2008-02-27 / Front Page

2008 STAR Students and Teachers named

Left to right: Georgia Ann Israel, Ashley Spooner, Principal Ginger Webster, Tracy Pickle, Ameris Bank Branch Manager, Deanna Mason, and Joye Bailey Left to right: Georgia Ann Israel, Ashley Spooner, Principal Ginger Webster, Tracy Pickle, Ameris Bank Branch Manager, Deanna Mason, and Joye Bailey Tracy Pickle, representative of Ameris Bank in Colquitt, local sponsor of the Miller County STAR program, is pleased to announce that Miller County High School has two STAR Students this year. Deanna Mason and Ashley Spooner achieved the honor of joint recognition for STAR Student. Deanna is the daughter of James G. Mason and Angie Mason. Ashley is the daughter of Andy and Lisa Spooner of Colquitt. "We are very proud of Deanna and Ashley and the academic excellence they exemplify at Miller County High School," said Mr. Pickle.

Deanna chose as her STAR Teacher Mrs. Joye Bailey. Mrs. Bailey, who has taught mathematics at Miller County High School for 13 years, stated, "What an honor it is to be chosen as STAR Teacher by a student of Deanna's caliber. Her motivation and determination to better herself is admirable. She has been an absolute joy to teach. I have truly been blessed to have been given the opportunity to know and to teach Deanna."

Deanna has two sisters, Andrea Josey, 20, and Adrian Mason, 16. Her grandparents are Sue Reckner, James Mason, Eloise Parkins and the late Ray Phillips. Deanna plans to attend Georgia State University in the fall and major in biology with a concentration in microbiology.

Ashley chose as her STAR Teacher Mrs. Georgia Ann Israel, who has taught courses in the Health Occupations Program at Miller County High School for 26 years. Mrs. Israel said, "I have truly enjoyed teaching Ashley these past three years. The best way to describe her in just a few words is like a 'diamond in the rough.' She is a student that I have not only had the pleasure of teaching, but the privilege to teach as well."

Ashley has a sister, Mary Katherine, 15, and a brother Bradley, 10, who attend Miller County schools. Her grandparents are Victor and Kathy Spooner, and Mary Daniels, and her greatgrandparent is Alice Andrews. Ashley plans to attend Georgia Southwestern State University in the fall and major in nursing.

Mrs. Ginger Webster, principal of Miller County High School, expressed her excitement that two students accomplished the STAR Student requirements. This is the first time in the history of Miller County High School. Mrs. Webster stated, "It is a high honor to have two such accomplished STAR students at Miller County High School and two such deserving STAR Teachers. I congratulate all the recipients."

The PAGE Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) program, in its 50th year, is sponsored by the Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE) Foundation, the Georgia Chamber of Commerce and the Georgia Department of Education. Since its inception, the STAR program has honored more than 21,000 students and the teachers they have selected as having had the most influence on their academic achievement. Students are selected on the basis of their SAT scores and class standing/scholastic averages. To obtain the nomination for STAR student, students must have the highest score in one sitting on the new three-part Scholastic Assessment Test (SAT) taken through the December test date of their senior year and be in the top 10 percent or top 10 students of their class based on grade point average.

STAR begins each year in participating high schools throughout Georgia when the STAR Student is named and chooses a STAR Teacher to share in this recognition. The students and their teachers are honored by their schools and receive special recognition in their communities from civic organizations and businesses that sponsor local programs. Ameris Bank in Colquitt as the sponsor of the Miller County High School STAR Students awards them a $300 scholarship at graduation and sponsors the STAR Student, Teacher, and family members at the regional STAR Banquet in Americus.

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