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All Cherokee high schools offering more AP classes

All Cherokee high schools offering more AP classes

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. -- All six of Cherokee County's public high schools will offer new Advanced Placement courses in the STEM subjects during the upcoming school year.

The new courses will be added through a nationwide grant program called the AP STEM Access Program.

To qualify for the program, a school must show the potential for increased STEM course participation by women and minorities, and the likelihood that most students will earn passing scores of 3 or higher on the national end-of-course exams.

"Because of this grant, thousands of students will have new opportunities for advanced learning that will better prepare them for college and their future careers," Charles Best, founder and CEO of DonorsChoose.org, said in a statement. DonorsChoose.org distributed the AP STEM Access Program funding with a $5 million grant from Google's Global Impact Awards.

Sequoyah HS equestrian wins national titles

Sequoyah HS equestrian wins national titles

CANTON, Ga. -- A rising junior at Sequoyah High School won two National Championship titles at a recent tournament.

Ashley Bates placed first in Hunter Over Fences and Hunter on the Flat at the Riders Interscholastic Federation of North America National Horse Show.

The tournament was held May 18 and 19 at In Your Dreams Farm in Alpharetta.

Bates is president of Sequoyah High's Equestrian Club.

Valedictorians, salutatorians honored

Valedictorians, salutatorians honored

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. -- The Cherokee County School District has announced its valedictorians and salutatorians for the Class of 2013.

The top students were recognized during a banquet last week.

RELATED | School ends Wednesday in Cherokee County

This year's valedictorians and salutatorians are:

Cherokee HS
Valedictorian: Jebb Ricketts
Salutatorian: Taylor Wilson

Creekview HS
Valedictorian: Victoria Cochran
Salutatorian: Kasey Perrin

Etowah HS
Valedictorian: Madison Miracle
Salutatorian: Ahila Manivannan

River Ridge HS
Valedictorian: Raj Patel
Salutatorian: Ian Donn

Sequoyah HS
Valedictorian: Margaret Hartman
Salutatorian: Anna King

Formula: Graduation rate soars among Georgia high school students

Formula: Graduation rate soars among Georgia high school students

(WXIA) -- The number of students receiving diplomas is on a steady rise, as it jumped for a second time using a new formula.

For 2013, Matt Cardoza of the Georgia Department of Education reported, the graduation rate marked 67.4 percent in 2011, followed by 69.7 percent in 2012.  The new way to figure the graduation rate is based on the adjusted cohort rate, which is required by the U.S. Department of Education. 

The four-year adjusted cohort graduation rate defines the cohort based on when a student becomes a freshman, Cardoza said. The calculation takes the number of students who graduate within four years and includes adjustments for student transfers. 

"I am very pleased that our graduation rate continues to increase, no matter how it is calculated," State School Superintendent Dr. John Barge said. "While our graduation rate is still far too low and we have much progress to be made, we are moving in the right direction."

Liberty ES helps pets in need

Liberty ES helps pets in need

CANTON, Ga. -- The Cherokee County Animal Shelter is participating in the ASPCA Rachael Ray $100K Challenge, and Liberty Elementary School is completely on board.

Students at the Canton school have raised $618.45 for the shelter so far.

To win the challenge, the shelter must rescue 300 homeless pets this summer. It costs $23.53 for the shelter to adopt out one cat or dog, so the Liberty students' donations saved the lives of 26 pets.

Learn more about the challenge at aspca.org.

Cherokee Schools police chief honored

Cherokee Schools police chief honored

CANTON, Ga. -- Mark Kissel, police chief for the Cherokee County School District, received the 2013 Judge Andrew A. Mickle Outstanding Instructor Award.

The honor, which is given annually by Georgia State University, recognizes part-time instructors in the school's Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology.

"I congratulate Chief Kissel for being selected to receive this award and for his accomplishments," department chair Brian K. Payne said in a statement. "This award serves to recognize the important contributions of a dedicated instructor like Chief Kissel to the teaching mission of the Department of Criminal Justice and Criminology."

10 Cherokee students named Ga. Scholars

10 Cherokee students named Ga. Scholars

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. -- Ten exceptional students from five Cherokee County high schools have been named 2013 Georgia Scholars.

Only 115 high school seniors statewide received the honor. To qualify, a student must exhibit excellence in all areas of his or her life, including academics, community activities and home.

RELATED | 48 Cherokee students earn sports scholarships

All Georgia Scholars receive special seals on their diplomas.

Cherokee County's Georgia Scholars include:

Cherokee HS
Jessica Simmons
Taylor Wilson

Creekview HS
Victoria Cochran
Madeline Ryan
Abigail Sherrod

Etowah HS
Allison Guebert
Hannah Keith
Madison Miracle

Sequoyah HS
Victoria Gordon