Pittsylvania County Schools: 
A Great Place to Learn and Work!

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P.O. Box 232 • 39 Bank Street, SE 
Chatham, Virginia 24531  
Telephone:  (434) 432-2761 • 1-888-440-6520
Fax: (434) 432-9560


Superintendent's Weekly Wrap-Up




Superintendent's Weekly Wrap-Up

School Year 2016-2017

February 17, 2017

Employee of the Week:
Please join in recognizing Mrs. Susan Brooks, Teacher Aide at Chatham Elementary School, on her selection as Employee of the Week for Pittsylvania County Schools. Please click on the following link to find out what employees do to make this A Great Place to Learn and Work! http://www.pcs.k12.va.us/staff/employee-of-week/

Please be reminded that Monday, February 20, 2017, is an early release day for students. Students will be dismissed at 1:00 p.m. with a teacher workday scheduled that afternoon.

It has been a tradition at Pittsylvania County School Board meetings to have the Student Representatives report on the Character Word of the Month. The reports begin in September when the Assistant Superintendent for Instruction or another Central Office staff member makes the first report to the School Board, and speaks with the Student Representatives about how to prepare and deliver the information to the Board.

I have always been amazed when the students present. They are always well-prepared, their delivery is excellent, and their essays are well-done. I have asked the Student Representatives whether they would mind if I use their second essays in the Wrap-up this year. The first to present a second essay was Sam Nicholson, the Student Representative to the School Board from Chatham High School. He reported on Self-Control at the February School Board meeting and his essay reads as follows:

Good evening Dr. Jones, members of the school board, my fellow student representatives, and all of those in attendance today.

The character word of the month for February is self-control. Self-control is an imperative virtue that one must have in order to lead a strong and healthy life. The most successful people I know are people that have a remarkable amount of self-control and willpower, because they have mastered the art of delayed gratification: something that many people fail to understand, even in adulthood.

Living in the United States, we live in a world of opportunity. If we have a goal and are dedicated to achieving it, there is nothing that is able to stop us as long as we never give up and as long as we demonstrate the self-control needed to succeed.

Of course, this is easier said than done. Building willpower takes time, but it can in fact be trained. My dad has a somewhat cheesy adage that he often says to me as I’m headed out the door to go to school in the morning: get an A today. He says that people often try to look too far into the future and end up getting overwhelmed; they quickly fall into old habits. He tells me that if I can just make it through today while making smart decisions, I’ll feel better tomorrow. And he’s so right about that; self-control can be strengthened by just improving on the little decisions you make every day. I know all of you have said to yourself at one point or another, “okay, I’m gonna cut out soda, run 3 miles a day, and read for an hour before bed now!” And while ambition shouldn’t be discouraged, all self-control really is is being smart about the small things, and things will improve from there.

School Board Clerk Appreciation Week-February 19 – 24, 2017:

Please join me in recognizing Mrs. Janet Hancock, Clerk of the Pittsylvania County School Board, for all that she does for Pittsylvania County Schools. She is a tireless champion for the students and staff of this County, who spends countless hours each week on tasks which ensure that the school division operates at its optimum. In every aspect of her job, she is a consummate professional.

School Board Appreciation Month:

Governor McAuliffe has proclaimed February, 2017, as School Board Appreciation Month to help build awareness of the crucial role school board members play in our communities and schools. Board members are extraordinary people who voluntarily tackle the enormous job of governing school divisions. Their actions and decisions affect the present and future lives of our children. Administrators, school staff, students, and the community all should recognize our School Board members for this exemplary commitment and sacrifice, and join in thanking them for all that they do for Pittsylvania County Schools.

Pittsylvania County Schools All-County Band Concert – Saturday, February 18, 2017:

The band directors of Pittsylvania County Schools would like to invite everyone to the All-County Band Concert on February 18, 2017. The concert will be held at Chatham High School in Chatham, Virginia, and will start at 7:00 p.m. The guest conductors for this event will be Mr. Earl Shaffer and Mr. David Holley. Some may know Mr. Holley as a former Tunstall High School graduate and former Pittsylvania County Schools’ employee. The public is invited to attend, and there is no admission fee to the concert.

Pittsylvania County Schools All-County Chorus Concert – Thursday, February 23, 2017:

All County Chorus 2017 will be held at Tunstall High School this Thursday, February 23, 2017. Students from Chatham High School, Dan River High School, Dan River Middle School, Gretna High School, and Tunstall High School will provide an excellent evening of music. The guest conductor is Mr. Jeremy Craft from Bedford County School Public Schools and Heather Anderson, Choral Director at Tunstall High and Middle Schools, will be the accompanist. The concert is free and open to the public. It will begin at 6:00 p.m. We invite you to join us for this event!

February is Black History Month:

In celebration of Black History Month, the Virginia Department of Education has provided teachers and school divisions with materials to use, and they may be found in the link to the VDOE memo as follows:


Please use these resources as you celebrate the accomplishments of many prominent African Americans.

Transportation Department Distributes Scholarship Information:

This week Ms. Ann Cassada, Assistant Superintendent for Support Services, and Mr. Kenyon Scott, Director of Pupil Transportation, provided information to high schools and staff relating to scholarship opportunities. The following scholarships are available:

Scholarship Due Date Due To
2017 Clyde W. Morris Memorial Scholarship 04-10-2017 Mr. Scott
2017 Buster Bynum Education Scholarship 04-10-2017 Mr. Scott
2017-2018 Pupil Transportation Scholarship 03-01-2017 VA Tech
2017 Adult Continuing Education Scholarship 04-30-2017
(Post Marked)
VAPT Chair
Sonny Merriman Memorial Scholarship  04-10-2017 Mr. Scott

Tunstall Middle School Shines at Jr. Beta Convention:
Congratulations to the Tunstall Middle School (TMS) BETA CLUB for placing as follows: TMS took- 2nd for Wreath, 3rd for Quiz Bowl, 4th for Spotlight your Club, and 4th for Songfest at the 21st Virginia Jr. Beta Convention in Williamsburg last week. There were 38 participants who attended with their sponsor KerriBeth Ludeman. Also, TMS BETA Sponsor, Kate Wells, directed and coordinated the entire Virginia State Convention as State Sponsor and completed her second year as Virginia State Jr. BETA Sponsor. She will assist at the National Convention in Orlando, Florida, in June. Congratulations Titans!

Chatham Elementary School Students Win Awards at Jr. Beta Convention:

Chatham Elementary School and students earned the following awards at the 2017 Jr. Beta Convention:

Gold Key award for 10% or more growth

  • 1st place poetry - Noel Word

  • 1st place special talent - Abby Yeatts

  • 2nd place language arts - Alyson Boyd

  • 3rd place math - Savannah Amos

  • 3rd place social studies - Sam Siebert

  • 3rd place t-shirt (Club)

Arts and crafts

  • 2nd place wreath - Trinity Custer

  • 2nd place woodworking - Cole Clements

  • 2nd place b&w photo - Riley Clements

  • 3rd place fiber - Will Anderson

  • 3rd place recycled art - Payten Daniel

Dan River High School Teachers Receive Air Force Association Grant:

Dan River High School is proud to announce that Mrs. Kelly Merricks, Science Teacher, and Ms. Tammy Strader, Librarian, have received the Chapter 240 Air Force Association matching grant. The funds will be used to add science laboratory materials in the classroom and update science resources in the library.
Superintendent's Weekly Wrap-Up

Black History Month-John L. Hurt, Jr. Elementary School:

Ms. Melanie Fredericks' 3rd-5th Grade music class learned about African American Spirituals and how these songs were used to communicate information about the Underground Railroad. Discussions involved "code words" in the songs "Follow the Drinking Gourd" and "Wade in the Water" to help the slaves find their way north to freedom. African Drums that were purchased with a grant from the Danville Pittsylvania County Chamber Foundation were used to play along to "Wade in the Water." Kindergarten students learned about Martin Luther King, Jr. Sign language was used, and the students sang the song "Sing About Martin." The students concluded class by coloring a picture about Martin Luther King, Jr.
Superintendent's Weekly Wrap-Up


  • Character Word of the Month – Self-Control

  • February is Black History Month

  • February is School Board Appreciation Month in Virginia

  • All County Band Concert, Saturday, February 18, 2017, @ 7:00 p.m., Chatham High School

  • Last Day of the Marking Period, Monday, February 20, 2017, 1:00 p.m. dismissal for students, ˝ Teacher Workday

  • Instructional Assistant Principals’ Meeting, Monday, February 20. 2017, @ 8:30 a.m., School Board Office

  • Grades entered into PowerTeacher, Wednesday, February 22, 2017, by 5:00 p.m.

  • All-County Chorus, Thursday, February 23, 2017, @ 6:00 p.m., Tunstall High School

Family Life Education Schedule for February

BES Grade 4 02-27-2017 to 03-02-2017 p.m. and Grade 5 02-27-2017 to 03-03-2017 p.m.

CMS Grades 6-8 02-21-2017 to 02-23-2017

SMES Grade 4 02-27-2017 to 03-02-2017 a.m.

Grade 5 02-27-2017 to 03-03-2017 a.m.

Tdap clinics and dates have been approved by the Health Department and are listed below:

9:00 a.m.         Gretna Elementary School
1:30 p.m.         Hurt Elementary School

9:00 a.m.         Chatham Elementary School

9:00 a.m.         Southside Elementary School
1:30 p.m.         Union Hall Elementary School

9:00 a.m.         Twin Springs Elementary School
1:30 p.m.         Mt. Airy Elementary School

9:00 a.m.         Kentuck Elementary School

9:00 a.m.         Stony Mill Elementary School
1:30 p.m.         Brosville Elementary School

Please send media requests to: http://www.pcs.k12.va.us/media/.  This may be (1) to request media presence on site to cover an upcoming event or (2) to request media coverage (without media on site) of an upcoming event or (3) to report news from a past event.  Thank you for identifying the great things happening in the schools!

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Last update: Monday, February 20, 2017 12:07 PM