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School Board of the City of Virginia Beach names Dr. Donald Robertson Jr. superintendent

The School Board of the City of Virginia Beach voted to name Dr. Donald Robertson Jr. as superintendent at its meeting Jan. 23. A native of Hampton Roads, Dr. Robertson began his career as a math teacher with Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) in 1988 and progressed in leadership roles including assistant principal of Bayside High School, principal of Salem High School, chief strategy and innovation officer, chief schools officer, chief of staff and acting superintendent. 

Logo Virginia Beach City Public Schools Charting the Course

Hundreds of Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) students will participate in the 16th Annual African American Male Summit on Jan. 20 at Frank W. Cox High School. Boys in grades six through 12 will share ideas with each other and with adult community members on topics such as student leadership, community involvement, relationship-building, and physical and mental well-being.

Program Offerings

African American Male Summit

The African American Male Summit (AAMS) is an annual program to commemorate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The program is open to males in grades 5-12 along with their parents and community partners. Participants engage in breakout sessions focused on academic excellence, teambuilding and leadership development. The program provides an opportunity for parents to learn about division initiatives and community resources. Participants are exposed to historically black universities and other post-secondary opportunities through an extensive exhibition. This year’s summit yielded 600 students that pre-registered to attend, which is the largest number of pre-registrants in the past two years. The AAMS was highlighted in the Virginia School Boards Association (VSBA) 24th annual VSBA Showcases for Success directory, highlighting successful K-12 programs in Virginia's public schools. Virginia Beach City Public Schools (VBCPS) was one of 44 school divisions from across the Commonwealth that had been featured.

Beach Girls Rock Empowerment Series

Beach Girls Rock (BGR) is an empowerment series offered three times during the school year for girls in grades 5-8. The workshops are hosted and planned by high school students, staff and and division-wide committee. The high school leaders plan and facilitate the sessions with the support of staff. BGR is designed to develop and enhance and empower girls to become strong, successful women emotionally and academically. The series provides opportunities for girls to identify themselves as valuable, powerful, and capable young women in their respective schools and community.

Black History Initiative

The Black History Initiative (BHI) is a diverse team of students, educators, parents and community partners focused on exploring and understanding the lived experiences of black residents of Virginia Beach. BHI shares the information they gain through awareness events and social media platforms. Additionally, the BHI team participates in leadership opportunities, service-learning experiences, community outreaches, research opportunities, and other pathways to build inclusivity through validation and affirmation of all cultures. The Office for Diversity, Equity and Inclusion was awarded the Beneath the Surface grant from Virginia Humanities and Hampton Roads Community Foundation for the BHI team to explore, understand and communicate a multi-faceted project focused on the 38 alumni who were eligible to integrate Virginia Beach Public Schools in 1962.

Diversity Ambassadors Workshop

Diversity Ambassadors Workshop (DAW) offers an opportunity to provide cultural awareness knowledge, skills and tools to our middle and high school students, alongside club advisors in Virginia Beach City Public Schools. The engaging DAW activities support the goals of our School Board and division’s core values based on a culture of respect for every student, every day. Students who successfully complete the workshop have the tools to lead as Diversity Ambassadors and will work within their school and community to become models and champions of cultural diversity. The DAW is provided in partnership with Tidewater Community College (Norfolk) through planning, facilitation and evaluation.

Making Waves Mentoring Program

The Making Waves Mentoring Program ensures that all students benefit from an educational experience that fosters their social and emotional development. The program provides central office staff a unique opportunity to mentor a student across our 86 schools and centers to support students’ social/behavioral/emotional growth during an entire school year. During the 2019-2020 school years, fifteen Making Waves mentors were selected to participate in this program. Our mentors commit to spending at least two hours a month with their assigned mentee on school grounds.