All posts by Krissy Vick

Rising fourth graders visit Walker School 2019

Walker school counselors to visit current fourth graders in coming weeks

The Walker Upper Elementary School school counselors are busy planning their annual visits to all city elementary schools to provide information and guidance to rising fifth graders. For a full calendar of related-events, see important dates below.

“We want to make the transition to a new school as seamless as possible for our current city fourth graders,” said Walker School Counselor John Kronstain. “By visiting these students in the coming weeks, we hope to make connections and put them at ease by providing useful information and answering questions they may have.”

Rising fourth graders visit Walker School 2019
Walker students lead visiting rising fifth grade students on tours to show them their future school.

After visiting each of the six elementary schools, Walker Upper Elementary School will invite all city fourth graders to visit the upper elementary school in the spring for Rising Fifth Grade Visit and Tour Day. This will be followed by a Rising Fifth Grade Parent Night that will include dinner, tours, and an information session for families to ask questions.

The school counselors will introduce the rising fifth graders to a variety of information including choosing electives for the 2020-21 school year.  Fifth and sixth grade students at Walker can choose two electives. The first selection must be a fine arts option–band, orchestra, music and chorus, or visual arts–and the second choice can be Spanish, Pre-Engineering, or an additional fine arts option (students may not choose both band and orchestra in the same year).

For more details on elective options, view this video:

Upcoming Important Dates

  • January 28 Buford Curriculum Expo (for rising 7th- and 8th-graders), 5pm
  • January 31  School counselor visits at Jackson-Via and Greenbrier
  • February 4  School counselor visits at Burnley-Moran and Clark
  • February 5  School counselor visits at Johnson and Venable
  • February 10-17  Elective forms sent home with students–please discuss and make selections with your student
  • February 28  Completed elective forms due back to school
  • March 31 and April 2: Instrument Selection Nights, 5-7pm
  • April 14  Rising Fifth Grade Visit and Tour Day at Walker Upper Elementary (students will be brought to Walker during the school day via school buses)
  • April 14  Rising Fifth Grade Parent Night at Walker, 5:30-7:30pm (parents and their rising fifth grade student are invited to join us for dinner and information session)





Walker cooking club-girl chopping vegetables

Walker EDGE Club Spotlight: After-school cooking club is recipe for learning valuable life skills

Walker cooking clubThe Walker Upper Elementary Cooking Club is an after-school activitiy option for fifth and sixth grade students in the EDGE program who want to learn about basic food preparation and cooking skills.

Walker cooking club-girl chopping vegetables

Led by advisor Becky Calvert, the group meets once a week in the school kitchen for an hour and prepares a variety of recipes such as egg rolls, tomato soup, mini-quiches, mac & cheese, homemade granola, fruit and yogurt parfaits, kale chips, crepes, open face roasted veggie sandwiches, mango salsa,  cranberry orange muffins and vegetable jambalaya.

“The kids love cooking and are more likely to try something new if they made it,” said Calvert. “They are learning life skills and having fun while doing it.”

At the end of each semester, Calvert said the students receive a cookbook of the recipes they made so they can show their new skills off and re-create their favorite recipes at home.

Spring semester info and sign-ups for Walker’s EDGE clubs will be sent home on 1/27. Registration also begins on 1/27. The first club meetings will be held on 2/5. Fees are $20/semester (free for students with free/reduced lunch). For more information, check out the EDGE web site here!


Flyer for Dr. Williams parenting workshops on Equity topics

Dr. Joseph Williams to host free parenting workshops on equity

Flyer for Dr. Williams parenting workshops on Equity topicsCharlottesville City Schools will be hosting two parent workshops on equity-centered topics on January 11 and 18 from 1-3 p.m. at Charlottesville High School.

Led by UVA’s Dr. Joseph Williams, the workshops will address topics including implicit bias and talking to kids about race.

An associate professor in the Counselor Education Program at the University of Virginia, Dr. Williams consults with school districts, communities, associations, and corporations to improve diversity, inclusion, and equity efforts and engage people in productive dialogue and action. His professional interest include multicultural and social justice training practices for (K-12) counselors, educators, and other helping professionals. Prior to becoming a counselor educator, Dr. Williams earned his Ph.D. in Counselor Education with a cognate in Social Work from the University of Iowa and his M.S. in Mental Health Counseling from Minnesota State University.

The workshops are free and open to all Charlottesville Schools parents.

  • Session 1: Implicit Bias – January 11, 1-3 p.m. at CHS
  • Session 2: Talking to Kids about Race – January 18, 1-3 p.m. at CHS


For additional questions, contact Denise Johnson at


CHS boys hoops wins Holiday Classic

Jake Bowling and Zymir Faulkner earn all-tournament honors after winning the 2019 Daily Progress Holiday Hoops Classic.
Jake Bowling and Zymir Faulkner earn all-tournament honors after winning the 2019 Daily Progress Holiday Hoops Classic.

The Charlottesville High School Boys Basketball team beat Albemarle High  School 61-56 to claim the Daily Progress Holiday Championship trophy!

Jake Bowling and Zymir Faulkner both earned all tournament honors and Faulkner was the tournament MVP.  Isaiah Washington, Nic Motley, and Christian Stewart all had strong performances over the weekend to propel the Black Knights to the championship. Courtesy Rodney Redd,

See media coverage of game here. For more on CHS winter sports and game schedules, visit

Photo Credit: Cville Varsity
Energy and Water Management Winter Quarter poster

City and Schools promote energy and water conservation-Winter Quarter Update

Energy and Water Management Program Winter Quarter poster

Charlottesville City Schools and the City’s Energy and Water Management Team are working together to reduce the energy and water footprint of all City schools. On April 11th, 2019 the School Board approved an Energy and Water Performance resolution, showing a commitment to achieving and maintaining high performing school facilities. 

Continuing on past efforts, the City’s maintenance and development teams are specifying high efficiency building equipment, such as high-efficiency chillers and LED lighting, and are enhancing operational control through advanced building automation systems. Charlottesville Schools and the City’s Energy and Water Management Team continue to investigate ways to accelerate the installation of high performance equipment throughout our schools.

The City is also working with each school to raise awareness about energy and water saving practices through education and outreach efforts that include distributing educational materials and providing tips and strategies that students and faculty can use to reduce the energy and water impact at our schools. 

Each quarter a different theme emphasizes aspects of energy and water efficiency/conservation. The 2019-2020 themes are:

  • Fall (September – November): The Value of Energy and Water
  • Winter (December – February): Understanding Our Energy and Water Use
  • Spring (March – May): Smart Energy and Water Use
  • Summer (June – August): Keep Going! Summertime Savings

Have questions about this program? Contact the City’s Energy and Water Management Team at

Learn more about other green initiatives at Charlottesville City Schools here.

2019-20 Education and Outreach

Energy and Water Management Program Winter Quarter posterWinter Quarter: Understanding our Energy and Water Use

Did you know that the greenhouse gases produced from energy used at all 10 Charlottesville City Schools is equal to the greenhouse gases produced by 500 homes? We know our schools need resources to operate but what exactly uses energy and water in our schools every day?

We are asking students and faculty to try to identify what uses energy and water when you walk into your classroom each day. For energy, think about the overhead lighting, computers, electronics, and air conditioning/heating. For water, think about the water fountain in the hallway and sink in your classroom. What about at home?

There are also the items that aren’t as noticeable such as leaving your phone plugged in even when it’s fully charged or not paying attention to that dripping faucet. Even when a phone is plugged in and is fully charged, it still uses 2.24 watts of energy, and that slow drip…drip…drip of a faucet can waste 3,000 gallons of water a year!

Let’s reduce our energy and water impact at school and at home by focusing on these easy habits we can do each day.

Winter Quarter Tips:

  • Turn the lights off when you leave a room.
  • Make an effort to unplug personal electronics.
  • Turn the water off when not in use.
  • If you see a water leak or hear a running toilet, report it!


water and energy management posterFall Quarter: The Value of Energy and Water

The energy and water that we use at home and in our school are typically provided using finite resources. In Virginia, fossil fuels (coal, oil, and natural gas) are used to produce over 60% of the electricity that we use, with nuclear and renewables making up the rest. We also use natural gas directly to heat our school and to heat our water. The water we use is pumped from reservoirs fed by rivers and is treated before coming to our homes and school as clean, potable water.  Simply put, our demand for electricity, natural gas, and water (the amount we use) has a direct impact on these resources. We have a responsibility to manage what we use but we’re also empowered with the ability to make lasting change.

In many cases we use more than we need, so we already have simple opportunities to reduce our impact. The best place to start is just becoming aware of when and how we use energy and water throughout our typical day. As you do your normal activities, think about how long you leave your lights on, leave your phone plugged in, and leave the water running. Now think about how you can adjust your behaviors to trim that up a bit.  It’s a game of inches, not miles, and small changes add up to big savings.

Fall Quarter Tips:

  • Last one out? Flip the switch!
  • Turn the water off when not in use.


CHS students in Richmond to see unveiling of Kehinde Wiley statue.

Students attend “Rumors of War” unveiling at the VMFA

CHS students visit the unveiling of the Kehinde Wiley statue, "Rumors of War."Charlottesville High School art students and teachers traveled to the Virginia Fine Arts Museum in Richmond, VA to witness the much-anticipated unveiling of the sculpture, “Rumors of War,” created by American artist Kehinde Wiley.

According to a media release by the Virginia Fine Arts Museum, “Rumors of War” expands Wiley’s well-known efforts to use art to include more black and brown men and women in visual, historical, and cultural narratives. The statue, inspired by traditional portrayals of white subjects in equestrian portraiture and monuments, depicts a young African American rider in urban street clothes striking a heroic pose on a muscular horse.

“As Charlottesville City Schools strives to teach a more complete history through its Changing the Narrative initiative, field trips like this one provide cross-curricular opportunities for students to engage in learning experiences through the fine arts that challenge them to think beyond the traditional historical narrative and better understand the complexities of history and various perspectives,” said fine arts coordinator Aaron Eichorst.

The VMFA release further states that Wiley’s work “powerfully repositions black youth within the classical European tradition of power and status…while directly engaging the national conversation around monuments and their role in perpetuating incomplete histories and inequality.”

Geography Bee finalists

‘Tis the season for Bees

Congratulations to all of our students who participated in the 2019 Walker Spelling Bee and Geography Bee. We are proud of your efforts!

2019 Walker Geography Bee

All students at Walker participated in the preliminary 7 rounds and from there, nine students advanced to the final competition consisting of 9 rounds.

The finalists were fifth graders Hayes Connaughton, Cameron Steele, George Aten, and Caja Edwards. Sixth grade finalists were Felix Facteau, Tayah Shanks, Will Maurer, Sam Palmer and Jack Wielar.

Congratulations to our top finishers: 1st Place–Will Maurer, 2nd place–Jack Wielar, and 3rd place–Tayah Shanks.

2019 Walker Spelling Bee

10 students competed in 10 rounds in the final competition for the annual National Spelling Bee at Walker School. The finalists were students Catherine Crook, Amelia Morrison, Esme Ogden-Amt, Elaina Pierce, Kamdyn Hargrove, Anne Goodall, Griffin Lees, Caitlin King, Ryleigh Harrington, and Maya Lila S.F.

Congratulations to all who participated, especially our first place finalist, Griffin Lees, who correctly spelled the word A-B-U-N-D-A-N-C-E for the win!

National Junior Honor Society members selling Candy Cane Grams.

NJHS members give back with service projects

National Junior Honor Society members volunteering at the Toy Lift Cville event.Buford members of the National Junior Honor Society are living the five tenets of the NJHS: Everyday Scholarship, Service, Leadership, Character, and Citizenship!

Recently, the students volunteered to help with the Toy Lift Charlottesville, an annual toy drive that collects and distributes thousands of toys for local area children during the holiday season.

The students are also selling Candy Cane Grams to benefit SARA of Cville, a local non-profit agency that provides support to families and students.

Advisor Susan Muse says these community service activities help students understand “the power of one” and the positive impact they can have in our world by doing one thing, small or large, to make our community better.

The National Junior Honor Society recognizes students for their accomplishments, but challenges them to develop further through active involvement in school activities and community service.

National Honor Society Members sell Candy Cane Grams.