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Department of Education Launches “Georgia’s Future. Now!”

MEDIA CONTACT: Matt Cardoza, GaDOE Communications Office, (404) 651-7358,

Dorie Turner Nolt, GaDOE Communications Office, (404) 656-5594,  
Nov. 13, 2012 - State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge today unveiled a first-of-its-kind video web series called “Modern Teacher” as part of new statewide campaign to help build community support for public education.
The novel approach is called “Georgia’s Future. Now!”, a movement of forward-thinking educators, supportive communities and business leaders answering the call for help.
“It’s a research-based initiative, born in the classroom - not in the boardroom - with living examples of what works for teachers to prepare all Georgia students for college and careers,” said Superintendent Barge. “It’s time to stop tearing down public education and start building it up. There are many things working well in our public schools – and plenty of things not working well – so we need to rally around the successes and build on those and share them with other schools.”
The web series is a humorous introduction to a serious discussion about statewide initiatives in public education. It will launch in early 2013 on the web and features a full cast of characters who poke fun at themselves and the changes taking place in public education.
The premiere of each episode will be followed by a serious roundtable discussion about some of the state’s primary education initiatives: Common Core Georgia Performance Standards, the new teacher and leader evaluation system, the Elementary and Secondary Education Act waiver and Career Pathways. No tax dollars are being spent on the video web series.
“Things have been tough around public education lately, so perhaps a little humor will relieve the tension,” Dr. Barge said. “It will hopefully open the door to dialogue, create a buzz in our schools, touch your heart and mind while making a point.”
Barge launched “Georgia’s Future. Now!” on Tuesday morning at Twin Rivers Middle School in Buford. He was joined by J. Alvin Wilbanks, superintendent/CEO of Gwinnett County Public Schools; Jim Maran, CEO of the Gwinnett County Chamber of Commerce; Twin Rivers Principal Linda Boyd; and Georgia Teacher of the Year Lauren Eckman.
“This is a positive opportunity to share with people what we’re doing well to prepare kids to be productive citizens who can give back to their communities,” said Dr. Laurie Barron, the National Middle School Principal of the Year, who leads Smokey Road Middle School in Coweta County. “It’s taking all of our approaches, and putting them together in a concerted effort that gets us the goal we’re after.”
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NOTE TO TV STATIONS:  The Georgia DOE has a broadcast quality version of the Modern Teacher trailer. If you are interested in playing all or portions of it on your newscast, please contact Dorie Nolt and she will send you a link to download it, or go directly to the following link: