Charles “Chuck” Gardner Selected as New Chief Operations Officer

Chuck Gardner is a career educator committed to ensuring that every child receives a high quality education that prepares them for the life they choose. He served as Principal of Riverwood High School, Sandy Springs Middle School, and Frank McClarin High School in Fulton County Schools. Prior to being appointed principal, Chuck held positions as an assistant principal, and teacher including 8 years in the Cobb County School District.

Chuck grew up in the Marietta area and is a graduate of Lassiter High School. He received his bachelor’s degree from Florida State University, a master’s degree and Specialist in Educational Leadership from Kennesaw State University.

Additionally, he is a regular presenter at national conferences, including the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development (ASCD) and the National Association for Secondary School Principals (NASSP).

Most recently, as Principal of Riverwood High School, Chuck oversaw the construction of a multi-phase new school construction project totaling more than, $100 million.Chuck and his wife, Kelly are excited to join the Marietta City Schools family. He assumes his role as Chief Operations Officer, July 1, 2019.

StoneBridge Church Donates $50,000 to Park Street Elementary

Marietta City Schools appreciates the contributions of community businesses and organizations that help make our schools a better place to learn and work.

StoneBridge Church serves as a wonderful partner, providing ongoing volunteerism and financial support for Park Street Elementary School.

As a partner with Park Street, StoneBridge encourages and supports the hard-working Park Street staff, students, and families.

StoneBridge Church staff and members raised and donated $50,000 to provide K-5 classroom libraries. Their employees and members help staff the Park Street PTA, implement the Soccer in the Streets program, coach basketball, and volunteer in classrooms.

Additionally, StoneBridge provides mentoring programs where volunteers spend time in classrooms doing various activities and interacting with students; gardeners to tend to the school’s sensory garden; reading opportunities; and prepares and gives teachers gifts and tokens of encouragement throughout the year.

We are so grateful for the continued support of StoneBridge Church, one of our valued partners in service to our students, families, and staff. View Video

The Future Home of Lemon Street Campus

Marietta City Schools (MCS) announced plans to relocate its Central Office to the site of the old Lemon Street High School, creating a new educational campus for the District (coming in 2021).

  • Central Office designed to replicate the c. 1930 Lemon Street High School building, which had been demolished in 1967.
  • Plans for Central Office include a new museum, developed in conjunction with Kennesaw State University’s Department of Museums, Archives,and Rare Books, to tell the story of MCS from 1892 to the present, including the segregation era, with a special exhibition on the surrounding community.
  • Marietta Performance Learning Center relocates into the c. 1950 Lemon Street Grammar School across the street.
  • The new Performance Learning Center will preserve the building’s exterior and key architectural features while rehabilitating the interior, making it conducive for today’s learning.

“We have always known, due to its unique history, that the Lemon Street Grammar School was worth saving. The question was whether we could afford to save the building while being good stewards of taxpayer dollars. We are pleased to say that,

after careful study, we will be able to do both.”

-Grant Rivera, Superintendent

Marietta City Schools Celebrates Teachers & Employees, Names 2020 Teacher of the Year

Marietta City Schools (MCS) honored teachers and school employees during its annual awards celebration, Tuesday, May 28. Barbie Esquijarsoa English to Speakers as Other Languages (ESOL) teacher at A.L. Burruss Elementary School, was named the 2020 System Teacher of the Year by MCS Superintendent Dr. Grant Rivera.

“Barbie Esquijarosa, who has overcome many adversities in her life and persevered to become a teacher, wanting to better, not only herself and family, but all those around her.” said Dr. Rivera. “She has impacted the lives of all the children she has touched, holding high expectations for them and watching them excel. I am proud to name Barbie Esquijarosa Marietta City Schools 2020 Teacher of the Year.”

The event Platinum Sponsor was Ed Voyles Automotive Group. Gold Sponsors were Houze &

Associates, Marietta Power & Water and Zaxby’s; the Silver Sponsors were the Credit Union of Georgia and LGE Community Credit Union.  Marietta Schools Foundation sponsored and presented the Douglas A. Holder Awards to the Teachers of the Year for each school.

The Board of Education chair, Jason Waters, presented Board Appreciation Award to Sarah Martin, “Parent Liaison for Marietta Sixth Grade Academy (MSGA) Drama Program,” for her consistent selfless dedication to MSGA and MCS.

The Board Appreciation Award was also presented to StoneBridge Church for their generous donation to purchase books and ongoing volunteer support of Park Street Elementary School. John Silvey, owner of Zaxby’s, also received the Board Appreciation Award for being a key partner to MCS who “never says no.” The Georgia PTA, Middle Grades President, Krissty Foster also made a special presentation to John Silvey and presented him with an Honorary Georgia PTA Lifetime Achievement Award.

Ms. Rose Wing Jr. presented the Rose Wing Teacher of Promise Award to Blaise Bowman, a teacher at A.L. Burruss, in honor of her late mother Mrs. Rose Wing who taught for 42 years at Marietta City Schools. The award established in 2013 recognizes young teachers with two to five years of teaching experience who embody the extraordinary ability and spirit that Ms. Wing brought to the profession.

Other Award categories included the Customer Service Excellence Award presented to Marietta Middle School, Superintendent’s Awards, presented to Rachel Brown-Miller, Assistant Principal at Dunleith Elementary, Russ Henry, Technology Support Specialist at Marietta Sixth Grade Academy, Marsha Durham, Front Office Clerk at Marietta High School, and Kim Ellis, Director of Transportation for the district.  The Employee of the Year Award was presented to Christine Ramirez, Director of the Emily Lembeck Early Learning Center.

MHS Blue Devil Marching Band Ends Competition Season on a High Note!

MHS Blue Devil Marching Band Ends Competition Season on a High Note!
MHS senior band members enjoyed an emotional last marching band competition as they recently traveled to the North Georgia Marching Band Championships at South Forsyth High School. This competition was the culmination of The Blue Devil Band’s most successful competition in recent years.
The Blue Devil Marching Banding won all awards in their division, including:
  • Superior in every category, Drum Major, Percussion, Guard, and Band overall
  • Highest score out of every band in the A, AA, and even the AAA divisions
  • Drum Major and Color Guards came in 2nd overall
In a previous competition the band was awarded the following:
  • Superiors in the Band, Color Guard, and Drum Major Categories
  • 1st place in their Division for Color Guard and Drum Major
  • 2nd Place overall in the Silver Division
Congratulations to the Blue Devil Marching Band for an incredible competition season!

MHS Theatre Students to Represent MCS at State Thespian Conference

MHS Theatre Students to Represent MCS at State Thespian Conference
Congratulations to MHS theatre students for being selected to represent Marietta City Schools at the State Thespian Convention in February.
The Georgia Thespians hosted auditions and interviews for All-State Theatre in September at Houston County High School in Warner Robins, GA. Each high school can submit 4 students for All- State auditions, and 3 of our 4 students were selected.
This is the first time EVER that MHS has had students selected for All-State Theatre.
Katie Lloyd and Carson Shearer were selected as All-State performers after a rigorous audition process that included dancing and singing, and Katie was chosen as a featured soloist.
Vesey Banuel was one of only 8 students in the state selected as All-State Tech Crew through an interview process and portfolio submission. He will help create costumes and sets for the performance at Thespian Conference in February.
Congratulations to these talented students!

Marietta Middle Students Named REACH Scholars

Marietta Middle Students Named REACH Scholars
On October 22, 2019 Marietta Middle School Students Angeles Mendez, Lariyah Ivory, and Santiago Roque Rios joined a select group of distinguished 8th graders when they were named REACH Georgia Scholars by Governor Brian Kemp.
The Realizing Educational Achievement Can Happen (REACH) Georgia program pairs each student with an academic coach and mentor throughout their high school career. Upon graduation and successful completion of the program, each student will receive a college scholarship worth up to $10,000. This award can be matched by Georgia HOPE-eligible post-secondary institutions for a total of $20,000 per student. This year’s awards to MMS students was made possible by contributions from the Marietta Schools Foundation, Zaxby’s (John Silvey), and Roy and Kim Sheram.
The Marietta Mentoring for Leadership program facilitates the program and matches each student with a community member to mentor them through high school as part of the REACH Georgia program. Parents and guardians, in support of their children’s education, also sign the contract.
Please join us in wishing these amazing 8th graders the best as they tackle the next four years of high school and beyond!

Marietta Center for Advanced Academics Receives 2019 National Blue Ribbon Recognition

The U.S. Department of Education (USDOE) named Marietta Center for Advanced Academics (MCAA) a 2019 National Blue Ribbon School. Part of Marietta City Schools, MCAA is one of the 362 schools in the nation to be recognized in 2019 and was previously recognized in 2013.

U.S. Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, announced the list of schools today. The National Blue Ribbon Schools program celebrates school excellence and recognizes the overall academic performance or progress in closing achievement gaps among student subgroups. MCAA is recognized as an “Exemplary High Performing School” placing it among the state’s highest performing schools based on state assessments and nationally normed tests.

“It is my honor and privilege to serve the students, staff, and community of MCAA,” said Principal Dr. Tricia Patterson. “Being named a National Blue Ribbon School gives all those who work hard to remain Above the Line the recognition deserved. As an innovative model of STEAM education, we focus on developing students to be able to communicate and collaborate as they think critically to solve real-world problems in a creative way.”

Profiles of the 2019 National Blue Ribbon Schools can be found here: https://ed.gov/nationalblueribbonschools.

All of the recognized schools will be honored by the Secretary and the Department of Education at an awards ceremony in Washington, D.C. in November.

MCS Board of Education Recognizes Community Partner: Marietta Pizza Company

Marietta City Schools (MCS) is fortunate to have community organizations and individuals who continuously go above and beyond what is expected for our schools and students.
MCS recognized Marietta Pizza Company, at September’s Board of Education meeting, for continuously contributing their support to MCS students.
The Marietta Pizza Company, and owner Howard Wolfson, have been serving our school community and the city of Marietta for many years. For more than 13 years, the Marietta Pizza Company (MPC) has supported our District Student of the Month program, by donating a $20 MPC gift card to each Student of the Month.
MCS recognizes 13 students each year, one from each school, and even as the district has added schools and locations, like the Early Learning Center and the MAPS program, Marietta Pizza Company has not wavered on its commitment and support.
As an added bonus, Howard also awards each Student of the Month with a $10 gift card to Hawg and Ale Smokehouse in Marietta. This support of MCS students speaks volumes, and our students light up when they hear they have just been given a gift card to the Marietta Pizza Company and Hawg and Ale Smokehouse.
MCS is extremely appreciative of the Marietta Pizza Company of Marietta and Howard Wolfson for their continued support.

MCS Board of Education Recognizes Community Partner: Mayes Ward-Dobbins Funeral Home

The Board of Education is proud to recognize members of the Marietta community for their work and contributions in continually recognizing MCS staff.
MCS recognized Mayes Ward-Dobbins Funeral Home, at September’s Board of Education meeting, for continuously supporting and donating funds to benefit MCS.
Mayes Ward-Dobbins is a family owned and operated business that has been in existence since 1923. Mr. Terry Pendley and his three sons have owned the business since the 1980’s.
At every regularly scheduled Board of Education meeting, MCS recognizes an Employee of the Month by providing a plaque and check for $100. For more than 18 years, Mayes Ward-Dobbins generously donates this check to the MCS Employee of the Month.
In total, Mayes Ward-Dobbins Funeral Home has donated more than $16,000 to Marietta City Schools. MCS is extremely grateful to Mr. Chad Pendley, Director of the Marietta location, and Mayes Ward-Dobbins Funeral Home for their continued support of MCS staff.

Lockheed Martin Awards STEM Grant

Marietta City Schools (MCS) is proud to announce that Lockheed Martin recently awarded the MCS Office of Academic Achievement with a grant to provide funding for STEM projects for the district.
Last year, Dr. Jennifer Hernandez, Executive Director of the Office of Academics Achievements, wrote and received a grant from Lockheed Martin for $25,000 to strengthen the STEM pipeline. The grant focused on teacher professional learning and curriculum development.
And this year, Dr. Hernandez wrote and received a $10,000 extension to the grant, focusing on elementary STEM labs.
“The Office of Academic Achievement will collaborate with STEM lab teachers to create STEM resource boxes for school check-out that will be distributed to the STEM cohort of teachers for use on various projects,” said Dr. Jennifer Hernandez, Executive Director of Academic Achievement at MCS.
The resources boxes will contain curriculum and materials aligned to grade level standards, and the boxes will be available for school checkout in an effort to impact students at all schools.
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Kimberly Custance Named Marietta Community School Director

Kimberly Custance is a career educator who has served the children of our community since 2001. She is a results-driven and innovative leader with Pre-K through 12th grade experience. Kimberly served the Cobb County School District as a high school Social Studies teacher, Instructional Lead Teacher, high school and elementary school Assistant Principal, and Human Resources Supervisor for Elementary Schools. She is a dedicated servant leader, holding a belief that the schools are the foundation of any community, and as such, should be our greatest investment.
Kimberly earned her Bachelor of Science in Education and Master of Education degrees at the University of Georgia. She completed her Educational Leadership endorsement program at the University of West Georgia and earned a Specialists in Educational Leadership from Berry College.
Kimberly and her family have resided in Marietta City for the last 18 years. She has a kindergartner in Marietta City Schools and three-year-old twins who are future Blue Devils.   kim

MHS AFJROTC Receives a Myriad of Awards

Marietta High School (MHS) has one of the largest, most decorated JROTC programs in the southeast United States. Their proud tradition of awards continued this past summer at the Converse College Leadership School, held in Spartanburg, South Carolina.
Forty-four Marietta High School JROTC cadets attended the Converse College Leadership School, where they trained and competed against 307 cadets from 22 other schools from North Carolina, South Carolina, and Georgia. The MHS JROTC program received a myriad of awards and recognitions including:
  • Cadet Kimberly Alvarado, received Overall Best Room Inspection
  • Cadets Kimberly Alvarado, Fatima Badillo, Danielle Davern, Flory Jimon-Castro, Erika Jimon-Castro, Crystal Martinez and Kaylee Vicente were selected as Outstanding Flight Drill (Seven out of 12 cadets selected)
  • Cadets Kimberly Alvarado, Rayshell Ali, Fatima Badillo, Erika Jimon Castro and Melissa Amaya were selected as Honor Graduates
  • Cadets Prosper Allen, Hector Barocio and Brittany Perez selected Outstanding Flight Cadre
  • Cadets Jamila Hughes, Vanesa Mijes and Brandon Reyes selected as Outstanding Logistic Officers
  • Cadets Khamari Chambers, Hayden Hicks and Viviana Rodriguez were all Leadership School Outstanding Evaluators
  • Cadets Jasmine Barker and Olivia Gould won Outstanding Squadron Commanders
  • Cadet Meagan Alfaro won Outstanding Group Commander Award
  • Cadet Charlotte Hettrich was presented with the Commander Eagle, the highest award given at Leadership School
Marietta City Schools is immensely proud of all 44 MHS cadets for their outstanding performance and wonderful display of leadership during the 2019 Converse College Leadership School.
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Financial Services – Earns Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting

Marietta City Schools’ Financial Services Department recently received the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting for 2018 by the Government Finance Officers Association of the United States and Canada (GFOA) for its Comprehensive Annual Financial Report (CAFR).
This is the fifth consecutive year the department has received this recognition.
The Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting is the highest form of recognition in the area of governmental accounting and financial reporting. Receiving this Certificate of Achievement for Excellence shows a significant accomplishment by a government and its management.
The GFOA established the Certificate of Achievement for Excellence in Financial Reporting Program (CAFR Program) in 1945 to encourage and assist state and local governments to go beyond the minimum requirements of generally accepted accounting principles to prepare comprehensive annual financial reports that evidence the spirit of transparency and full disclosure and then to recognize individual governments that succeed in achieving that goal. The goal of the program is to recognize entities that must meet the high standards of the program, including demonstrating a constructive “spirit of full disclosure” to plainly communicate its financial story while motivating potential users and user groups to read the CAFR.
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