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School news
Riverbend Elementary students who received Accelerated Reader T-shirts for achieving their grade level reading goal in the first semester are, back row from left, Briggham Winkler, Brandi Jarrard, Alex Zimmerman, Breunna Middlebrooks and Zachary Green. Front row from left are Alexander McIntosh, Connor Nichols, Evan Zimmerman, Taylor Kimsey, Katie Allgood and Kate Pless. - photo by For The Times

Sarah Harste of Gainesville has been selected to participate in the Wofford College Community of Scholars, a cross-disciplinary program of undergraduate student research at the college in Spartanburg, S.C.

The 10-week summer program is designed to create cross-disciplinary dialogue among students and faculty conducting research in the natural sciences, social sciences and humanities.

Harste's project is "Exploration and Colonization: A Survey of Representations of the Female Body as Territory." She is the daughter of Richard and Margaret Harste of Gainesville.

Heath Roper and Nikki Varsel of Gainesville recently were presented with Reinhardt College's McCamish School of Business Spring 2009 Leadership Award. In all, 28 students were honored.

The award is presented each semester to students who demonstrate leadership in the classroom.

Riverbend Elementary School was awarded a Laura Bush Foundation for America's Libraries grant to expand the library's collection of books on science.

The foundation began in 2002, and Riverbend Elementary was among 190 schools across the United States to receive this grant.

Alec Martin, a seventh-grader at East Hall Middle School, has been accepted to the Duke University Talent Identification Program's academy for summer studies.

Martin received this honor based on scoring in the top 5 percent of seventh-graders across the country on the SAT or ACT test. He is the son of Christopher and Deann Martin of Gainesville.

The Dragon Group from Jefferson High School had top finishes in five of eight categories at the 2009 JROTC state drill meet, along with two individual event top finishes.

There were 26 teams from across the state, ranging from AA to AAAAA classifications, although all teams competed against each other.

Gorge Rodriguez won the Outstanding Armed Drill Commander trophy. The team of Emily Mitchell, Gorge Rodriguez, Hannah Botts and Clay Gooch came out with a third place in Unarmed Color Guard. The team of Casey Gray, Rachel Andrews, Maribel Rodriguez and James Jimenez finished fifth in Basic Color Guard. The team of Brian Herron, Lance Wilson, Miguel Rodriguez and Matthew Tillman placed sixth in the Armed Color Guard competition. Both the unarmed drill team and armed drill team placed fourth in their divisions in the Inspection Competition. Tillman finished eighth in Individual Drill Routine.

Taylor Hall of Gainesville High School and his duet partner from North Hall High School, Kathryn Foote, ranked straight superiors in their performance of "Young and Healthy" during the State Thespian Conference on Feb. 27.

Other Gainesville High students, duets Stacy Young with Charleston Troutman, Angie Highsmith with Robert Whelchel, Lizzie Webster with John Jennings, Nicole Alley with Chandler Darby, Hall with Ariel Thilenius and Parrish Brown with Austin Whelchel ranked superior with "It Don't Mean A Thing If You Ain't Got That Swing."

Gainesville High's small group musical "Mama Says" with Nick Boleman, Robert Whelchel, Taylor Hall, Isaac Hopkins and Austin Whelchel received an overall excellent and the large group musical "Footloose" received an overall excellent rating. Shelley Farmer's performance of "Mr. Snow" also received excellent ratings.

Jimmy Smith, a student at Georgia Tech in Atlanta, earned a 4.0 grade-point average and received faculty honors for the fall 2008 semester.

He also received the highest pledge class grade-point average from the Sigma Chi Fraternity.

He is the son of Jimmy and Robbin Smith of Flowery Branch and a graduate of Flowery Branch High School.

Lakeview students recently competed at the 2009 State Educational Technology Fair at West Forsyth High School in Cumming. The following winners were:

  • From the lower school: Corey Matyas, first place, Programming and Technology Literacy Challenge; Emma Reinhardt, first place, Digital Photography; Reanna Wang, first place, Animated Graphic Design; Seth Munn, third place, Case Modification.
  • From the middle school: Vidya Mani-Medepalli, second place, Non-Multimedia; Emma Fordham and Reagen Leimbach, third place, Non-Multimedia ; Mac Sims, third place, 3D Design.
  • From the upper school: Thomas King, third place, Technology Literacy Challenge; Steven Hickey, third place, Technology Literacy Challenge.

The following students qualified for state competition: Asha McDonald, Ansley Rochester, Anna Lee Skinner, Cal Thralkill, Reanna Wang, Christian Madsen, Jordan Madsen, Joris Trip and Cooper Lewis.

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