Thursday, May 21, 2009

Jump Start on College Credit for Georgia High School Students

DeVry University Offers Passport2College Program This Summer

Georgia High School students who will be entering their junior or senior year in the fall of 2009 need to check out DeVry University's Passport2College Program being offered this summer. Qualified students who enroll in the program will earn college credit, getting a jump-start on their college education. There is no tuition cost for the Passport2College Program, but qualified students are responsible for the cost of the textbooks.

Application Deadline: June 8, 2009

Students with an interest in the areas of business and/or technology and a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher should see if this opportunity fits their needs.

For more information:
Visit the DeVry website
Call 404.270.2800 or 800.221.4771, ext. 2742800

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Colquitt County Teacher Recognized

2010 Georgia Teacher of the Year

Gwen Desselle was named 2010 Georgia Teacher of the Year at an event held at the Georgia Aquarium on May 15, 2009. Mrs. Desselle is a high school social studies teacher from Colquitt County and a 32-year veteran educator. Her duties during her term will include speaking to the public about the teaching profession, conducting workshops and programs for educators, and serving as an advisor to Superintendent Cox and the Georgia Department of Education.

The Teacher of the Year Award is a competitive process that begins at the level of the individual school and moves to the district then state competition. Nominees are observed in their classroom as part of the application process. The state winner is eligible to compete at the national level.

2010 Georgia Teacher of the Year Finalists

Tiffany Todd, Southeast Bulloch High School, Bulloch County
Dr. Mark Lang, Camden Middle School, Camden County
Michelle Rigsby, BelAir Elementary School, Columbia County
Suzy Besson-Martilotta, Chattahoochee Elementary School
Merrill Boynton-Cheyne, Harris County Carver Middle School, Harris County
Sandy Akin, East Jackson Comprehensive High School, Jackson County
Krista Pearson, Lowndes High School, Lowndes County
Kathie Wood, Marietta Middle School, Marietta City
Jennifer Beckum Irvin, Toombs County High School

Visit the Georgia Department of Education website for the Office of Communications to view more information about Gwen Desselle and Georgia's Teacher of the Year Program.

Georgia Students Named as New Gates Millennium Scholars

10th Anniversary Class Announced

The Gates Millennium Scholars Program (GMS) was begun in 1999 with a one billion dollar grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation. The goal of the Scholars Program is to promote academic excellence and to provide an opportunity for outstanding minority students with significant financial need to reach their highest potential. The program is administered by the United Negro College Fund (UNCF).

In April, 2009, 1,000 students from across the country were notified of their selection as the 10th Anniversary Class of scholars. Sixty four Georgia high school seniors were successful in the extensive application process to become part of this group. The award is a needs-based scholarship that can be used at the college or university of the student's choice. The amount is determined on an individual bases after other sources of college aid and scholarships are figured into a student's situation. The scholarship can be applied to tuition, books and room and board.

Georgia's 2009 Millennium Scholars attended the following high schools:
Atlanta Public Schools
Carver School of Health Sciences & Research
Douglass High School
Maynard Jackson High School
Mays High School
North Atlanta High School
South Atlanta High School
Terrell High School
Washington High School

Fayette County Public Schools
Whitewater High School

Richmond County Public Schools
Davidson Fine Arts

Note: This is an incomplete list. Please let us know of 2009 Gates Millennium Scholars in your high school.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Georgia's Early College Initiative

Early College Awareness Week

The first week in May was designated nationwide as Early College Awareness Week. The Board of Regents of the University System of Georgia announced activities for Georgia students in a recent press release.

Year round, the Early College Program in Georgia provides students with an opportunity to earn a high school diploma along with one to two years of transferable credit towards a bachelor's degree. Begun in 2005, Georgia's Early College Program targets the student populations that are underrepresented in higher education in our state.

Georgia's Early College Program is a partnership between the Georgia Department of Education and the University System of Georgia. Visit the website for more information on this initiative.

MetLife 2009 Ambassador in Education Award for Arts Educator at North Atlanta High School

Georgia Art Educator Recognized for Community Service

MetLife's Ernest L. Foster and National Civic League President Gloria Rubio-Cortes present the 2009 MetLife Foundation Ambassadors in Education Award and a $5,000 check for the school to art educator Natalie Brandhorst (center).

Natalie Brandhorst was recently recognized in a ceremony at North Atlanta High School for the work she has done with her students to build bridges between the school and community. View the Georgia Graduation Stories blog for April 14th and the Atlanta Public Schools press release for May 13th for more details on the MetLife Ambassador in Education Award and the accomplishments of Ms. Brandhorst and her students.

Thank you to Joe Manguno, Media Relations Specialist for Atlanta Public Schools, for supplying the photograph.

Monday, May 11, 2009

NASA Offers Education Programs for Students

NASA Online Learning Community and Summer Studies Available to High School Students

High School students interested in careers in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) are encouraged to visit the NASA Education website. NASA is accepting applications for the Interdisciplinary National Science Program Incorporating Research Experience (INSPIRE) program. Eligible students will have the opportunity to participate in an online learning community that allows them to interact with their peers and with NASA scientists and engineers.

Students selected for the online learning community will then have the option to compete for placement in programs for the summer of 2010 held at NASA facilities and participating universities throughout the country.

Schedule for Application Process

Applications for the INSPIRE Online Learning Community accepted:
May 1 to June 30, 2009
Students selected for the Online Learning Community will be notified:
Sept., 2009
Eligible Online Learning Community members provide additional documents to compete for optional 2010 summer experiences.
Fall, 2009
Online Learning Community members selected for summer experiences notified.
Spring, 2010

Friday, May 8, 2009

High School Students Travel to Egypt

Carver School of Health Sciences and Research Students visit the Valley of the Kings at Luxor, Egypt. (photo by Dr. Darian Jones)

Promises Kept
Dr. Darian Jones made a promise to the first freshman class at Carver's School of Health Sciences and Research. Graduate in four years, and we will travel to Egypt. On May 2, 2009, 50 seniors who fulfilled their graduation commitment were joined by parents and faculty on the promised trip.

View the Atlanta Public School's press release for more pictures and exciting details.

Thank you to Joe Manguno, Media Relations Specialist for Atlanta Public Schools, for supplying the information to Georgia Graduation Stories blog.

Webcast: Call Me MISTER


Tuesday, May 12, 2009
3:30-4:30 p.m. Eastern Time


presented by
Dr. Roy Jones

*How can we partner with colleges and universities to address the shortage of teachers in our struggling schools?

*Learn about the many components of the Call Me Mister Program

This webcast will explore the fundamental principles that provide the guidance and foundation for the success of the nationally recognized Call Me MISTER program model. It is the goal of Call Me MISTER, now in its ninth year, to address the the shortage of teachers serving in some of the state's most struggling primary schools. Both the South Carolina and national initiative strategy will be examined. We will also discuss Project Middle Passage, a Call Me MISTER outreach component focused on mentoring and developing 6th, 7th, and 8th grade middle school African American boys. It is our belief that by successfully placing strong teachers in elementary calssrooms among at-risk among at-risk populations, we will have a positive impact on stemming the deplorable dropout rate.

Visit the Call Me MISTER (acronym for Mentors Instructing Students Toward Effective Rose Models) website for more information on this national initiative.

On the day of the webcast, log on 10-30 minutes early to ensure you are connected to the broadcast @

Supplementary materials are now available online. All necessary information about participating fully in this professional development opportunity is found on the website. For further questions, contact the National Dropout Prevention Center or call 864.656.2580.

Participation in this webcast is free and no registration is required. The program will be archived in its entirety on the website. On the day of the webcast, link to the broadcast. This webast is produced with support from Penn Foster. If you have trouble with the link, copy and paste the entire address listed below into your web browser:,P1,F063CEFD-2B16-4933-9440-BC7ACFDCF044

Friday, May 1, 2009

Georgia Student Media Festival

Student Work Judged at Annual Media Festival

May 1, 2009, over 160 judges assembled at Georgia Public Broadcasting to begin the process of reviewing work from over 1,100 of Georgia's K-12 students. This 33rd year of the Georgia Student Media Festival (GSMF) allowed groups of educators, media specialists, instructional technology specialists and university students to review the student produced media projects that had already earned high scores in competition at both the local building and system levels. The projects are organized into categories that include: Live Action, Animation, Sequential Stills, Electronic Picture Book, Electronic Photographic Essay, Interactive Stills and Website.

Student projects submitted to the state level of competition are awarded rankings of Superior (96-100), Merit (90-95) or Participation (Below 90). Projects are judged on their own merits for excellence in production, writing, creativity, lighting and impact. Students whose work earns a Superior at the state level will be entered into competiton at the International Student Media Festival (ISMF). Deborah Hargroves, IMSF Coordinator, says that Georgia is always well represented at this highest level of competition.

These instructional technology and media projects provide students with a creative outlet, along with:
*opportunity to demonstrate their understanding of technology
*an outlet to extend the learning beyond the classroom
*opportunity for self-expression
*another pathway for student success

Michelle Linderman

Deborah Gray (Gwinnett Co. Schools) and Michelle Lenderman (Bibb Co. Schools) served as C0-Chairs for the 2009 GSMF. Dr. Gordon Baker, Director, Libraries at Clayton State University Library, served on the leadership team. Joni Jones (Rockdale Co. Schools) designed the GSMF website.

Deborah Gray (GSMF) and Marylyn Stansbury, Director of Education & Outreach, GPB

Some of the Judging Stations

The Georgia Student Media Festival is sponsored by the Georgia Association for Instructional Technology, Inc. (GAIT), and the Georgia Library Association (GLA), in partnership with Georgia Public Broadcasting (GPB).