Three PGCPS Elementary Schools Receive VDOE Purple Star Designation for Excellence in Supporting Military Families

November 1, 2022

Prince George County Public Schools is proud to announce three elementary schools, L.L. Beazley Elementary, North Elementary, and South Elementary, have been recognized as Distinguished Purple Star Schools by the Virginia Department of Education (VDOE) and The Virginia Council on the Interstate Compact on Educational Opportunity for Military Children (Virginia Council) for their commitment to supporting military-connected students and families on their campuses.

This latest recognition by the VDOE and Virginia Council is a historic moment for Prince George County Public Schools as all five of the district's elementary schools are Designated Purple Star Schools. In 2020, David A. Harrison Elementary and William A. Walton Elementary each received the award for their schools' efforts in serving military-connected students.

For a school to receive the Purple Star Award, they must have a staff point of contact (POC) for military students and families who serves as the primary link between the military family and the school. Additionally, the school-based POC must complete specific VDOE modules relating to supporting military-connected children in the school setting. Other requirements include the following:

  • The school keeps or links to a division-wide page dedicated to military student and family support that includes information on moving to and from the school division, academic planning, special needs navigation, parental rights, and other matters of importance to military-connected families; 
  • The school division has assigned a central office staff member to be the contact for the school-based liaison and military families; 
  • The school maintains a student-led transition program to include a student transition team coordinator. This program should provide peer support for newly enrolled and withdrawing students to include those that are military-connected; and
  • Division-wide efforts to support military students and families, including resolutions passed by the local school board and events aimed at recognizing the military and demonstrating a military-friendly culture across the school division community.

"Prince George County Public Schools congratulates each of these campuses for receiving the Purple Star Award designation from the Virginia Department of Education," Division Superintendent Dr. Lisa Pennycuff said. "Through this latest honor, all five Prince George County elementary schools are now Purple Star-designated campuses. This achievement represents our district's commitment to serving all our students' needs, including our military-connected families. We partner with Fort Lee and its military leaders to support our military families during their time with us. We thank Fort Lee and its representatives for being valued partners in our educational efforts and their continued support of our division and initiatives."

"We are so excited to be recognized for our efforts to provide a smooth transition for our military-connected students into L.L. Beazley Elementary school," Beazley Elementary School Principal Elizabeth Pell said. "Our teachers and school administration work to establish a partnership with our military families to help support students so they may be successful at school."

"We are so proud to receive the Purple Star Recognition for North Elementary," North Elementary School Principal Jennifer Rollings said. "The military community is an integral part of our Cardinal family here at North. We are so thankful for the partnerships and look forward to continuing to work closely together with our military community."

"We are so grateful to receive the Purple Star Award at South Elementary," South Elementary School Principal Susan Braswell said. "We take great pride in our relationships with the military-connected students and work hard to make South Elementary a welcoming and supportive place for all families."

For both Beazley and North Elementary, it is their second time receiving the VDOE and Virginia Council's Purple Star Award. 

All three schools will be recognized during an upcoming meeting of the Prince George School Board. 

To learn more about the Virginia Purple Star Designation Program, visit the Virginia Department of Education website by clicking HERE.