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Emory professor, former research chemist to speak at Brenau

Emory professor, former research chemist to speak at Brenau

GAINESVILLE, Ga. -- A professor of Environmental Health at Emory University will give a talk on epidemics on January 9 at Brenau's Thurmond McRae Auditorium.

Dana Boyd Barr, was previously a research chemist at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Her talk, "Epidemics - Spread the Word, not the Disease," is January's Sense and Sustainability lecture. Barr is also a Brenau alum, according to David Morrison of Brenau.

"Dr. Barr is an excellent addition to the program," Brenau Professor Rudi Kiefer said. "She brings a wealth of international experience and anecdotes from a splendid career in public health. She can operate a laboratory full of high-tech mass spectrometers to check for signs of prenatal substance abuse in newborns, or give a lecture on preventative health care to an audience from several continents."

Chestatee HS soccer players win academic award

Chestatee HS soccer players win academic award

GAINESVILLE, Ga. -- The girls' varsity soccer team at Chestatee High School has received the 2011-12 NSCAA Team Academic Award.

The honor, which went to 224 high school soccer teams across the country this year, is given to teams that maintain a minimum GPA of 3.25 for an entire academic year.

Chestatee's Lady War Eagles have received the award eight years in a row. The team has also won the NSCAA's All-Time honor for earning the Academic Award so many times.

2 Hall schools among Ga. Reward Schools

2 Hall schools among Ga. Reward Schools

GAINESVILLE, Ga. -- Two Hall County middle schools are among this year's Georgia Department of Education Reward Schools.

Reward Schools are the Georgia schools with the highest performance or biggest academic gains by students in the last three years.

"These schools are shining examples of what we can achieve in public education in Georgia," Superintendent Dr. John Barge said in a statement. "I want to take what's working at our Reward Schools and replicate that in every school in the state. These are the schools making education work for all Georgians."

East Hall and South Hall middle schools made the list of High Progress Schools. These schools are among the top 10% of Title I schools in Georgia, meaning that they are making the most progress to improve student performance on statewide assessments like the CRCT.

Confused over the Charter School Amendment?

Confused over the Charter School Amendment?

ATLANTA -- If you're confused about Amendment One on this year's general election ballot, you're not alone.

Wednesday we asked some early voters in Cobb County what they thought of the wording, which asks:

"Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities?"

"It was a bit confusing," said voter Brett Atkinson.

Voter Larshaun Williams said she would not have understood it without doing a lot of homework first.

"Definitely," she told 11 Alive, "I would not have known which direction to go."

Even more confusing to some is the wording of the preamble, just before the actual amendment question:

"Provides for improving student achievement and parental involvement through more public charter school options."

There's now a lawsuit claiming that preamble wording is misleading in favor of the amendment.

Nighthawk to be University of North Georgia's mascot

Nighthawk to be University of North Georgia's mascot

GAINESVILLE, Ga. -- A mascot has been chosen for the university to be formed by the consolidation of North Georgia College & State University and Gainesville State College.

The Gainesville Times reports that nighthawks will be the mascot of the new University of North Georgia, which is to form in January.

North Georgia President Bonita Jacobs says selecting a new mascot to is important to build community at the new consolidated university.

The schools' current mascots are the Saints at North Georgia and the Fighting Geese at Gainesville State. Students were given three options for their new mascot: Golden Eagles, Nighthawks or Warriors. With 51 percent of the vote, Nighthawks was the clear winner.

A nighthawk is a bird indigenous to the North Georgia region that typically hunts at dusk and dawn.

Hall County SAT scores released

Hall County SAT scores released

GAINESVILLE, Ga. -- The average SAT scores for Georgia's Class of 2012 were released Monday.

According to the results, which were posted by the Georgia Department of Education, Georgia's graduating seniors scored an average of 1452 out of 2400 on the test.

North Hall High, with an average score of 1536, was the only Hall County school to exceed the state's average. However, Chestatee High was only three points away, while West Hall High was 11 points short.

The score breakdown of Hall County's high schools is as follows:

Chestatee HS
134 students took the SAT in 2012
Overall: 1449
Critical Reading: 496
Math: 497
Writing: 456

East Hall HS
113 students took the SAT in 2012
Overall: 1374
Critical Reading: 464
Math: 463
Writing: 447

Flowery Branch HS
258 students took the SAT in 2012
Overall: 1425
Critical Reading: 484
Math: 482
Writing: 459

Path2College scholarship coloring contest ends Sept. 30

Path2College scholarship coloring contest ends Sept. 30

ATLANTA -- Georgia children in Pre-K through 5th grade can now color their way to a college scholarship from the Path2College 529 Plan.

In honor of College Savings Month, the statewide college savings program is hosting a coloring contest with a $1,529 scholarship at stake.

To win the money, children must color a picture of Hootie the Wise Old Owl and complete a sentence: When I graduate, I'm going to be a ________.

Download the picture of Hootie here.

Entries must be postmarked by Sept. 30 and must be received no later than Oct. 5. More information about the contest can be found at path2college529.com.

A winner will be randomly chosen in mid-October.