Henrico County VA

HCPS among national leaders in reducing suspensions


Henrico County Public Schools has made significant progress in finding alternatives to student suspensions. A new UCLA study lists the division among the most-improved large school systems in the nation for reducing student suspensions between the 2009-10 and 2011-12 school years.

The rate of suspensions in the division decreased from 31 percent to 13.8 percent during that time. Suspensions of black students were down 29 percent; suspensions of Hispanic students decreased 16 percent; and suspensions of white students were down 8 percent.

“We’ve made real progress with initiatives, training and the hard work of our staff,” said Patrick C. Kinlaw, the division’s superintendent. > Read more.

Henrico Fire officials pluck a duck, dog from icy ponds


Henrico Fire officials weren't auditioning for the sequel to the movie Frozen in recent weeks, but they could have been.

Firefighters used the bitter cold weather in late February as an opportunity to practice ice-rescue training at a partially frozen lake at Three Lakes Park – a rare opportunity to get hands-on experience in such environments.

The Division of Fire's Technical Rescue tam, Hazardous Materials team and Search and Rescue Dive team joined to practice rescuing a team member who was placed in the water in a special ice suit (above). > Read more.
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Volunteers enjoy giving back

Gloria Nolan sent a text message on a recent Saturday morning canceling an interview appointment. A friend’s wife had died and she wanted to spend time with him instead.

What started as one of Nolan’s volunteer assignments for Hospice of Virginia had grown into a friendship.

Nolan’s primary duties as a hospice volunteer include making regular visits and helping relieve caregivers so that they can run errands or take a needed break. She has volunteered for about four years for the hospice.

“Some patients request that I read Scriptures, or just sit quietly and keep them company,” Nolan said. “Others enjoy having someone listen to them tell life stories or help with needlework. At times, I may simply keep the caregiver company while the patient rests. While not required by [Hospice of Virginia], I enjoy remembering special
days like birthdays and anniversaries.” > Read more.

Business in brief


Michael Gibrall, of Henrico, recently won Best Feature Screenplay at the 2012 Spirit Quest Film Festival for his romantic dramedy “Available.” This is the second acknowledgement for the script, which was also a semifinalist at the 2012 Action on Film Festival, a Top 25 Film Festival according to MovieMaker Magazine. Spirit Quest is in the fourth year of the festival and receives films and screenplays from around the world. The festival is geared towards uplifting and inspirational works. Gibrall is a 1987 graduate of Mills E. Godwin High School. He received a bachelor of arts degree in communication from St. Vincent College in 1990. For more information, visit http://www.oneofeachproductions.com > Read more.

Senator advocates easier absentee ballot process

A state legislator wants to make it easier for Virginians who can’t go to the polls on Election Day to obtain an absentee ballot.

Sen. John C. Miller, D-Newport News, has proposed that voters be able to request and receive an absentee ballot by email. They still would have to return the completed ballot by regular mail or by hand.

Currently, only voters who are in the military or are overseas can use email to request and receive an absentee ballot from Virginia election officials. > Read more.

Milestones


Becky Bell, a local volunteer coordinator with the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE), recently received the organization’s Local Coordinator of the Year award. Bell, who has been involved with CIEE’s high school exchange program for 10 years, helps find good host and/or welcome families for high school exchange students in metro Richmond, including Henrico. Bell was the highest placing LC last year and also managed one of the largest teams in the country. She can be contacted at 928-1948 or .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). > Read more.

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Community

RAMPS receives $8k grant


RAMPS (Ramp Access Made Possible by Students) recently received an $8,000 grant from the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation. The award was one of 75 grants totaling more than $600,137 awarded by the Reeve Foundation to nonprofit organizations nationwide that provide more opportunities, access, and daily quality of life for individuals living with paralysis, their families and caregivers.

RAMPS, an organization founded by then-Henrico County high school students to build ramps for local low-income residents who need them, will use the grant to purchase modular wheelchair ramp supplies. These supplies will be used by local high school RAMPS clubs, who provide volunteers to build the ramps. > Read more.

Henrico man to compete in Liberty Mutual Invitational National Finals

Henrico resident Larry Loving, Jr., will compete with three other locals – Thomas Scribner (Richmond), Roscoe McGhee (Midlothian) and Larry Loving (Richmond) in the Liberty Mutual Insurance Invitational National Finals at TPC Sawgrass, in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla., Feb. 26-Mar. 1. The foursome qualified for the national golf tournament by winning the Liberty Mutual Insurance Invitational, held at Whiskey Creek Golf Club in Ijamsville, Md. on June 11. That event supported the RiteCare Center for Childhood Language Disorders.

In total, 240 amateur golfers will compete in Florida. > Read more.

Henrico PAL recognizes supporters, HSHS athlete


The Henrico Police Athletic League (PAL) held its Sixth Annual Awards Banquet Feb. 5 at The Cultural Arts Center of Glen Allen, celebrating accomplishments of 2014 and recognizing outstanding contributions to the organization. Henrico County Juvenile Domestic Court Judge Denis Soden served as master of ceremonies and former Harlem Globetrotter Melvin Adams served as keynote speaker. 

Among the 2014 honorees were Richmond International Raceway (Significant Supporter), Richmond Strikers Soccer Club (Significant Supporter), Henrico County Schools-Pupil Transportation (Summer Camp Supporter), Bruce Richardson, Jr. (Youth of the Year), Sandra Williams (Volunteer of the Year), Thomas Williams (Employee of the Year), Mikki Pleasants (Board Member of the Year), and Michelle Sheehan (Police Officer of the Year).   > Read more.

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Entertainment

Weekend Top 10


For our Top 10 calendar events this weekend, click here! > Read more.

Travinia brings contemporary elegance to Willow Lawn


It was another win for Willow Lawn when Travinia Italian Kitchen and Wine Bar opened there six months ago, nestled in the heart of the re-made shopping center. The contemporary American Italian restaurant boasts 13 locations up and down the East Coast, with the Henrico location opening in August.

In the same week, I hit up Travinia twice, once for lunch and once for a late dinner. At lunchtime on a weekday, I was overwhelmed by the smell of garlic and by the number of working professionals in nice suits on their lunch breaks. When we first walked in, I was concerned our meal would be a little too pricey based on the décor – it’s a really nice place. Luckily, the menu has a variety of options for every budget. > Read more.

Soak up the fun

‘SpongeBob’ movie energizes with wit, laughter

There’s a ton of sugar in The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge Out of Water. Literal sugar, as SpongeBob Squarepants (Tom Kenny) and Patrick (Bill Fagerbakke) inhale their own weight in cotton candy and eat ice cream, one scoop per mouthful.

At one point we burrow into the brain of our boxy yellow hero and discover the inner workings of his brain: googly-eyed cakes and candies that giggle and sing. All of which is extremely appropriate for a film like Sponge Out of Water. Because not only is the movie sweet (the “awwww” kind of sweet), but it’s the equivalent of a 30-candy bar sugar rush, zipping between ideas like a sponge on rocket skates.

The story under all this is really not that complicated. SpongeBob flips burgers at the Krusty Krab. > Read more.

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The United States Navy Band Sea Chanters chorus will perform at Deep Run High School, 4801 Twin Hickory Rd., at 7 p.m. The performance in Glen Allen is part of… Full text

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