More News & Features
One successful Morgan County businesswoman finds love in motherhood, spirituality, God and work
story by Ann Cantrell • photos by Angelina Bellebuono
story and photos by Matthew Burgoyne
Spring's the time to have a go - at getting involved in the Morgan County 4-H showing season
by Tara Derock Mahoney
photos by Angelina Bellebuono
By Kathryn Purcell
The end of the semester always seems to bring good and bad. School is almost out for the summer but, to get there, students nationwide must endure a vast amount of end-of-the-year testing.
Morgan County High School is no exception. In fact, the school will have at least two tests going on throughout the day each day until the end of the semester arrives on Friday, May 23.
The tests stem from an increasing amount of students in various school programs as well as state and national requirements, from the Advanced Placement (AP) and International Baccalaureate (IB) programs to the Georgia High School Graduation Test (GHSGT) required by the No Child Left Behind Act.
This semester, according to Assistant Principal Pat Lemming, the school has 191 students of all grade levels taking 243 AP exams. Within the IB program, 43 seniors, 17 of which are candidates for IB diplomas, as well as 68 juniors will be taking a total of 159 IB tests at the Morgan County Library.
Teachers at the school will also have to administer 1,925 End of Course Tests (EOCTs), mandated by the Georgia Department of Education to count for 15 percent of students' grades. EOCTs are given in eight areas -- ninth grade English, 11th grade English, Physical Science, Biology, Algebra I, Geometry, United States History and Economics.
Further, GHSGTs are given to seniors in the areas of English and Math. Part of the No Child Left Behind Act, the results of this tests are used to measure the school's Adequate Yearly Progress (AYP).
Lemming remembers that just three years ago Morgan County High School gave about 30 AP exams, the IB program was just beginning and EOCTs were starting to be phased in.
"It used to be only the Graduation Test and a handful of AP exams," Lemming said.
Why the seemingly sudden onslaught of tests, then?
By Ann Cantrell
Bill Richardson, president of the non-profit organization "It Won’t Happen to Me," spoke at Morgan County High School last Thursday about what his organization calls "the silent tragedy."
He implored the students to avoid this silent tragedy, teen car crashes, which are the number one cause of teen deaths.
Teen car crashes are referred to as the silent tragedy because the number of deaths is rarely talked about or reported on in the news.
“We’ve lost 4000 troops in Iraq. We’ve been inundated with that number. A number we are not inundated with but we should be is the number of teenage deaths from car crashes,” said Richardson.
Since the United States entered Iraq, 27,000 teenagers have died in car wrecks, said Richardson.
Richardson is a retired Gwinnett County police officer who dealt with many deaths related teenagers driving. Eventually he was approached by a woman and asked what could be done to stop all of these car wrecks.
Now, Richardson travels around to different schools educating students on what they can do to prevent becoming one of these statistics.
Most accidents can be easily prevented, said Richardson, and less than 25 percent of them are related to drug use or alcohol intake. The majority of them are caused by inexperience and not paying attention to the road.
Richardson implored the students to be a good role model to their friends by making them buckle up when they get their car.
“You need to set the example—you need to be the leader and not the follower,” said Richardson.
The organization, “It Won’t Happen to Me,” attempts to warn teenagers and parents about the consequences of not setting a good example. Last Thursday, Richardson warned the students that there are many consequences to teen deaths within a family.
By Matthew Burgoyne
Madison hosted a group of international business leaders last week which may lead to an increase of business in the area.
Hosted by the Department of Economic Development (DED) of Georgia , the Council Generals, a group of trade representatives from over 20 countries, met in Madison to take a tour of the area. The DED brought the representatives to various locations in Georgia with the hopes of interesting them of bringing business to the state. Madison was one of the chosen spots in Georgia.
Traveling in an official convoy with police escort, Bob Hughes, Chamber of Commerce Economic Development Director, brought the representatives around Morgan County. A highlight of the tour for most of the Council Generals was Bruce Weiner’s microcar museum. The museum showcases microcars built post World War II.
The tour of Madison can only bring positive things to the community – more business, more jobs, more money.
“It gave us the chance to showcase who we are,” said Hughes.
This was the first time the DED chose to bring the Council Generals to Madison. The Council Generals serve as the liaisons between a foreign nation and the city of Atlanta and the state of Georgia and are brought to the state every year.