Thursday, July 31, 2008

Atlanta Christian College Offers CLEP Exams

Atlanta Christian College is pleased to announce that CLEP exams will now be available on the ACC campus, beginning August 1. The College-Level Examination Program (CLEP) is a credit-by-examination program, sponsored by the College Board, which gives students the opportunity to earn college credit by earning qualifying scores on exams. CLEP exams are computer-based and administered on the computer in the Enrollment Office at ACC.

Students take CLEP for a variety of reasons. Some use CLEP to shorten the time it takes to earn a college degree, thereby saving money on tuition and fees. Others take CLEP to move on to more advanced courses sooner, complete basic requirements in order to take more electives, or satisfy college requirements.

“The biggest benefit of taking a CLEP test is that it will save students time and money,” said Colleen Ramos, vice president of enrollment management and professional studies at ACC. “These tests also recognize your past experiences and allow you to test your knowledge.”

CLEP exams also offer a low-cost method for earning college credit. At $90 ($70 for the exam plus $20 administration fee), each exam is a fraction of the tuition required for a similar college course. The 90-minute, computer-based exams are offered in more than 34 subjects, ranging from U.S. history to Spanish to college algebra. Students receive their scores immediately upon completion of the exam (except for the English Composition with Essay exam).

Students have the opportunity to prepare for CLEP exams using the CLEP Official Study Guide, which helps students learn more about CLEP exams and decide which CLEP exams to take. It includes sample test questions for all 34 CLEP exams and provides test-taking tips and a list of study resources to help students prepare for the exams. Individual subject guides are also available online on the CLEP web site.

Nearly 3,000 colleges and universities grant credit or advanced standing based on CLEP exam performance. However, it is not necessary to be enrolled in college in order to take a CLEP test.

For more information about CLEP, visit www.collegeboard.com/clep. To schedule an exam, call 404-669-3202 or visit our web site at www.acc.edu/clep.

Clayton State Alumni Association to Sponsor Clayton State Night at Turner Field

Clayton State University alumni and friends, mark your calendars, it’s time for a trip to the ballpark.

The Clayton State Alumni Association will sponsor Clayton State Night at the Atlanta Braves’ Turner Field on Thursday, Sept. 4. First pitch will be 7 p.m., as Atlanta faces off against the Washington Nationals in a National League East Division match-up.

Tickets will be available at a special $6 per person rate, which is half-price off the regular gate price for an Upper Box ticket behind home plate. Dues-paying Alumni Association members will have the opportunity to receive even a better deal and can purchase two tickets for $6.

The Association is also considering reserving a pre-game patio area for attendees to meet and greet before the game if there is enough interest. Tickets are limited, and the Alumni Association asks that alumni and friends to please RSVP as soon as possible.

For more information about purchasing tickets, please contact Clayton State Alumni Relations at (678) 466-4477 or by email gidrowell@clayton.edu.

A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.

Clayton State University Welcomes New Director for Center for Instructional Development

Clayton State University welcomes Dr. Jill Lane, the new director for the Center for Instruction Development (CID).

“The first thing I plan to do is to find out exactly what the faculty needs are and to meet with all of the deans to find out how CID can support them. Once I have accomplished this, I plan to work with the department to tailor programs to their needs,” says Lane.

Based on faculty demand and a recommendation from the University’s Faculty Development Coordinating Council, CID was established under the Vice President of Academic Affairs in August 1998. The goals of the Center are:

support faculty in the use of software and multimedia tools;
enhance instruction through the development of online courses;
build community among academic support units;
explore new technologies for instruction;
model pedagogical principles.

Prior to her appointment as the director of CID, Lane held the position of research associate/program manager of Course and Curricular Development at Penn State’s Schreyer Institute for Teaching Excellence.

Lane earned her Doctorate of Education in Instructional Systems from Penn State. She also earned her Master of Education in Computing in Education from Rosemont College.

Lane is a co-recipient of the 2006 Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals Teaching Innovation Award and a co-recipient of the 2005 American Society of Engineering Education Mechanics Division’s Best Paper Award, Best Session Award and Best Overall Presentation Award.

Lane was the invited keynote speaker at the 2007 International Conference on Foreign Language Teaching and Learning in Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

Her research centers on the sustainability of innovations in education. She has more than 10 years experience working with faculty and teaching assistants on methods to enhance teaching and learning. Lane anticipates that within five years Clayton State’s CID will have more of a prominence at the state and national levels for its support of faculty.

“Faculty development is something I hold very near and dear to my heart. When the position was offered to me, it was a very easy decision to make. Ultimately, the commitment and emphasis on teaching at Clayton State is what made my decision easy. However, I also choose to come to Clayton State because of the diversity of the faculty, staff, and student body. The diversity here offers so many opportunities to learn from others,” explains Lane.

Now living in McDonough, Ga., Lane moved from Pennsylvania with her three cats. Lane loves gardening and wood working as stress relievers. She also makes furniture in her spare time. Lane looks forward to getting settled in her new home which has a large workshop to accommodate her hobbies.

A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.

Clayton State to Extend Late Registration Through Saturday, August 16

With the opening of Laker Hall as the first on-campus student housing at Clayton State University, and “move in” dates for the new residence starting on Thursday, Aug. 14 and extending through Sunday, Aug. 17, the University has decided to extend late registration for the fall semester through Saturday, Aug. 16.

All campus offices, with few exceptions, will be open Saturday, Aug. 16 from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m.

The following dates are important to remember:

Aug. 10 Last day for students to pay tuition and fees without late fee
Aug. 12-16 Late registration for fall term 2008 ($100 late fee)
Aug. 16 Last day for admitted students to register and pay tuition/fees
Aug. 18-21 Drop/Add for students who are enrolled by 5 p.m. on Aug. 16

No new registrations will be allowed after 5 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 16. Students not paid by 5 p.m. on Aug. 16 will be purged from class rolls immediately following close of registration.

A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.

Georgia's Standards Get High Marks

Georgia's state curriculum is extremely well-aligned with what colleges and the business world expect high school graduates to know, according to a national report released today.

Achieve Inc., a group seeking to raise academic standards across the nation, reviewed the standards of 16 states to determine if the state's expectations of students aligned with the skills and knowledge needed in college and the work place. With a top score of 3 points, Georgia's English standards scored 2.96 and Georgia's math standards scored 2.79.

"The Achieve report is another validation of the hard work that was done to create clear, rigorous standards for our students," said State Superintendent of Schools Kathy Cox. "The Georgia Performance Standards are providing our students the core knowledge they need to be successful in the 21st century."

Georgia is one of 33 states engaged in Achieve's "American Diploma Project," which seeks to align state standards with college- and work-ready expectations. It is the result of collaboration between the nation's governor's and business leaders.

"This report underscores the wisdom to put in place a more rigorous curriculum in Georgia's K-12 schools," said University System of Georgia Chancellor Erroll B. Davis. "Higher academic standards in K-12 means more Georgians graduating from high school prepared for college-level work, and in turn, ultimately, more college graduates ready to help Georgia prosper."

Achieve's report, "Out of Many, One: Toward Rigorous Common Core Standards from the Ground Up," reviews the English and Mathematics standards for the 16 states that signed on to the American Diploma Project early on. It rates English standards in eight categories, or "strands," and rates Mathematics standards in five categories. The top possible score is a 3.0 in each area (see chart below).

Georgia has revised its core curriculum into a set of clear, rigorous expectations called the Georgia Performance Standards. The curriculum revision began with the four core subjects of English language arts, mathematics, science and social studies. The Georgia Performance Standards are being phased in over a number of years and teachers are being trained for a full year before the new curriculum is introduced in the classroom.

Additionally, the state has a new set of graduation requirements that were developed collaboratively by educators and leaders from K-12 schools, colleges, universities, technical colleges and the business community. In order to earn a diploma, students who are entering 9th grade in 2008-2009 will have to take four years of mathematics, science and English Language arts and three years of social studies. These students will also have at least seven electives with which to personalize their education, whether that includes more core content, career-preparation classes or pursuit of the arts.

"In today's world, all students need a strong foundation in mathematics, English, science and social studies, no matter what their plans are after school," said Ron Jackson, Commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia. "If we properly prepare our students in elementary, middle and high school, we are preparing our students for success and creating a strong workforce for the state of Georgia."

Superintendent Cox, Chancellor Davis and Commissioner Jackson serve together on the Alliance of Education Agency Heads. The Alliance brings together the leaders of Georgia's seven education agencies to collaborate on initiatives that will improve educational opportunities, from pre-K to Ph. D.

The other members of the Alliance are Jennifer Rippner Buck, Executive Director of the Governor's Office of Student Achievement; Tim Connell, President of the Georgia Student Finance Commission, Kelly Henson, Executive Secretary of the Georgia Professional Standards Commission, and Holly Robinson, Commissioner of the Department of Early Care and Learning. The Alliance also includes representatives from the Georgia Partnership for Excellence in Education and the Metro Atlanta Chamber of Commerce. Learn more about the Alliance at www.gaeducationalliance.org.

GEORGIA'S ENGLISH STANDARDS
Strand Score (out of 3.0)
Language 3.00
Communication 3.00
Writing 3.00
Research 3.00
Logic 3.00
Informational Text 2.67
Media 3.00
Literature 3.00
TOTAL AVERAGE 2.96

GEORGIA'S MATHEMATICS STANDARDS
Strand Score (out of 3.0)

Number Sense and Numeracy Operations 2.63
Algebra 2.92
Geometry 2.89
Data Interpretation, Statistics & Probability 2.50
Mathematical Reasoning 3.00
TOTAL AVERAGE 2.79

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Clayton State Welcomes New Dean for College of Arts and Sciences

Clayton State University welcomes the new dean for the College of Arts and Sciences, Dr. Nasser Momayezi.

Momayezi comes to Clayton State from Texas A&M International University (TAMIU) located in Laredo, Tx. He began teaching at TAMIU in 1995 as an associate professor of political science. While at TAMIU, Momayezi held positions as the department chair, associate dean and was promoted to dean for the College of Arts and Sciences in 2002.

“Moving to a new city and starting a new job can be quite stressful,” says Momayezi, “But people here at Clayton State; especially my colleagues in the College of Arts and Sciences, have made us feel at home. We truly appreciate this wonderful Southern hospitality. I am very excited about my new job and I foresee a wonderful bright future for this college and university.”

During his tenure, Momayezi hopes to see the College of Arts and Sciences offer new programs and degrees, as well as a new science building which would be a vehicle to offer more degrees in science fields. He also emphasized the importance of giving faculty as much support as possible so they can become tenured faculty with excellence in both teaching and research.

His primary research and teaching contributions include international relations, Middle Eastern politics, American Constitutional law, and Texas politics. He has more than 40 publications and most recently was the primary author of the third edition of Texas Politics: Individuals Making a Difference.

Momayezi received his PhD in political science from Texas Tech University. In 2003, he also earned a University Management Development Program (MDP) certificate from the Graduate School of Education at Harvard University.

He received a Master Teacher Award in teaching excellence presented by the University of Texas at Austin in1993 and also honored in 2003 as a Texas A&M University System Regents Professor.

Momayezi has served vice president and president of the Texas Association of the Deans of Liberal Arts and Sciences. He also served as a senior fellow at the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.

“Clayton State University’s College of Arts and Sciences has an excellent cadre of faculty with impeccable credentials. I will work closely with this dedicated faculty to move this college to the next level of excellence,” says Momayezi.

Momayezi is married with two children who are 12 and six years old. After living in Texas for more then two decades, he and his family now reside in Smyrna, Ga.

A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.

Clayton State Adds Dr. Lila Roberts, Dean of the College of Information and Mathematical Sciences

Clayton State University welcomes Dr. Lila F. Roberts, new dean of the University’s College of Information and Mathematical Sciences (CIMS). Roberts officially starts her duties this fall semester.

CIMS houses the University’s undergraduate Information Technology degree programs and the institution’s Mathematics degree program – a pairing that Roberts calls “unique” in the University System of Georgia.

“The organizational structure of the CIMS is unique in the University System and this organization presents both exciting potential and interesting challenges,” she says. “I [am] impressed with the talent and potential in both departments, the prospect of expanding and developing new programs and the enthusiasm and supportive nature of this administration.”

The fact that CIMS houses IT and mathematics under the same roof intrigues Roberts, and she hopes to foster a sense of community among CIMS’ faculty and students as well as extend the collaborative spirit of the college into other disciplines.

“One way we might do that is to develop a concentration area in Computational Sciences, which would have a multi-disciplinary focus so students can experience how important mathematics and computing are in a variety of settings. Mathematical biology and bioinformatics are ‘hot’ areas of research… building such programs will help us to cross college boundaries…”

Roberts is also committed to community outreach and hopes that Clayton State can nourish existing partnerships with local school systems and establish new ones.

Addressing the need for strong mathematics skills before students reach the college level, Roberts says, “Outreach by Clayton State University Mathematics faculty is critical to the region in terms of improving elementary, middle school and high school student preparation in mathematics. One way our faculty is reaching this population of students is by providing content enhancement to teachers in the surrounding counties.”

On the home front, Roberts will also encourage the development of the proposed Master of Science in Teaching (MAT) in Mathematics and a Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with an emphasis on game design and development.

A native of rural western North Carolina, Roberts holds a B.S. in Mathematics Education from North Carolina State University and an M.S. and Ph.D. in Computational and Applied Mathematics from Old Dominion University. Prior to her appointment as dean of the College of Information and Mathematical Sciences, Roberts served as chair of the Department of Mathematics at Georgia College & State University from 2003 to 2008.

Roberts and her husband, Dr. Lonnie Roberts, recently celebrated their 30th wedding anniversary. They currently live in Fayetteville and have two feline children, who, according to Roberts, “allow us to live in their home.” Woody is a four-year-old Seal Point Siamese and Lucy is a four-year-old Tortie Siamese. Both animals are rescues.

And if you’re wondering whether the CIMS dean spends time with technology when she’s off the clock, Roberts is a self-proclaimed technology junkie. Want proof? She owns seven iPods.

“If something has a computer chip, I’m interested in it.”

Always education minded, Roberts enjoys developing strategies for using technological innovations to enhance learning. Roberts’ project Demos with Positive Impact, funded by the National Science Foundation, won the 2008 MERLOT Award for Exemplary Learning Materials. She is currently developing a website that makes Demos with Positive Impact web pages and multimedia materials accessible to students and instructors who have low hearing or vision.

To learn more about Roberts, email lilaroberts@clayton.edu.

A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.

Tift College of Education Programs Expand Throughout State

Tift College of Education is expanding several programs, including the graduate program. The College’s Master of Education degree with a concentration in early childhood education, which is currently offered on the Atlanta campus, also will be available at the Douglas County and Henry County Regional Academic Centers beginning this fall.

The M.Ed. program for teachers consists of 10 classes designed to enhance the knowledge and skills of certified teachers while also providing teachers with the opportunity to upgrade their teaching certificate to a master’s level (T-5). Classes are arranged in cohort groups that will start each fall.

As a twist, the master’s level early childhood education program in Douglas and Henry Counties will be a hybrid program, with learning occurring in the classroom and in an online environment. Each program will have the same objectives and offer the same courses, though the Atlanta program will continue to meet all classes face to face.

The College also offers M.Ed. degrees in middle grades education, reading, secondary education and educational leadership, as well as a Collaborative Educator program.

In addition to the Master of Education degree program, other Tift College of Education programs are expanding their borders. The College introduced the Early Care and Education program at the Henry County Regional Academic Center in McDonough in fall 2006 with an inaugural class of 21 students. Although only a year and a half old, the program—which currently enrolls 85 students — is opening its doors to new communities. In addition to the Henry County Center, students interested in the program can now enroll at the Douglas County Regional Academic Center in Lithia Springs and at the Atlanta campus.

This Bachelor of Science in Education degree, with a major in early care and education, is designed for individuals who wish to be certified to teach children from birth to five years of age. Graduates of the early care and education program are qualified for administrative, certified teaching, or social service positions with child care centers, Head Start programs, pre-kindergarten programs, social services agencies, and other facilities designed for the care and development of young children.

Plans are also underway to expand the educational leadership program to the Savannah campus beginning fall 2008, making Tift College of Education the third of Mercer’s schools and colleges to offer programs in Savannah. The program will join the four-year doctor of medicine program offered by the School of Medicine and the Professional Master of Business Administration degree offered by the Stetson School of Business and Economics.

Information about all Tift College of Education programs can be found at http://www.mercer.edu/education.

Upcoming Events at Clayton State University

Clayton State University will dedicate its first on-campus student housing, Laker Hall, on Tuesday, Aug. 12 at 10 a.m.

Customer Service Initiatives Ready to Roll Out, Aug. 1

Clayton State’s Customer Service Team is preparing to roll out two new customer service initiatives for the University, one involving providing information (Ask Me!) and the other looking for customer feedback (Tell Us!).

The Customer Service Team is set for the Aug. 1 rollout of a program that will ask for information – a standardized customer service feedback form. “Tell Us!” customer service feedback forms will be available in 10 to 12 boxes around campus.

This program is a new tool to measure to how successful Customer Service is at Clayton State, and is in keeping with the governor’s customer service initiative, which mandates a measurement function in customer service plans.

The “Ask Me!” program is a partnership between the Customer Service Team, the Department of Campus Life and the Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority that will help welcome newcomers to the University in the week before the start of fall semester classes. Featuring welcome tents and student volunteers wearing bright orange T-shirts, “Ask Me!” will start three to four days prior to the start of classes on Monday, Aug. 18.

In addition to the welcome tents, other orange-clad student volunteers will act as weekday “floaters” around campus, answering questions and generally helping point people in the right direction(s). Depending on the number of student volunteers – many of whom will come from the Honors Program – the bright orange floaters will start floating on Wednesday, Aug. 13 or Thursday, Aug. 14.

Clayton State to Dedicate Laker Hall, Aug. 12

Clayton State University will dedicate its first on-campus housing, Laker Hall, on Tuesday, Aug. 12 with a grand opening and ribbon cutting starting at 10 a.m.

The ribbon cutting, hosted by Clayton State President Dr. Thomas K. Harden and the CSU Foundation Real Estate I LLC, will be held in the lobby of Laker Hall, which is located on the north side of Clayton State Boulevard. A reception and tours of Laker Hall will immediate follow the ceremony. Media representatives wishing to attend the event should contact the Clayton State Office of University Relations.

In addition to signifying a true paradigm shift in the history of Clayton State University, Laker Hall is also the largest building on campus, at 178,000 square feet, and features 451 beds in 108 units on four floors. Laker Hall is a public/private venture, funded by a bond project with the Development Authority of Clayton County the issuing agency. Owned by CSU Foundation Real Estate I LLC, Laker Hall is leased to the University System of Georgia with the lease payments coming from housing rental.

School of Graduate Studies Holding Open House, Aug. 12

The Clayton State University School of Graduate Studies will be holding its next monthly informational Open House on Tuesday, Aug. 12 from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in room 201 of the University’s Harry S. Downs Center.

The Open House will give prospective graduate students a chance to learn more about the Master of Arts in Liberal Studies, Master of Business Administration, Master of Health Administration, and Master of Science in Nursing. The Clayton State School of Graduate Studies regularly holds open houses on the second Tuesday evening of each month.

Clayton State Premiere, Aug. 14 – Aug. 17

Clayton State’s welcoming its first class of residential students, Clayton State University Premiere, will take place Aug. 14 to Aug. 17 with several activities and events planned.
“This will be an historic time at the University with the opening of the first-ever on campus housing,” says Dr. Brian Haynes, vice president for Student Affairs. “We are encouraging students, faculty and staff to participate in the many activities associated with this occasion.”
“Operation Move-in” will begin in the morning of Thursday, Aug. 14 with students moving into their rooms. Several additional activities and events are being planned and will be released shortly for the four-day span by the Premiere Committee and the Office of Residence Life.

2008 Welcome Week, Aug. 18-22

As a way to welcome Clayton State University’s new and returning students to campus, the Department of Campus Life is scheduling Welcome Week 2008 for Aug. 18 through Aug. 22.

The theme for this year’s Welcome Week is E3: Explore. Experience. Excel. The mission of Welcome Week is to provide events, programs and information for students that will enhance their chances of excelling in and outside of the classroom. The week will feature several events and programs that will make new and returning students’ college transition and experience memorable and productive.

Third Annual New Student Convocation & Reception, Aug. 26

The Third Annual New Student Convocation will be held on Tuesday, Aug. 26 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:20 p.m. This ceremony will inspire, motivate and officially welcome new students to Clayton State University. Per faculty feedback regarding last year’s program, we will return to academic regalia for this year’s event. Please allow eight-10 weeks for turnaround time if you plan to order or rent regalia. Please contact the University Bookstore or Linda Campbell at LindaCampbell@Clayton.edu for additional ordering information.

The program will provide an opportunity for students to connect with their faculty, staff and classmates. Faculty support at last year’s event was phenomenal. Approximately 140 faculty and staff and 240 students were in attendance for the program. Your continued support and assistance is greatly needed and appreciated.

For additional information, contact Celena Milner at (678) 466-5443 or via e-mail at CelenaMilner@clayton.edu.

NARA Records Administration Conference, Sept. 9

The Southeast Region of the National Archives and Records Administration Director of Records Management is developing a regional version of NARA's national Records Administration Conference (RACO), which is held annually in Washington, DC.

The Southeast region event will take place at The Fox Theatre in Atlanta on Tuesday, Sept. 9, 2008, and will consist of a keynote address by the Archivist's (of the United States) lawyer on challenges associated with the management of ephemeral electronic records, plus several sessions relating to disaster preparedness and response, collaborative records management tools such as Web 2.0, records management training, and implementation of Records Management Applications.

A buffet lunch and docent-conducted tours will round out the event. All interested faculty and students within Atlanta's academic community are invited. More information will be forthcoming in Campus Review and Laker Lines.

Daniel Pyle to Open 2008/2009 Spivey Hall Season, Sept. 13

Dr. Daniel Pyle, adjunct instructor of Music Appreciation and Harpsichord for the Department of Music, and music director/organist for The Church of Our Savior in Atlanta, will open the 2008/2009 Spivey Hall season on Saturday, Sept. 13, with an organ recital presented by the Department of Music

The free concert, which begins at 7:30 p.m., will feature music of Northern Germany and Scandinavia by Baroque master Dieterich Buxtehude and Commotio by 20th-century Danish composer Carl Nielsen.

A unit of the University System of Georgia, Clayton State University is an outstanding comprehensive metropolitan university located 15 miles southeast of downtown Atlanta.

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West Georgia to Hold Commencement Saturday

The University of West Georgia summer commencement will be held in the Campus Center Gymnasium at 9 a.m., noon and 3 p.m. Undergraduates from the College of Arts and Sciences will be awarded degrees at the 9 a.m. ceremony. The noon ceremony will feature undergraduates receiving their degrees from the Richards College of Business. At 3 p.m., students earning their degrees from the College of Education and the Graduate School will receive their diploma.

Yong Suh, a graduate of the UWG Honors College and Advanced Academy of Georgia, will speak at the 9 a.m. ceremony. Suh is currently a healthcare analyst focusing on pharmaceutical and biotechnology investments at Noonday Asset Management, a global multi-strategy hedge fund.

As an undergraduate student at UWG, Suh was one of only four undergraduates in the nation selected to serve as a National Institutes of Health research fellow in the laboratory of Dr. Francis Collins, then the director of the Human Genome Project. Following his graduation from UWG in 2001, he worked in Collins’ lab researching the genetics of type 2 diabetes.
Before embarking on a career in finance, Suh was a Marshall Scholar at Oxford University and the only Marshall Scholarship recipient in UWG’s history. He completed two master’s degrees at Oxford in less than two years, graduating with a M.Sc. in research in pharmacology and an MBA the age of 23.

Dr. David H. Hovey will speak at the noon ceremony. Hovey served as dean of the Richards College of Business at UWG from 1984 to 1999 and as professor of management until his retirement this summer.

During his years as dean, the RCOB achieved accreditation of its graduate programs and separate accreditation of accounting undergraduate and graduate programs from the prestigious Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business International (AACSBI). Hovey also established the Small Business Development Center on campus and helped create a consortium to offer Georgia’s first online MBA degree. Other programs initiated during his tenure include the International Banking and Finance Study Abroad Program, the annual Economic Forecast Breakfast and the Merryl and Hardy McCalman Executive Roundtable.
Hovey was also instrumental in securing the donation from the Roy Richards family that led to the college’s naming as the “Richards” College of Business. Beginning this fall, he will continue his university service by teaching part time in the RCOB.

Dr. Brent M. Snow will be the commencement speaker for the 3 p.m. ceremony. Snow is the associate vice president for Academic Affairs, a professor of counseling and educational psychology at UWG and has served as the chair of the Department of Counseling and Educational Psychology for 16 years.

Snow and faculty in the counseling and educational psychology department earned recognition as pioneers and national leaders in school counseling reform in 2002 by the Education Trust, a nonprofit educational organization based in Washington, D.C. Under his leadership, the department was also one of only six university departments in the United States to gain funding from the Wallace-Reader’s Digest Fund to transform graduate-level training programs in school counseling. The $450,000 grant is the largest private grant in UWG’s history.
Approximately 500 students will graduate with a degree this summer. For more information, visit the university website at westga.edu.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

College Scholarship Helps Students with Asthma

(ARA) – Even as the class of 2008 enjoys the milestones of their senior year, many are already well into their preparations for college. Scholarships are an important way for some students to help fund a college education, though identifying available awards can be daunting. However, if you are one of the many high school students affected by asthma, there’s a special option for you.

Applications are now being accepted for Schering-Plough’s “Will to Win” college scholarship program, which recognizes high school seniors with asthma who are pursuing higher education.

“Every day, teenagers overcome the challenges of living with asthma and achieve great things,” says Mike Tringale, director of external affairs at the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America. “The ‘Will to Win’ Scholarship Program recognizes these young asthma patients who are dedicated to properly managing their disease and have not let the condition impede their ability to excel.”

Scholarships of $5,000 will be awarded to two high school seniors in each of five categories: performing arts; visual arts; community service; athletics and science. Each applicant must demonstrate outstanding performance and a documented track record of achievement in one of these categories. Applicants must also have received at least one separate award related to their category.

All high school seniors with asthma who will graduate in 2008 and hold a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.5 on a 4.0 scale are eligible to apply. All scholarship winners will be required to supply documentation of U.S. citizenship, acceptance to an accredited college and enrollment in college in the fall 2008 semester.

For additional information, applications and entry rules, please visit the Web site www.schering-ploughwilltowin.com or call (800) SCHERING.

Courtesy of ARAcontent

Early-Life Nutrition May Be Associated With Adult Intellectual Functioning

• Adults who had improved nutrition in early childhood may score better on intellectual tests.
• Poor nutrition during childhood is associated with poor cognitive performance in adulthood.

Adults who had improved nutrition in early childhood may score better on intellectual tests, regardless of the number of years they attended school, according to a report in the July issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

"Schooling is a key component of the development of literacy, reading comprehension and cognitive functioning, and thus of human capital," says Aryeh D. Stein, PhD, MPH, an associate professor of global health at Emory University's Rollins School of Public Health.

Research also suggests that poor nutrition in early life is associated with poor performance on cognitive (thinking, learning and memory) tests in adulthood.

"Therefore, both nutrition and early-childhood intellectual enrichment are likely to be important determinants of intellectual functioning in adulthood," Stein says.

Between 1969 and 1977, Guatemalan children in four villages participated in a trial of nutritional supplementation. Through the trial, some were exposed to atole--a protein-rich enhanced nutritional supplement--while others were exposed to fresco, a sugar-sweetened beverage. Stein and colleagues analyzed data from intellectual testing and interviews conducted between 2002 and 2004, when 1,448 surviving participants (68.4 percent) were an average of 32 years old.

Individuals exposed to atole between birth and age 24 months scored higher on intellectual tests of reading comprehension and cognitive functioning in adulthood than those not exposed to atole or who were exposed to it at other ages. This association remained significant when the researchers controlled for other factors associated with intellectual functioning, including years of schooling.

"Nutrition in early life is associated with markers of child development in this population, and exposure to atole for most of the first three years of life was associated with an increase of 0.4 years in attained schooling, with the association being stronger for females (1.2 years of schooling)," Stein says.

Thus, schooling might be in the causal pathway between early childhood nutrition and adult intellectual functioning, says Stein. The data, which suggest an effect of exposure to an enhanced nutritional intervention in early life that is independent of any effect of schooling, provide additional evidence in support of intervention strategies that link early investments in children to continued investments in early-life nutrition and in schooling.

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In addition to Stein, study authors were Meng Wang, MS, Ann DiGirolamo, PhD, Usha Ramakrishnan, PhD, Kathryn Yount, PhD, and Reynaldo Martorell, PhD, all of the Hubert Department of Global Health, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University; and Ruben Grajeda, MD, and Manuel Ramirez-Zea, MD, PhD of the Unit of Public Policies, Institute of Nutrition of Central America and Panama.

This study was supported by grants from the National Institutes of Health and from the National Science Foundation. The National Institutes of Health, the Thrasher Fund and the Nestle Foundation have funded the work of the INCAP Longitudinal Study since its inception. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.

Reference: Arch Pediatr Adolesc Med. 2008;162[7]:612-618

New GI Bill Provides Increased Educational Benefits

The latest GI Bill considerably improves the opportunity for today's servicemembers to obtain their education, a senior Defense Department official said.

President Bush signed the Post-9/11 Veterans Education Assistance Act of 2008 on June 30. The new law mirrors the tenets of the original GI Bill, which gave returning World War II veterans the opportunity to go to any school they wanted while receiving a living stipend, Bob Clark, the Pentagon's assistant director of accessions policy, said.

"The original GI Bill was said to be one of the most significant social impacts of the 20th century," Clark said. "We believe the new bill is going to have a similar impact."

The ew GI Bill is applies to individuals who served on active duty on or after Sept. 11, 2001, and offers education benefits worth an average of $80,000 – double the value of those in the previous program. It covers the full costs of tuition and books, which are paid directly to the school, and it provides a variable stipend for living expenses. It's also transferable to family members of career servicemembers.

Its only restriction is that payment amounts are limited to the most expensive in-state cost to attend a college or university in the state where veterans attend school, he said.

The variable stipend is based on the Defense Department's basic allowance for housing for an E-5, which averages about $1,200 a month, and $1,000 a year will be paid directly to the servicemember for books and supplies, he added.

Enrollment into the Post-9/11 GI Bill is free. Eligibility for the Montgomery GI Bill is based on service commitment and requires active-duty servicemembers to pay a $1,200 fee over the initial year of their enlistment.

The new bill requires that an individual serve at least 90 days on active duty after Sept. 10, 2001, and if discharged, be separated on honorable terms. Servicemembers discharged due to a service-connected disability are eligible if they served 30 continuous days on active duty. Servicemembers must serve 36 aggregated months to qualify for the full amount of benefits.

Servicemembers are entitled to benefits of the new bill for up to 36 months and have up to 15 years from their last 30 days of continuous service to use their entitlements. But as successful as Defense Department officials anticipate the new bill to be, Clark suggested that new recruits still enroll in the Montgomery GI Bill.

The Montgomery GI Bill gives benefits for higher education as well as vocational training, apprenticeship programs and on-the-job training, he explained. The Post-9/11 GI Bill focuses solely on higher education and can only be used at institutions that offer at least an associate's degree, he said.

"We recommend that all new recruits think hard before turning down the Montgomery GI Bill, because they will limit their opportunities for additional education without it," he added.

Servicemembers also are "highly encouraged" to use the Defense Department's tuition assistance program while on active duty, because the Post-9/11 GI Bill's full entitlements, such as the living stipend and book allowance, will not be available, Clark said.

"If you use the Post-9/11 GI Bill while on active duty, it will merely cover tuition or the difference of what tuition assistance will pay," he explained. "Another downside to that is each month you use [the new bill], you lose a month of your 36 months of eligibility."

So, if servicemembers serve on active duty on or after Aug. 1, 2009, and meet the minimum time-in-service requirement, they will be eligible for the new GI Bill while also maintaining benefits from the Montgomery GI Bill, he said.

The Post-9/11 GI Bill also brings good news for officers and for servicemembers who enlisted under the loan repayment program. Since eligibility for the Post-9/11 GI Bill is based on time already served, more servicemembers will be able to take advantage of its benefits, Clark added. Officers commissioned through one of the service academies or through ROTC and enlisted servicemembers participating in the loan repayment program don't qualify for the Montgomery GI Bill, he said.

Those servicemembers will be able to qualify if they finish their initial obligatory service. Commissioned officers must complete their initial five-year commitment if they attended a service academy or their four-year agreement if they were commissioned through college ROTC. Servicemembers whose college loans were paid off by the Defense Department as a re-enlistment incentive must finish their initial commitment – whether it is three, four or five years – before they can apply, Clark said.

"Any amount of time an individual served after their obligated service counts for qualifying service under the new GI Bill," he said.

Another facet unique to the Post-9/11 GI Bill is that it's transferable to family members. The feature gives the defense and service secretaries the authority to offer career servicemembers the opportunity to transfer unused benefits to their family. Though Defense Department officials still are working with the services to hash out eligibility requirements, there are four prerequisites that are subject to adjustment or change, Clark said.

Currently transferability requirements are:

-- Qualifying service to be eligible for the Post-9/11 GI Bill;

-- Active duty service in the armed forces on or after Aug. 1, 2009;

-- At least six years of service in the armed forces;

-- Agreement to serve four more years in the armed forces.

"We're really excited about transferability," Clark said. "That was one of the things about education and the GI Bill that's come up the most often from the field and fleet."

Individuals who may not qualify to transfer unused benefits because they leave the service before the new bill's effective date most likely still will qualify for the bill. As long as the separated servicemembers meet the minimum qualifying time served, they can contact their local Veterans Affairs office and apply for the program. While payments are not retroactive, eligibility is, Clark said.

"This new bill will allow our veterans to chase their dreams," Clark said. "It will allow them to go back and experience college like they deserve, much like their grandfathers did in World War II."

More information about the Post-9/11 GI Bill is available at local Veterans Affairs Office and at www.gibill.va.gov.

By Army Staff Sgt. Michael J. Carden
American Forces Press Service

Bob Barr: Government Should Leave Home Schooling Families Alone, Says Wayne Allyn Root

“There is no more important task for a parent than the education of one’s children. That responsibility belongs to parents, not the government,” insists Wayne Allyn Root, the Libertarian Party candidate for vice president. “As a home school parent myself, I know how important it is for government to not interfere in the education process.”

Yet the city of Washington, D.C. has issued new regulations that for the first time in 15 years anywhere in America increase government control over home-schooling. “Given the abysmal job performed by the District public schools, the D.C. government should be encouraging, not discouraging home schooling,” says Root. “It is the height of arrogance for this school system with its poor performance to sit in judgment over the quality of parental instruction.”

Home schoolers also have been under attack in California, Root observes, where a court recently ruled against home school parents, declaring that there is no constitutional right to home school. However, he notes, “the U.S. Supreme Court once blocked a state attempt to outlaw private schools, explaining that 'the child is not the mere creature of the state.' That principle is equally valid for home schooling.”

"The good news in California," Root adds, "is that the state has dropped its action against the home schooling family. But the state legislature still should act to protect the fundamental right of parents to educate their own children. The D.C. city council should do the same,” he says.

“There may be no better example as to how government has outgrown its original role than the fact that many people now believe education to be not a family, not a local, and not a state responsibility, but a federal responsibility. That’s entirely wrong,” says Root. “There may be no more important liberty than the right to care for one’s own family, including to ensure the proper education of one’s children. Bob Barr and I are dedicated to promoting that right in our campaign for president and vice president.”

Wayne Root and his wife Debra home school their 4 young children. Wayne is the first home school father on a Presidential ticket in modern history.

Know Your Options When It Comes to Paying for College

(ARA) – Is your son or daughter one of the 18 million students heading for college this fall? If so, you’re probably still recovering from the shock of seeing the tuition bill.

During the 2007-2008 academic year, The College Board reports that the estimated average annual cost of attendance was $35,374 at a four-year private college, $17,336 at a four-year public college and $13,126 at a two-year college. Those figures are even higher for the 2008-2009 school year.

So how are you going to come up with the money? If you haven’t figured that out yet, here’s some important advice that will help:

1. Apply for Scholarships
To find scholarship opportunities, start your search early -- December or January for the next school year -- and utilize the resources around you. Begin with your high school guidance counselor for a list of possible resources. Next, check with the college financial aid office. Most state and many colleges offer scholarships. Think small -- competition can be tough for large awards. Smaller awards ($1,000 and less) typically have less competition and are easier to obtain. Finally, the Internet and organization Web sites are excellent places to search. Remember, this information should always be free.

For example, at www.usbank.com/studentbanking, you can apply to be one of 30 high school seniors to receive a $1,000 U.S. Bank Internet Scholarship. Over the past 12 years, U.S. Bank has awarded more than $320,000 in scholarship funding for this program. Scholarship award recipients are selected through a random drawing process. To qualify, students must be planning to attend an accredited two- or four-year college full time next fall. The U.S. Bank Web site also features a powerful scholarship search engine that contains 1.68 million scholarships and awards worth $7.69 billion.

2. Apply for Work Study
The Federal Work Study program gives students the opportunity to earn money for school and gain valuable work experience. It’s available to both undergraduate and graduate students with financial need. The amount you can earn depends on several factors: need, other aid received and availability of school funds.

3. Student Loans -- Covering the Big Costs
Student loans are some of the most commonly used financial tools. Student loans are funds borrowed from a financial institution or federal or state government. Education loans must be repaid. There are at least three types of education loans:

* A Federal Perkins Loan is a federal loan program administered by colleges. It’s available to both undergraduate and graduate students and is based on need and the availability of government funds.

* Federal Stafford (student) Loans and Federal PLUS Loans (for graduate students and parents of undergraduate students) are available through financial institutions, such as U.S. Bank, that participate in the FFEL program or through the federal government in the direct loan program.

* Financial institution (or “supplemental”) loans are for students (or their parents) who attend participating colleges and graduate schools. They are not based on need. As you determine the best way to finance your education, remember to consider the full range of student financial aid options available to you. Supplemental loans are often used to supplement federal student loans when they are not sufficient to cover the full cost of education. U.S. Bank offers a number of supplemental loans where students can borrow up to the entire annual cost of attendance, minus other financial aid received.

Information on U.S. Bank student loans can be found on the Web at www.usbank.com/studentloans or by phone at (800) 242-1200. Even if you think you won’t qualify for college financial aid, try anyway. You might be pleasantly surprised.

Courtesy of ARA Content

Facing a Tuition Payment Deadline? Don’t Worry. Sallie Mae Offers Last-Minute Options to Help Students, Parents Pay for College


BUSINESS WIRE --As back-to-school season approaches, parents and students still have time to find money to foot this falls college tuition bill. Sallie Maethe nations leading saving-and-paying-for-college companyoffers several affordable options available in time to meet the cost of higher education.

The good news is that families do not have to turn to credit cards or tap retirement savings to pay for college, said Martha Holler, spokeswoman, Sallie Mae. If you have your financial aid but are still coming up short, get educated on these no- and low-interest options to cover this semesters tuition bill.

Sallie Mae advises families to consider these solutions to a last-minute college financing gap:

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Tuition Payment Plans


Many schools offer families the opportunity to make monthly tuition payments over the course of the school year as an alternative to a large, lump-sum payment due at the start of the term. Sallie Mae's TuitionPay is an interest-free, monthly installment option that helps families better manage the cost of education. TuitionPay plans can save families money by reducing the amount needed to borrow, and by letting funds stay longer in interest-bearing accounts. For more information, visit www.TuitionPay.com or call 800-635-0120 to speak with a TuitionPay consultant.

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Sallie Mae PLUS Loan




Federal PLUS Loans allow graduate and professional students and parents of undergraduate, dependent college students to finance their unmet financial need, up to the full cost of education, as certified by the student's school. Federal PLUS Loans carry a fixed interest rate of 8.5%, regardless of the customer's credit history, income, assets or collateral. The loan may be used to cover education expenses in addition to tuition, including room, board, books, supplies and even travel.


New federal legislation has made qualifying for PLUS loans easier this year as borrowers may be up to 180 days late on payments on their primary mortgage or medical bills and still qualify. Also new this school year: Parents with new PLUS loans may postpone making payments until six months after their beneficiary student completes college or drops below half-time status. In addition, Sallie Mae assists parents and graduate and professional students who do not immediately qualify for a PLUS loan in resolving outstanding or erroneous credit issues. More information is available on www.SallieMae.com/PLUS.

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Sallie Mae Signature Student Loan




For students who have explored all federal student loan programs and still have unmet financial need, the Sallie Mae Signature Student Loan is the next best option. Sallie Mae's Signature Student Loan is a private education loan for qualified undergraduate, graduate and health profession students that offers competitive interest rates that reward creditworthiness. Applicants who do not have an established credit history are encouraged to apply with a creditworthy cosigner to help qualify for the loan. Those who have an established credit history may be eligible for a lower interest rate by applying with a creditworthy cosigner. By logging onto www.SallieMae.com/Signature, students can learn more about the Signature Student Loan, use the online pre-approval feature to receive credit results quickly and complete the entire application using the e-signature process.

Sallie Mae encourages families to use its 1-2-3 approach to paying for college: First, use free money. Fill out the FAFSA to access need-based grants, and research and apply for scholarships. Consider supplementing with current income, college savings, and an interest-free monthly tuition payment plan. Second, explore federal loans. Available to both students and parents, they can offer low, fixed interest rates and flexible repayment options. Third, fill any gap with private education loans. They are convenient and designed to help students meet the total cost of college.

SLM Corporation (NYSE:SLM), commonly known as Sallie Mae, is the nations leading provider of saving- and paying-for-college programs. The company manages nearly $172 billion in education loans and serves 10 million student and parent customers. Through its Upromise affiliates, the company also manages more than $19 billion in 529 college-savings plans, and is a major, private source of college funding contributions in America with 9 million members and $425 million in member rewards. Sallie Mae and its subsidiaries offer debt management services as well as business and technical products to a range of business clients, including higher education institutions, student loan guarantors and state and federal agencies. More information is available at www.salliemae.com. SLM Corporation and its subsidiaries are not sponsored by or agencies of the United States of America.


Monday, July 28, 2008

Summer Enrollment at UGA Increases to 15,608 Students

Summer enrollment at the University of Georgia is up by 306 students from a year ago. Total enrollment for summer semester is 15,608, a 2 percent increase over last summer’s enrollment of 15,302 students.

A total of 14,702 students is attending summer classes at the Athens campus, an increase of 148 from last year. The figure includes 10,004 undergraduates, 4,316 graduate students and 382 students enrolled in the professional schools of law, pharmacy and veterinary medicine.

Total enrollment at UGA extended campuses totals 673 students, up nearly 34 percent over last year’s total, which was 501.

Graduate enrollment at UGA’s campus in Gwinnett County totals 451, an increase of 67 students and a 17.4 percent increase over last summer.

Enrollment at UGA’s extended campus in Buckhead includes 76 students in the evening M.B.A. program and 64 students in the Executive M.B.A. program.

Twenty-eight students are enrolled at UGA’s Tifton campus, which offers only undergraduate courses, up from 11 last year.

Enrollment at the Griffin campus, which offers both undergraduate and graduate programs, is 54 students, a 108 percent increase over last summer. The figure includes 25 undergraduate students, up from 10 last summer and 29 graduate, up from 16 last year.

An additional 233 students are enrolled in UGA independent study programs, a 5.7 percent decrease from last summer.

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Governor Perdue re: AYP Graduation Rates

“I am extremely pleased with the significant progress our schools and students are showing in graduation rates. As the AYP standards continue to rise, we are also increasing the rigor of the curriculum which will result in our students performing better in the classroom and being more prepared to face the world upon graduation,” said Governor Sonny Perdue. “Judging from past experience, I am confident the schools that came up just short of meeting AYP will redouble their efforts and work hard to meet the standards next year. I will continue to work closely with Superintendent Cox to make sure we are doing everything we can to promote student performance and achievement. I will never apologize for asking more of our schools and our students as we strive to make Georgia globally competitive - anything less is unacceptable.”

More Than Two-Thirds of Georgia's Public Schools Made Adequate Yearly Progress

More than two-thirds of Georgia's public schools made Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) in 2008, even as the bar was raised across the board.

"Not only did all the academic measures of Adequate Yearly Progress go up this year, but we continued to raise the rigor of the work our students are doing, especially in mathematics," said State Superintendent of Schools Kathy Cox. "But even with the higher bar and the increased rigor, a majority of our schools met the mark."

Superintendent Cox released the state’s annual Adequate Yearly Progress report Friday morning. She also announced that the state's preliminary graduation rate for 2008 is 74.4 percent – up more than two points from last year.

"This two point increase represents 6,000 more students that graduated on time with a full diploma in 2008," Superintendent Cox said. "This is the result of hard work by a lot of students and strong collaboration among principals, teachers, counselors, graduation coaches and parents."

The final graduation rate will be calculated when summer graduates are added. This fall, the AYP report will be updated, as well, to account for summer graduates and summer retest results for students in grades 3, 5 and 8.

HIGHER BAR, MORE RIGOR

In 2008, it was harder for all schools to make AYP for two main reasons.

First, the percentage of students that had to pass state tests in math, reading and English went up for all grade levels (see chart below). Secondly, students were doing more rigorous work and taking more rigorous tests in 2008, especially in mathematics.

Superintendent Cox emphasized that in 2007-2008 the state's more rigorous curriculum and more rigorous tests in mathematics were implemented in all grades considered for AYP in elementary schools.

"It was a lot tougher for elementary schools this year," she said. "Still, more than 3 out of every 4 elementary schools made AYP, the best performance of all grade levels"

However, Superintendent Cox said it was important to embrace more rigorous standards in mathematics and she is confident that elementary schools are prepared.

"It's very important for our elementary school students to get a strong foundation in math," Superintendent Cox said. "I have a tremendous amount of faith in our elementary school principals and teachers. I know they will rise to the challenge in math, just like they have in reading, and we will see much better AYP numbers next year."

About 69 percent of all schools made AYP, including 76 percent of elementary schools. About 65 percent of middle schools and 48 percent of high schools made AYP in 2008.

NEEDS IMPROVEMENT SCHOOLS

There are 340 schools in Georgia that are in Needs Improvement status, meaning these schools have missed AYP for two or more consecutive years. Needs Improvement (NI) schools must offer options to parents – such as tutoring or school choice – and may need to take specific action to improve student performance. The consequence a school faces depends on how long it has been in Needs Improvement.

In 2008, 37 schools made AYP for the second consecutive year and got out of Needs Improvement status -- including six that had been in NI status for five or more years (see attached list).

"Even with the increased rigor and the higher bar, these 37 schools were able to get over the hurdles and shake the Needs Improvement label," Superintendent Cox said. "Congratulations to the staff, parents and students of these schools."

Additionally, nine of the state's 19 "contract-monitored" schools made AYP this year (see attached list). These schools had been in Needs Improvement for 7 or more years.

"These schools entered a contract with the state and promised to get the job done -- and that's just what they did," Superintendent Cox said. "This is a great example of how the state, a district and a school can work together to improve student achievement."

GRADUATION RATE
The state's preliminary graduation rate is 74.4 percent -- the highest it has ever been. This rate is expected to increase once summer graduates are included.

"The graduation rate not only went up overall, but increased among every subgroup," the Superintendent said. "There is still work to be done, but thanks to all the effort and teamwork, we are continuing to move the needle."

Under the state's NCLB plan, the graduation rate represents the percentage of students who received a full diploma in four years and a summer. This figure does not include special education diplomas or certificates of attendance. (See chart below) CHARTS AND LISTS

Graduation Rate (by Subgroup)
2008
2007
All Students
74.4%
72.3%
African American
67.6%
65.5%
Hispanic
64.2%
60.3%
White
79.6%
77.5%
Economically Disadvantaged
65.4%
63.1%
Students w/ Disabilities
36.3%
32.9%
English Language Learners
47.9%
46.4%
Percent of Students that must pass in order to make AYP (AMO)
2008
2007
Reading/ELA – Grades 3-8
73.3%
66.7%
Mathematics – Grades 3-8
59.5%
58.3%
English – Grade 11
87.7%
84.7%
Mathematics – Grade 11
74.9%
68.8%

Schools that came out of Needs Improvement status

Atlanta Public Schools Sutton Middle School
Bartow County South Central Middle School
Ben Hill County Ben Hill County Middle School
Chatham County West Chatham Middle School
Clayton County Kilpatrick Elementary School
Clayton County Babb Middle School
Clinch County Clinch County Elementary
Cobb County Norton Park Elementary School
Cobb County South Cobb High School
Coweta County East Coweta High School
DeKalb County Chapel Hill Middle School
DeKalb County Henderson Middle School
DeKalb County Woodward Elementary School
Dodge County Dodge County Middle School
Early County Early County Middle School
Effingham County Effingham County High School
Fulton County Riverwood High School
Gilmer County Gilmer Middle School
Glynn County Glynn Middle School
Gordon County Ashworth Middle School
Greene County Greene County High School
Gwinnett County Norcross High School
Gwinnett County Shiloh Middle School
Gwinnett County Lilburn Middle School
Gwinnett County Summerour Middle School
Hall County Chestatee Middle School
Hall County Lyman Hall Elementary School
Hall County Myers Elementary School
Houston County Northside Middle School
Houston County Perry High School
Long County Long County High School
Meriwether County George E. Washington Elementary School
Richmond County Hornsby Elementary School
Sumter County Staley Middle School
Tattnall County Tattnall County High School
Taylor County Taylor County Upper Elementary
Whitfield County North Whitfield Middle School

Contract-monitored Schools that made AYP for the first year

(NI-7 and above last year)
Atlanta Public Schools Kennedy Middle School
Dougherty County Merry Acres Middle School
Hall County East Hall Middle School
Mitchell County Mitchell County Middle School
Muscogee County Baker Middle School
Richmond County Morgan Road Middle School
Richmond County Tubman Middle School
Stewart County Stewart-Quitman High School
Thomasville City MacIntyre Park Middle

School Schools that are have made AYP for 10 consecutive years

Atlanta Public Schools Fain Elementary School
Atlanta Public Schools D. H. Stanton Elementary School
Bacon County Bacon County Primary School
Berrien County Berrien Primary School
Bleckley County Bleckley County Primary School
Burke County Waynesboro Primary School
Charlton County Bethune Elementary School
Crisp County Blackshear Trail Elementary School
Crisp County J. S. Pate Elementary School
Dalton City Roan Elementary School
Dublin City Susie Dasher Elementary School
Dublin City Saxon Heights Elementary School
Emanuel County Swainsboro Primary School
Fayette County Robert J. Burch Elementary School
Fayette County North Fayette Elementary School
Fulton County Randolph Elementary School
Gainesville City Enota Multiple Intelligences Academy
Jasper County Jasper County Primary School
McDuffie County Thomson Elementary School
McDuffie County Maxwell Elementary School
Mitchell County Mitchell County Primary School
Monroe County T.G. Scott Elementary School
Monroe County Samuel E. Hubbard Elementary School
Oconee County Oconee County Primary School
Terrell County Cooper Primary School
Thomas County Garrison-Pilcher Elementary School
Washington County Crawford Primary School
Washington County Elder Primary School
White County Jack P Nix Primary
Wilkes County Washington-Wilkes Primary School
Worth County Worth County Primary School

SYSTEMS THAT HAD 100% OF THEIR SCHOOLS MAKE AYP
Bremen City Buford City Cartersville City CCAT Chickamauga City Clay County Commerce City Echols County Evans County Fayette County Franklin County Hancock County Heard County Jefferson City Jefferson County Lee County Long County Miller County Monroe County Morgan County Oconee County Oglethorpe County Pierce County Pike County Quitman County Rabun County Randolph County Stephens County Stewart County Towns County Trion City Union County Wheeler County Wilkes County

About AYP

2008 ADEQUATE YEARLY PROGRESS
The Georgia Department of Education will release the annual Adequate Yearly Progress Report on Friday, July 25.
Before the results are released, here is some information that may be helpful as journalists prepare their stories.

WHAT IS THE ADEQUATE YEARLY PROGRESS REPORT?

The Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP) report is released as part of the federal No Child Left Behind Act. It measures schools in three areas: Academic Performance, Test Participation and a "second indicator," such as graduation rate or attendance.

To demonstrate academic performance, a certain percentage of students in a school ‐‐ and in any qualifying subgroup of students ‐‐ must meet or exceed standards on state tests in reading, English language arts and mathematics. This is called the Annual Measurable Objective or AMO.
The results of the Criterion‐Referenced Competency Test (CRCT) are used in elementary and middle schools. The results of the Georgia High School Graduation Test (GHSGT) are used in high school.

WHAT IS A “NEEDS IMPROVEMENT” SCHOOL?

A “Needs Improvement” school is one that has missed AYP for two or more consecutive years. A “Needs Improvement” school faces consequences, depending on the number of years a school has been in Needs Improvement status. To get out of Needs Improvement status, a school must make AYP for two consecutive years.

WHAT HAS CHANGED WITH AYP THIS YEAR?

It is going to be tougher for schools to make AYP this year for two main reasons

1) ALL ANNUAL MEASURABLE OBJECTIVES (AMOs) ARE GOING UP: A greater percentage of students must meet or exceed standards in order for a school to make AYP.
2008 2007
Reading/ELA – Grades 3‐8 73.3% 66.7%
Mathematics – Grades 3‐8 59.5% 58.3%
English – Grade 11 87.7% 84.7%
Mathematics – Grade 11 74.9% 68.8%

2) STUDENTS WERE TAUGHT A MORE RIGOROUS CURRICULUM AND TOOK A MORE RIGOROUS TEST: This is especially true in mathematics. The state’s more rigorous mathematics curriculum – the Georgia Performance Standards – was introduced in grades 3, 4, 5 and 8 this past school year. Grades 3, 4 and 5 are the only grades considered for AYP in traditional K‐5 elementary school

ARE THESE THE FINAL RESULTS?

No. The AYP results will be updated in the fall to account for the results of CRCT retests in grades 3, 5 and 8, as well as summer graduates. Under the state’s No Child Left Behind plan, a graduate is a student who receives a regular diploma in four years and a summer. A regular diploma does not include special education diplomas or certificates of attendance.

WHAT IS “DIFFERENTIATED ACCOUNTABILITY?”

This means that the state won’t treat all schools the same. A school that missed making AYP in one subgroup in one subject shouldn’t be treated exactly the same as a school that missed it across the board.

Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Education announced that Georgia was one of 6 states that would pilot a differentiated accountability plan. To learn more about the state’s differentiated accountability plan, go to http://www.gadoe.org/pea_communications.aspx?ViewMode=1&obj=1648.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Public Input Sought on Proposed SPLOST

The Fayette County Board of Education is exploring the possibility of asking voters to approve a one percent SPLOST (Special Local Option Sales Tax) in November to help the school system maintain its high level of education while lowering property taxes.

A public input session will be held at the Fayette County Board of Education (210 Stonewall Avenue, Fayetteville) on August 28 at 7 p.m. Residents wishing to make comments on the proposal will need to sign up that evening prior to the beginning of the session. Each person will be limited to two minutes in order to ensure that everyone who wants to speak has an opportunity to do so. Doors will open at 6 p.m.; the sign-in sheets will be removed promptly at 7 p.m. Written and emailed comments are also welcome.

Austerity cuts over the last several years have resulted in a loss of approximately $21 million in state funding. That, coupled with rising fuel costs and increased prices for basic supplies, has forced the school system to make some tough funding decisions that could have a direct impact on students.

A one percent SPLOST would generate approximately $100-115 million over a five-year period to help fund needs that have been postponed as well as address future needs. Specifically, the SPLOST would fund debt service ($38 million), which will lower property taxes; technology ($35 million); security ($2.5 million); textbook adoption ($2.5 million); facilities five-year plan and warehouse relocation ($17 million); transportation ($10 million) and an aquatic facility ($10 million) for school swim teams and swimming lessons.

It is estimated that the SPLOST would lower property taxes through a reduction of the school system’s bond millage rate ranging between 0.83 mills to 1.59 mills during the time it is in place. This would lower the property tax bill on a $250,000 home between $83 and $159 each year.
The board of education has until August 4 to adopt a resolution for the SPLOST. If a resolution is adopted by the board and approved by voters in November, the new tax will take effect April 1, 2009.

PR Department Earns National Recognition

The Fayette County School System’s public relations department has received five awards from the National School Public Relations Association (NSPRA) for distinguished achievement in writing, graphic design and electronic communications.

Entries are judged on content, use of graphics/special effects and color, layout and usefulness to the intended audience. This year’s winning entries received honorable mentions and include two press releases (the Starr’s Mill High daycare center and holocaust memorial at RSMS), the 2007 financial summary and 2007 recruitment brochure and a Channel 24 video about the Starr’s Mill High daycare center.

Fayette’s projects competed against 1,064 entries from across in the nation in the publication and audio/visual categories. Only 570 of these entries received awards.

“This recognition is truly an honor. The competition is very rigorous with entries competing against each other without the size of the school system or public relations department taken into consideration. Knowing that our projects went up against those from bigger systems with more resources and larger public relations departments makes these awards even more meaningful,” says Melinda Berry-Dreisbach, public information specialist.

The public relations department has received both national and state awards for its communication materials since the office opened in 2001. All totaled, the department has been awarded 56 national and state honors.

Georgia Southern University Freshmen BUILD Leadership Opportunities

This summer eighty Georgia Southern University freshmen will begin their college career with BUILD, a volunteer leadership and service opportunity that gives them a head start on their college experience. This is the third year Southern Pathways has conducted BUILD, an acronym that stands for Building Undergraduate Involvement in Leadership Development.

BUILD students will labor with two local organizations, Habitat for Humanity and Kingdom Builders during the day, then spend their evenings participating in leadership activities and talking over the experiences of their day. Two BUILD experiences are planned, one for July 27-31 and a second for Aug. 10-14. Both will take place in Statesboro Pointe.

“As they participate in the hands-on BUILD experience, students learn that leadership begins with service,” says Jodi Middleton, assistant director of Student Leadership and Civic Engagement. “That’s the most important aspect of the program. At the end of the program, BUILD students will have logged more than 1,000 community service hours.”

Each day of the BUILD program focuses on a leadership theme: building community; ethical leadership; service learning; creating a vision and action plan; and diversity.

“When their semester starts, BUILD students are already familiar with the campus and community, and they’ve had an opportunity to get acquainted with other students,” says Diana Hensley, Coordinator of Civic Engagement in the Office of Leadership and Civic Engagement. “It’s a great way for students to transition from their hometowns, and it’s a way to get to know campus and community.”

BUILD students live in the same residence hall during the session to facilitate discussions of the days’ work and other leadership topics. Upperclass mentors serve as BUILD leaders, guiding the students’ conversation about their experiences.

Southern Pathways will also present Wilderness Introduction to Leadership Development –WILD – with the help of Campus Recreation and Intramurals. Eight students, led by CRI’s Dustin Sanderson, will take a five-day backpacking trip in the mountains of north Georgia. They will hike during the day and spend their evenings in leadership activities and discussions. Like BUILD, each day of the program focuses on a theme.

Furlong and McFarlane Win MicrobeLibrary Curriculum Resource Editor’s Choice Award

The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) has honored Clayton State University’s Dr. Michelle Furlong and Renee McFarlane with the 2008 MicrobeLibrary Curriculum Resource Editor’s Choice Award for their article, “Immunity and the Spread of Influenza Within a Population Department of Natural Sciences.”

The MicrobeLibrary Editor’s Choice Awards were created by ASM to spotlight excellence and raise the status and visibility of research into teaching and learning in microbiology education and allied disciplines. Selected by ASM’s Curriculum Resources Editorial Committee, the Curriculum Resource Award is given to one curriculum resource published in the past year that exemplifies the criteria for publication in MicrobeLibrary. Furlong and McFarlane’s article was selected above all of those published in the MicrobeLibrary Curriculum Collection in 2007.

Furlong is interim department head of Natural Sciences and an associate professor of Biology in the Clayton State College of Arts & Sciences. McFarlane is an instructor of Biology. Together, they created a classroom activity that teaches about the influenza virus – a particularly timely subject given the still-relevant issues of a possible Avian Flu epidemic.

“Renee and I created a new activity for the microbiology classroom that teaches students about the influenza virus, immunity and the spread of influenza in a population,” explains Furlong about their award-winning activity. “In our publication we explained how to conduct the activity in the classroom and we presented data that showed that the activity enhanced our students’ understanding of immunity, spread of disease and the influenza vaccine.”

MicrobeLibrary is a founding partner of the American Association for the Advancement of Science’s BiosciEdNet Collaborative (www.biosciednet.org), a portal sponsored by the National Science Foundation’s National Science Digital Library (www.nsdl.org). MicrobeLibrary, which has won many citations and media accolades, is the first service of its kind and continues to be recognized as one of the best resources for science information.

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Orientations Scheduled for 2008-2009 Academic Year

As students get ready to head back to school on August 11, many will be entering the school system for the first time or graduating to middle or high school.

In order to help students and parents become familiar with their new schools, orientations will be held prior to the beginning of the academic year. During orientation, parents and students will receive information that will help make their first year at their new school an enriching and successful one.

Teachers, counselors, administrators and bus drivers will be on hand to help answer questions. Representatives from various clubs and organizations will also be in attendance to help introduce parents and students to extracurricular activities available at each school.

The 2008-2009 orientation schedule is listed below.

All Elementary Schools will hold orientation on August 7, 2008, 4-6 p.m. The following schools will hold special pre-K and kindergarten orientations on August 7 at the times listed below by school.

Brooks: Pre-K, 9-10:30 a.m.; Kindergarten, 10:30 a.m.-12 p.m.
Crabapple Lane: Kindergarten, 9-11 a.m.
Huddleston: Kindergarten, 9-11 a.m.
North Fayette: Pre-K and Kindergarten, 10 a.m.-12 p.m.
Peeples: Kindergarten, 9-11 a.m.
Peachtree City: Kindergarten, 9-11 a.m
Robert J. Burch: Pre-K and Kindergarten, 9-11 a.m.
Spring Hill: Kindergarten, 10 a.m.

Middle Schools
Bennett’s Mill: August 8, (6th – 2-3:30 p.m.) (7th & 8th – 4-5:30 p.m.)
Fayette: August 7, (6th – 2-3:30 p.m.) (7th & 8th – 12:30-1:30 p.m.)
Flat Rock: August 7, (6th – 2-3:30 p.m. p.m.)
Flat Rock: August 8, (7th & 8th – 4-6 p.m.)
J.C. Booth: August 6, (6th – 4-5:30 p.m.) (7th & 8th – 2-3:30 p.m.)
Rising Starr: August 7, (6th – 9:30-11 a.m.) (7th & 8th – 1:30-3 p.m.)
Whitewater: August 7, (6th – 10-11:30 a.m.) (7th & 8th – 1:30-3 p.m.)

High Schools
Fayette County: August 7, (9th grade and new students) – 6-7:30 p.m.
McIntosh: July 29 & 30, Camp McIntosh Freshman Orientation, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Sandy Creek: August 7, (9th grade and new students) – 6-8 p.m.
Starr’s Mill High School: August 7, (9th grade and new students) – 6-8 p.m.
Whitewater: August 5, (12th – 8-10 a.m.) (11th – 10 a.m.-12 p.m.) (10th – 2-4 p.m.) (9th – 4-6 p.m.)

Vision, Truth and Love Should Guide the Class of 2008, says Newark Mayor Corey Booker

Morehouse’s newest graduates should strive for greatness while at the same time using their success for the common good, said Newark, N.J. mayor Corey A. Booker.

“If you don’t manifest the truth in the world through your actions, you remain on a log, in a bog without getting anything done,” he said to cheers during the 2008 Summer Commencement ceremony at the Martin Luther King Jr. International Chapel on Saturday, July 19. “We are people who must live our authenticity through our actions…We are a participating democracy. Get off the couch, get off the sideline and get into the game.”

Sixty-one men of Morehouse became Morehouse men during the ceremony.

They had marched from Kilgore Campus Center, through the heart of campus before entering the chapel to cheers as exuberant parents, family and friends stood, yelled and clapped. One family had blinking red lights on their shirts. A group from Maryland had all dressed in white.

Once seated, the graduates were told to see the occasion not as a culmination, but as a beginning.

President Robert M. Franklin Jr. ’75 urged the graduates to continue striving to
become Renaissance men in his charge to the class.

“Four or more years ago you made a promise, gentlemen,” he said. “Now it’s up to you to make good on that promise…Know that the world will be watching. Always remember you are not average men. You are Morehouse men.”

The audience then heard from Booker, Newark’s mayor since 2006 and a former college football star at Stanford University, a Rhodes Scholar and a Yale Law School graduate. The New Jersey native once moved into a housing project to fight for tenants’ rights and better living conditions and went on a hunger strike in front of another development to protest drug dealing.

He said spiritual lessons in vision, truth and love for his community is what led him to a life as an activist and politician.

“I have been fortunate that there have been so many messengers who have come to me to help me in this value-based, character-based, continuous education in my life,” Booker said.

He said the vision each person had of themselves is stronger than the way the world will ever look at them; the graduates should be advocates of their own truths and that their love should be so deep that generations after them benefit.

“I challenge you now to set your sights high, unleash your truths and to love flagrantly and with abandon,” Booker said.

Booker and new Johnson C. Smith University President Ronald L. Carter ’71 were presented presidential citations in honor of their work.

Ellis Barney Freeman, a retired civil service examiner, was inducted into the Morehouse College National Alumni Association as an associate member of the class of 1933. Freeman entered Morehouse in 1929 but was forced to leave school in 1931 to help support his family during the Great Depression.

By Add Seymour Jr.

Valdosta State Receives Major Gift from South Georgia Medical Center

South Georgia Medical Center announced July 19 a $1 million investment to address its largest category of staff vacancies -- nursing. The pledge, designated to the Valdosta State University Health Sciences and Business Administration facility, will be used to facilitate the development of an expanded program of nursing and allied health sciences in Valdosta.

Approximately four years ago, SGMC CEO James McGahee and VSU President Ronald Zaccari began meeting to discuss partnership opportunities to advance educational programs at Valdosta State for a variety of health occupations. Working with the Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia, a proposal to build a Health Sciences and Business Administration facility at VSU’s Rea and Lillian Steele North Campus evolved.

According to McGahee, SGMC is very concerned about the nursing shortage that is facing the healthcare industry. He said, “Like so many hospitals around our state and nation, South Georgia Medical Center struggles with a nursing shortage. On any given day, we have between 75 and 100 nursing vacancies throughout our organization. When you couple this shortage with an aging population and increasing hospital utilization, you quickly realize that we are outpacing our resources. SGMC is stepping up to the plate to proactively invest in the establishment of a world-class, health sciences training program at VSU.”

While SGMC helped fund VSU’s Second Degree program and offers nursing scholarships and other incentives for students in health-related fields, McGahee feels more had to be done. “Our goal is to expand opportunities and graduate record numbers of students. Since SGMC will provide clinical training for these students, we hope they will become familiar with our people, practices and procedures and want to work here when they graduate,” McGahee said.

According to Dr. Zaccari, the construction of the Health Sciences and Business Administration facility establishes a partnership with South Georgia Medical Center and the region’s medical community that represents a tremendous economic impact on South Georgia. Additionally, it provides the needed facilities to increase educational opportunities within various health-related and business areas of study. The north campus project will include an additional $30 million in residence halls, dining facilities, and related infrastructure that will bring the total cost to approximately $75 million.

“The new Health Sciences and Business Administration facility, planned strategically on the university’s north campus and directly across from South Georgia Medical Center’s own visionary and emerging facilities, will provide many opportunities for collaboration and new educational and clinical experiences,” Zaccari said. “Our vision is to attract outstanding scholars, teachers and researchers to Valdosta State University, and in turn open new partnerships with physicians, hospital administrators and multiple use facilities. It is an important and crucial time in our region’s history to chart a new course of action - an intense action plan that serves as a catalyst for combining scarce and valuable resources and accomplishing projects never before imagined.”

The VSU Health Sciences and Business Administration facility is quickly moving up the University System of Georgia’s capital projects list and construction should begin within the next three years. The approximately $46 million facility will represent one of the most significant advances in VSU’s history, and directly responds to the state of Georgia’s critical need for more healthcare professionals.

College of Education’s DREAMS Institute Mentors Local High School Teens

Georgia has one of the lowest high school graduation rates in the nation, according to a national survey released last month by Editorial Projects in Education.

To provide a safety net for at-risk students, the College of Education’s Alonzo A. Crim Center for Urban Educational Excellence hosts the annual DREAMS Institute. The mentorship program is designed to engage African-American male and female teens in activities that develop social competency, self-understanding and career aspirations.

This month, about 90 teens from the New Schools at Carver, Daniel M. Therrell and Tri-Cities high schools will be on-campus and linked with Georgia State undergraduate and graduate students, who serve as program facilitators and mentors.

“A lot of these teens haven’t thought about themselves as college students and we want to expose them to that idea through relationships with college students and interactions in the college environment,” said Lawanda Cummings, a graduate student and one of the DREAMS coordinators.

Some of the programs at the institute are gender-specific. Male teens will have an opportunity to hear a hip-hop artist and a professional athlete talk about their respective industries and ask questions about what are realistic career goals. Female students will attend workshops on body image, sexual health, self-confidence and self-identity. All teens will go on confidence-building field trips, such as white water rafting and indoor rock climbing.

Facilitators say the DREAMS (Developing Relationships Empower African-American Mentee Success) Institute makes a noticeable difference in teens.

“You see the student who had an attitude at first open up and start sharing, and the shy, reserved student makes friends,” said Kelly Newsome, a recent Georgia State graduate who has been a mentor in the DREAMS program for three years. “And those students who were only interested in finishing up high school are now applying to college. It’s wonderful.”

The mentoring intervention program extends beyond the DREAMS summer institute into the school year with monthly group meetings and activities for the young people. Future plans for the project include research aimed at investigating resilience, academic expectations and achievement, self-esteem and cultural heritage awareness.

“We let them know that excellence is expected from them and they should expect it from themselves too,” said Susan McClendon, Crim Center associate director. McClendon and assistant professor Miles Irving also mentor the undergraduates and graduate students who facilitate the program.