Wesleyan College and Mercer University have been named to the 2014 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll.
It’s the highest federal recognition a college or university can receive for its commitment to volunteering, service learning and civic engagement. It recognizes institutions of higher education that support exemplary community service programs and raise the visibility of effective practices on campus.
The Corporation for National and Community Service has administered the award since 2006.
A total of 766 institutions were honored for their work in one of four categories: general community service, interfaith community service, economic opportunity and education.
WRITING TEST SCORES
School systems across the state recently received scores from the Georgia High School Writing Test.
The test was administered Sept. 24, and 96 percent of students statewide earned a passing score.
Of area school systems, Twiggs and Monroe counties have the highest rate of passing scores at 98 percent, rounded to the nearest percent. Next up was Houston County at 97 percent, followed by Baldwin and Jones counties at 96 percent. Peach and Crawford counties both notched a 95 percent mark, and 93 percent of Bibb County students earned a passing score.
COMMENTING ON CALENDAR
The Bibb County school district wants to know if parents, students and others are happy with the current academic calendar format. Stakeholders are encouraged to provide anonymous feedback in a brief, one-question survey at svy.mk/1z2qt20. Responses will be considered during planning for the 2015-2016 academic calendar.
WARNER ROBINS MIDDLE SCHOOL RECEIVES TECHNOLOGY
Warner Robins Middle School math teacher Jennifer Franklin and her students recently opened new technology that arrived at school through DonorsChoose.org. Samsung Chromebooks were purchased for the classroom with funds donated to use as part of the Bring Your Own Device initiative. Thanks to DonorsChoose and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, eight Chromebooks valued at $2,390 are now available for students to use during class.
Her math students are using the devices to learn basic coding skills. They have also linked coding blocks to create a video promoting school spirit. In addition, the Chromebooks are used during math class for online tutorial assistance, polling and quick quizzes.
MDS LEGO ROBOTICS TEAM ADVANCES
Mount de Sales Academy’s Middle School LEGO Robotics team was one of only nine to advance in the FIRST LEGO League regional competition held in Griffin. This was the team’s first-ever competition, and they will go on to compete at super regionals in January.
The LEGO Robotics team was required to participate in three components of the competition: an interview with judges, a presentation of an innovative project and a task-programmed robot competition. The team won Best Overall Teamwork at the event.
The FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) LEGO League is an international program for children aged 9-14. It introduces students to real-world engineering challenges. Activities focus on team building, creativity and problem-solving skills.
GIFTED SCREENING NOTIFICATION
The gifted screening process for the Bibb County school system is scheduled for Jan. 7-21, 2015. Parents or guardians may refer students to their students’ school eligibility team for consideration. Students may also refer themselves. All referrals must be written and sent to the student’s homeroom teacher no later than Jan. 21, 2015.
PERRY HIGH SENIOR A FINALIST FOR ARTS COMPETITION
Perry High School senior Eli Guidry has been named a finalist in the National YoungArts competition. More than 11,000 students applied nationally, and only 170 students were chosen as finalists. Out of 10 disciplines, Eli is one of 23 finalists in writing.
Eli will be awarded a cash prize ranging from $1,000 to $10,000. He will also fly free of charge to Miami for YoungArts week from Jan. 4-11 to receive instruction from some of America’s best university professors and published authors. While there, he will give formal public readings of his work. He is now in the running to be named one of 20 U.S. Presidential Scholars for the arts. If chosen, he will read for the president at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., in the spring.
HOUSTON COUNTY AP STUDENTS, SCHOOLS EARN AWARDS
Through the National Math and Science Initiative for Advanced Placement classes, Houston County high schools recently had reason to celebrate.
NMSI presented more than $170,000 in cash awards at the five high schools, with some teachers picking up more than $4,000 and students taking cash gifts of as much as $400. In the first year of the effort, the rate of students scoring 3 or higher on the AP tests, which is scored on a scale of 1-5, increased by 47 percent across the system.
Staff writers Jeremy Timmerman and Oby Brown contributed to this report.