GHS Teacher arrested after alleged confession to student relationship

News
Break-In closings, rally

ELLIJAY, Ga. – In speaking with Superintendent Dr. Shanna Downs, FYN has confirmed that a teacher at Gilmer High School has been arrested after allegations came in regards to an “inappropriate relationship.”

Nathan Sutton

Nathan Sutton

A former student of Gilmer High School came forward to speak with Principal Carla Foley about the situation and to voice concerns about the possibility of it continuing with others now.

This female student, that will not be named, spoke with both Foley and the Sheriff’s Office about her time in the school and her relationship with the teacher. Downs confirmed the teacher to be Nathan Sutton, a Technology Teacher focused in audio/visual and the Film Program Instructor.

According to Downs, the student originally offered to come and speak with Principal Foley and share her story. However, upon arrival, she was asked if she would be willing to speak to officers as well. Downs said that the former student was willing to speak with officers at the same time as Foley.

Downs stated that, normally, the school system would investigate itself and share their information with the Sheriff’s Office, they asked deputies to be present from the start this time because the female is not currently a student in Gilmer. The school also declined to say when the student graduated.

According to Downs, the school system was informed of the situation yesterday and spoke with the student. After this, she immediately placed Sutton on administrative leave.

She said that deputies went to speak with Sutton last night, at which point he allegedly confessed to the relationship. Downs said that she went immediately to speak with Sutton today, at which point he resigned from teaching at Gilmer High School. Sutton’s resignation will be brought before the Board of Education tomorrow night at their regular meeting as is procedure with all resignations.

Dr. Downs said that she will be filing further with the Georgia Profession Standards Commission. While the Sheriff’s Office is taking the investigation, Downs said the school system will be filing an ethics complaint against Sutton.

According to the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Office website, Sutton is currently being held at the Gilmer County Detention Center having been arrested in less than twelve hours after allegations were brought against him. He is being held on a Felony Charge of “Sexual Assault by Persons with Supervisory or Disciplinary Authority.”

FYN has requested details about his arrest and the ongoing investigation.

Isabella Chastain tosses perfect game for Gilmer

GHS Softball, Sports, Team FYN Sports
gilmer

The Gilmer County Lady Cats (6-1, 4-0) faced off against the struggling West Hall Spartans (0-11 0-7) on Monday, August 31st in a region game in Oakwood Georgia.  Isabella Chastain was on the mound for the Gilmer Lady Cats and boy, was she perfect. Literally perfect.

Chastain posted a bunch of zeros in the score book, allowing zero runs on zero hits while walking zero batters through three innings, and also striking out five West Hall Spartans.

Macy Hamby tripled in the first inning, driving in Jasmine Staley and Maddie Rosas-Wright. This started the offensive onslaught for the Gilmer Lady Cats.

GilmerLater in the 1st, Hamby came back around in the lineup and beaned a line drive into left field that scored 3 more runs.

Later in the first, Taylor Elliot laid down a suicide squeeze bunt that scored Macy Hamby and gave the Lady Cats an 11-0 lead.

In the bottom of the first inning, West Hall was set down in order by Isabella Chastain.

In the Second inning Hamby, Vick and Sirmans drove in six more runs.

West Hall was set down in order again in the second by Chastain.

In the third, Macy Hamby came around again and drove in the final two runs of the game.

Hamby ended up three for three at the plate while driving in eight runs. Taylor Elliot also went three for three while driving in four runs. Staley, Vick, Taylor, Sirmans and Hughes also drove in runs for the Lady Cats.

The Lady Cats also did not commit and error in the field, with Maddie Rosas-Wright going six for six in the field.

Gilmers next game will be against region foe Dawson County tonight.

 

Gilmer Lady Cats shutout North Hall, move to 4-1

GHS Softball, Sports, Team FYN Sports
gilmer

The Gilmer Lady Cats (4-1, 2-0 region) headed into Monday nights game against the North Hall Trojans (1-4, 0-2 region) riding a 2 game winning streak and they were able to keep that alive, moving to 4-1 overall on the GHSseason.

Isabella Chastain was on the rubber for the Lady Cats, and she was really strutting her stuff as she tossed a complete game shutout and lead Gilmer to a 12-0 shutout over North Hall yesterday.

Jasmine Staley led the Gilmer offense by driving in four runs and going three for four at the plate. She was able to drive in runs in on a double in the fourth and a single in the sixth.

In the first inning, Taylor Elliot fired up the Lady Cats by laying down a sacrifice bunt that scored a run and put the Lady Cats on the board.

In the sixth inning the Lady Cats tallied five runs. Taylor Elliot, Jasmine Staley and Makenzie Taylor all drove in runs in the inning and gave the Lady Cats a nice and comfortable 12-0 lead heading into the final inning where Isabella Chastain was able to complete her shutout.

Macy Hamby was also a menace at the plate, going three for four with three Runs Batted In. Hamby also tallied a triple in Monday nights contest.

The Gilmer Lady Cats will continue their season tonight with another region game against the White County Trojans (2-3, 1-1 region) at six p.m. at home.

 

 

Gilmer names Jones as 2020 STAR Student

Bobcat's Corner, Community

ELLIJAY, Ga. – Gilmer High School has named Nathan Daniel Jones, 18, as the school’s 2020 PAGE STAR Student. Jones has subsequently selected Dr. Renee Hoard, a Mathematics teacher at GHS, as his STAR Teacher.

GHS 2020 PAGE STAR Student Nathan Jones

Nathan Daniel Jones, 18, has been named as Gilmer High School’s 2020 PAGE STAR Student.

Sponsored in Gilmer by the Ellijay Lions Club, the Professional Association of Georgia Educators’ (PAGE) program for Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) honors seniors in schools. To be nominated, a senior must have “the highest score on a single test date on the SAT and be in the top 10 percent or top 10 students of their class based on grade point average.”

“We are very proud of Mr. Jones and Dr. Hoard and the academic excellence they exemplify at Gilmer High,” said GHS Principal Carla Foley.

Nathan is the son of Charlie and Starla Jones of Ellijay. He had Dr. Hoard as his teacher for Algebra II Honors, AP Statistics, and SAT/ACT Test Prep. Jones added that Dr. Hoard also helped him as he began sending off applications and preparing for college. Jones confirmed that he will be attending Georgia Tech (Georgia Institute of Technology) this fall.

While he has not decided on a major yet, Jones says he wants to pursue Math in some way in his degree. He said he finds a special satisfaction with math and he “just feels it.” His notion was echoed by Dr. Hoard who said she has seen him figuring out some math that even some professionals have had trouble with.

GHS 2020 PAGE STAR Teacher Dr. Renee Hoard

Dr. Renee Hoard has been named STAR Teacher for three of the last four years at GHS.

Dr. Hoard further commented on Jones’ award saying, “The best thing is he is just an all-around academic. You say he is a math person but he is excellent in all of his subjects.”

This is Dr. Hoard’s third nomination as STAR Teacher over the last four years, meaning that, including Jones, three of the last four STAR students picked her as their most influential teacher. She has been awarded in 2017, 2019, and 2020. She began teaching in 1989 and has taught for a total of 27 years since then.

Both the STAR Student Jones and his STAR Teacher Hoard will move on together throughout the remainder of the program. In the STAR Program, each high school’s STAR Student will compete for school system titles, and those winners compete for region honors. Region winners compete for the honor of being named State PAGE STAR Student.

 

Lady Bobcats place second, open region play Tuesday

GHS Basketball, Team FYN Sports
Lady Bobcats

The third season of the Susan Nunn era at Gilmer High is off to a strong start after the Lady Bobcats placed second in the annual north Georgia Thanksgiving Tournament in Blue Ridge.

Gilmer (3-1) came one-point away from matching last year’s 4-0 start with a one-point, 40-39, loss to Fannin Co. (4-4) in the tournament championship game Nov. 26.

Sophomore forward Elly Callihan scored a team-high 15 points, but she was the only Gilmer player in double figures in the low-scoring affair.

Senior point guard Bailey Teague scored eight, while senior center Jalynn Ledford and junior guard Hope Colwell each put in six. Junior wing Emma Callihan rounded out the Gilmer scoring with four points.

Lady Bobcats

From left, sophomore Elly Callihan, senior Bailey Teague, and junior Emma Callihan were named to the all-tournament team for the Lady Bobcats.

Despite that loss, the Lady Bobcats have much to be excited about. The team’s three all-tournament team members come from three different classes. Teague, Emma Callihan, and Elly Callihan were the three players named from Gilmer.

On the opening day of the tournament, Saturday, Nov. 23, Gilmer ran away from area-rival Pickens (2-2) in a 71-53 victory. While Gilmer and Pickens are both in Region 6-4A, the game did not count toward either team’s region record.

Elly Callihan scored a game-high 24 points for Gilmer, while Colwell put up 17 and Teague scored 15 in the dominant victory against the Dragonettes.

While the Lady Bobcats led by just one point, 32-31, at halftime, the team exploded to take a 20-point lead at the end of the third, 56-36.

Elly Callihan scored nine in that third period, while Colwell scored five to propel the Lady Bobcats into the big lead.

Emma Callihan (5), Ledford (4), Beth Burnette (3), Reagan Boling (2), and Anne Elise Williams (2) rounded out the points for Gilmer.

The win will undoubtedly give the Lady Bobcats confidence when the two teams meet again on Dec. 17 in Ellijay for a region game.

In between the win against Pickens and the loss to Fannin Co., Gilmer defeated Hiwassee Dam (N.C.) 41-35 in a surprisingly hard-fought game Monday, Nov. 25.

Junior guard Emma Callihan led the team with 12 points in the game, including eight points in the fourth quarter when her team needed her the most.

The Lady Bobcats led 30-25 to start the period, but the Lady Eagles closed the gap several times during the final frame before finally being put away late.

Elly Callihan had 11 points, all in the first half, while Ledford scored eight.

Colwell (3), Teague (3), Jasmin Staley (2), Williams (1) and Burnette (1) rounded out the scorers for the Lady Bobcats.

Up next for Gilmer is the opening game in the Region 6-4A schedule against Southeast Whitfield Co. That game is scheduled to tip-off at 6 p.m., Tuesday, Dec. 3, in Ellijay.

Gilmer defeated Southeast Whitfield soundly in all three meetings last season, including a 60-36 victory in the region tournament.

To read about this week’s TeamFYNSports Writer’s Player of the Week, click here.

 

 

GHS mentors students in adult life with “Adulting Day”

Bobcat's Corner, Community

ELLIJAY, Ga. – Students all across Gilmer High School were introduced to life after Senior Year through a new event, Adulting Day.

Including students from all grades, the day showcased different experts in areas of the future from college and careers to everyday tasks like tax forms and budgets throughout the day. Students were also invited to speak with representatives from Military branches and colleges during the day.

Steak Parade at Adulting Day in Gilmer High SchoolWith more available, a few of the classes we visited included culinary skills at the Steak Parade, speaking with law enforcement about career options and opportunities, learning about traveling with a Travel Agency, local economy with JDA Executive Director Kent Sanford, dangers of Social Media, how to fill out Tax Returns, Budgeting, Healthcare careers, and trade careers. Some classes even dealt with current choices about high school life that will directly affect college or post-graduation life including SAT Prep and Personal Health and Wellness.

The day also included an outdoor experience as students attempted to “drive under the influence” through the use of special goggles and a guided course while driving a golf cart.

Drunk Driving Course during Adulting Day at Gilmer High SchoolThe experience used several different goggles that varied through vision and equilibrium impairment based on different BAC (Blood-Alcohol Content) levels. While not overly challenging the course showcased how difficult even simple obstructions become through the different levels of intoxication.

Students attended the classes and college fair throughout the day up to 2:15 p.m. sharing in information from teachers and experts alike. Different from normal college fairs, these classes added the extra step to prepare some who may not choose college or may take alternate paths in life. Additionally, granting these first experiences through necessary events like taxes allowed for questions and advice to be exchanged through the school environment.

The event was hosted by Gilmer High School Administration and Counselors involving the teachers and an additional 30 volunteers.

The Adulting Day event has been confirmed to continue annually as Gilmer High School Principal Carla Foley stated, “We will definitely make this a yearly event.”

 

See more photos of the event at FYN’s Facebook Page.

Schools lock down during investigation

News

ELLIJAY, Ga. – Confirmed by a representative inside the Gilmer County Charter School System, the campuses of Gilmer High School, Mountain View Elementary, and the Larry Walker Education Center, as well as the campus of North Georgia Christian Academy went into a soft lock down today, October 21, 2019.

FYN learned that the lock down was caused by an investigation in the area. Schools were advised to go on lock down for protection as it was said it was not directly involving the schools. This was later confirmed by the Gilmer County Sheriff’s Office who stated in a public release, “The investigation that caused schools to be put on “lock out” has been completed by Ellijay Police Department. The investigation was unfounded and everything is to go back to normal operations soon.”

Schools are currently returning to normal operation as the Police Department is wrapping up its operations. There is no available information about the investigation itself at this time, but authorities are contacting schools to resolve the issue. North Georgia Christian Academy said it had contacted parents about the incident but declined to comment publicly about the lock down.

BOE presents 2019 Milestones results

News
GMP, Coronavirus

ELLIJAY, Ga. – Georgia Milestones Assesment System (GMAS) scores were released this month after the state embargo was lifted at the end of July.

Presented to the board, these scores show results from the 2018-19 school year as well as recent years for comparisons. While grades 3-8 separate scores into Math, ELA, Reading, Science, and Social Studies, High School scores are presented as End Of Course test results.

Chief Academic Officer Lottie Mitchell presented these results to the board in August noting the trends the county has seen in the last five years in levels 2-4, whereas Milestones scores are ranked by levels (level 1 – Beginner / Level 2 – Developing / Level 3 – Proficient / Level 4 – Distinguished). Mitchell also told the board that while the schools did retest this year, they are going to participate in retesting in the 2019-20 school year. In 3rd Grade, they can retest in Language Arts. In 5th Grade and 8th Grade, they can retest in Reading and Math.

In Math, Grades 3-8, Mitchell highlighted the 2019 scores which saw seven of the eight groups scoring above the State’s average. While Mountain View’s 4th Grade did decrease, they are still above the average as well. Only Clear Creek Middle School’s 7th Grade group was below average in Math, but they only missed the average by one percent.

“We are very pleased in Math,” said Mitchell as she pointed out the county’s relation to the state.

In ELA (English Language Arts), Mitchell noted that while the county did generally perform close to the state’s average in most of the groups when comparing levels 2-4, the chart on the right shows four groups above average when looking only at the percentage of those who score at Level 3 – Proficient and Level 4 – Distinguished.

Mitchell addressed the charts differences saying, “We are moving more of our developing up to our proficient.”

In Reading and Vocabulary, Mitchell said, “For the past few years, we have not had anyone. When we first applied for the L4GA Grant, we didn’t have anyone who was above the state average… This year Clear Creek 7th Grade was above the average. We are showing improvement. Sometimes we have a little dip, but we are overall showing improvement.”

With six of the eight groups showing high scores than five years ago, Mitchell said they are happy for the improvements. While administration is excited for the math scores, much of their concern and focus have been on improving these scores. She noted several initiatives to achieve that goal such as a new phonics program, increasing student time in tech and balanced literacy, increases in training and guided reading, and reading rewards programs that have already shown success in GMS and CCMS among other initiatives.

Additionally, she credited the success that CCMS has seen to a new program, WIN, that alligns students in groups according to their MAP scores to allow those of similar skill levels to improve together.

In Science and Social Studies, Mitchell noted that in recent years, only 5th and 8th Grades take these tests. Both grades beat the state average in Science and 8th Grade beat it in Social Studies. While 5th Grade did not score above average in Social Studies, they did scores just below, by one percent, similar to Clear Creek’s 7th Math group. This did, however, show a dip in scores compared to last year.

 

In High School End of Course Tests, only two groups beat the state average. However, Mitchell instead pointed to the growth the county has seen in the last five years. From 2015 to 2019, 9th Grade Lit percentages have gone up 33.1 percent, from 52.99 to 85.88 percent.  U.S. History percentages have gone up 36.58 percent, from 36.96 to 73.54percent. Economics percentages have gone up 35.49 percent, from 48.99 to 84.48 percent. In the past year alone, Physical Science scores went up 13.97 percent, from 70.72 to 84.69 percent.

Addressing the dip in Math scores, Mitchell pointed back to the higher math scores in lower grades saying, “We are sending students up to the high school with a stronger foundation and proficiency to do the rigorous math such as Algebra I and Geometry.”

Additonally, Principal Carla Foley is also arranging schedules to provide additional support in the fall for 9th grade lit and Algebra I to give the a year to master the content rather than one semester.

Mitchell said the Milestones scores not only showcase the successes of Gilmer County, but they are allowing answers and responses like these to address the issue areas in order to spread the success to all areas of the schools.

Gilmer Schools start THIS WEEK!

Bobcat's Corner, Community, News

GILMER COUNTY, Ga. – While parents and students have been shopping back to school for a while in preparation of this week, this is the week that kids will return to classes on Wednesday, August 7, 2019, in Gilmer County across all six schools.

Today is the kickoff with open houses going all day starting with Pre-K through 5th Grade meeting from 3:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., 6th Grade through 8th Grade meeting from 4:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., and 9th Grade through 12th Grade meeting from 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m.

Additionally, each school will adhere to these school day times according to the Gilmer County Charter School Systems website:

Clear Creek Elementary School
Start Time: 7:50 am
Dismissal Time: 2:50 pm

Ellijay Elementary School
Start Time: 8:05 am
Dismissal Time: 3:05 pm

Mountain View Elementary School
Start Time: 8:10 am
Dismissal Time: 3:10 pm

Clear Creek Middle School
Start Time: 7:45 am
Dismissal Time: 2:45 pm

Gilmer High School
Start Time: 7:45 am
Dismissal Time: 2:45 pm

 

Gilmer alumus joins Reinhardt program

Bobcat's Corner, Gilmer High School

An alumnus of both Gilmer High School and its football program, Tyler Bertolini has been hired on to Reinhardt’s Strength and Conditioning program.

According to Cherokee County news sources, Bertolini will take the Coordinator position replacing Ellis Spratlin, the two-year veteran coordinator.

Many of Gilmer’s citizens will recall Bertolini running up numbers in September of 2012 when he won FYN’s Player of the Week award for 132 yards rushing with an average of 7.8 yards per carry and scoring a touchdown.

That award came almost one year after being injured during an October game in 2011.

Bertolini has also previously worked in strength and conditioning for Kennesaw State and LSU, but returns to the North Georgia area to continue his career with Reinhardt University.

Gilmer High School hosts its annual basketball end-season banquet

GHS Basketball, Team FYN Sports

ELLIJAY, Ga.- Gilmer High School hosted its annual basketball end-season banquet on Sunday, March 24, 2019, at the Gilmer Agriculture Center & Cannery next to Clear Creek Middle School.

(Left to Right): Coach Hice, Coach Nunn of Gilmer High School.

Coach Nunn presented the girls awards, while coach Hice presented the boys awards.

The JV Girls were as follows:

Reagan Boling
Elly Callihan
Haley Wilson
Lark Reece
Kadie Weaver
Jalynn Ledford
Jasmine Staley
Anne Elise Williams

JV Girls

The Varsity Girls were as follows:

Elly Callihan
Anne Elise Williams
Hope Colwell
Mary Lee Callihan
Beth Burnette
Emma Deyton
Emma Callihan
Mallory Kiser
Bailey Teague
Jasmine Staley
Jalynn Ledford

 
The JV Boys were as follows:

Varsity Girls

Kell Weaver
Tripp Pierce
Carter Hice
David Smith
Coady Cobb
Bennett Ray
Luke Wimpy
Braden Jenkins
Carson Pierce
Isaiah Hopper
Brady Sanford
Kyle Allison
Gavin Berger
Bryson Sisson
Dylan Abercrombie
Cade Carter
Ethan Banks
Lewis Mulkey
Britt Taylor
Rowan Gobble
Mark Tyson
Garret Wiseman
Darrill Carpenter
Ethan Jones

JV Boys

Congratulations from Fetch Your News to all who received recognition during this end-season banquet!

 

 

 

 

 

 

A video of the entire banquet may be viewed below. Timings for each event are as follows:

0:00: Introduction
1:19: Thanks
6:31: JV Girls Awards (All)
8:01: Awards for JV Girls
11:16: JV Boys Awards (All)
15:20: Awards for JV Boys
20:32: Varsity Girls Awards (All), Managers Awards, Girls Christmas Tournament Awards, Misc. Girls Awards
29:41: Awards for JV Boys
47:39: Girls Stats-Based Awards
1:10:00: Awards for Senior Boys
1:16:47: Coach awards from girls, coach awards from boys.
1:23:07: Coach awards, thanks, and closing.

[embedyt] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7CD7rWNjXOg[/embedyt]

Gilmer Schools earn 100 on Health Scores

Bobcat's Corner, News
instructions, budget

ELLIJAY, Ga. – Walk into a restaurant and check the health scores, chances are, you won’t see a lot of 100’s. Sure, you will, hopefully, see a lot of high 90’s scores, but not that elusive 100.

This week, however, the Gilmer County School’s Nutrition Services not only managed to score a 100 in the latest health inspection, but they found that score in every school within the system.

Each of these inspections came within the last two-and-a-half months for Gilmer Schools as Ellijay Primary was inspected on January 11, Ellijay Elementary was inspected on January 17, Mountain View Elementary on February 11, Clear Creek Middle on February 18, Gilmer Middle on February 28, and, finally, Gilmer High inspected on March 8.
While this is not the first time the Gilmer Schools have ever made this accomplishment, it is no less a feat according to Gilmer County Schools Nutrition Director Linda Waters, who said, “I am extremely proud of all of our school nutrition staff for achieving perfect health inspection scores.  It is a difficult challenge, but they work hard daily to maintain the highest food safety standards.”
The staff she praised for their dedication includes 37 employees spread over all six schools. The school systems employ nutrition managers who determine cleaning schedules, ensure proper food and storage temperatures are recorded, and that employees follow all HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) standards. Waters notes that these managers are all ServSafe certified.
ServSafe is a program run by the National Restaurant Association. According to their website:
As the premier provider of educational resources, materials, and programs to help attract and develop a strong industry workforce, ServSafe has been the restaurant industry’s leading association since 1919 and, together with the National Restaurant Association Education Foundation, our goal is to lead America’s restaurant industry into a new era of prosperity, prominence, & participation, enhancing the quality of life for all we serve.
Gilmer County Schools Superintendent Dr. Shanna Downs also praised the efforts of Waters and the nutrition staff saying, “We are so proud of the cleanliness and food quality of our schools cafeterias.”
It’s not all focused on the scores, however, as Waters has been reporting increases to student participation in breakfasts in the schools as well as a more positive response to the menu from students since the start of the 2018-19 school year.

Gilmer CLC dedicates new building

Uncategorized
Gilmer CLC CCMS Campus Clear Creek

East Ellijay, Ga. – The Gilmer Christian Learning Center (CLC) opened the doors of its new addition at the Clear Creek Campus this week to dedicate the building and allow the public to see where students will be learning and growing in the coming years.

The new campus adds on to the already well-established work being done at the High School campus located on Bobcat Trail between Gilmer High School and Gilmer Middle School.

Executive Board Member, Loy Jarret spoke at Sunday's Open House and Dedication of the Gilmer CLC's new Clear Creek Campus.

Executive Board Member, Loy Jarret spoke at Sunday’s Open House and Dedication of the Gilmer CLC’s new Clear Creek Campus.

As stated in Executive Board Member Loy Jarrett’s opening remarks of the Dedication Ceremony, the CLC began as a dream from Joel Stembridge. With the dream accomplished in 1985, Jarret went on to say that this building represents “Joel’s second wish.”

Jarret said the CLC exists to, among other things, teach kids about self-image, individual achievements, people skills, and spiritual foundation. As the mind, body, and soul make up a person, the soul stands most important.

“Life is a marathon,” said Jarret, “It’s not just a sprint… The more that we can expose these kids to this marathon, the more that they will improve our next generation.”

Accomplishing the 20-month long process, the building stands completed. With only interior items like landscaping, shelving, and supplies left to put the finishing touches in, CLC Director Jennifer Colson said the Gilmer CLC Clear Creek Campus will achieve its deadline to be ready for classes this fall. With students already lined up from last years class registrations, the building will begin seeing use in just a few weeks.

Jennifer Colson, Director of Gilmer's Christian Learning Center, is set to split time at the two locations as she manages the program and its continued growth.

Jennifer Colson, Director of Gilmer’s Christian Learning Center, is set to split time at the two locations as she manages the program and its continued growth.

With one 7th grade class and one 8th grade class, the cycle changes every 9 weeks to help reach as many students as possible. More than that, Colson says they are excited to have the new building in the Clear Creek campus and will be looking to host 6th, 7th, and 8th grades in the building as the system goes through changes to its schools’ restructuring in the coming years.

 

s Director, Colson says she will be splitting her time between the two buildings in order to support the staff of the CLC’s two locations.

Colson spoke at the Dedication Ceremony to offer thanks for those who donated, volunteered, and provided in every way for the new building. She also noted that the CLC program will be moving into the new building debt-free, an amazing feat as the CLC is a completely non-profit organization.

Thanking God for provisions and guidance, Colson said it has been astonishing as people have continuously volunteered and donated time and time again for the expansion. Whether it was volunteers working, others financially supporting, and professionals donating services, the progress has marched on to prepare the new facility as Colson states, “It’s just been amazing to see how the community has come together and said ‘We believe in CLC. We believe in the mission of this ministry. We believe our seventh and eighth graders need to hear about Jesus daily.'”

 

 

Check out these photos and more from the ceremony and open house at FetchYourNews’ Facebook Page.

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GHS renovations near completion

Bobcat's Corner, News

ELLIJAY, Ga. – With the majority of the renovations complete and everything ready for the students, it is confirmed that the project will not reach 100% before Tuesday’s start of term.

However, the project has not moved construction into classrooms and only minor details remain in student areas. During a special called meeting of the Board of Education, Gilmer County Charter Schools Superintendent Dr. Shanna Downs told the board that the biggest remaining item is that the staff furniture will not arrive before the start of school.

With that said, Downs informed the board that critical staff will be in the front office utilizing a built-in desk in the front office and utilizing what they have available as opposed to moving in older furniture just to moved out again.

With rising concern over the project’s student readiness, Downs assured the board that the student areas, as well as the secured, single-point entry, would be ready before Tuesday.

This means some administrative faculty will utilize the school’s media center while they await the new desks and furniture.

One minor setback saw relief at the meeting as well for the media center as the project survived a surprise rain during roof work. Insurance replaced the carpet after the area flooded. With the new carpet installed, the media center is already repaired and ready for use.

Walking through the building certainly shows the area with a feeling of an upgrade. The cafeteria and commons area have combined for an open space. The commons murals are gone, but as of this point, it is not certain if the school will repaint the murals or seek a different decoration for the area.

The commons area now caps with a centralized trophy case that will soon showcase all the trophies the school has acquired and those yet to come.

The new flooring and roofing reach throughout the administrative offices. A new administrative conference room and renovations to the nurse’s station are just two of the expansions allowed by pushing the offices forward against what used to be the glass of the entrance area.

With the new single-point, secured entrance, those taking the front entrance to the school will walk right past the Linda Miller Memorial Theater into the commons area. The other hallway students and visitors are used to traveling down now reaches a dead-end just past the back edge of the media center allowing an emergency exit onto the grass.

While talks continue about the next phase of renovations to come, exact plans have not been drawn, but discussion indicated a possibility to angle the corner of the media center and adding glass along the hallway, giving the media center more of an internet cafe styling.

As for this year, the construction is wrapping up in the hallways of the offices and awaits the last details and finishing touches to prepare for the students’ arrival in four days.

 

 

Enjoy the full album of photos on FYN’s Facebook Page.

Future Farmer of America honors members at year-end banquet

Bobcat's Corner

ELLIJAY, Ga. – The Gilmer County Charter School System’s chapter of the National FFA Organization (formerly known as the Georgia Future Farmer’s Association) held their banquet honoring those award winners for the year’s work.

The banquet was also visited by Georgia Speaker of the House David Ralston who stopped by offering his congratulations to those being honored. Ralston commented on the banquet saying, “When I go to FFA groups, I know among some of the finest of our young people. Young people that are learning great work ethic, learning to prepare for leadership roles in the world, and will assume leadership roles in the world. I want to commend you for all your hard work and for the great job you do. Agriculture, not only here in Gilmer county but in the state, has a great future.”

Ralston went on to note the efforts the state has put into getting the second headquarters of Amazon. He told those present that even with Amazon, agriculture would maintain its position as the number one part of our economy in Georgia.

Continuing the banquet, attendees were treated to a dinner served by FFA members before the honorees were brought on stage. The winners noted in the banquet received their awards in the Career Development Events area and are listed below the slideshow.

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Agricultural Communications
Gilmer High FFA (Eighth in Area) Kaytlin Beavers, Abigail Blackwell, Hunter Bowyer, Sam Dillard.

Agricultural Electrification
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area; 10th in State) Thomas Chastain.
Thomas received a $500 scholarship from the Georgia EMC for placing first in the Area I competition.

Agricultural Mechanics
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area; Eighth in State) Thomas Chastain, Eli Cochran, Bryson Mulkey (high individual), Dylan Parker.

Agricultural Technology and Equipment ID
Gilmer High FFA JR (Sixth in Area) Ari Price, Avery Marshall, William McVey, Dilian Ojala.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fifth in Area) Jacob Bertolini, Abby Bauer, Cole Parks, Sawyer Wishon.

Agricultural Sales
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area) Mary Lee Callihan, Mallory Kiser, Carter Hice, Nathan Cain (high individual).

Conduct of Chapter Meeting
Gilmer High FFA JR (Third in Area) Alyssa Ashurst, Gavin Berger, Rose Chadwick, Ally Elrod, Sarah Ingle, Lauren Smith, Emma Thurman.

Clear Creek FFA (Second in Area) Octavia Bushey, Macie Wilkes, Tori Reed, Abby Baurer, Natalie Johnson, Morgan Griggs, Mallory Lane.

Creed Speaking
Gilmer High FFA (First in Sub-Area; Third in Area) Sara Ingle.

Dairy Evaluation
Gilmer High FFA JR: (First in Area; Second in State) Rose Chadwick, Coleman James, Arianna Price, Lauren Smith.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Third in Area; 10th in State) Annalysa Brown, Morgan Griggs, Torri Reed, Octavia Bushey.
Gilmer High FFA SR: (First in Area; Sixth in State) Mary Keener, Joe Leonnig, Shelby Nealey, Elizabeth Stillwell.

Environmental Natural Resources
Gilmer High FFA JR (Second in Area, Eighth in State) Alyssa Ashurst, Issac Bradshaw, Ally Elrod, Heath Stover.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Fourth in Area) Hunter Bowyer, Mary Keener, Blake Ledford, Joseph Leonning.

Extemporaneous Public Speaking
Gilmer High FFA (Fourth in Sub-Area) Stephanie Bailey.

Farm Business Management
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area; Third in state) Bryce Bowen, Grace Henderson, Matt Long, Katie Marick.

Floriculture
Gilmer High FFA JR (Fifth in Area) Andrea Byers, Olivia Lykins, Griselda Perez, Emma Thurman.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Third in Area) Abby Bauer, Andrew Mooney, Emma Reece, Joshua Taffin.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Fifth in Area) Jalynn Ledford, Abriana Mccollum, Allison Ross, Claire Stanley.

Forestry
Gilmer High FFA JR (Third in Area) Colby Barnes, Rose Chadwick, Chandler Clayton, Ally Elrod, Isaiah Hopper, Sara Ingle, Clayton Ott, Heath Stover, Emma Thurman.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fifth in Area) Samuel Mclaughin, Logan Chadwick, Jacob Jenkins, Hanna Rutledge, Kingston Collier, Sawyer Wishon, Andrew Mooney, Trace Duncan.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Sixth in Area) Brentney Clemmons, Alex Edens, Blake Ledford, Grant Ledford, Joe Leonnig, Nate Mooney, Mason Penland, Elizabeth Stillwell, Caleb Waddell.

Land Judging
Gilmer High FFA JR(First in Area; Fifth in State) Rose Chadwick, Ally Elrod, Alyssa Ashurst, Sara Ingle.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fifth in Area) Abby Bauer, Jacob Bertolini, Sawyer Wishon, Imogen Reeves.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Fourth in Area ) Sadie Bryan, Carter Ott, Bryson Smith, Caleb Waddell.

Lawnmower Operations
Clear Creek Middle FFA (11th in Area) Jacob Bertolini.

Livestock Evaluation
Gilmer High FFA JR (11th in Area) Rose Chadwick, Clayton Chandler, Sean Lewis, Lauren Smith.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fourth in Area) Sarrah Mclemore, Jacob Jenkins, Jacob Bertolini, Dacey Motes.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Fifth in Area) Eli Cochran, Colin Reece, Taylor Sellers, Bryson Smith.

Marketing Plan
Gilmer High FFA (Second in Area; Fifth in State) Samantha Dillard, Mary Keener, Jaylynn Ledford.

Meats Evaluation
Gilmer High FFA JR (Fifth in Area) Isaiah Hopper, Coleman James, Clay Ott.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Second in Area; Sixth in State) Madison Jenkins, Jacob Jones, Billie Marie Sullens.

Nursery Landscaping
Gilmer High FFA SR (First in Area; Fourth in State) Stephanie Bailey, Brentney Clemmons, Summer Davis, Stephen Madalo.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Fourth in Area) Andrew Mooney, Daniela Montes, Jasmine Rafael, Hannah Rutledge.

Parliamentary Procedure
Gilmer High FFA (First in Area and STATE WINNER) Bryce Bowen, Grace Henderson, Madison Jenkins, Matt Long, Katie Marick, Bryson Smith.
They will represent the state of Georgia at the National FFA Convention this October in Indianapolis, Indiana.

Poultry Evaluation
Gilmer High FFA JR (14th in Area) Colby Barnes, Clayton Chandler, Isiah Hopper, Jacob Nelson.
Clear Creek Middle FFA JR(Fifth in Area) Laney Hensley, Emma Reece, Cole Parks, Samuel Mclaughin.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Third in Area) Alex Edens, Jacob Jones, Samuel Parks, Billiemarie Sullens.

Prepared Public Speaking
Gilmer High FFA JR (Fourth in Sub-Area) Ari Price.
Gilmer High FFA SR (Third in Sub-Area) Elizabeth Chesser.

Wildlife Management
Gilmer High FFA JR (Second in Area; Eighth in State) Issac Bradshaw, Clay Ott, Heath Stover.
Clear Creek Middle FFA (Seventh in Area) Sawyer Wishon, Lilly Penland, Larz Fowler, Jacob Jenkins.
Gilmer High FFA SR(Third in Area) Grant Ledford, Nathan Mooney, Mason Penland.

 

Also honored at the banquet were this year’s senior class students who were invited to say a few words and what stood as their final meeting of the Gilmer FFA this year. Individually noted, each senior’s plans for post high school follows:

Tyler Cantrell will be attending Nashville Auto Diesel College after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He will be studying to become a diesel mechanic;

Shelby Nealey will be attending the University of North Georgia after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be studying to become a registered nurse;

Sara May will be attending the University of North Georgia after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in business administration.

Brentney Clemmons will be attending Young Harris College after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in environmental science.

Grant Ledford will be attending Truett McConnell University after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He is undecided at this time.

Stephanie Bailey will be attending Kennesaw State University after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in international business.

Samuel Parks will be attending the University of North Georgia after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He will be majoring in avian science.

Alex Edens will be attending the University of North Georgia after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in agribusiness.

Joe Leonning will be going to the Naval Academy after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He will be studying to become an aircraft mechanic.

Megan Bird will be attending Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in agricultural education.

Elizabeth Stillwell will be attending Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in agricultural education.

Rachel Waddell will be attending Young Harris College after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in early childhood education.

Bryce Bowen will be attending the University of Georgia after he graduates from Gilmer High School. He will be majoring in pre-med.

Katie Marick will be attending Reinhardt University after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in math education.

Grace Henderson will be attending Oglethorpe University after she graduates from Gilmer High School. She will be majoring in biology/pre-med.

Gilmer High Band looks for new uniforms

Community

ELLIJAY, Ga. – The Gilmer High School (GHS) Marching Band is looking to replace their uniforms after 13 years of use.

The legacy of the current uniforms stretches across over a decade of champion level performances, nation-spanning shows like Hollywood for the Christmas Parade, and growth into new avenues, such as this year’s inaugural Winter Guard Competitive Season.

After all the events these uniforms have been showcased at, the time has come to hang up the old and ring in the new. Director of Bands Joe Pflueger has worked since November on finding the new look and gauging interest of both band members and Band Boosters members. Originally engaging three companies for design bids and ideas, Pflueger has finally come to a definitive design.

Noting the resemblance of the front design to that of our iconic mountains, he said he has decided on the final design from Fruhauf Uniforms, Inc. The competition line uniform will bear the school’s emblematic G as seen in the photo.

Achieving this goal, however, is something the band team is still working towards. Pflueger took time to speak with FetchYourNews (FYN) saying he felt the new uniforms, along with the board’s August approval for replacing percussion instruments, bear a rewarding feeling for the students after the constant work and successes in recent years.

The uniforms are more than just a new design for some though. Band mom Bobbi Leigh Mullins said it represented the chance to have her son “sparkle and shine” as he marched for the band.

Consisting of 130 musicians, the GHS Band has always grown from support from its band boosters, support from the school and school board, and support from the community to further its efforts. Pflueger spoke with FYN confirming that the band has already raised half of the funds necessary to purchase the uniforms. However, if they are to meet their hopes of fielding these uniforms at the opening show next season, this fall, they need to garner another $30,000 to finish the project.

Attempting to raise the necessary funds, the band has turned to its community for help. An official release from the organization has offered game-time announcements and program recognition for sponsorship at different “star levels.” Each level represents a part of a uniform up to “5 Star” level at $395 for a full uniform.

Pflueger said the process has included over 20 designs and numerous minor changes to designs before ending on this arrangement. Though the current band stands at 130 students, Pflueger admitted the band could see growth toward 140 in the coming years, making it the largest band Gilmer has fielded to date. Pflueger told FYN, “With all the organizations, it’s just getting the kid involved. It makes for a better, well-rounded kid. And it provides those kids with memories they can keep the rest of their lives … That’s the satisfying part of it.”

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