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 GaDOE Library Media Update - May 2018

Table of Contents

  • 2017 NAEP Scores: Georgia Students Show Improvement in Eighth-grade Reading and Math
  • Georgia Receives Testing Waiver from U.S. Department of Education for Middle School Advanced Courses
  • Superintendent Woods Names 2018 AP Honor Schools
  • 2018 Regional Library Media Specialists of the Year
  • Distinguished School Administrator Award
  • Intellectual Freedom Award
  • GALILEO Training and Marketing Survey
  • Get Georgia Reading Campaign Partners Share New Data Tools
  • Community Partnership Grants
  • Free Day of Discovery - Professional Development
  • Add Britannica School Content to Google Classroom
  • EarSketch Computer Science Workshop
  • Get Adobe Spark Premium for your School, for Free
  • Worth Sharing
  • Going Social
  • GaDOE Media Mailing List

2017 NAEP Scores: Georgia Students Show Improvement in Eighth-grade Reading and Math

The results of the 2017 National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) show Georgia’s students improving in eighth grade reading and math, and holding steady in fourth grade math. There was a slight (two-point) decrease in fourth-grade reading. Georgia is above the national average in eighth-grade reading, and nearing the national average in the other three subject areas.
“I’m pleased to see Georgia’s students making gains in eighth-grade reading and math,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said. “There is more work to be done, but as we continue our efforts to strengthen foundational instruction, provide developmentally appropriate formative assessments for early literacy and numeracy, and invest in reading and literacy, I’m confident we’ll see Georgia continuing to move in the right direction.”

  • For more information on NAEP, click here (GaDOE site) or here (NAEP site)

Georgia Receives Testing Waiver from U.S. Department of Education for Middle School Advanced Courses

Flexibility eliminates double-testing for middle school students

Georgia received approval from the U.S. Department of Education (US ED) April 12 to reduce testing and avoid duplication for students taking advanced courses in middle school.

Increasing numbers of Georgia students take high school English Language Arts, math, and science courses in middle school – without a waiver, most of those students would be required to take both the middle school End of Grade (EOG) and high school End of Course (EOC) tests. The waiver approved by US ED today allows those students to take the End of Course test only.

“This waiver provides both continued flexibility and a further reduction of testing here in Georgia,” State School Superintendent Richard Woods said. “We continue to seek every possible opportunity to reduce and avoid duplicative testing and reserve that time for teaching and learning. This also ensures that these students are being assessed by the test that aligns with the instruction they received.”

Superintendent Woods Names 2018 AP Honor Schools

State School Superintendent Richard Woods has named 685 Advanced Placement (AP) Honor Schools for 2018

“Georgia’s schools continue to expand opportunities for their students, including through their AP offerings,” Superintendent Woods said. “We know the AP program produces strong results – for example, the graduation rate for students who complete just one AP course is 98 percent. I commend the school leaders who are expanding access for their students, and the students and teachers in each of these schools who continue to pursue high-level learning.” 

Georgia saw a 14-percent increase in the amount of AP STEM Achievement Schools. Those schools have students testing in at least two AP math courses and two AP science courses, and at least 40 percent of exam scores on AP math and AP science exams earning scores of 3 or higher. Georgia also saw an increase in the amount of AP STEM Schools – which have students testing in at least two AP math courses and at least two AP science courses. 

AP exams are administered by the College Board, which also administers the SAT. AP courses are one of several ways Georgia students can access college-level learning at the high-school level; students who receive a 3, 4, or 5 on an AP exam may receive college credit. The 2018 AP Honor Schools are named in six categories, based on the results of 2017 AP courses and exams. A list of categories is below and a full list of schools in each category is linked in the description. 

Georgia is ranked 15th in the nation for the percentage of students scoring 3, 4, or 5 on at least one AP exam during high school, and 12th in the nation for AP participation.

2018 Regional Library Media Specialists of the Year

GLMA (Georgia Library Media Association) and GAIT (Georgia Association of Instructional Technology) co-sponsor the Georgia School Library Media Specialist of the Year (LMSOTY) award to recognize K-12 library media specialists with dynamic, innovative programs and whose instructional collaborations foster student engagement and achievement. Additionally, LMSOTY finalists are leaders within their school buildings and in the greater community of library media specialists.

Each school system may select one library media specialist for this award. From those chosen for the system level award, one media specialist is chosen as the GLMA Regional Library Media Specialist of the Year. The Georgia Library Media Specialist of the Year is selected from the GLMA Regional winners. The 2018 winner will be announced at the GLMA Summer Institute in June.

Congratulations to these amazing Library Media Specialists!

  • Northwest: Teri Mull, Woodland Middle School at Euharlee 
  • North Central: Jennifer Lewis, Indian Knoll Elementary
  • North Georgia: Julie Townley, R.W. Johnson High School
  • Metro: Joni Gilman,Peachtree Ridge High School
  • South Metro: Cristi Johnson, Locust Grove High School
  • East Georgia: Laura West, Academy of Richmond County
  • West Central: Kimberly Scott, Double Churches Elementary
  • Coastal Georgia: Martha Bongiorno, Richmond Hill Elementary
  • South Central: Michelle Beaufort,  Sallas Mahone Elementary

Distinguished School Administrator Award

Mark Smith, principal of Woodstock High School, received the inaugural Distinguished School Administrator Award from the Georgia Library Media Association. His media specialists, Jennifer Cogdill and Kim George, nominated Mr. Smith for this award. As Cogdill and George stated in their nomination, “we always feel like we matter and belong at Woodstock High School because we, as media specialists, are included in all that is going on.” He regularly participates in library programs, supports the improvements of the library space, and asks his media specialists, “What can I do for you? What do you need from me?”

This award has been implemented to recognize those administrators, outside the library profession who, through individual leadership and sustained effort, have made worthy contributions to the operations of effective school library services and to advancing the role of the school library in the educational program. In addition, it recognizes the responsible and influential role of those administrators that aid in developing successful school library programs.

Intellectual Freedom Award

Leigh Burnham, media specialist at Kingston Elementary School, has received the 2018 Intellectual Freedom Award for Georgia Library Media Association. During her time at Kingston Elementary, she has advocated for her students’ right to access, without restriction, all resources available in the media center. In addition, she has worked to educate her teachers on the importance of label-free leveling for students and has shared her vision with her literacy committee and principal. Leigha has blogged about her transition to a label and level-free media center and shared her efforts through social media platforms.

The GLMA Intellectual Freedom Award recognizes an individual for upholding the principles of intellectual freedom as set forth by the American Library Association of School Librarians and the American Library Association.

GALILEO Training and Marketing Survey

GALILEO staff believe some of the best ways to empower librarians and media specialists to help their students with GALILEO resources is to offer training and marketing support. To do that successfully, we need your help. The Training and Marketing Survey will help us assess needs and preferences and also help us prioritize our efforts in these areas. The survey will take about 15 minutes to complete.

None of the questions on the survey is mandatory, so you only need to answer those questions that are relevant to you. Your responses are voluntary and will remain confidential. If you have any questions or concerns, contact Karen Minton at

Get Georgia Reading Campaign Partners Share New Data Tools

The revamped data section on allows you to dive into relevant data points indicating factors that affect children’s ability to read proficiently—and to use data tools developed by Campaign partners to help state and local leaders understand and address the challenges children face so leaders can craft solutions together.

Community Partnership Grants

The Innovation Fund’s Community Partnership Grants provide between $35,000 to $75,000 over one to two years for eligible organizations—in partnership with schools, districts, and community, state, or national organizations—to implement programs with priority areas including Birth to Age 8 Language and Literacy Development and Positive Learning Climate. Applications are accepted on a rolling basis; the first deadline is Saturday, June 30.

Free Day of Discovery - Professional Development

Join Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB) for free professional development to ignite your classroom through Computational Thinking! 
Tuesday, June 12, 2018 - South Georgia, 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. 
Thursday, June 28, 2018 - Metro Atlanta, 8:30 a.m. - 3:00 p.m. 
Learn and connect with educators and thought-leaders in your community with a day of immersive professional development. Get ready to dive deeper into the world of computational thinking and learn ways to seamlessly connect strategies to standards and bring them to life in your classroom. Join GPB for the Ignite My Future In School Day of Discovery, a customized in-person professional development experience brought to you by leaders at the forefront of computational thinking. GPB’s Day of Discovery is designed to connect you with your fellow educators and will equip participants with the tools they need to start incorporating the skills associated with computational thinking into classroom learning activities.

Add Britannica School Content to Google Classroom

Are you a Google Classroom educator/school/district? If so, your life just got a lot simpler. Now, Britannica School articles, videos, and images can be added directly to your Google Classroom! If you would like to have this feature enabled for your school(s), please contact Britannica School tech support at

EarSketch Computer Science Workshop

EarSketch is a free, web-based STEAM learning environment that engages students by teaching introductory computer science in the context of music composition, remixing, and production. This workshop will primarily focus on the Computer Science Principles (CSP) curriculum but is also appropriate for other introductory computing courses. Breakfast and lunch will be provided during the workshop. There is required online prerequisite work, which should take 5 to 7 hours to complete depending on your background in Computer Science (CS).

Who: Middle and High School CS and Technology Teachers 
When: June 26 - 28 2018 
Where: Georgia Tech Campus, Atlanta GA

Cost: Free. Travel stipends may be available to accommodate participants coming from outside of the metro Atlanta area. You can apply for this during registration. If you have any questions contact

Get Adobe Spark Premium for your School, for Free

Adobe Spark is a suite of apps for quick and easy creation of graphics (e.g. posters), web pages (e.g. visual reports and essays), and videos (e.g . presentations and ads).nSpark is instantly engaging and inspires students to create their best work.

Primary and Secondary schools and Higher Education institutions can now deploy premium versions of Spark to all their students, faculty and staff, free of charge.

Worth Sharing

Going Social

GaDOE Media Mailing List

Do you want to share the GaDOE Media Updates? If so, encourage your colleagues to join the email mailing list by following the directions on this page.

Tony Vlachakis
Educational Technologist 
Library/Media Liaison