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WMS Principal's Message

A Message From Your Principal

Josh Walton_2014-15-1.jpg

Dear Walton Community,

The teachers and staff at WMS are excited for the 2019-2020 school year to kick off. We hosted a wonderful array of Learning Camps this summer, which highlighted our work with project-based learning, which will continue into the regular school year. We thank all those students who participated and hope to expand our offerings next summer. 

We also had a lot of learning for teachers as we had teachers working on P-Based (Project, Passion, Problem) Learning in ACPS’s annual Curriculum, Assessment, and Instruction Institute. This was the third year in a row that this was a focus of CAI, which means that we are continuing to build capacity around PBL and providing learner centered experiences for our students. Some teachers the annual AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination) Summer Institute in Philadelphia. AVID strategies are really just best practices for writing, inquiry, collaboration, organization, and reading. Our AVID Site Team will work to ensure these best practices are in place throughout our school. We continued to build our capacity around Social and Emotional Learning through training for staff in Developmental Designs ( Finally, we had a large group of teachers participate in training with Ken O’Connor ( around best practices for grading. This was an opportunity offered to all ACPS and Charlottesville City secondary teachers through funding from the Public Education Foundation of Charlottesville ( The training sparked very fruitful conversations around grading practices, which is something that will remain a focus of study for ACPS and WMS. All of this work aligns with our School Board Priorities to create a culture of high expectations, eliminate practices that perpetuate the achievement gap, and develop students’ personal interests. I am so proud of the work our teachers and learning community are doing to bring these priorities to life. 

In addition, to learning we have had some maintenance work.The bulk was behind the scenes through upgrades to our electrical system through panel upgrades and a switchgear replacement. While these upgrades are hard to see directly, they result in a more reliable electrical system for our school. 

I am honored to continue to serve the Walton community and its enthusiastic students and wonderful families. Our talented and dedicated staff look forward to continuing to put our students at the center of the learning process to prepare students for high school, college, and career success. I look forward to working with our whole community to support our youth on their journey towards owning their future. 

Have a safe and joyful rest of summer,

Josh Walton​

Follow me on twitter for more updates @mrjwalt and @WMSWildcatNews​ 

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