Tag Archives: Awards

STAR Student and STAR Teacher: Andy Chinuntdet and Luke Burch

Congratulations to Anderson (Andy) Chinuntdet, a student at MHS, and Luke Burch, a teacher at MHS, for being recognized as a Georgia STAR student and teacher.

The Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) program honors Georgia’s highest achieving high school seniors and the teachers who have been most instrumental in their academic development.
Since its creation in 1958 by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, the STAR (Student Teacher Achievement Recognition) Program has honored nearly 26,000 high school seniors who have in turn chosen their STAR Teachers to share in this recognition.
To obtain the STAR nomination, high school seniors must have the highest score on any single test date of the SAT taken through the November 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.
“This award means a lot to me; it’s more than just something I can put on my resume,” Andy explained. “My favorite thing about it is that I got to honor a teacher who’s been so influential in my school work and life the past couple years.”
In addition to his academic success, Andy has also played basketball for three years, he serves as the president of the National Honor Society, he volunteers to plan and manage events for elementary students at his church, and he serves as a student leader in his youth group.
Andy plans to attend Georgia Tech next year and study aerospace engineering, as he aspires to pursue a career at NASA, SpaceX, or Lockheed after college.
Andy’s teachers describe him as a rare student who combines great intelligence with a hard work ethic while remaining humble and always willing to help anyone.
“Andy not only works hard and, through his hard work, earns incredible grades and scores on tests but he also exemplifies our MHS values,” said Mr. Burch, Andy’s physics teacher. “He is reflective; humble, willing to help others, and always striving to do his best.”
Each high school STAR student is asked to name his/her STAR teacher, and Mr. Burch, a physics teacher at MHS, was honored that Andy nominated him for the prestigious recognition.
Andy says he nominated Mr. Burch because he helped to make one of the hardest classes for students, manageable and enjoyable for students, while also caring about their wellbeing inside and outside the classroom.
“He isn’t just a good teacher; he’s an amazing man,” Andy said. “He’s taught me how to manage my time well, take good notes quickly, and think outside the box to solve difficult problems. He’s also inspired me to be a better person and a harder worker in all aspects of my life.”
Mr. Burch says that seeing the excitement and getting high fives from a physics student who didn’t understand a concept, but then worked with the concept more and got it, are his favorite moments as a teacher at MHS.
“Every day as teachers we strive to touch students’ lives and make an impact,” Mr. Burch explained. “Often times we do not get to see the fruits of our labor, but occasionally for each of us, we get a glimpse that our work is impacting students. I am no different than the rest of the teachers here in MCS, simply working hard and doing my best to help shape the future of my students. I am humbled and grateful for each moment such as this where I am able to see that what I am doing is having an impact.”
When asked what he loves most about teaching at MHS, Mr. Burch explained that he loves the diversity that MCS and MHS provide, and he enjoys working with students from all different backgrounds, in all different places educationally, all with different needs.
Locally, STAR students and STAR teachers are honored by their schools and receive special recognition in their communities from one of more than 165 civic organizations and businesses that serve as local STAR sponsors.


Four MCS Students Place in Georgia PTA State Reflections Competition

This year celebrates 50 years for the National PTA Reflections Program, a National PTA and Georgia PTA cultural arts competition.

The purpose of the program is to provide an opportunity for students to express their creative ideas and talents through their own original works. The excitement and enthusiasm that the program generates for students, parents, schools and communities is unmatched with the majority of Georgia PTAs participating in the program at all PTA levels. The 2018-2019 Reflections theme was “Heroes Around Us.”

Marietta City Schools is proud to recognize the students who won at the state level of the competition:
* Julian Tam, Grade 2 – Photography 2nd place, and Literature 2nd place, from A.L. Burruss E.S.
* Wynn Shoemaker, Grade 5 – Photography 3rd place, from West Side E.S.
* Anna Kate Oglesby, Grade 4 – 3D Visual Arts 1st place, from West Side E.S.
* Quadriyah Williams, Grade 9 – Film 1st place, Marietta High School

Students from MCS participated in all 6 PTA Reflections categories including, Visual Arts, Photography, Literature, Music Composition, Dance Choreography and Film Production.

The PTA Reflections Celebration is a powerful tool for encouraging students to explore and be involved in the arts. Together, school leaders and families offer positive reinforcement for participation in the National PTA Reflections program.

The Students will be honored at the High Museum, this Sunday, March 24 with the other state winners, at which time they will find out if they are moving on to Nationals.

GOSA Gives Innovation Award to Amy Crandall of MCAA

Media Specialist and Technology Coach Amy Crandall of Marietta Center for Advanced Academics (MCAA) was recently recognized as a Governor’s Office of Student Achievement (GOSA) Innovation in Teaching winner.

The statewide competition rewards teachers who utilize innovative instructional strategies to advance student achievement. This year’s competition focused on blended and personalized learning applied with a focus on STEAM (science, technology, engineering, arts, and mathematics).

As 1 of 3 winners from across the state, Amy will receive a $5,000 stipend, and MCAA will receive a $10,000 grant to support innovative instructional strategies. In addition, she will be highlighted by Georgia Public Broadcasting with an opportunity to discuss effective instructional strategies, management techniques, and the winning instructional unit. Amy’s video and teaching resources will be available online for other educators, educational institutions and the general public.


MHS Students, Two of Twenty Georgians Chosen as Pages at Georgia State Capitol

On March 14th, the Georgia State Capitol hosted the 4th Annual Type 1 Diabetes Day and invited children living with Type 1 Diabetes between the ages of 12 to 18 to apply to serve as Pages to the Georgia Senate or House for the day.

Marietta High School seniors, Breanne Barco and Aili Fisher, were two of only 20 students selected to participate in Georgia’s Senate Page Program and serve as a Page to several Georgia State Senators.

This day was sponsored by the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation, with the goal of raising awareness of issues facing diabetics in the state of Georgia to our legislators. These include step therapy, Kevin’s Law and insulin pricing awareness.

The Senate Page Program offers students a first-hand opportunity to visit the Capitol to observe and participate in the legislative process. Senate Pages serve the Senators by delivering important information and messages to them in the Senate Chamber during the legislative session day.

Aili and Breanne were chosen from a record number of applicants to page and both were honored to be part of a Senate Resolution recognizing March 14th as Type 1 Diabetes Awareness Day at the Capitol.


Burruss Elementary Students Win District Reading Bowl, Head to Regional Competition


Students from eight elementary schools competed in the annual Marietta City Schools Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl, January 18 at the Marietta Performing Arts Center.

The Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl is a rigorous reading competition in game format created by former Dekalb County media specialist Helen Ruffin as a way to use books from the Georgia Children’s Book Awards to encourage students to read.  Teams from different schools compete to quiz their knowledge on the selected books.

Today Bowl is open to students in grades four through twelve across the state of Georgia.

This year’s MCS Helen Ruffin Reading Bowl Winners include:

1st Place – AL Burruss Elementary

2nd Place – Marietta Center for Advanced Academics (MCAA)

3rd Place – West Side Elementary

The top two teams, A.L. Burruss and MCAA will compete in the regional competition on Saturday, February 9 at the University of West Georgia. The top two winners of the regional competition will advance to the divisional competition, and the winning teams from the divisional bowls will meet at the Annual Conference on Children’s Literature in March to compete in the state finals.

Marietta High School Theater Department Wins 2nd Place in Regional Competition

Anatomy of GrayThe Marietta High School Theatre Department can’t stop winning – bringing home multiple awards this weekend during the Regional One Act Competition and a cash prize for their recent award-winning jingle.

This weekend, the cast of “Anatomy of Gray” competed at the Georgia Regional One Act Competition, winning Best Ensemble, Best Costumes, Best Supporting Actress (Jessica Napier), 2 All-Star Cast members (Calvin Rausch and Katie Lloyd), and 2nd place OVERALL in the Region.

Thanks to an overwhelming amount of support from the community, the Marietta High School’s Theatre Department also recently won third place in the statewide Hope for Jingle Contest.  The department was awarded $1500 based on a combination of their creativity and number of votes cast by the community.
Anatomy of Gray2

Teachers of the Year Recognized by Cobb Chamber During Annual Pep Rally and Breakfast

The Cobb Chamber of Commerce recognized all Marietta Schools and Cobb County Schools educators selected as Teacher of the Year during their annual pep rally and breakfast at Roswell Street Baptist Church, October 23, 2018.

We think this video captures the energy in the room as our hard-working educators were celebrated by their students and peers.



Andrea Langston: MCS Employee of the Month

Andrea Langston is a Special Education teacher at Hickory Hills Elementary and has been with MCS since 2012. When leadership identified the need for a self-contained class for grades 3-5 at Hickory Hills, Andrea developed sensory exercises and activities during her summer break to ensure student success.


Andrea is described by her peers as a quiet, unsung hero who is committed to giving her all to her colleagues and students. She enjoys implementing various strategies and techniques to best assist her students. And while positive and upbeat, she prefers to stand in the background and remain humble about her accomplishments.
Andrea moved to Georgia from Virginia with her husband and children in 2012. Three of her children attend Marietta City Schools. She loves singing, dancing attending church and has a passion for working with the elderly and children.
Congratulations to Andrea Langston, the Marietta City Schools Employee of the Month!

TOTY Hand Prints – Marietta Teacher of the Year Continues Tradition in the Square

Marietta 2nd grade teacher, Kristin Lincoln, surrounded by her students, family, and fellow Sawyer Road Elementary School educators, ‘cemented’ her place in history this week when she added her handprints to the sidewalk on the Marietta Square.

Hosted by the Cobb County Chamber of Commerce at the Earl Strand Theatre, this event is one of three held annually to honor extraordinary teachers who make a difference in the lives of students. “My heart is happiest when I’m in the classroom with my students, collaborating with other educators, or standing in the hallways laughing with my colleagues,” said Lincoln.

A true believer in the importance of social-emotional learning in the classroom, Lincoln shared, “Students must know that they are loved, valued, and accepted. Taking the time to build their trust and respect is where the real value in education begins.” As a teacher, Ms. Lincoln let the audience know that she values her unique position to influence, guide, and encourage students to become lifelong learners.

Ms. Lincoln is in her 15th year of teaching and holds two degrees from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville; a Bachelor of Art in Psychology and a master’s degree in Urban and Multicultural Education. Kristin has been with Marietta City Schools since 2002 and at Sawyer Road Elementary since 2005. “When I entered college, I knew I wanted to follow the path to becoming an educator,” Kristin said. She has taught in Marietta City Schools for eleven years and proudly represents her fellow educators around the district.

As an active and supportive member of her community, she has served in various leadership capacities in her church, she loves to travel, and spend time with her daughters Caroline and Sarah Anne.


Brandi Smith, MHS College Coordinator Receives Prestigious Counseling Award

BrandiSmithMarietta City Schools’ College Advisor, Brandi Smith has been selected to receive the The National Association for College Admission Counseling (NACAC) 2018 Excellence in Education Award.
Smith, along with fellow counselors Steve Frappier, Director of College Counseling at Westminster Schools in Atlanta, and Marie Bingham, Director of College Counseling at Isidore Newman School in New Orleans, have been recognized for their social justice and equity work in founding the ACCEPT Facebook group. ACCEPT, stands for Admissions Community Cultivating Equity & Peace Today. The group consists of thousands of college admissions representatives dedicated to promoting social justice and equity.
The Excellence in Education Award is presented to individuals who have improved the field of education and the way students are served.
Previous award recipients include former First Lady Michelle Obama, Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, and Tom Joyner. Smith will be recognized at NACAC’s national conference in Salt Lake City later this month.