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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
With 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.
The 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.
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.
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 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
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.
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.
Coach Nunn presented the girls awards, while coach Hice presented the boys awards.
The JV Girls were as follows:
Anne Elise Williams
The Varsity Girls were as follows:
Anne Elise Williams
Mary Lee Callihan
The JV Boys were as follows:
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:
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.