Today we kicked off Goochland Reads 2019, a program that encourages a larger community to engage in a common literary experience during a common period of time.  Each one of our elementary students, teachers, and support staff received a copy of the Goochland Reads book at no cost – and throughout the month of January our schools facilitate a reading schedule that includes trivia questions, awards and recognition, and other engaging activities.  This year’s selection is Wendy Orr’s Nim’s Island.

The Goochland Reads 2019 calendar can be accessed here, and a copy of the program’s welcome letter that came home with our elementary students can be accessed here.

Happy reading!

We have had an exceptional first half of this academic year!  As I walk through our schools, I continue to see countless examples of the excellence that is ever-present in the Goochland County Public Schools.  Our highly dedicated, talented, and expert instructional staff are providing students with exceptional learning experiences on a daily basis.  I continue to be amazed by what I see taking place!

Thanks to everyone on Team Goochland, including our staff, students, parents, volunteers, and supporters who contribute daily to the many successes of our school division. Your investment of time, labor, and resources in our community’s future, our students, is why our school division continues to be recognized as a leader in public education in the Commonwealth.  I am truly humbled to be able to live in and serve in this wonderful community!

As we approach a break in our instructional calendar, I hope that you will have an opportunity to rest, relax, connect with those who are important in your lives, and allows you some time to do what you enjoy!  Best wishes for a joyous holiday season!

Seasons Greetings from the Goochland County Public Schools

All three of our elementary schools annually welcome grandparents and extended family to school to enjoy a meal and participate in classroom activities with our students.  This year, I had the pleasure of being a part of Grandparent’s Day at Byrd Elementary School.  Over 450 parents, grandparents, aunts, uncles, and extended family participated in this incredible event!

Dr. Hendron and I joined in the fun and festivities as we took our 360 degree camera inside to capture this exciting event.  As you watch, use your mouse or your fingers to pan around to get the full experience!

Budget season has begun!  I am in the midst of collecting feedback to help me prepare my upcoming budget request.  Again this year, I am seeking your perspective regarding ideas that you may have for budget initiatives as well as opportunities for efficiency.  Please take a moment to share your thoughts with me via this survey.  I welcome your thoughts, comments, and perspective.  Results of this survey will be shared with the School Board at their upcoming December meeting.

It’s amazing how quickly this school year is moving!  We are entering our 13th week of school and we are well into the second quarter of the school year. The momentum from an extremely smooth opening of school has continued as we remain on track for another fantastic year.

This week, our school division will be celebrating American Education Week, a time to pause and celebrate the work that we do as public educators to inspire the next generation of youth in Goochland to make a positive impact in our ever changing world.  During the past several weeks, I have spent time in our schools, clinics, buses, offices, and cafeterias seeing the exceptional work that Team Goochland is doing on behalf of our students. Our Team demonstrates their commitment to excellence on a daily basis as they continually strive to provide our students world class experiences.

I have always had a great appreciation for the challenges that each of our teammates face as they teach, counsel, support, and encourage a talented and diverse student body.  My appreciation for their talents became even greater than before just recently as I planned and prepared a short, 30 minute story and activity for 15 of our first grade scholars at Byrd Elementary.  It definitely did not go as well as I planned. Remember Arnold Schwarzenegger in Kindergarten Cop? You get the picture.

As I walk through our buildings, pop into classrooms, and conduct instructional rounds, I am impressed with our employees and their ability to capture the attention of our students, get them excited about learning, and engage them in memorable learning experiences.  I know that they spend many hours sacrificing time away from their families to plan, prepare, and reflect on the work that they do in order to make this happen, and I am truly humbled to have the pleasure of serving our community’s students and families with them.

Thank you, Team Goochland!  Thank you for your excellence, your academic optimism, and your willingness to create and innovate. Thank you for having the courage to try something new, and for serving as positive role models for our students.  Our school division is amazing because of you, and I am forever grateful for the time, effort, and labor that you dedicate to making our school division awesome!

Students had a four-day weekend last week, likely a welcomed opportunity to catch up, get ahead, and rest! Meanwhile, the work of the school division rolled on as teachers spent Monday with families engaged in fall conferences. Some started as early as 7 o’clock in the morning and others as late as 8PM in order to accommodate as many schedules as possible.

Tuesday was a day focused on adult learning, and our approach was customized to ensure the time was meaningful to all involved. Opportunities like this are few and far between during the busy schedule of the regular instructional year – and the GCPS team made the very most of the time we had!

Last week, all 8th graders from Goochland Middle School attended an event to provide them with some early exposure to the many different careers in the Richmond Metro area. Their attendance at this event at the Richmond International Raceway was a part of our division’s ongoing efforts to maximize the potential of every learner. Read more about this event, Mission Tomorrow, here.

Students from Goochland Middle School attend the Mission Tomorrow event at Richmond International Raceway