All posts by Beth Cheuk

Two girls participate in Hour of Code activity at Venable.

January 2020 News and Highlights


A Word from Superintendent Dr. Rosa Atkins

Ms. Clarke's fourth grade classroom renovationDear staff, family, and community:

As we start 2020, I’ve been looking ahead to what the year will bring. Here are four areas you will hear more about:

Facilities. In early 2019, our Board endorsed a plan to reconfigure our schools. We received $3 million from the City to help us plan and design a new Walker (for preschool) and Buford (for grades 6-8). Once the bidding process is complete, the City will then select a firm to help with this work. Find updates here, and stay tuned!

Equity. The last year or so has been marked by public conversations and bold action on equity in our schools. On February 19 and 26, we’ll hold public events to continue this conversation, and you can also learn more detailed updates here.

Data. Among our most foundational work in equity — and in overall school improvement — is committing to a set of indicators that will show our progress and needs. This sounds simple, but in a world of changing tests, evolving tools, and unintended consequences, it is not. So we are thoughtfully exploring our top goals and the best way to measure them.

Substitute teachers. We — like school divisions across the country — have had shortages in areas such as substitute teachers, CLASS after-school staff, and bus drivers. We are doing internal work to assess the substitute situation and our responses (via marketing, training, compensation). And we are considering options for our community’s after-school care needs. In the meanwhile, help us spread the word! We are looking for substitute teachers and after-school staff — and our colleagues at the City (who manage student transportation) are looking for bus drivers (and substitute bus drivers). Together, let’s find good solutions and talented individuals.

As always, we invite you to partner with us. This might mean checking in with your teacher, attending events or meetings, volunteering, or just staying informed.

Enjoy the long weekend!

Dr. Rosa Atkins


Family Engagement/Parent University Leaders

Did you enjoy Parent University? Have you chatted during a Bus Stop Meet-n-Greet? Or perhaps your family enjoyed the winter break calendar of suggested activities. Thanks to Velvet Coleman, Bianca Johnson, & partners! Recently, the Daily Progress featured our family engagement team.

Dr. Joseph Williams headshotThe Cville Schools staff and administrators have engaged in a variety of trainings related to equity — and we’ll continue to offer these important workshops. But families are a big part of the work, too. So in response to PTO requests, Cville Schools has worked with UVA professor (and Cville Schools parent) Dr. Joseph Williams to provide two free workshops for families. This past Saturday was a session on implicit bias, and this Saturday, we’ll cover “How to Talk to Your Child about Race.” Sign up here.

Jackson-Via renovationAs part of our elementary modernizations, Jackson-Via just completed a $1.25 million improvement to its entrance, lighting, tech, furnishings, and more. This follows work at Clark in 2018, and Burnley-Moran is up next. In addition, we continue to plan for the redesign of Buford and Walker. The RFP for design and planning services was posted in December. An overview of these plans (moving 6th grade to Buford; returning 5th-grade to elementaries; creating a dedicated early education center at Walker) is on our web site.

Dad demonstrates sewing for preschool students.It’s time to apply for preschool: Cville Schools offers free preK classes for qualifying 3- and 4-year-olds. The joint application is here (for Cville Schools, ACPS, and MACAA). Among the changes this year, incomplete toilet skills are no longer an automatic disqualifier for Cville Schools — we’ll look at students on a case-by-case basis. Other preschool news (aside from planning for an early childhood center — see above item) includes the “Creative Curriculum,” a research-based resource that ties together play, literacy, math, and personal growth as kiddos explore everyday subjects like balls or clothes. Pictured left, one of our parents demonstrates sewing as part of the unit on clothing.

Walker students participate in cooking club.The Walker after-school program (EDGE) offers options ranging from sign language to theatre — come see Peter Pan on 1/17! Since 2003, a cooking club has brought Cville area chefs to work with students, started by former nutrition coordinator Alicia Cost and now run by Becky Calvert. It’s almost time for spring EDGE sign-ups. Spring info and sign-ups will be published 1/27. Sessions start 2/5; fee is $20 or free to students with free/reduced lunch. For more info for students OR adult volunteers, visit the EDGE web site.

Better living golden apply award logoMaybe a new teacher has gotten off to a great start. Perhaps it’s time to show appreciation for the teacher who’s put in good work for decades. Either way, it’s time for the annual Golden Apple nominations for outstanding teachers, sponsored by Better Living Building Supply & Cabinetry. Take a few minutes — perhaps working with your student — to submit a nomination to your principal by 1/27. (Winners from the last three years aren’t eligible, but you can still jot them a note of appreciation!) Find the application form here.

illustration of curriculumThe first semester ends Friday, but it’s already time to think about next year! Check out upcoming ways to learn about our course offerings. For instance, Buford has a family curriculum night on 1/28, CHS has one on 2/3, Buford’s engineering expo is 2/13, and CATEC has an event on 2/25. Plus, Walker counselors are visiting elementary schools, and a video helps Walker families understand their choices. Counselors are checking in with Buford and CHS students to help them plan for a future that extends well beyond high school. Have questions? Ask your teacher, counselor, or principal!

snow photo of DOA‘Tis still the season for snow and ice. Take time now to prepare for a weather closing. To choose phone, email, or text notifications (and to check your contact information), log into PowerSchool and select School Messenger at left. Then in the top-left corner, click the three-menu lines and select “Preferences” to make your choice and check your info. Find more instructions. Need help logging into PowerSchool? Call your school, 245-2943, or 245-2962. Find more info about weather closing and notifications.

Cville Schools official logoIn December, the School Board said farewell to interim member Ned Michie. In January, they welcomed new member Lashundra Bryson Morsberger, re-elected Jennifer McKeever and Leah Puryear as chair and vice chair, and approved committee assignments. Thanks to all for serving! December also began the budget development season (see the calendar of budget events and presentation slides). Areas of action include changes to the policy about distributing medicine in school, and the approval of the 2020-21 academic calendar and program of studies. Reports were given about family engagement, special education, the strategic plan, and the equity committee. Find more School Board information, including agendas, minutes, and livestream video.

illustration of calendar1/16-17 CHS Musical Theatre Education class presents Pippin, 7pm, Black Box Theatre, $10 adults ($5 students/alum)
1/17 Early Dismissal, End of 2nd Quarter, & Afternoon Professional Learning
1/17 Walker Stage Left Performs Peter Pan, 6:30pm, Walker Auditorium
1/20-21 No School (MLK Day on 1/20; teacher workday on 1/21)
1/21 Budget Update Meeting, 5pm, Jackson-Via (open to all)

1/28 Buford Family Curriculum Expo, 6pm (Walker families welcome!)
1/29 CHS Symphony/Choir/Arts Celebration, 7:30, MLKPAC

1/30 Walker 5th Grade Band Win
ter Concert, 6:30pm, Walker Auditorium
2/3 CHS Curriculum Fair & Buford Family Night, 4:30-7pm, CHS Cafeteria. (Buford Family Information Session will take place from 6:30-7pm in A-Commons.)

2/5 Walker EDGE Clubs Begin for Second Semester
2/6 School Board Meeting, 5pm, CHS Media Center
2/6 Harvest of the Month Snack Program (thanks, City Schoolyard Garden)
2/13 Buford Engineering Expo, 5:30-7pm, Buford (open to all)

More Looks at Cville Schools

Zymir Faulkner by Andrew Shurtleff/Daily Progress

Go Black Knights! Basketball, sideline cheer, swimming, track, and wrestling are in season. Boys’ hoops (12-1) won the Daily Progress Holiday Classic, and Zymir Faulkner (above) was the DP’s athlete of the week. Prior to Friday’s basketball game, the state championship boys’ soccer team was honored and received their rings. Spring tryouts start 2/24 — info will be posted to

Pippin poster and cast (musical theatre ensemble class)

The arts are always in season at Cville Schools. Students from CHS’s musical theatre ensemble class are presenting Pippin 1/16 and 1/17 in the Black Box. Walker students are presenting Peter Pan 1/17 at Walker. ALL CHS arts students are performing and presenting on 1/29. Don’t miss it! 

Venable Hour of Code activity

Students participated in the Hour of Code (national programming activities). Our iSTEM teachers present coding year-round, leading to computer science pathways at CHS and CATEC. And shout-out to CHS BACON (Best All-around Club of Nerds) for qualifying for the state FTC Robotics championship!

Find more info and events on on our website, social media, or our Google calendars!

Find us on the web at

Illustration of book with circles containing curriculum areas like a globe or a beaker

Buford Hosts Rising 7th/8th Grade Curriculum Expo

Illustration of book with circles containing curriculum areas like a globe or a beakerAll rising 7th- & 8th-grade students and families are invited to Buford’s Curriculum Expo! Learn more about your elective choices for next year!

Tuesday, January 28, 2020
Buford Cafeteria

Interested in Buford engineering?

Attend the Buford Engineering Expo on February 13, 5:30-7pm!  Hear from students as they demonstrate projects and answer questions about the program.

Heading to CHS next year?

Check out the CHS curriculum fair on February 3, 4:30-7pm in the CHS Cafeteria. A Buford family information session will take place from 6:30-7:00pm in A-Commons.

Teacher and students in renovated Jackson-Via hallway

New look, new learning as Jackson-Via completes modernization

Jackson-Via remodeled classroom wideshotWhen school reopened after winter break, Jackson-Via students and staff returned to find the finishing touches complete on their 2019 modernization projects.

The project included new paint throughout the building, daylighting for more natural light, new technology and furnishings, beautiful way-finding guides, and more. As with the 2018 work at Clark Elementary, fourth-graders saw the biggest impact in their spaces.

Designed by VMDO Architects, the work is part of an annual appropriation of $1-1.25 million by the City of Charlottesville for modernization (in addition to annual maintenance of school facilities). Planning is underway for a 2020 project at Burnley-Moran.

Teacher and students in renovated Jackson-Via hallwayIn addition, the City has also allocated $3 million for planning and design work for Buford Middle School and Walker Upper Elementary as part of a reconfiguration plan to move 6th-graders to Buford, return 5th-graders to the elementary schools, and place preschoolers at an early learning center on the site of Walker.

Budget Development Process underway for FY2020-21

graphic of pie chart on a stock chart with a budget

It’s time to develop the 2020-21 budget for Charlottesville City Schools! We’d like to hear from you.

Upcoming opportunities for the community to learn more and share your thoughts are:

  • Thursday, December 5 at 5 pm, CHS Media Center, School Board Meeting
  • Wednesday, January 8 at 6 pm, Walker/Buford PTO at Walker (open to entire community)
  • Thursday, January 9 at 5 pm, CHS Media Center, School Board Meeting
  • Monday, January 13 at  5:30 pm, CHS PTO (open to entire community)
  • Tuesday, January 21 at 5 pm at Jackson-Via PTO (open to entire community)
  • Thursday, February 6 at 5 pm, CHS Media Center, School Board Meeting

School Board meetings are the first Thursday of the month at 5 pm in the CHS media center. The January meeting is Thursday, January 9 (the second Thursday of the month due to Winter Break).

You can also check out the resources and information at

Draft calendar for 2019-20 school year. PDF is attached on this page. For details, call 245-2962.

Draft Calendar for 2020-21

Draft calendar for 2020-21 academic calendar. Call 245-2962 with questions.UPDATE: The Charlottesville School Board voted to approve this draft in January 2020. The Albemarle County School Board will vote on the calendar (with a possible slight change) later in January.

The Charlottesville-Albemarle School Calendar Committee has created a draft calendar for the 2020-21 school year.  The proposed calendar is nearly identical to this year’s.

Please take a minute to review the draft and share your thoughts with us.

A joint committee from Charlottesville Schools and Albemarle County Public Schools will review the feedback and then present a recommendation to the School Boards in December. After School Board consideration, a vote will be held in January.

Comments about the calendar:

  • Spring break: Our practice is to designate the first full week of April as our spring break. We are sometimes asked, Can’t you align spring break with U.Va.’s?   U.Va.’s spring break is typically near the beginning of March, which for K-12 students would make for a very long stretch without a break later in the spring. So while we recognize that this would be a good solution for U.Va. families, we feel that it doesn’t represent the interests of all our students and staff. A 2016 survey indicated that a majority of respondents favored keeping spring break during the first week of April.
  • Religious Holidays: Our practice is not to observe religious holidays as school holidays (but we do try to avoid scheduling evening events on major religious holidays). Students or staff who wish to be absent to observe a religious holiday are allowed to do so. For the 2020-21 school year, a professional learning day falls on Yom Kippur. This might be a benefit to Jewish families but might present a conflict for Jewish teachers and staff (who are welcome to take a personal day off but would miss the professional learning day). We welcome your input on this draft.
  • History about the calendar development: For over a decade, the Charlottesville and Albemarle County school divisions have worked together for a common calendar. A joint committee creates a draft calendar, and then we ask for input from students, teachers, administration, and parents. If necessary, the committee makes revisions to the draft before submitting a recommended calendar to the two school boards for approval.
graphic 2019-20 surveys


graphic 2019-20 surveysPreschool Parents and Guardians:

You are invited to take a short survey about how you found an early childhood program for your child. The survey will take about 10 minutes.  

Our program is working with the University of Virginia, the Virginia Department of Education, and Virginia Early Childhood Foundation on the Preschool Development Grant Birth to Five (PDG B5) initiative. We are working to make it easier for Virginia families to find great care and education programs for their young children. We want to hear from your family!

On a computer, tablet, or phone, go to: and complete the survey by December 15.

The survey is voluntary. You do not have to take it. The survey is anonymous. It does not ask for your name, your child’s name, or the name of your early childhood program. No one will know what you say in the survey.

If you have any questions, please contact the project coordinator, Christina Taylor, by email ( or by phone (434-297-6703).

Thank you for your input!

Take a Survey about our 2020-2021 Draft Calendar


Estimado padre, madre o tutor,

Le invitamos a completar una breve encuesta sobre cómo encontró un programa de primera infancia para su hijo. La encuesta dura unos 10 minutos. 

Estamos trabajando para hacer que a las familias de Virginia les resulte más fácil encontrar programas de educación y cuidado excelentes para sus hijos pequeños. Nuestro equipo en University of Virginia (UVA) está trabajando con el Departamento de Educación de Virginia y Virginia Early Childhood Foundation en la iniciativa Preschool Development Grant Birth to Five (PDG B5). ¡Queremos escuchar las opiniones de su familia!

En una computadora, tableta o teléfono, ingrese a:

Complete la encuesta antes del 15 de diciembre.

Su participación en la encuesta es voluntaria. No es obligación completarla. La encuesta se completa de manera anónima. No se pregunta su nombre, el nombre de su hijo ni el nombre del programa de primera infancia. Nadie sabrá qué puso en la encuesta.

Si tiene alguna pregunta, comuníquese con Christina Taylor, por correo electrónico ( o por teléfono (434-297-6703).


November 2019 News and Highlights


A Word from Superintendent Dr. Rosa Atkins 

Poster at CHS Honoring First-Generation College Students among staff and studentsDear staff, family, and community:

Recently, CHS celebrated “I’m First Day,” a nation-wide initiative to support students who will be the first in their family to graduate from college. The event included hand-written notes of encouragement and a photo wall featuring CHS staff and students who were (or will be) first in their family. As a first-generation college student myself, I am proud that our schools prepare so many of our students to be trailblazers in this way, and I was touched to learn that so many of my colleagues on the staff are themselves first-generation college students. First-gen staff members like Dr. Eric Irizarry (CHS principal), Kim Powell (Assistant Superintendent for Finance and Operations), and Dr. Jesse Turner (Buford principal) have cleared a path, and they in turn can encourage our students to take those first bold steps toward college, career, or adulthood.

Williams family in front of Johnson historic marker.Speaking of trailblazers, in October we honored the families and students who desegregated Johnson School in 1962. The City and City Schools installed a historic marker and hosted a ceremony recognizing Eugene and Lorraine Williams along with the four black students who integrated the school. For photos, video, and more information about this powerful event, click here. And to learn how we are incorporating diverse and local voices into our history classes,please click here. As one small piece of this project, we have created an annual Trailblazers Day to tell our students about our own school history.

Together, let us blaze a new trail toward equity and excellence in our schools.

Dr. Rosa Atkins


Elementary School Activities

A glimpse into our elementary schools… 4th-graders attending a “sound engineering” concert at UVA… UVA President Jim Ryan reading to Johnson students… Jackson-Via students learning teamwork with string … Clark students testing water flow during an iSTEM activity.

TheatreCHS tech crew students shine a lightAt the Virginia Theatre Association’s high school festival, CHS earned the first-ever “Spirit of  Theater” award. The new award recognizes collaboration and positivity in the face of challenge. CHS won for its complex and well-received presentation of “Failure,” directed by senior Jack Heaphy. The one-act, which relied on technical effects, also won top technical honors. In addition, students earned awards in the Tech Olympics and for improvisation, and many seniors earned college call-backs and scholarships. Visit TheatreCHS on Facebook.

Draft calendar for 2020-21 school year.The draft academic calendar for the 2020-21 school year has been posted to our web site for community comment. The proposed calendar is nearly identical to this year’s. A joint committee from Cville Schools and ACPS will review the feedback and then present a recommendation to the School Board in December. After School Board consideration, a vote will be held in January. Click here for the draft calendar and a link to the survey.

CHS senior Dejua Lewis of Dejua's Creationz at Fifth Street StationThe Dejua behind “Dejua’s Creationz” at Fifth Street Station is a CHS senior who followed her mother’s footsteps to bring her dreams to life. When she’s not at CHS, Dejua Lewis offers desserts and smoothies in a space that she shares with her mother’s restaurant. The restaurant was recently featured on NBC29, and Dejua was also interviewed in the CHS Knightly News, where she told her classmates, if they “invest their time, love, and patience into their craft, they can be just as successful.”

Two bus drivers at a Cville Schools appreciation eventOctober brought National Bus Driver’s Week, and we honored those who transport our students safely between school and home each day. At an appreciation breakfast, we thanked our drivers for their part in Charlottesville City Schools’ mission– “Every Learner. Every Day. Everyone!” The City has openings for additional regular and substitute drivers. For more information, click here.

Matt Degan's social studies class at CHSEighth-graders in Dr. Venable’s math classes have been treated to several guest speakers who have reflected on their journey from young person to community leader. (In the photo at left, Mr. Marcus Carter, a counselor and athletic director at Fluvanna Middle School, is leading students in a teamwork exercise.) “Voices from the Village” is a similar program that offers speakers at CHS and Lugo-McGinness Academy.

CHS engineering student showing work to UVA engineersA new partnership with UVA Engineering’s Link Lab will connect high school engineers with graduate student mentors. The UVA students will guide CHS students in year-long, team projects like engineering of drones, windmills, oscillators and autonomous systems applications. The launch event included a group discussion, tour of the CHS Sigma Lab, and problem-solving sessions. To learn more, visit UVA Engineering on Facebook.

Cville Schools official logoIn October, the School Board approved new equity and anti-racism policies and heard an update about “Changing the Narrative,” which aims to include more diverse and local voices in social science classes. The Board also approved the calendar of budget development meetings. In other news, Juandiego Wade will receive the 2019 Paul Goodloe McIntire Citizenship Award. And the recent elections returned James Bryant, Dr. Sherry Kraft, and Jennifer McKeever and brought Lashundra Bryson Morsberger for a first term. Congratulations to all and thanks for your service. For School Board information, including agendas, minutes, and livestream video, read more here.

illustration of calendar11/13 Special Education Advisory Committee, Johnson, 5:30pm
11/15 Starry Knight Telescope Star Party (open to all Cville Schools families), 7-8:30pm, CHS Curtis Elder Track & Field Complex
11/18 CHS Band Fall Concert, 7pm
11/19 Buford Orchestra Fall Concert, 7:30pm

11/19 Lugo-McGinness Student/Family Celebration, 12pm
11/19 Parent University, 5-7:30pm, Jackson-Via Elementary (open to all)
11/27-29 Thanksgiving Break

12/2 Gifted Advisory Committee Meeting, 7-8:30pm, Division Annex Offices at CHS
12/4 CHS Orchestra Winter Concert, 7:30-9pm, MLKPAC
12/5 School Board Meeting, 5pm, CHS Media Center
12/5 Harvest of the Month Snack Program (thanks, City Schoolyard Garden)

12/6 City of Charlottesville Grand Illumination, begins at 4:30pm, Downtown Mall
12/10 All-City Band Winter Concert, 7pm, MLKPAC
12/11 Walker Orchestra Concert, 7pm, MLKPAC
12/12 CHS Holiday Pops Choir Concert, 7-8:30pm, MLKPAC
12/18 Walker Chorus Concert, 7-8pm, Walker Auditorium
12/19 Walker Stage Left Performance of Peter Pan, 6:30pm, Walker Auditorium
12/23-1/3 Winter Break (classes resume 1/6)

More Looks at Cville Schools

Fourth-graders dance during Minds in Motion

Minds in Motion: same great program, new season. Our partnership with the Richmond Ballet continued in a new format. Elementary schools hosted two-week intensive residencies, culminating in a fall performance. This year’s program was the “Journey of the Monarch,” combining dance with biology, plus teamwork, confidence, and fun. See more photos.

Walker student working with hip hop artist

Sixth graders enjoyed a hip hop writing workshop with Grammy-award winning artist Secret Agent 23 Skidoo. Students found courage to share their own original raps to professional background beats. The next day, students saw the artist perform at the Paramount. More info.

Class of 2022 CHS powderpuff football champs

The Class of 2022 is this year’s Powderpuff champions of Charlottesville High School! With the help of assistant Principal Rodney Redd, who also oversees athletics, the CHS Student Council revived this popular tradition two years ago. 

Find more info and events on on our website, social media, or our Google calendars!

Find us on the web at

Clark students collaborating in a STEM activity.

News and Highlights: October 2019


A Word from Superintendent Dr. Rosa Atkins 

Two CHS graduates from the Class of 2019!Dear staff, family, and community:

As the end of the first quarter approaches on October 31, I hope the year has gotten off to a good start for you and your family.

Congratulations to the Class of 2019 and all those who helped them attain a school-high on-time graduation rate of 95.7 percent! Our black students’ rate was even higher — 95.9!  As CHS Principal Irizarry noted, “Even as we celebrate, we set new goals. As we continue to emphasize increased rigor and high expectations, we will expect to see more students pursuing the advanced diploma. But regardless of the type of diploma our students have earned, we celebrate this accomplishment and the good work our teachers, counselors, and staff are doing.”

Yes, we approach our schools with a combination of pride for what we’ve accomplished and a strong commitment to doing better. This fall, we have rolled out a wide array of commitments for improving our schools for everyone. You can learn more about these commitments by visiting

Dr. Rosa Atkins

VA Secretary of Education Qarni visits CHS to talk about mental wellness.

VA Education Secretary Atif Qarni (center) spoke with CHS students to learn about the school’s pioneering mental wellness initiatives. From pre-K to high school, our schools have earned national attention for classroom-based social-emotional learning.  Click here for more.

Three Jackson-Via students enjoy a whole-class gifted activity.This fall, Charlottesville City Schools began an innovative model for gifted instruction. The new model is a collaboration between gifted resource teachers and classroom teachers, bringing the enriching activities of the gifted program to all students. These changes come after years of revising our old model and after months of soliciting feedback and consulting with experts. To learn more, find information on our web site or in the Daily Progress.

Fine arts students at Walker School.Walker students now choose not one, but two electives, selecting from art, band, choir, orchestra, pre-engineering, and Spanish. This has increased the enrollment and diversity of fine arts classes and helped students identify their own interests. Read more.

In other fine arts news, world-class violinist  Anyango Yarbo-Davenport visited Buford and CHS musicians, the CHS orchestra announced a tour to Lisbon & Madrid, the CHS choir raised more than $9,000 for hurricane-devastated Ocracoke Island, and CHS art students are contributing to a future mural in the City

ESL peer mentors at CHS.CHS has earned a national grant to support a peer-to-peer mentorship program. Newly-arrived immigrant and refugee students are matched with a mentor who has their same background and experiences, but who has been at CHS longer. “Having peers actually caring about them, reaching out, welcoming them… it just makes such a huge difference… You see them light up,” said ESL teacher Tina Vasquez. See NBC29’s coverage here.

Fourth-graders explore the Rivanna River at Camp Albemarle.Through visits to Camp Albemarle, field trips to Wildrock, time in our school gardens, and Farm-to-School Week activities, we are reaping nature’s wellness and educational benefits. Recently all schools earned (another) “Virginia Naturally” award for our efforts in sustainability and environmental learning. And the City’s Public Works staff is helping us save energy and water by providing educational materials for students and staff.

Matt Degan's social studies class at CHSTeachers are “changing the narrative” to include more diverse and local voices and history in social sciences. We are one of six school divisions included in a Virginia Humanities grant to train teachers and write new curriculum. “We want to be on the cutting edge of this work,” notes social sciences coordinator Neeley Minton. See NBC29 coverage.

The fall has also offered ways to explore our schools’ history. September marked the 60th anniversary of the desegregation of Charlottesville Schools, and in October, a new historic marker at Johnson will explore the schools’ integration from 1959-1962.

Clark students collaborate in a STEM activity.Using hands-on activities related to everyday life such as changing leaves, water quality, and the heat retention of blankets, our STEM program is helping students understand the world around them. One real-life lesson? Failure is an important first step to learning and growing. To learn more about Cville Schools’ innovative and robust STEM programming, check out CCS_iSTEM on Twitter or attend a STEM Family Night at your school!

Cville Schools official logoRecent School Board activity includes a review of the division’s latest student data reports, an update about our 2019-20 equity commitments, and a first reading of proposed equity and anti-racism policies. (To review the drafts and provide feedback, click here.) Board members also voted to approve several documents to finalize their commitment to the new model for gifted education. For School Board information, including agendas, minutes, and livestream video, read more here.

illustration of calendar10/23 Dedication of Historic Marker at Johnson (call 245-2962 to learn more)
Buzz-by-Belmont Family 5K (open to all & sponsored by Clark PTO)
10/30 Minds in Motion, MLK PAC, 7pm
10/31 End of First Quarter
11/1-5 No School (Professional Learning and Teacher Workdays)
11/7 Harvest of the Month in all schools (thanks, City Schoolyard Garden!)
11/7 School Board Meeting, CHS Media Center, 5pm

11/11 CHS and Buford Bands Veterans Day Concert, 11am (CHS) and 2pm (Buford)
11/12 School Health Advisory Board Meeting, Division Annex at CHS, 4pm
11/12 Walker STEM Night, 6pm
11/13 Special Education Advisory Committee Meeting, Johnson, 5:30pm
11/18 CHS Band Fall Concert, 7pm
11/19 Buford Orchestra Fall Concert, 7:30pm

11/19 Lugo-McGinness Student/Family Celebration, 12pm
11/27-29 Thanksgiving Break

More Looks at Cville Schools

Burnley-Moran student learning to bike during recess.

Burnley-Moran students bike during recess. By partnering with the City’s Safe Routes to Schools program, all elementary schools have a biking unit during PE. This fall, Burnley-Moran instructional assistant Myk Reid worked with the City to provide bikes during recess. Said one second-grader, “This is obviously the best day of my life!” See more photos.

Dedication of Curtis Elder Track at CHS.

The CHS track & field facility was refurbished and rededicated to its namesake, legendary CHS track coach, Curtis Elder. When the school’s not using it, come enjoy our lovely track! More info.

Buford volleyball team has a record of 13-2!

Congrats to the Buford Volleyball team, with a 13-2 record so far! Fall sports are underway at CHS and Buford — thanks to the marching band, cheerleaders, and fans for their support! 

Find more info and events on on our website, social media, or our Google calendars!

Find us on the web at

Equity: Archived Page


Every Learner. Every Day. Everyone.

Charlottesville City Schools serves 4,500 students who are economically, racially, and ethnically  diverse, and we want all of them to succeed. This is made possible by a culture of respect, high expectations, and mutual support.

We’ve come a long way in helping all of our students grow:

  • Our on-time graduation rate for African-American students has grown by 25 points since 2006;
  • At CHS, our African-American enrollment in honors classes has grown 29 percent since the 2015-16 school year.Cville City Schools 17-18 Demographics: 42% White, 33% Black, 12% Hispanic/Latino, 7% Asian/Pacific Islander/Hawaiian, and 6% Other
  • Our students have elected a wide variety of their peers as class presidents, homecoming queens, School Board reps, and other key positions. Recent leaders and honorees have included students from many racial and ethnic groups, special needs students, and immigrants and refugees;
  • Our AVID program sends first-generation college students to U.Va., Howard, and many more top universities.

Even so, we see persistent achievement differences — often along lines of race and socioeconomic status — in areas such as standardized testing, diploma type earned, enrollment in advanced classes, and more. We are committed to addressing these disparities.

In other words, we have come far, yet  we are committed to doing more. Read below to learn about some of our approaches to achieving progress.

  • universities.

Even so, we see persistent achievement differences — often along lines of race and socioeconomic status — in areas such as standardized testing, diploma type earned, enrollment in advanced classes, and more. We are committed to addressing these disparities.

In other words, we have come far, yet  we are committed to doing more. Read below to learn about some of our approaches to achieving progress.

Charlottesville City Schools will host a community forum to discuss equity on Tuesday, October 23, at Charlottesville High School at 7pm.

Graphic: Every Learner. Every Day. Everyone.


Response to the White Nationalist Rally in Charlottesville

The events of August 11 and 12, 2017, certainly provided challenges to the Charlottesville community, and in response to those challenges, our teachers provided incredible learning and reflection opportunities for our staff and students. Our response to the rallies began with our teachers, who returned to work just days after the rallies. We held an … Continue reading Response to White Nationalist Rally in Charlottesville in August 2017

Community Partnerships to Promote Equity

Community Partnerships to Promote Equity

image collage about partnership between Cville Schools and 100 Black Men of Central VA. For questions, call 245-Charlottesville City Schools partners with community organizations in efforts to serve our students’ diverse needs.

Groups such as the Alliance for Black Male Achievement and 100 Black Men of Central Virginia work to “change the narrative” about black men and boys in the city. Examples of partnership include lunch buddies and other mentoring opportunities as well as positive displays of support. For example, students arriving at Buford Middle School have sometimes arrived at school by walking through a  tunnel formed by supportive adult black men.

Charlottesville’s City of Promise received national recognition as one of only 15 recipients of federal Promise Neighborhood planning grants. City of Promise is the result of several interrelated efforts that over the course of ten years have resulted in a pathway of supports for children in three of the city’s under-resourced neighborhoods. By involving the community on multiple levels to refocus efforts around children’s education, City of Promise is truly changing the game for children in these three neighborhoods. At 62 percent, Charlottesville’s City of Promise students’ rate of college attendance is 10 percent higher than the national average for low-income students. In addition, City of Promise middle-schoolers’ state test scores have improved so much that in 2015-16, their pass rates exceeded Charlottesville’s all-student pass rate!

Children in the Johnson City Schoolyard with a chicken.
City Schoolyard Garden provides rich learning experiences for all.

Another partnership that enhances the opportunities for all of our students is City Schoolyard Garden, which maintains garden classrooms and offers educational programs in most of our schools. Aside from getting our students’ brains and hands busy, CSG does important work in supporting academic learning, in developing student leadership, in promoting food justice, in furthering the health and well-being of our students and staff,  and much more.

We have many other community partnerships to support our diverse students. A few examples include:

  • Programs serving our English language learners. See below for more information.
  • Books on Bikes, a group of Charlottesville teachers and librarians who bring books (and freezy pops) to low-income neighborhoods in the summer months
  • CATEC, the Charlottesville Albemarle Technical Education Center
  • Boys and Girls Club of Central Virginia (adjacent to Buford Middle School)
  • STEM and health science partnerships with U.Va. (see below).

Aside from our local partnerships, our efforts to promote equity are also reliant on the expertise and programs of state and national partners.

Promoting Diversity in STEM and Healthcare

Promoting Diversity in STEM and Healthcare

CHS Biology 2 students presenting at UVA-sponsored medical symposium
CHS Biology 2 students presenting at UVA-sponsored medical symposium.

Charlottesville City Schools has a terrific neighbor, the University of Virginia. We regularly partner with U.Va.’s schools of education, engineering, and medicine to develop programs that expose all our students to engineering and medical fields with the goal of attracting a diverse pool of students in these fields.

The medical school partnership includes behind-the-schools tours of U.Va. Medical Center for all middle schoolers, and it also includes a student symposium of faculty-mentored medical research for the high school’s Biology 2 students.

Clark students investigating a robot.
STEM learning at Clark.

The engineering partnership is even more substantial. The University of Virginia was instrumental in the creation of our five-year engineering curriculum that can begin as early as eighth grade. The engineering program has no application or math prerequisites to encourage as broad of participation as possible, and African-American participation in these programs has grown tremendously (nearly doubling) since the establishment of the program four years ago. Furthermore, we recognize that by middle school, some students have already decided that STEM is not for them, so we have developed a K-6 elementary iSTEM program that touches all of our students with cross-curricular, hands-on activities that will build a bridge to our expansive offerings in engineering, coding, math, and science.  The iSTEM program continues at Buford Middle School and CHS to help build cross-curricular connections with the schools’ extensive science and engineering programs.

Teaching Local and African-American History

Teaching Local and African-American History

photo of globe held up by hands of different skin tonesWe believe that understanding our history is the best foundation for a positive future. This is true of our global, national, state, and local history. It’s even true of the history of Charlottesville City Schools, which closed Lane High School and Venable Elementary School in 1958 to resist integration before the courageous “Charlottesville 12” integrated our schools. (Read about our School Board honoring and apologizing to the Charlottesville 12. )

We have offered African-American history classes at Charlottesville High School since 2009. Aside from these classes, we teach our history to our students, staff, and Board members. We work closely with groups such as the Jefferson School African American Heritage Center, Monticello, the City of Charlottesville’s Office of Human Rights, and others for field trips, curriculum, and resources to help our staff and students better understand our history.  For a recent example, see Charlottesville Tomorrow’s article, “CHS professional development focuses on city’s racial, ethnic history.

In light of the white nationalist rallies in August 2017 (see above to explore the learning opportunities we created in response), we are renewing our commitment to learning from our history and guiding our students in crucial conversations that will lead to a better future for all.


Buford students reading with Johnson buddies.
Buford students reading with Johnson buddies.

We believe in mentoring, whether that means Buford eighth-graders serving as reading buddies at neighboring Johnson Elementary, upperclassmen at CHS welcoming ninth-graders through Link Crew, or teachers, coaches, and community members guiding students every step of the way.

The Link Crew program at CHS connects ninth-graders with peer mentors, who not only welcome them in August, but meet with them throughout the year to acclimate students to a new school, answer questions, and build relationships. During the years of this program, CHS has seen significant gains for ninth-graders in areas such as attendance, discipline referrals, academic engagement, and more.

CHS alum thanking her elementary mentors!
CHS alum thanking her elementary mentors!

We appreciate community mentors from groups such as City of Promise, City Schoolyard Garden, 100 Black Men of Central Virginia, and area churches, just to name a few. And of course we recognize the power that our teachers and staff have to guide students. During the school division’s staff-wide welcome convocation in August, Dr. Atkins told the stories of a number of recent CHS graduates who had shown inspirational resilience. Virtually all of the students gave special credit to one or more teachers who believed in them, challenged them, and guided them.


Honors-option Classes at CHS

Honors-option Classes at CHS

Nicole Carter presenting on honors-option classes at the 2018 Atlantic Edu conference.
CHS presenting on honors-option classes at The Atlantic Education Summit.

To increase enrollment in rigorous and college preparatory classes, Charlottesville City Schools has begun offering innovative “honors-option” courses.  These courses allow different students in the same classroom to elect standard-level or honors-level credit for the course, depending on the student’s choice in the complexity and rigor of the readings and assignments. This promotes greater equity and diversity within a given classroom, which benefits all students.

Chart showing increases in African-American enrollment in advanced classes at CHS from 2016 to 2018. For information, call 245-2962.

Another outcome is that it helps a greater number of students see themselves as capable of honors-level work and become more likely to enroll in future honors-level, dual enrollment, or AP classes. In fact, Charlottesville High School’s African American enrollment in honors-level classes has risen 29 percent since 2015-16 (even excluding the honors-option classes). CHS teachers and staff have presented this model — which was developed with guidance from UVa’s Curry School of Education — at educational conferences and other venues.

Having started in English 9, honors-option classes have since spread to English 10-11,  Economics and Personal Finance, AVID, Biology 2/Human Anatomy, capstone Commercial Photography, introductory world languages, and Spanish 2.

Reducing Fees, Applications, Barriers

Reducing Fees, Applications, Barriers

Illustration for "reducing barrow" -- arrows finding a path around a wallRecognizing that 56 percent of our students qualify for free or reduced lunch, we are committed to eliminating or minimizing participation fees for coursework, after-school activities, field trips, school supplies and more. Whenever possible, we build the cost of these programs into our school budget.

We also partner with the community to make sure that all of our students enter the school year ready for success. In August, we join with Charlottesville’s African American Pastors Council to organize a free back-to-school bash in a pavilion on the iconic Charlottesville Downtown Mall. Churches, the schools, and other partners work together to provide school supplies, vouchers for haircuts, vaccinations and physicals, opportunities to sign up for clubs, and more. Another way we eliminate fees is that three of our elementary schools qualify and take advantage of the USDA’s Community Eligibility Provision to provide school-wide free student meals. When specific fees are unavoidable, we supply scholarships for students eligible for free or reduced meals.

Beyond fees, we look to remove other barriers that might block students’ access to programs. For instance, our acclaimed engineering program (see below) requires no application or math prerequisites for entry.  And we are building a division-wide elementary iSTEM program that reaches every single  one of our students with 21st-century skills like coding and design thinking. We also help eliminate transportation barriers by providing late bus routes to accommodate after-school or evening activities and special events.  In many cases, we go into the neighborhoods, using conveniently-located churches and community centers to hold  parent meetings, tutoring sessions, and community forums. We are committed to opening doors.

Free Preschool Programs for Qualifying Three- and Four-Year-Olds

Free Preschool Programs for Qualifying Three- and Four-Year-Olds

girls hands building with blocksEvidence shows that the value of early childhood education is high. So is the price tag of private preschools! Because of our belief in the value of early childhood instruction, Charlottesville offers a free preschool program for qualifying 3- and 4-year-olds.  This means paying for the 3-year-old program with local dollars and supplementing the state’s contributions for the 4-year-old program so we can serve more children. The preschool classes serve children who qualify based on factors such as poverty, developing English language skills, or the need for special services. Looking beyond our own school-based programs, we also partner with a neighboring school district, private preschools, and community agencies who offer preschool services. Jointly, we provide teacher training and even created a common application for families to minimize paperwork and barriers.

Social-Emotional Learning (including pilot programs at Greenbrier and Clark Elementary)

Social-Emotional Learning (including pilot programs at Greenbrier and Clark Elementary)

graphic with arrows showing a list of the benefits o social-emotional learning (ranging from more self-awareness to higher test scores to fewer behavioral problems)Our school division in particular — and the country in general — is increasingly focusing on the need to grow our students’ social and emotional skill set alongside the traditional emphasis on academic achievement.  Charlottesville Schools’ work in emphasizing social and emotional learning was highlighted by a 2018 report from the Annie E. Casey Foundation. Social and emotional learning is also a key element in our roll-out of Positive Behavior and Intervention Supports and Virginia Tiered System of Supports (see “Systems of Supports,” below).

During the 2017-18 year, at Greenbrier Elementary, we piloted two classrooms that combine the traditional academic curriculum and schedule with a strong emphasis on social and emotional learning.  In the 2018-19 school year, we have added a classroom at Clark Elementary. We are committed to trauma-informed care not only in our schools, but also in all of the other regional organizations that connect with our students.  We believe it will increase academic success, reduce disciplinary involvement, and lead to better outcomes overall.

In the pilot program at Greenbrier (expanded to Clark in 2018-19), students participate in the full “standard” curriculum and activities alongside a specific curriculum and structures to support social and emotional growth. One first-grade and one second-grade class are part of the pilot; each room is staffed by a teacher with experience in special education and social-emotional development; a gifted education teacher; and an instructional assistant. The explicit instruction in self-management and social skills helps all students in the pilot, and learning from the program is already informing our district-wide practices for the benefit of all.

For related strategies, see “Trauma-Informed Practices” and “Systems of Supports,” below.)

Extended-Day Program (Extending the Bridges of Literacy) — Pilot Program

Extended-Day Program (Extending the Bridges of Literacy) — Pilot Program

In the 18-19 school year, with a Virginia Department of Education grant, Charlottesville City Schools has entered the third year of piloting a voluntary extended day program called Extending the Bridges of Literacy (EBL). The pilot program serves K- through fourth-graders who would benefit from additional time immersed in language arts activities. The after-school time cumulatively represents more than twenty additional days of instruction.  The ultimate goal of EBL is to build confidence and enjoyment in our students’ literacy experiences. After just its first exploratory year, the pilot saw participating students’ fourth-grade pass rates on the PALS literacy test rise from 35 to 53 percent. In the 2017-18 year, all students made significant improvements on both the PALS and SOL test scores. Forty-three students went from being considered below grade-level expectations to being on grade level by the end of the year.

The EBL trial program complements a host of strategies and supports that are available in our schools.

AVID Success

AVID Success

CHS AVID grads in 2017
2017 CHS AVID grads!

Charlottesville Schools use the national Advancement Via Individual Determination (AVID) framework to help traditionally underrepresented students prepare for post-secondary education. AVID is implemented schoolwide at the 5th and 6th grade levels, and students apply to participate in the program in grades 7-12. In 2016-17, the AVID program at Charlottesville High School featured 54 seniors, the school’s highest number yet. In 2017-18, 100 percent of AVID senior were accepted to at least one four-year program, including U.Va., Howard, the University of Richmond, and Virginia Tech! AVID students learn study skills, make college visits, are guided in a “college-prep” mindset for course selection and the college application process, and more. In Charlottesville our AVID students also engage in a number of community partnerships, making pitches and presentations for a number of groups including the area’s Public Education Fund, the Tom Tom Founder’s Festival, CFA’s Institute’s Project SERVE, and more.

Dyshe Smith '18 tells of her success with the AVID program at the ribbon-cutting for our partnership with CFA Institute. Photo courtesy CFA Institute.
Dyshe Smith ’18 tells of her success with the AVID program. Photo courtesy CFA Institute.

The high school AVID program has also begun a mentoring/tutoring program for younger grades in part to encourage younger AVID students to make course selections that will set them on a path for college readiness.

In 2018, CFA Institute (headquartered in Charlottesville) partnered with us to create the CHS/CFA Institute Finance Academy, which supports the AVID program, the economics and personal finance course required of all students, and the CHS Student Investment Group. Aside from supporting these programs, this partnership also allowed the renovation of a CHS AVID classroom to support collaboration in a business/college environment.

Lugo-McGinness Academy

Lugo-McGinness Academy

Lugo-McGinness presentation to guests from Newport News Public Schools
Lugo-McGinness students speak with guests from Newport News Public Schools.

Lugo-McGinness Academy is a small, non-traditional academy that serves Charlottesville City Schools students in grades 9-12.  Students may self-select or be referred for admission to the LMA program. Students attending the academy are offered personalized learning through blended and face-to-face instruction, small class size, regular field trips, a Student Leadership Council, recreational basketball, a library, a gym, and a small garden.

After Lugo-McGinness Academy shifted its approach towards a trauma-informed environment, students made significant social and academic gains. In 2017, the school graduated four times as many students as during 2014, and the number of verified credits earned during this same time period rose from 13 to 44. Since implementing trauma-informed strategies, the school continues to see a tremendous reduction in disciplinary issues.

Lugo-McGinness regularly hosts educational leaders from other areas who wish to learn from our students’ and staff’s successes.

WALK Program

WALK Program

Portrait of Dianna Poe
Dianna Poe, WALK leader and recipient of a 2018 child advocate award.

The Charlottesville High School WALK Program was founded in 2008 with a simple goal: to help struggling high school students earn credits needed for graduation. Today, the program does this and much more. Students may be referred to WALK if they are failing one or more classes, are in danger of dropping out, are recent transfers who need to meet Virginia requirements, have health or trauma-related issues that cannot be managed in a traditional classroom, or require an alternative setting.

WALK staff are focused not just on their students’ education, but also on gaining trust and establishing relationships. In addition to providing academic support and counseling assistance, WALK instructors take a holistic approach with their students, assisting them in managing their lives at school, at home, and in the community. Following graduation, WALK continues to serve many former students who need additional support and mentoring. Approximately 90 percent of WALK students recover at least one — and usually multiple — credits.

Dianna Poe of the WALK program was honored as the 2018 John L. Snook Child Advocate Award. Read more about the inspirational work of Ms. Poe and the WALK program here.

Special Education Programs and Student Services

Special Education Programs and Student Services

Volunteer assists a student in wheelchair during a parachute game at the Little Feet Track Meet
Parachute game at the Little Feet Track Meet.

Charlottesville City Schools offers a wide variety of supports for students with special needs with staff ranging from special education teachers and aides, social workers, counselors, psychologists, nurses, and more. Information about our Department of Special Education and Student Services can be found here.

Among the unique offerings of our special education program is the Black Knight Coffee Cart at CHS, a program offered by students with disabilities. Begun in 2008, the student-run service offers homemade treats and drinks to CHS faculty and staff. This award-winning model  has been featured in special education textbooks and has since spread across the country.

Another special program is the annual Little Feet Track Meet, jointly organized by Charlottesville and Albemarle Schools to provide a fun and supportive recreational opportunity.

Partnerships to Recruit/Support a Diverse Staff

Partnerships to Recruit/Support a Diverse Staff

African American Teaching Fellows logoAt Charlottesville City Schools, we actively recruit minority teachers and staff to better reflect our diverse student body. For example, we partner with the  University of Virginia’s African American Teaching Fellows program and recruit at HBCUs (Historically Black Colleges and Universities).

Among our teaching staff, 16 percent are presently people of color (with 11 percent being African American). Among our entire staff, 25 percent are presently people of color (with 22 percent being African American).

The diversity of our teaching staff lags slightly below the metro area’s demographics:

Graph showing Cville area population vs Cville Schools teachers. Call 245-2962 for information.

When all Charlottesville Schools employees are considered, our staff is slightly more diverse than the Charlottesville metro area.Graph showing Cville area population vs all Cville Schools employees.. Call 245-2962 with questions.

Our staff — and shown here, our teachers — do not mirror the diversity of our student population, a much more challenging goal given that most of our applicants and employees live within the metro area:Graphic showing ethnic demographics of Cville Schools teachers vs those for Cville Schools students. For info, please call 245-2962

Helping our English Language Learners

Helping our English Language Learners

Three students pose in authentic Iranian costumes at International Day at Johnson Elem.
Students enjoying International Day, when families present their cultures of origin.

Charlottesville is not only racially diverse, but we are increasingly ethnically diverse with students from around the world. In 2017-18, approximately 15 percent of our students received services from our English as a Second Language (ESL) program, often assisted by our school-based social workers.

Among the innovative programs offered by our ESL program is a summer  camp jointly offered with Albemarle County Public Schools to welcome new middle- and high-school arrivals to our community who are learning English. These students take a variety of field trips to familiarize themselves with the area and learn about American school routines. Most importantly, the students start building friendships and trust.

Image says "translation -- see top of page" in Spanish, Chinese, Nepali, Arabic, and English.To help our immigrant and refugee students thrive, our ESL staff and social workers partner with work with the International Rescue Committee and a local nonprofit called International Neighbors. Both the IRC and International Neighbors offer services and assistance as families become self-sufficient and learn to navigate their new community. Through a contracted service, we provide translation offerings to help families communicate with school staff. (In addition, our web site can be translated into a wide variety of Google-supported languages with two clicks of the “Translate” button.)  And through events such as International Day, we partner with families to give students a chance to explore the many cultures represented in our schools, whether the student is a recent immigrant or whether the student’s family has been in the U.S. for a number of generations.

iSe habla espanol! We have a Spanish translation line monitored by a Spanish teacher. In addition, we have participated in Hispanic Help Fairs, and as issues particular to the Hispanic community have arisen, we have partnered with groups such as Sin Barreras to help our families find answers and supports.

To learn more about our International Days and other ways we create a culture of diversity, see “Celebrating Similarities and Differences,” below.


Celebrating Similarities and Differences

Celebrating Similarities and Differences

A family wearing native attire at International DaySchools in Charlottesville host a wide variety of events celebrating the many cultures represented by our students. At many of our schools, events such as “International Day” give students a passport to travel to other cultures, tasting foods, seeing native dress, hearing music, and more. Class readings and literacy projects can also reinforce this lesson, such as Clark students’ photo essays based on the book “Same, Same But Different” or the way CHS has initiated a “Big Read” of “The Hate U Give” throughout the school and the community. For more information about how we raise awareness of local black history, see “Teaching Local and African-American History,” above.

CHS Diversity Assembly.

Charlottesville High School lunches sometimes feature henna painting, salsa tastings, gender pronoun awareness campaigns, and more. The school hosts both an African-American History Month events and an assembly in February, and  a Diversity Assembly in March. These events highlight awareness of various American and world cultures, and they promote an appreciation for all of our students’ contributions to the CHS community.  Also at CHS, the Culture2Culture club  is a peer-tutoring program that matches students interested in tutoring with English Language Learners. Students meet one-on-one weekly at lunch throughout the year, building friendships as well as academic progress.

At all our schools, our libraries and reading selections feature a diversity of voices. Our fine arts program features a variety of styles and genres and brings artists, authors, and musicians into our schools representing many different cultures and voices. And our teachers, school counselors, and mentoring programs engage students in a number of team-building activities that help students celebrate both differences and similarities.

In addition, as part of our larger commitment to creating an environment that is welcoming and supportive to all, we have provided our staff with professional learning focusing on issues such as Charlottesville’s African-American history along with a range of small-group and division-wide book studies, film viewings, conferences, and workshops that address issues of racism, systemic barriers, positive climate training, implicit bias, restorative practices, and more.

Family Engagement

Family Engagement

Family Engagement Facilitator Velvet Coleman (left) talks with a mother at Johnson
Mrs. Coleman speaks with an elementary parent.

In 2017, Charlottesville City Schools created a new position, Family Engagement Facilitator. While our schools have always provided parent and family programming and resources, this employee is specifically dedicated to helping schools connect with parents/guardians. In addition, Mrs. Coleman is establishing communications channels and building a network of community partners that are united in supporting school families in our community. One  of her newest endeavors is “Bus Stop Meet and Greets,” at which she mingles with parents and supplies students with free books! She is also piloting Family Engagement On Demand, a mobile-friendly online tool that gives users great ideas and resources to support their children in the classroom.

Trauma-Informed Practices

Trauma-Informed Practices

illustration of two people with arms around each others' shoulders offering supportCharlottesville City Schools is committed to the importance of social and emotional learning and an awareness of the benefits of trauma-informed practices.  Consequently, we have begun seeking resources and training for our staff and helped establish the Greater Charlottesville Trauma Informed Community Network. This network is comprised of schools, agencies, health-care professionals and others, united by the following mission: to improve trauma-informed care by educating professionals and the community on the impacts of trauma and by advocating for trauma-sensitive systems of care.

Among our initial efforts to incorporate trauma-informed practices, we have offered multiple staff and community-partner screenings of films such as Paper Tigers, trainings such as “Barking Dog,” and presentations such as “Trauma-Informed Practices in the Classroom.” In March 2018, we cosponsored a community workshop called “Trauma in the Context of School Safety.”  Jim Sporleder (featured in Paper Tigers) was the keynote speaker for our staff-wide convocation in August 2018.

To learn about the impact of a shift toward trauma-sensitive practices at our alternative academy, see “Lugo-McGinness Academy,” above. In addition, see “social-emotional learning,” above.

Systems of Supports (PBIS and VTSS)

Systems of Supports (PBIS and VTSS)

Virginia Tiered System of Support GraphicCharlottesville has been a leader in developing systems of supports that are designed to help all our students succeed — academically, socially, emotionally, and behaviorally.

logo for PBIS (Positive Intervention Behavior and Supports)

Combining two protocols — Positive Behavior Intervention and Support, and Virginia Tiered Systems of Supports — helps us to create a structure where social and emotional learning, positive behavior, and mental wellness fit within a school’s core functions right alongside academic learning.

To learn more, visit

Non-Discrimination Notice

Nondiscrimination Notice

illustration of colored figures, some in wheelchairsThe Charlottesville City School Division is an equal opportunity employer, committed to nondiscrimination with regard to sex, gender, race, color, national origin, disability, religion, ancestry, age, marital or veteran’s status, physical or mental genetic information, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, political affiliation, or any classification protected by applicable law.

This attitude and commitment will prevail in all policies and practices concerning staff, students, educational programs and services, and individuals and entities with whom the Board does business.

The Director of Human Resources shall act as the compliance officer for discrimination issues regarding employees and the general public under Title IX.

The Director of Student Services shall act as the compliance officer for discrimination issues regarding students under Title IX and Section 504 of the Rehabilitative Act of 1973.

Both compliance officers may be contacted at the administrative offices of Charlottesville City Schools, 1562 Dairy Road, Charlottesville, VA. 22901. The phone number is 434-245-2400.


Summer School begins June 17


CHS will offer both face-to-face and virtual summer classes for current students and rising 9th-graders this summer.

  • Summer School Dates: June 17 – July 26
  • Closed July 4 and 5 in observance of Independence Day
  • NOTE: many of our popular courses such as Health/PE and Virtual Economics & Personal Finance do have capacity limits. Registration will be accepted in the order in which it is received.

To enroll:

  • Register online: Online registration and payment for summer school classes begins April 15.
  • Register in person: On-site registration at CHS will be held April 15 from 9:30am-11:30am. After this date, registration and payment can be dropped off in the CHS main office and receipts will be mailed.
  • Additionally, all registrants must complete the student information form and send it back to school. This sheet was sent home in the CHS third quarter mailing. Copies are also available in the Buford Middle School office for interested 8th graders.

Limited bus transportation will be available:

Face-to-Face Courses

General information and rules and regulations about face-to-face courses can be found here.

  • Economics and Personal Finance (1 credit)
  • English 9 (1 Credit)
  • English 10 (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • English 11 (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • English 12 (1 Credit)
  • Government (1 Credit)
  • VA & US History (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • World History 1 (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • World History 2 (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • Biology (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • Earth Science (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • Algebra 1 (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • Algebra 2 (1 Credit) – *End of Course SOL Exam
  • Geometry (1 Credit)
  • PE 09 (.5 Credit) – SESSION 1 (June 18 – July 6)
  • PE 10 (.5 Credit) – SESSION 1 (June 18 – July 6)
  • PE 09 (.5 Credit) – SESSION 2 (July 9 – July 27)
  • PE 10 (.5 Credit) – SESSION 2 (July 9 – July 27)
  • Behind-the-Wheel for driver’s education: this is a separate sign-up. Click here!

Please note: Our summer school program does not provide alternate PE curriculum for students with injuries or illness that prevent them from completing the course work. If a student is unable to complete the PE curriculum due to injury or illness, they will be removed from the course and are encouraged to take it during the school year when they are well.

Virtual (Online) Courses

General information and rules and regulations about virtual (online) courses may be found here.

  • PE 09 (.5 Credit)
  • Health 09 (.5 Credit)
  • PE 10 (.5 Credit)
  • Health 10 / Driver’s Ed (.5 Credit)
  • Economics and Personal Finance (1 Credit)

Please note: Our summer school program does not provide alternate PE curriculum for students with injuries or illness that prevent them from completing the course work. If a student is unable to complete the PE curriculum due to injury or illness, they will be removed from the course and are encouraged to take it during the school year when they are well.


Students attending CHS in the 2019-20 school year are considered “In District.”  Students on Free or Reduced Lunch are eligible for reduced tuition rates. Out-of-district students are not eligible for Free/Reduced rates. Tuition is non-refundable.

Course In District Tuition Price Out of District Tuition Price Reduced Lunch Tuition Price Free Lunch Tuition Price
Full Credit Course $400 each $550 each $200 each $25 Each
1/2 Credit Course:
PE 09 & 10
Health 9 & 10
$200 each $350 each $100 each $25 Each

You may bring your tuition payment (cash, check or money order payable to Charlottesville High School) to the CHS Office.

Or, you can pay your summer school tuition online through MySchoolBucks at A convenience fee will apply.

Steps to Register Online

    1. Complete your online registration (opens April 15): go to to complete the online form.
    2. Pay summer tuition online at (convenience fee applies) or bring cash, check or money order to CHS office.
    3. ALL students must complete a Student Information Form – mail or bring into CHS office.

Walk-In Registration on April 15

Walk-in registration will held be at Charlottesville High School on April 15th at 9:30am – 11:30am.

Additional Questions? Please contact: