-be-grads at Lugo-McGinness Academy

Welcome Jackson-Via’s New Principal!

Jackson-Via Elementary welcomes Dr. Tara Bartlett as its new principal! Currently an assistant principal at Stanley Elementary School in Page County, Dr. Bartlett will start in Charlottesville on July 1.  Come say hello that day at Popsicles with the Principal, 3:30-5:30pm on the Jackson-Via playground.

Dr. B has worked in school divisions ranging from Chesterfield to Fairfax, serving as a classroom teacher, an ESL (or ELL) teacher, a reading specialist/literacy coach, and an ELL department chair. We look forward to a smooth transition to our new principal as Dr. Justin Malone moves to CHS. 

Dr. Tara Bartlett
Poem from Unfinished Jigsaw

Unfinished Jigsaw Published
See the world through the eyes of Charlottesville City Schools students! Poems, stories, essays, and artworks by students in pre-K through 12th grade are featured in our division's annual Unfinished Jigsaw Anthology, published now.

Writers Recognized!
Alex-Zan’s “My Help List Contest" honors students' essays about how they help others and why it is important to do so. Congratulations to winners from our division, Carolina Meyer, 2nd grade, Jackson-Via Elementary School, and Ruth Butler, 6th grade, Walker Upper Elementary School! See story on NBC29. 
Beam-Signing at Buford Marks Progress
This Thursday, Buford students and staff will have a chance to sign one of the steel beams that will support the new academic building of the future Charlottesville Middle School (CMS), scheduled to open in August 2025! Thanks as always to our students and staff for their patience during construction. Learn more about the future CMS. 

Rendering of future Charlottesville Middle Schools
New Members of Charlottesville Youth Council

Congratulations to the new Youth Council members David Darring, Buford, Grade 7; Emma Bennett-McConnell, CHS, Grade 10; Jaylynn Bailey, LMA, Grade 10; and Dash Jackson, CHS, Grade 11. These young people are appointed by City Council to look into issues facing young people and make recommendations to make our community better. There are several additional spots still available, and the deadline to apply is July 31. Learn more and apply here.


School Board Update: Mini-Minutes, Safety & Budget Updates

  • The May 30 Mini-Minutes are here. Note: due to tomorrow's graduation, this was the "June" meeting, the last meeting until August.

  • CHS SAFETY UPDATE: At the May 30 meeting, the Board voted unanimously to postpone a vote on adding Youth Resource Officers to the CCS safety plan until March 27, 2025 to allow time for further engagement as well as progress reports in October and December. In March, the Board approved the purchase of weapons detectors for use at CHS ticketed events.

School Board Updates with Cville Schools logo

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