Crozet turns out for new library

Almost 300 people of all ages formed a human chain between the old and new libraries in Crozet last week, passing the last of the 33,000 volumes hand-to-hand to their new home. Photo courtesy Charlottesville Tomorrow Almost 300 people of all ages formed a human chain between the old and new libraries in Crozet last week, passing the last of the 33,000 volumes hand-to-hand to their new home. Photo courtesy Charlottesville Tomorrow

Our regular Education Beat reporting is the result of a partnership with the nonprofit community news platform Charlottesville Tomorrow, which covers growth, development, public education, and local politics.

Nearly 300 people formed a human chain through Downtown Crozet last week.

Passing books from one person to the next, The Book Brigade, which snaked along Railroad and Crozet avenues before turning left into the Square and jutting down the alley behind Crozet Hardware, hauled the remainder of Crozet Library’s catalog to its new location.

“There’s something for almost everybody,” said Bill Schrader, chairman of the Build Crozet Library Fundraising Committee. “We’ve tried to treat it as a community center and a library.”

At approximately 18,000 square feet, the new building will house the first early literacy room in the Jefferson-Madison Regional Library System, Schrader said. This space will offer children the opportunity to explore age-appropriate books as their parents look on. Additionally, the new structure has a large community room, space for homeschool students to meet with tutors, and 12 computers.

“It’s something the community can be very proud of and something that will serve them for decades to come,” John Halliday, Director of the JMRL, said.

The next step, Schrader said, is to increase the library’s book collection from 33,000 volumes to 75,000.

The library opens Wednesday, September 4, and an official ribbon-cutting ceremony will be held Saturday, September 28.

Local musician gives to city schools  

Students at Walker Upper Elementary, Buford Middle, and Charlottesville High schools will now have access to private music, tennis, and academic lessons. Charlottesville City Schools reported last week that the Boyd C. Tinsley Fund at the Charlottesville Area Community Foundation provided a $75,000 grant for students who would otherwise be unable to afford things like tennis lessons, tuition to summer music camps, and one-on-one tutors.

Tinsley, who has made gifts to city schools for 11 years, is a 1982 graduate of CHS, a member of the Dave Matthews Band, and an avid tennis fan who sponsors the Boyd Tinsley Women’s Clay Court Classic in Charlottesville each year.

“We are so fortunate for Boyd’s generous gift,” said orchestra director Laura Thomas. “It gives many students an opportunity to excel in a variety of areas and, as a CHS alumnus, Boyd serves as an inspiration to musicians, scholars, and athletes.”


Back-to-School Nights: On Tuesday, September 3, the following Albemarle County schools will hold back-to-school nights: Agnor-Hurt Elementary, grades pre-K-2, 6:30pm; Albemarle High School, all grades, 7pm; Baker-Butler Elementary, grades 3-5, 6pm; Greer Elementary, all grades, 6pm.

Sutherland Choirs: Tryouts for Sutherland Middle School’s new boys-only choir will be held on September 4 and 5. Tryouts for the girls choir, the Siorcanna Singers, will be held September 9, 11, and 12. Both groups are open to all grade levels. Interested students can sign up and pick up tryout information in the choir room, or contact Ms. Rife at if you have questions.


Meet your educator: Brandy Garbaccio, 5th Grade Teacher, Stony Point Elementary School

What has your classroom experience taught you that studying education could not have prepared you for? 

It is rewarding to witness students applying newfound skills with confidence. That confidence would not be possible without a classroom climate of acceptance. Setting the proper classroom tone on the first day of school and beyond makes all of the difference.

What teaching adjustments do you plan to make moving forward?

I found strong success with student collaboration. Students enjoy sharing what they know, and what better way to learn than to work with one’s peers? I hope to allow for more collaborative opportunities moving forward.

In your eyes, what is the biggest challenge facing education currently?

Technology in the classroom is remarkable. Our biggest challenge as educators is to keep up with the latest interests of our students. Ideally, various technological devices should be equally accessible to every student. It is our job to help guide students to respect and utilize these technological tools in a constructive, positive manner.—Tim Shea 

For the next few weeks, to gain insight on what important lessons our young teachers learn early in their careers, Charlottesville Tomorrow’s Meet Your Educator profiles will feature first- and second-year teachers.

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