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56 Cherokee students earn National Signing Day scholarships

56 Cherokee students earn National Signing Day scholarships

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. -- Nearly 60 seniors at Cherokee County's six public high schools accepted sports scholarships on National Signing Day.

The scholar-athletes were recognized Wednesday during a special brunch at the Northside Hospital-Cherokee Conference Center in Canton.

Highlights from the event included twin brothers Austin and Avery Smith signing baseball scholarships for the same college, and the awarding of the county's very first bowling scholarship.

COMPLETE COVERAGE | National Signing Day

Cherokee County's 2014 signees include:

Cherokee HS
* Victoria Cassidy, soccer, Reinhardt University
* Savanna Dover, softball, Southern Illinois University

Doodle 4 Google contest accepting entries

Doodle 4 Google contest accepting entries

(WXIA) -- It's back! The wildly popular Doodle 4 Google contest, which gives children the opportunity to create a Google Doodle, is now accepting entries.

Students in grades K-12 can enter the competition by drawing the Google logo with the theme, "If I could invent one thing to make the world a better place ..."

"So many of the world's greatest inventions started out as simple doodles -- just think of Leonardo da Vinci's drawings of flying machines long before airplanes were made. We hope students will think big and surprise us with their creative ideas, just like they've done in years past!" Google said in a release.

Google will choose one finalist from each state. Last year's Georgia winner was Christine Jeong, a 5th grader at Wilson Creek Elementary School in Johns Creek. Meet Christine and see her winning doodle.

Scholarship available to Cherokee senior

Scholarship available to Cherokee senior

CHEROKEE COUNTY, Ga. -- Every year, Oak Leaf Church in Canton gives a $1,000 college scholarship to one Cherokee County high school senior.

Graduating seniors at all of Cherokee County's public high schools are invited to apply.

Download an application here. In addition to the scholarship form, students must include two references.

More information about the Oak Leaf Church scholarship can be found at the Cherokee County School District Virtual Community Bulletin Board.

Ga. Connections Academy accepting applications until Feb. 27

Ga. Connections Academy accepting applications until Feb. 27

(WXIA) -- Sometimes a student is forced to change schools mid-year.

If a child is a promising athlete, a working performer or encounters some type of health issue, online school gives him the flexibility he needs to heal, practice and/or travel.

Georgia Connections Academy, a fully accredited K-12 online school, is now accepting applications for mid-year enrollees in grades K-11. The school allows students to learn at their own pace, be it faster or slower than traditional school.

Visit connectionsacademy.com for more information about the school and to sign up a child. Parents can also call the school at 678-825-3258.

Late enrollment ends Thursday, Feb. 27.

Friends Club leads to bond between classmates

Friends Club leads to bond between classmates

CANTON, Ga. -- The Friends Club at Freedom Middle School in Cherokee County encourages regular and special education students to spend time together.

Recently, the club allowed two wonderful students to form a bond.

Dylin Hardeman is a basketball player at Freedom Middle. Nicholas Wendel is a special education student who is confined to a wheelchair.

The two met through the Friends Club, and Dylin slowly began to gain Nicholas's trust by giving him high-fives in the hallway and complimenting him.

Now, Dylin spends time helping Nicholas achieve his goals, including grasping objects and building his social skills.

When Dylin heard Nicholas loves sports, he even had all his teammates sign a basketball and present it to his new friend.

Learn more about Freedom Middle School at cherokee.k12.ga.us.

Ga. Lottery posts educational transfers totaling $15B

Ga. Lottery posts educational transfers totaling $15B

ATLANTA – As the Georgia Lottery Corp. celebrates its 20th anniversary, lottery officials today announced record proceeds to education for the first half of fiscal year 2014. The Georgia Lottery’s first-half transfers to the Lottery for Education Account will bring the total raised for educational programs in the state to $15 billion since the lottery’s inception in 1993.

Georgia Lottery returns to education for the first half of fiscal year 2014 totaled $462.1 million, more than $11.6 million ahead of the same period last year.

“More dollars will go to fund educational programs in Georgia than ever before as a result of our strong start to the fiscal year,” said Georgia Lottery President and CEO Debbie D. Alford. “We are proud of our accomplishments and remain committed to maximizing revenues to benefit Georgia’s students.”

The first half of the fiscal year spanned from July 1, 2013, to December 31, 2013.

Path2College launches savings sweepstakes

Path2College launches savings sweepstakes

(WXIA) -- Path2College, Georgia's 529 savings plan, has kicked off this year's $25,000 Reasons to Save Sweepstakes.

The promotion is designed to get parents thinking about saving for college while their children are still young.

Through the sweepstakes, one lucky child will be awarded $15,000 for his or her college education. The winner's school will receive $10,000.

"All you have to do is go online and enter for a chance to win," Path2College exeuctive director Mitch Seabaugh said. "There's nothing to lose by entering, and both a child and his or her school have a lot to gain."

To enter, visit path2college529.com. The sweepstakes is open to current Path2College 529 Plan account owners or non-account owners who live in Georgia and are at least 21 years old.

The contest closes on Sunday, Aug. 10.