Week of November 24, 2015

December 2, 6:00-7:30 p.m.

The annual budget development process for MLWGS is starting. Last year, parents and students spoke up about a variety of needs including a new activity bus and textbooks. Guess what? The activity bus was replaced as well as textbooks for some of the classes that need them. The Regional School Board will listen, it just needs your input. Come to the Budget Town Hall on Wednesday, December 2, 6:00-7:30 p.m. in the MLWGS Auditorium. Speakers need to signup in advance by contacting Barbara Marshall at bmarshall@gsgis.k12.va.us no later than 10:00 am on December 2. For more information about the public comment procedure, click here. For other questions, please contact Anne Hayes, PTSA Advocacy Chair at annehayes@verizon.net.


Never fear!  Herff Jones will be accepting orders online through early January without a late penalty.   Go to www.vagrad.com, type in “Maggie Walker” in the dialogue box at the top of the webpage.  Once the page loads, click on “Graduation Products.”  If you don’t see an option that fits your needs, simply scroll down to the bottom of the screen and “Create Your Custom Grad Package.”  Don’t forget…you have already paid for your cap and gown (paid through senior dues).  All orders received on time will be delivered in late April.  Please contact the vendor directly with questions about these products. If you have other questions regarding graduation, please contact Ms. Sheppard, MLWGS Graduation Coordinator, at 804-354-6800 ext. 3304 or ksheppard@gsgis.k12.va.us.


Yes, it's true. There is only one SCRIP order date left before the holiday break. If you are trying to think of the perfect gift for that special someone, consider a SCRIP gift card! The final scrip order due date before the holidays is Tuesday, December 1. Cards will be delivered to school the following Tuesday, December 8. SCRIP order forms can be picked up in the Bluestone Lobby office or can be downloaded from the MW website. Contact Karen Murtha at k.murtha@comcast.net or Lori Bekenstein at lori.bek@verizon.net if you have any questions. 


SOL Testing for freshmen who attended private middle schools will take place during the week of Monday December 7.  Specific testing times and locations were distributed to these students last week.  

All students at MLWGS are required to pass nine SOL End-of-Course tests in order to qualify for a Virginia Advanced Studies High School Diploma.  MLWGS students typically earn SOL verified credits for Biology, Chemistry, World History II (given at the end of 10th grade), US History (10th or 11th grade), English writing (10th grade), English reading (11th grade), Algebra I, Geometry, and Algebra II.

Students who attended private middle schools need to verify earned credit through SOL tests for Algebra I, Geometry, and/or Algebra II classes taken.

Students are encouraged to go to the Virginia Department of Education site http://www.doe.virginia.gov/testing/sol/practice_items/index.shtml  to review materials to prepare for the tests.  In addition, students may ask their current math teacher for additional help.  Finally, the math tutoring lab is open after school on Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays for help with specific content.

Students will have a practice opportunity to use the online math tools during lunch on Monday, November 30 in lab 201.  It is highly recommended that all students attend this practice session since it is important to be able to use the tools effectively during online testing.  Students with last names A-H should report at the start of lunch and last names K-Z should report at noon.

SOL tests are scored as fail, pass/proficient or advanced/college path.  If a student fails the SOL, he or she is permitted to take an expedited re-take if the score is between 375 and 399.  This re-take will be scheduled within a couple of weeks of the initial testing date.  If a student fails the re-test, he or she will have an opportunity to retake the test in May.  The scores are not used for college admissions purposes and are only used for verifying credits.

Please contact MLW School Counseling Coordinator Karl Zweerink at kzweerink@gsgis.k12.va.us or 804-354-6800, extension 3210 if you have any questions or if your student did not receive an SOL schedule last week.


Ethan Cruikshank (Hanover ‘16) has been named a 2015 Nickelodeon HALO (Helping and Leading Others) honoree for his efforts with his community service organization Music To My Ears. The organization, which he founded in 2009, offers free weekly musical instrument lessons to elementary school-age children taught by experienced musicians in middle and high school. His program also provides instruments to children that are unable to obtain a practice instrument so they too can participate. Now in its seventh year, Music To My Ears has spread to neighboring communities and three additional states. Through the efforts of the volunteers, more than 1800 hours of service has been provided to their communities. As a benefit of being a HALO honoree, Ethan received a college scholarship and support for his organization. He is thrilled to be among the four honored this year at the HALO TV awards show which airs on Nickelodeon on November 29 at 7:00 p.m.


Qualifying for selection into the prestigious event requires a thorough blind audition process that takes place each year in September. More than two-thirds of those who audition will not qualify. At stake is the opportunity to perform in a one-hundred piece symphony orchestra under the direction of an acclaimed guest conductor. Participants also gain eligibility to audition for an even higher and more competitive honor: All Virginia Orchestra. This year’s SRO event transpired November 11-12 at Glen Allen High School.  Maestro Scott Laird, Fine Arts Coordinator and Instructor of Music at The North Carolina School of Science and Mathematics, conducted works by Tchaikovsky and Smetana. Congratulations to Rachel Zhao (Henrico ‘18,), 6th Cello, Willow Kwak (Henrico ‘18,), 10th First Violin, and Andrew Shin (Henrico ’18), 1st Viola (pictured left to right).


The Governor's School Foundation has an immediate opening for a part-time fiscal assistant.  This position is responsible for maintaining and updating certain fiscal records for the Foundation, whose mission is to support MLWGS.  The Fiscal Assistant plays an important role by providing financial accountability and administrative support to the Foundation.

Qualifications include proficiency in Microsoft Word and Excel, database management experience (eTapestry preferred) and knowledge of accounting/bookkeeping software (Quickbooks preferred.) 

This 20-hour/week position is perfect for a Maggie Walker parent who is looking for a part-time opportunity.  Click here for a copy of the job description:  Fiscal Assistant Position.  For more information, please e-mail Laura Lewis, Interim Development Officer, at laura.lewis@GovernorsSchoolFoundation.org, or call her at 354-1566.