News from Patrick Henry High School – Feb. 17, 2017

By Elizabeth Gillingham

Digital badges

The district is launching digital badges for students in middle and high schools as a way of recognizing a skill or achievement a student has earned.

Electronic badges are popular among young adults, used by industry, and something we believe will support students as they enter the post-secondary world of college and career by displaying what they can do, as well as what they know.

These badges can be collected over time and shared on social media and through resumes. Our badging system is supported by UCSD Extension and other local business partners.

Starting last year, 2015/16 school year, students’ records will be reviewed and badges will be awarded for various achievements. Students will receive badges for last year’s accomplishments only and any future accomplishments going forward.

Badges will be awarded twice a year following each semester term. Sample of badges that students can earn include:

  • Advanced Placement test scores at 3+.
  • College coursework.
  • CCTE college articulated coursework.
  • Successful completion of a career technical education pathway.
  • Students who scored “standard met” on the math and or ELA sections of the Smarter Balanced Exam.
  • Students who score “ready” on the English EAP.

Students who earn badges will receive notification of their badges through the Gmail feature of their Google apps for education.

Gmail was turned on for secondary schools and will only function as a means for this notification. To ensure student safety, students will not be able to send or receive emails to or from any other entity.

More information about the district program and instructions for students who would like to accept their badges can be found at

Let’s celebrate another way to say great work and be on the lookout for the next generation of resumes.

PHHS Student of the Month

Britney Packer is a senior at Patrick Henry High School and it was an easy choice picking her for PHHS Student of the Month for January.

When we asked teachers to nominate students, Britney’s name came up several times as being a very hard working student who is always willing to assist other student in and out of her classes. She has a special heart, as exhibited by her love for others including animals.

(l to r) Vice principal Cynthia Bolton, Mrs. Packer, Brittany Packer, Mr. Packer and Kiwanis member Doug Grosmark (Courtesy of PHHS)

Recently, Britney noticed a hurt rabbit on campus and notified administration since she wanted to make sure it was taken care of. The rabbit was subsequently taken to an animal hospital by vice principal Jennifer Pacofsky for care.

Additionally, Britney is part of our amazing Instrumental Ensemble and Marching Band Core and plays both the flute and piano. She is an integral part of performances and is hoping to attend Oregon State and eventually to become a high school band teacher.

We wish her all the best in her future endeavors!

PHHS teacher honors

Kyra Bartlett has been selected as the Patrick Henry High School Teacher of the Year. Kyra has been a teacher at PHHS since 2002 and serves as our special education chairperson.

Special education teachers have an amazing task before them, as they are expected to help children succeed regardless of their disability.

To make this work, you have to be willing to go the extra mile that might include expectations that extend into summer months and beyond the typical four years that is needed to get them through their educational goals.

As our department chairperson, Kyra takes on this responsibility from the moment a student starts their eighth-grade year, as she encourages both middle schools, Lewis and Pershing, to invite her to any IEP meetings held to help with the transition plan.

This allows her to plan a program for every Henry student that includes matching the case managers with the student’s needs (instead of random placements) and ensuring they are in the right program from the beginning. In this process, she typically selects the most challenging students to be on her caseload.

(l to r) PHHS Teacher of the Year Kyra Bartlett, CLHS Educator of the Year 2016 Chad Miller, and CLHS Educator of the Year 2017, Greg Chronopolos (Courtesy of PHHS)

Everyone who has met Kyra knows that her heart is in the right place and that she cares about every student at Henry. A parent of a past graduate saw the nomination and sent Principal Gillingham this endorsement:

“I AM SO PROUD OF Kyra Bartlett and believe with all of my heart that she is SO deserving of this! I can’t wait to tell my son! Who, I’m proud to say, is still working hard up there in Chico and currently has a GPA of 2.76 and a major GPA of 3.12!”

Nice work to Kyra and special thanks to her for all she does to help students who struggle find their way to college and their careers!

PHHS teacher Greg Chronopolos was selected as Region IX Educator of the Year and will be honored at the California League of High School’s yearly conference in Sacramento this month where he will be a finalist for the state Educator of the Year title for Northern and Southern California regions.

In her nomination letter, Principal Elizabeth Gillingham stated:

“Greg Chronopolos is formally a mild-to-moderate special education teacher, but at Henry we know him as a coach, teacher, psychologist, advisor, and an advocate for our students. From the moment you meet Mr. Chronopolos you know you’ve made a friend for life. His jovial sense of humor and dedication towards helping those who struggle makes him someone you want to aspire to be like in one form or another. He knows how to put his students at ease when dealing with difficult issues and doesn’t hesitate to have difficult conversations to help students understand their roles and responsibilities within the classroom. He has a gentle but firm approach that allows him to maintain a caring persona with his students and the families he supports.”

When speaking at the Educator of the Year dinner in Ramona, Greg credited his colleagues for helping him understand and appreciate the “Henry way” in terms of building high expectations for our students. It takes a team to help students who struggle and we appreciate Greg’s ability to push his students and advocate for them when they need extra assistance!

Up-coming PHAME events

“Little Mermaid” is coming to Patrick Henry High School on March 15, 16, and 17 from 6–8 p.m. Contact Chris Carr at for tickets.

PHHS Variety Show will be March 25 from 6–8 p.m. Contact Autumn Ross at for tickets.

Choir Spring Concert on May 24 from 6–8 p.m. Contact Kristin Love at for tickets.

Choir and Instrumental Concert on May 31, 6–8 p.m. Contact Matt Kalal for tickets at

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