Superintendent's Memo #326-09

State seal, Commonwealth of Virginia

Department of Education

December 4, 2009

TO: Division Superintendents

FROM: Patricia I. Wright, Superintendent of Public Instruction

SUBJECT: Eleventh Annual Panasonic National School Change Awards

The nomination forms for the Eleventh Annual Panasonic National School Change Awards are now available from the award’s sponsor, Panasonic Corporation of North America. The purpose of the award is to recognize schools across America that have made significant positive changes. Potential awardees must meet certain criteria related to school change set by the cosponsors in the following four dimensions: 1) How meaningful is the change?; 2) How deep and broad is the change?; 3) How is the change focused?; and 4) How is the change measured?

To assist schools in Virginia that may be interested in applying for the award, the Virginia Department of Education will provide a one-hour audio technical assistance workshop on December 15, 2009, from 1-2 p.m. Mr. Donald Burnham, principal of the George W. Carver Middle School in Chester, Virginia, and Ms. Elizabeth McCay, principal of the Jackson-Via Elementary School in Charlottesville, Virginia, winners of the Tenth Annual National School Change Award in 2009, will discuss their successful approaches. Department staff will also be available to provide assistance for school divisions.

To join the teleconference, please call 1-866-842-5779 and use the pass code 8043712932.

Six Panasonic National School Change Award winners are selected in the spring of each academic year. The winners will receive: 1) an award ceremony conducted at their school; 2) an award of $5,000, including Panasonic products; 3) national recognition and coverage by the media; 4) subsidized participation of the school’s principal in the Twelfth Annual National Principals’ Leadership Institute; 5) an award presentation by the United States Department of Education in New York City; and 6) participation in a major national research project focusing on school change.

The deadline for submission of applications is March 4, 2010. A copy of the application is available at

Attachment A contains a response form for the audio workshop to be completed and returned by fax on or before December 11, 2009, to Ann Sheehan, Title I specialist, at (804) 371-7347. Please note that the form contains a place to list questions to be addressed at the workshop. If you need additional information, please contact Ms. Sheehan at or (804)371-2932.



a. Response Form Technical Assistance Audio Workshop (Word)