Education

Middle school redistricting process to be delayed


The start of a redistricting process that could alleviate crowded conditions at Hungary Creek Middle School is on hold for another seven months or so while Henrico County Public Schools officials first consider the possible implementation of new instructional programs at the middle school level.

The Henrico School Board had hoped to begin the redistricting process this fall, but Assistant Superintendent for Instruction Beth Teigen told the board last week that it wouldn't make sense to start yet. That's because officials are weighing the possibility of establishing special "academies" at some middle schools to provide focused instruction in several topics – potentially including leadership, coding and/or STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics).

Steward to host ‘Pancakes for a Purpose’ March 21


The Steward School will host "Pancakes for a Purpose" from 7 a.m. to noon Saturday, March 21, to celebrate the legacy of late Associate Head of School for Community Advancement Debbie Robson. Robson’s loss spurred the school community to build upon her desire to strengthen school pride.

The event is free, but suggested donations are $5 for individuals and $20 maximum per family. Breakfast will be served from 7 a.m. until noon in the Middle School Dining Commons on The Steward School campus at 11600 Gayton Road. Children’s activities and planting in the school’s Ipsen Gardens will take place throughout the morning.

Proceeds from the event will support the recently created Debbie Robson Merit Scholarship, a four-year scholarship for two rising ninth graders.

Ridge ES principal receives REB Leadership Award


Katina Otey, principal of Henrico County’s Ridge Elementary School, recently was awarded the 2014-15 REB Award for Distinguished Educational Leadership. The Community Foundation presents the award to four principals annually – one each from the school systems of Henrico, Chesterfield and Hanover counties and one from the city of Richmond schools.

The award recognizes principals who go beyond the day-to-day demands of their jobs to create an exceptional educational environment. The award stresses management and communication skills, and the ability to inspire, encourage and advocate for the school. It includes $7,500 for personal development and an additional $7,500 for school projects of the recipient’s choosing.

“To have this recognition is just a light, a light shining on our school,” said Otey.

Fairfield MS to host summer camp festival March 27

Fairfield Middle School will host a summer camp festival on March 27, from 5:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. A number of summer camps will be represented by officials who will be available to answer questions and provide information about their summer programs. The event also will include parent workshops, activities, snacks, prizes and more.

Fairfield Middle School is located at 5121 Nine Mile Road in Eastern Henrico. The event is free and open to the public. For details, e-mail .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Tejas Muthusamy repeats as regional spelling champ


Sixth-grader and Henrico County Public Schools spelling champion Tejas Muthusamy repeated as regional champion Friday. Muthusamy, of Moody Middle School, bested champions representing 30 central Virginia school divisions in the 41st Annual Richmond Times-Dispatch Regional Spelling Bee. He now advances to the Scripps National Spelling Bee May 24-29 at National Harbor near Washington D.C. Last year, he finished eighth in that 281-person competition, earning national attention for his abilities from the event, which was broadcast on ESPN.

To win last week, Muthusamy correctly spelled the word “redox” in the 14th round. Merriam-Webster defines the word as “of or relating to oxidation-reduction.”

Henrico 4-H team repeats as LifeSmarts state champions


A Henrico County 4-H team will compete in the national LifeSmarts consumer education competition for the second consecutive year after winning the state championship this week in Glen Allen.

The 4-H team — called WYSIWYG, an abbreviation for “What You See Is What You Get” — consists of students Joshua Hyde, Stephen Baker, Curtis Cantwell, George Evans and Emily Royster. Karie Dawkins coaches the squad, with assistance from Kathleen Cantwell and Sheila Hyde.

WYSIWYG earned its second state title after scoring better than five other teams in the Virginia LifeSmarts Competition, held March 9 at the Virginia Housing Development Authority’s Virginia Housing Center in Glen Allen.

Music teacher wins Steward award


Steward School Head of School Dan Frank presented the Paul R. Cramer “Best Faculty Award” to 32-year veteran music teacher Bonnie Anderson last month.

Bestowed annually on the faculty member who best embraces the characteristics of “balance, perspective, and humor” as exemplified by late Headmaster Paul R. Cramer, the award was established in 2008 to honor the man and his contributions to The Steward School. During his tenure, Cramer talked about the “pillars” of the Steward community and described Anderson as one of Steward’s pillars. The sentiment regarding Anderson’s place in the Steward family hasn’t changed.

“Bonnie is absolutely amazing. She works often all day without a single free period to plan—she is with students nearly every period of the week. She never, ever, loses her temper or her cool; she is deeply passionate about what she does, but she is flexible and caring and dedicated,” said Frank in his presentation of the award.

Youth awards honor 17 from Henrico


Honorees from 45 area public and private schools joined with parents, educators, and community leaders Feb. 12 for the 48th Annual Brotherhood Sisterhood Youth Awards program, sponsored by the Interfaith Council of Greater Richmond (ICGR) and held at River Road Baptist Church.

Keynote speaker Jonathan C. Zur, CEO and President of the Virginia Center for Inclusive Communities, led the gathering of educators, parents, and community leaders in congratulating award winners. Among students recognized for their excellence of character, efforts on behalf of social and cultural justice, and desire to help others overcome prejudice and discrimination were 17 Henrico County seniors.

14 Henrico schools receive ‘Active RVA’ designation


Fourteen Henrico County schools have been named 2015 Active RVA Fit Schools in recognition of their success at incorporating physical activity into their curricula.

The certification is given by healthy-lifestyle nonprofit Sports Backers as part of its Active RVA initiative to promote fitness in the Richmond area. To qualify, a school must show it has made fitness part of its culture through programs and infrastructure, and show measurable results in increasing physical activity among its students, staff and local community.

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