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Class Notes: School districts name Philip Wright Award winners
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Each year, school districts in Northeast Georgia’s Pioneer RESA area honor an individual who has a strong commitment to improving educational outcomes for students with disabilities by presenting the Philip Wright Award.

The award is given in the name of Philip Wright, who created a legacy of service in this area.

Each regional education service agency district selected an individual who exemplifies service, deep respect and regard, commitment and advocacy for children with special needs.

The individuals were recognized Friday at the Babyland General Ballroom in Cleveland.

The Gainesville winner is Jerry Castleberry, director of transportation for Gainesville City Schools for his generosity and support for transporting children with special needs and supporting their families. Other winners include Lesley Congdon of Hall County; Jane Grillo of White County; Melinda Caudell of Banks County; Margie Holbrook of Habersham County; Melanie Spooner of Dawson County; Anna Arthur of Alpine Program; and Susann Hirst of Lumpkin County.

Gainesville wins ‘Most Unique High School Mascot’ in Georgia

More than 87,000 votes earned the title for Gainesville High in USA Today’s “Most Unique High School Mascot in Georgia” for the Red Elephants mascot.

Only a thousand votes behind was Jefferson High School’s Red Dragons.

On the newspaper’s website, it states the origin of the Red Elephants as “The word is that the Red Elephants name came from Everett Strupper, a local sports writer in the mid-1930s. Once after watching Gainesville pull out a hard fought win, he wrote that Gainesville marched ‘up and down the field like a herd of red elephants.’” The name stuck and became the official mascot.

The school might advance to the regional finals this week or the national finals on March 15. It all depends on the votes.

Fans to gather for basketball championship game sendoff

Gainesville High basketball fans are gathering on Friday at Gainesville city schools and at City Park starting at 12:15 p.m. to send off the school’s basketball team. Team members will rally at the schools before they leave.

Spirit and charter buses will load at 2:30 p.m. for the state championship game. The contest against Miller Grove High School of Lithonia begins at 8:30 p.m. at the Centreplex, 200 Coliseum Drive, Macon.

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