Caroline County Teacher Announced as VFW National Teacher of the Year

We are pleased to announce that Caroline Middle School’s U.S. History II teacher, Ms. Sara Gibson has been selected as both the Virginia State Veterans of Foreign War’s Teacher of the Year as well as the VFW National Teacher of the year.
The VFW Teacher of the Year award contest recognizes three exceptional teachers for their outstanding commitment and passion for teaching Americanism and patriotism to their students. Each year, a classroom elementary, junior high, and high school teacher whose curriculum focuses on citizenship education topics can be nominated for the Smart/Maher VFW National Citizenship Education Teacher Award. Winners receive $1,000 for their own professional development, $1,000 for their respective schools, plus a free trip to New Orleans, La., where the awards will be presented during the 118th VFW National Convention this July.
In addition to the traditional awards, the top 10 high school category nominees will receive a special tuition grant to attend a summer Freedoms Foundation’s Medal of Honor Legacy graduate program. The accredited course, which includes up to three graduate credit hours, focuses on character-building and developing responsible citizens through the study of history and social sciences.
Caroline County Public Schools celebrate Ms. Gibson’s accomplishments and are fortunate for the learning opportunities her students receive on a daily basis as well as the impact she has on our community!

Sara Gibson in Korea
Sara Gibson

Inclement Weather Plan

Team Caroline,

Recent encounters with Mother Nature have provided Caroline County Public Schools with a natural opportunity to remind families of the school division’s inclement weather plan. As noted on the back of the 2017-2018 instructional calendar (located at www.ccps.us – under Division tab), CCPS has identified February 16 and April 9 as potential inclement weather make-up days. At this time, February 19 and April 9 will not be used as make-up days; however, the CCPS leadership team will continue to monitor the impact of any future closings on state requirements and instruction.

The Code of Virginia requires that school divisions’ instructional calendars reflect a minimum of 990 instructional hours. The 2017-2018 instructional calendar currently exceeds 990 hours which provides the division with flexibility to use “banked hours” to address the loss of instructional time due to inclement weather. School Board Office staff closely monitors lost instructional hours to ensure we remain in compliance with this regulation. This is especially critical at the secondary level as Caroline High School operates on a 4×4 schedule which equates to courses being one semester long. We must ensure that these semester-long high school courses align with state regulations by offering at least 495 hours of instruction per semester.

We respectfully reserve the right to inform you of any calendar changes should future closings necessitate a change to our current school calendar.

Thank you!

Young Explorers Program Builds Potential in All Second Grade Students

Caroline County Public Schools is thrilled to announce the launch of a new primary critical thinking program called Young Explorers. Young Explorers is designed to address a wide variety of critical thinking skills and strategies and to challenge students to think in different ways. The goal of the program is to recognize and cultivate the talents and abilities of all children in Caroline County at an early age, as well as identify students who may be underrepresented in the gifted program. Gifted specialists and classroom teachers collaborate to plan and teach these daily lessons that address topics such as mindset, memory, deductive reasoning, vocabulary, algebraic thinking and more. The program is implemented at the second grade level in all three elementary schools in Caroline County including Bowling Green, Madison and Lewis and Clark.

CCPS is committed to increasing achievement for all students through a variety of best practices, innovative teaching strategies, data analysis, differentiation, and providing students a safe and caring learning environment. As we strive to achieve excellence at the state and national levels,it is pertinent that we recognize the needs of all students, particularly culturally diverse and economically disadvantaged students who may not be reaching their full potential. By implementing the Young Explorers program and observing students more closely, we will have a better understanding of each student who comes through our doors and respond appropriately to their feelings, behaviors, and needs. CCPS is very dedicated to providing classrooms where potential is actively nurtured and valued.

The Young Explorers program was developed by CCPS gifted specialists Barbara Miller, Lindsey Rose, and Chelsea Spiegel. Dr. Joanne Jones, Director of Curriculum shared, “Caroline is excited about the potential of the program and would like to thank Chesterfield and Hanover Counties for their collaborative support and shared successes with similar programs.”