Guidance on Teaching About Holidays & Religion

Christmas and Hanukkah holiday design

When teaching about holidays and religions, a recent article in Teaching Tolerance (Favorite Holiday Poster Projects Aren’t Inclusion: An educator and mother recommends strategies for supporting all students’ religions and cultures, during the winter holidays and year-round) offers these helpful tips: Continue reading

A Little Farewell History

Superintendent's BlogEvery generation inherits a world it never made; and, as it does so, it automatically becomes the trustee of that world for those who come after. In due course, each generation makes its own accounting to its children.” — Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, 1968

As I come to the end of 43 years working in public schools — 13 as superintendent — I still feel the power of this quote. I came to Albemarle County thirty-two years ago because I knew educators were doing great things for children and the community supported public education. During my years here, this shared value for educating children well has not faded. Our school division’s strengths reside in this community and in our historical commitment to education that does not stand still in time. Keep reading the June 27 Superintendent’s Blog post »

Gov. Ralph Northam Talks SOLs, Early Childhood Education

Ralph NorthamCurious about our governor’s perspectives on current public education issues? Last week, Governor Ralph Northam addressed Virginia educators in attendance at the second annual Virginia School Leaders Hot Topics Conference. Northam spoke about his desire for students to learn how to think creatively; the importance of recruiting and retaining high-quality teachers; and the need for SOL reform, more broadband access in rural Virginia, increased emphasis on vocational and technical training at the high school level, more diversification in early workforce development, and improved education at the early childhood level. Check out coverage of his speech in The Roanoke Times »

100 Inspiring Ideas for School Social Media Posts

ACPS Social MediaCommunication is key to any organization’s success. Here at ACPS, we see the value in our schools leveraging the power of social media to communicate with one another, our students, and the community. Whether you are new to or familiar with social media, if you find yourself wondering what to post, check out these 100 Inspiring Ideas for School Social Media Posts. And don’t forget to mention @k12albemarle on Twitter and use the hashtag #ACPS!

If you have any questions about social media and how to best use it, contact our Web and Social Media Specialist, Lorenzo Dickerson, at

Bite-Size SEL Lessons

Edutopia“I used to think that snack time was an interruption in the schedule in my early childhood classroom. I offered crackers and water and then asked kids to finish up so we could move on to whatever activity was next.

Last year, however, I found ways in which snack time—previously just a pit stop in our day—could help teach social and emotional skills and build a classroom community in which each child felt valued. My students and I savored our snack time. Here’s how I did it.” Keep reading in Edutopia »

Finally, a Useful Application for VR: Training Employees

MIT Technology Review“If you’ve ever been inside a Walmart during the annual frenzy known as Black Friday, you know there’s no way to truly prepare yourself for the crushing crowds and panic-fueled shopping—you have to see it to believe it. But wearing a virtual-reality headset that lets you stand in the middle of this madness comes pretty close.” Keep reading in MIT Technology Review »

What Superintendent Moran has to say: Continue reading

Three Principles of Writing Instruction in a Personalized Learning Classroom

EdSurge“There is no right way—or place—to write. Similarly, there is no single right way to teach writing; effective writing instruction depends on the unique needs of each learner. In theory, this is a relatively easy idea to get behind. But in a traditional classroom setting, turning this idea into practice can be a challenge.” Keep reading in EdSurge »

What Superintendent Moran has to say: Continue reading

Do Fewer Walls Make for Better Schools?

CityLab“Schools across the world have been experimenting with more open layouts—and teaching techniques that suit them—since at least the 1950s. But such efforts, even in Finland, have not always proved successful because open-plan schools can suffer from distractingly high levels of noise. So how has Finland learned from the problems of the past to create a more effective model?” Keep reading Why Finland Is Embracing Open-Plan School Design in CityLab »