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Cherokee schools eliminate 'critical overcrowding'

Cherokee schools eliminate 'critical overcrowding'

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. -- For the first time in 15 years, none of Cherokee County's public schools are "critically overcrowded."

The school district announced this milestone in a memo released Tuesday afternoon.

"This achievement is a reflection of the school district's long-standing successful policies governing student enrollment growth forecasts and planning school construction projects to accommodate growth and is a tribute to the leadership and foresight of the school board," superintendent Dr. Frank Petruzielo said in the memo.

A critically overcrowded school is one that exceeds 140 percent of its enrollment capacity. Such schools also use portable classrooms and meet other, similar criteria.

Cherokee County began battling critical overcrowding with SPLOST dollars in 2001. It continues to use the money for much-needed construction projects throughout the district, according to the memo.

3 Sequoyah HS students attend Federal Service Language Academy

3 Sequoyah HS students attend Federal Service Language Academy

CANTON, Ga. -- Three cadets in Sequoyah High School's Air Force Junior ROTC spent part of their summer at the Federal Service Language Academy at the University of North Georgia in Dahlonega.

RELATED | Cherokee students attend Ft. Stewart camp

While at the academy, the students -- Michael Chamness, Yusemi Mondragon and Christopher Thomas -- studied foreign languages and learned all about different cultures. Chamness and Mondragon studied Chinese, while Thomas chose to study Russian.

Each cadet received one academic credit for successfully completing first- or second-year proficiency levels in one of the academy's languages, such as Arabic, Korean, German, Portuguese or French.

2012 Ga. Schools of Excellence named

2012 Ga. Schools of Excellence named

ATLANTA -- The Georgia Department of Education has identified the state's 2012 Schools of Excellence.

The annual honor is presented in two categories: Highest Performance and Highest Progress. Fourteen schools made the cut in each area.

"These schools are the epitome of excellence," Georgia School Superintendent Dr. John Barge said in a statement. "I offer my congratulations to our 2012 Georgia Schools of Excellence."

Barge added that he plans to visit all 28 schools at some point during the school year.

Metro Atlanta's Schools of Excellence include:

Atlanta Public Schools
* KIPP STRIVE Academy, Southwest Atlanta (Progress)

Bremen City
*Jones ES (Performance)

Clayton County
* Elite Scholars Academy, Morrow (Performance)

Cobb County
* Garrison Mill ES, Marietta (Progress)
* Kennesaw Charter Science and Math Academy (Progress)

Welcome back to school!

Welcome back to school!

(WXIA) -- Monday, Aug. 5 is the first day of school in four metro Atlanta counties: Cherokee, Floyd, Henry and Rockdale.

Send your first day of school pictures to photos@11Alive.com or submit them to 11Alive's first day of school photo gallery.

Path2College sweepstakes end Aug. 15

Path2College sweepstakes end Aug. 15

ATLANTA -- Georgia's Path2College 529 Plan is making it easier for families to pay for college by holding two scholarship giveaways.

The deadline to enter both contests is Thursday, Aug. 15.

Mitch Seabaugh, director of the Path2College 529 Plan, said the two sweepstakes are designed to encourage families to start saving for college while their children are still very young.

"If 10,000 more Georgia families start saving for college, that's 10,000 more children who will have a head start toward achieving their dream when they graduate from high school," he said in a statement.

Seabaugh added that the sweepstakes also benefit young students because they provide money for schools and libraries.

The first contest -- the 10,000 Reasons to Save Sweepstakes -- will gives $10,529 to two lucky winners: a current Path2College account holder and a non-account holder. The two winners' schools will each receive $10,529.

Child's Play Early Learning Center announces preschool open houses

Child's Play Early Learning Center announces preschool open houses

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. -- Child's Play Early Learning Center, proudly serving the families of Cherokee County for almost 20 years, is pleased to announce all three preschools will have their open houses on Aug. 7 and 8 from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Child's Play has three conveniently located schools in Cherokee County; Towne Lake and Sixes Road locations are non-denominational, while the Hickory Flat location offers a Christian-based program.

The mission at each of the Child's Play Early Learning Centers is to help young children develop, their minds, bodies and spirit in an environment rich in sensory and hands-on experiences. The curriculum and staff foster and stimulate a life long love for learning.

"We are very excited to welcome the kids to Child's Play.  We have lots of great activities and themes planned for the school year and can't wait to watch your child grow and learn!" said Child's Play owner Donna Swedborg.