CCSD Names 2017-18 Student Advisor, Student Delegates to School Board

CCSD Names 2017-18 Student Advisor, Student Delegates to School Board

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower thanks the 2017-18 Student Advisor and Delegates following their first School Board Meeting of service on August 17, 2017. From left to right, front row: Katie Bishop, Etowah HS; Arely Gonzalez-Labra, ACE Academy; Student Advisor Ashlee Floyd, Cherokee HS; Katherine Relick, Woodstock HS; back row: Christian Fanning, River Ridge HS; Bryce Goodwyn, Creekview HS; and Theodore “Teddy” Campbell, Sequoyah HS.

The Cherokee County School District has named the 2017-18 Student Advisor and Student Delegates to the School Board.

The School Board has included a Student Advisor position on its board since 1999, and for the past seven years, a Student Delegate from each high school also has been selected. These students serve for one year to give input and feedback to the School Board; the advisor role is rotated among the county’s high schools.

“Our mission is ‘Educating the Emerging Generation,’ and we best serve our students at a governance and policy-making level by engaging with them and gaining their perspective,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower said. “We appreciate our Advisor and Delegates’ service and look forward to working with this outstanding group of young leaders. We know they will be outstanding representatives for their schools and inspire our School Board and me to continue striving for excellence for them and all of our students.”

This year’s Student Advisor is Ashlee Floyd of Cherokee HS. The Student Delegates are: Arely Gonzalez-Labra of ACE Academy; Bryce Goodwyn of Creekview HS; Katie Bishop of Etowah HS; Christian Fanning of River Ridge HS; Theodore “Teddy” Campbell of Sequoyah HS; and Katherine Relick of Woodstock HS.

The students began their service at the School Board meeting on August 17.

Students selected to serve as Student Advisor or Student Delegates share common traits: they excel in the classroom, often ranking in the top 10 percent of their class and earning titles like valedictorian; they are involved in their school, often participating in numerous clubs, sports and organizations; and they seek out opportunities to serve and lead.

STUDENT ADVISOR
Cherokee HS, Ashlee Floyd
• Recipient of: Academic Letter, Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award, UGA Honors, Mock Trial Team Region Champion
• Member of: Beta Club, Mock Trial Team, National Honor Society, Academic Bowl and Alpha Gamma Council
• Volunteers for: Northside Hospital and River Green Peanut Butter Drive

STUDENT DELEGATES
ACE Academy, Arely Gonzalez-Labra
• Recipient of: Excellence in American Literature, Excellence in Math and Diamond Dolls
• Member of: ACE Academy Student Council, Book Club, Special Education Speech Class Assistants, DECA Club, National Novel Writing, Strikers Allstar Cheerleading and Passion CrossFit Training
• Volunteers for: Revolution Youth Group

Creekview HS, Bryce Goodwyn
• Recipient of: Academic Letter, Lamp of Knowledge, Scholar Athlete, Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award, Georgia Certificate of Merit, DAR U.S. History Award, Optimist Club Student of the Year, 1st Team All-Region in Soccer, 2nd Team All-Region in Soccer and Soccer Letter (all four years)
• Member of: Varsity Soccer (Varsity Captain), National Honor Society, Model UN, Habitat for Humanity and National Spanish Honor Society
• Volunteers for: Gardening Project with Creekview HS Varsity Soccer Program

Etowah HS, Katie Bishop
• Recipient of: Academic Letter, Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award, Varsity Lacrosse Letter for two years and Community Service Letter for two years
• Member of: Student Government (Student Body President), Beta Club, National Honor Society, Math Team and Model UN
• Volunteers for: Vacation Bible School with her church, Shop with an Eagle and other various activities through SGA (150+ hours of community service)

River Ridge HS, Christian Fanning
• Recipient of: Microsoft Power Point Certification and Academic Letter
• Member of: Student Advisory Board (Senior Class President), Chick-fil-A Leadership Academy Program, Crusading Knights Community Service Club and Junior Varsity Cross Country (2015-16)
• Volunteers for: Woodstock City Church, Co-leader for River Ridge Challenger Basketball Program and with Crusading Knights Service Club

Sequoyah HS, Theodore “Teddy” Campbell
• Recipient of: AP Scholar Award from College Board, Principal’s Academic Achievement Award for PSAT, Georgia Certificate of Merit, SHS Award for highest GPA (three years in a row) and Triple Letter in Varsity Tennis
• Member of: Varsity Tennis, Beta Club, National Honor Society, Student Government (Past Class President) and Habitat for Humanity
• Volunteers for: Habitat for Humanity and local Tennis Academy

Woodstock HS, Katherine Relick
• Recipient of: Math Award, Superintendent’s Key Scholar, UGA Merit Award and Teen Leadership Program Completion Participant
• Member of: National Honor Society, Beta Club, Student Government (Vice-president), Women in Science & Engineering, Science National Honors Society, Math National Honors Society and Giving Children Hope Club (President)
• Volunteers for: Anna Crawford Children’s Center Student Advisor, SPLASH (a volunteer group that teaches children with special needs to swim), Cherokee Family Violence Center and as a Sunday School teacher with her church


Board Briefs: Board Hears Positive Report on CCSD Finances

2016-17 Student Advisor and Student Delegates

Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower welcomes the 2016-17 Student Advisor and Student Delegates to the Cherokee County School Board at the Aug. 11, 2016 School Board Meeting. From left to right, front row: Meghan Hines, Etowah HS; Kayla Brader, Woodstock HS; Parker Quarles, Creekview HS; second row: Julia Kochansky of Cherokee HS; Jordan Mason of River Ridge HS; Isabelle Riddle of Sequoyah HS; back row: Student Advisory Joseph Henderson of ACE Academy.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Cherokee County School Board on Thursday, August 11, 2016, devoted its strategic work session to an update on the financial state of the Cherokee County School District, and the Board heard very good news.

The School District has received a “clean opinion” on its most recent financial audit, with no findings, which means that the finances and accounting all are in proper order and following best practices. The State also has issued its letter of acceptance, which closes the process.

The School District’s overall financial position continues to improve as the county recovers from the recession, with local property tax collections expected to exceed projections by approximately $3.5 Million, which will increase reserves. Intentionally increasing the reserves “savings account” is one way that CCSD is strategically improving its credit rating from the already positive Aa2 and AA levels, as rated by Moody’s and Standard & Poor’s, to the top AAA rating.

“We’re in much better shape than we have been,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower said, noting he and his staff are meeting with county government leaders to discuss possibly adjusting the tax collection timeline to further improve CCSD’s financial position as it relates to the timing of the annual infusion of local tax dollars into the operating budget.

The School Board then reviewed more detailed plans for the five-year renovation plan to begin if the Education SPLOST (Special Purpose Local Option Sales Tax) renewal is approved by voters in November. The renewal of the penny sales tax is focused on: retiring bond debt from school construction; building new classrooms and learning spaces at three schools; continuing to fulfill technology infrastructure and instructional needs; acquiring land for future school construction; purchasing 35 replacement school buses; and major renovation projects at more than two dozen schools.

In addition to reviewing a detailed list of those renovation projects, the School Board heard plans to install artificial turf in all of CCSD’s high school stadiums, which will save $1.6 Million in grass field maintenance costs over the lifetime of the turf… about $110,867 in savings a year that could instead be spent on teaching and learning in CCSD classrooms.

The installation of artificial turf, which already has been completed in other metro school systems such as Cobb, Forsyth and Fulton counties, offers other benefits in addition to the savings, such as fewer injuries to students, faster recovery time after rain and increased usage opportunities by multiple athletic teams and marching bands for both games and practices.

If the Education SPLOST is approved in November, the turf installation would likely take place the summer of 2018; while Etowah HS already has turf that was installed by its school foundation, it would receive a needed resurfacing as part of the project. Additionally, new restrooms would be installed at the Etowah HS and Sequoyah HS stadiums to replacing outdated facilities.

School Board Member Clark Menard said he appreciates the thought put into developing the Education SPLOST plans.

“Paying down the debt and increasing our bond rating will have a direct impact on being able to meet our financial obligations,” Mr. Menard said, adding he sees the value in projects like the turf installation that reduce maintenance and operating costs. “It’s not sexy. It’s not a great big high school. But it provides some real return for our operating fund.”

The School Board also heard another installment in a series of staff presentations on the negative impact the Governor’s Opportunity School District Constitutional Amendment, which will be on the ballot in November, would have on CCSD if approved by voters.

The Amendment would allow the State to take over so-called “failing schools” and turn operations of the schools and their assets paid for with local monies over to for-profit private operators overseen by an appointed statewide czar — despite the fact that the metric (CCRPI) used to issue this label is based on a faulty barometer of achievement.

“How can the State seriously consider overriding local control of a community school based upon a metric that changes each year,” Dr. Hightower said. “They’re using a metric that’s seriously flawed, and this is as high-stakes as it gets.”

School Board Members spoke up in agreement with Dr. Hightower’s concerns; and at the Sept. 1 meeting, the Board likely will consider adopting a resolution opposing the Constitutional Amendment.

“This really bothers me,” School Board Chair Kyla Cromer said of the potential for State takeover of local schools. “Our schools are working their tails off… the students are working, the teachers are working, the parents are working.”

School Board Member Mike Chapman said it’s a smack in the face to anyone who supports local control of their community schools, but the ballot language is deceptive.

“The language is all motherhood and apple pie, unicorns and rainbows,” he said. “It’s crazy what’s going on here and counter to everything we talk about [as conservatives].”

During its regular meeting, the School Board also:

  • Recognized Georgia PTA Outstanding School PTAs and Award Winners;
  • Recognized Johnston ES as a National Common Sense Digital Citizenship Certified School and Media Specialist Angel Ginn as a National Common Sense Digital Citizenship Certified Educator;
  • Recognized CCSD Technology Project Specialist Sandi Adams as a National Microsoft Innovator Educator Expert Award winner;
  • Recognized Creekland Middle School’s Sixth-Grade Academic Bowl Team for Nationals win;
  • Recognized the 2016-17 Student Advisor to School Board, Joseph Henderson of ACE Academy, and Student Delegates;
  • Approved renewal of Partnership Agreements with Cherokee County Council of PTA and Cherokee County YMCA;
  • Approved the first reading of technical modifications to School Board Policies;
  • Approved monthly Education SPLOST report;
  • Approved out-of-state travel;
  • Approved out-of-state and overnight student field trips;
  • Approved the monthly capital outlay projects report;
  • Approved special lease agreements;
  • Approved monthly personnel recommendations; and,
  • Began planning for required annual School Board Member training.

Next School Board meeting: 7 p.m. Sept. 1, 2016


CCSD Names 2016-17 Student Advisor, Student Delegates to School Board

The Cherokee County School District has named the 2016-17 Student Advisor and Student Delegates to the School Board.

The School Board has included a Student Advisor position on its board since 1999, and for the past six years, a Student Delegate from each high school also has been selected. These students serve for one year to give input and feedback to the School Board; the advisor role is rotated among the county’s high schools.

This year’s Student Advisor is Joseph Henderson of ACE Academy. The Student Delegates are: of Cherokee High School, Julia Kochansky; of Creekview High School, Parker Quarles; of Etowah High School, Meghan Hines; of River Ridge High School, Jordan Mason; of Sequoyah High School, Isabelle Riddle; and of Woodstock High School, Kayla Brader.

The students will begin their service at the School Board meeting on August 11.

Students selected to serve as Student Advisor or Student Delegates share common traits: they excel in the classroom, often ranking in the top 10 percent of their class and earning titles like valedictorian; they are involved in their school, often participating in numerous clubs, sports and organizations; and they seek out opportunities to serve and lead.

BRADER Kayla

HENDERSON Jospeh

HINES Meghan

KOCHANSKY Julia

MASON Jordan

QUARLES Parker

RIDDLE Isabelle

STUDENT ADVISOR

ACE Academy, Joseph Henderson

  • Recipient of: Algebra Excellence Award
  • Member of: ACE Academy Student Council, Boy Scouts of America – Troop 241 (Life Scout, Order of the Arrow) and Flag Honor Guard
  • Volunteers for: Special Olympics, Etowah River Clean-Up Project, Georgia National Cemetery (flag and wreath placements)

STUDENT DELEGATES

Cherokee HS, Julia Kochansky

  • Recipient of: Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award, Honor Roll, Georgia Scholar, Optimist Club Essay Contest – First Place, National Latin Exam – Gold (Latin I, II, and III), Spirit of Learning Award, Academic Excellence Certificate, Academic Letter, Lamp of Knowledge, Georgia Certificate of Merit, Governor’s Honors Program Nominee, Student of the Month, National AP Scholar, AP Scholar with Distinction, GHSA State Literary Competition Essay Writing – First Place Divisional, Hugh O’Brien Youth Leadership Conference and Leadership 56, Mock Trial Lawyer Award, Daughters of the American Revolution Youth Citizenship Award
  • Member of: National Honor Society, Alpha Gamma, Beta Club, Mock Trial, Leadership 56 (Sophomore and Junior Year)
  • Volunteers for: Fernbank Museum Future Urban Naturalist Program

Creekview HS, Parker Quarles

  • Recipient of: Academic Letter, Scholar Athlete, Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award, UGA Certificate of Merit, AP Scholar and All-County Lacrosse
  • Member of: National Honor Society, Habitat for Humanity, Beta Club, Student Government, DECA and FBLA
  • Volunteers for: Summer lacrosse coach

Etowah HS, Meghan Hines

  • Recipient of: Academic Letter, Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award, SGA Student of the Month and National Spanish Exam Bronze Award
  • Member of: Student Government (Student Body President, Senior Class President, Junior Class President, Sophomore Class Treasurer and Freshman Class Secretary) Beta Club, Mu Alpha Theta, Nation English Honor Society, National Honor Society, Flight Club and Competitive Dance
  • Volunteers for: Church mission trips and ministry, Shop with an Eagle, SGA Elementary Reading Program

River Ridge HS, Jordan Mason

  • Recipient of: Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award, Presidential Community Service Award and Physical Fitness and Health Award
  • Member of: National Honor Society, Teen Leadership Cherokee Class of 2015, Student Government (2017 Vice President), Knights of the Round Table, Beta Club, Metro Atlanta Regional Commission and Chick-fil-a Leadership Program
  • Volunteers for: Big/Little High School Mentorship Program Coordinator and Crusading Knights Service Club

Sequoyah HS, Isabelle Riddle

  • Recipient of: AP Scholar with Distinction, PSAT Academic Achievement Award, Academic Letter, Ayn Rand Institute Essay Contest – Second Place, Quest Bridge College Prep Scholar, One National Dance Competition – Second Place Overall, Teen Leadership Cherokee Most Outstanding Leader Award, Grant Recipient for “Doggie Dash” Service Project and PTA Reflections Contest State Winner
  • Member of: National Honor Society President, Student Government (Treasurer), Beta Club (Honorary Member), Fellowship of Christian Athletes Leadership Council, Model Atlanta Regional Commission
  • Volunteers for: H.F.D.A Gives Back (service club founder) and MUST Ministries (Summer Lunch Coordinator)

Woodstock HS, Kayla Brader

  • Recipient of: Academic Letter, Gold Medal, National Spanish Exam – Silver Medal and Certificate, WHS PTSA Essay Scholarship 2015-16 Winner, Governor’s Honors Program Nominee and Varsity Letter in Track
  • Member of: Wolverine Marching Band, National Honors Society, Science National Honor Society, Beta Club, Model United Nations, Women in Science and Engineering (President), Spanish National Honors Society (Past President) and Youth Community Board at Transfiguration Catholic Church
  • Volunteers for: Domestic violence shelter and Transfiguration Catholic Church