Cherokee County Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower congratulates the new Student Advisor and Student Delegates to the School Board, from left to right, of River Ridge HS, Emily Paulson; of Sequoyah HS, Taryn Lorelai Mareau; of Etowah HS, Erin Bradley; Student Advisor Carson Heath of Creekview HS; of Woodstock HS, Lydia Lord; and of Cherokee HS, Catherine Butterworth.
The Cherokee County School Board on Thursday evening welcomed its new Student Advisor and Student Delegates for the school year!
The School Board has included a Student Advisor position on its board since 1999, and, for the past 11 years, a Student Delegate from each high school also has been selected. These outstanding high school seniors serve for one year to give input and feedback to the School Board and to the Superintendent of Schools and his senior staff; the advisor role, which includes the opportunity to sit on the dais with the School Board, is rotated among the district’s high schools. The innovative engagement program earned the Georgia School Boards Association’s 2020 Leading Edge Award.
The Student Delegates were introduced at Thursday’s School Board meeting and, prior to the regular meeting, met with Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower to learn more about their important role.
“The Student Delegates provide an invaluable service to our School Board and to me and my senior staff: the opportunity to hear the student voice as part of our decision-making process. We are here to serve our students, and their feedback matters,” Dr. Hightower said. “The Delegates bring incredible resumes and resulting insights to the table. Their strong participation in many of our academic and extra-curricular programs gives them program knowledge to share with us, as well as friendships with a diversity of students that broaden their viewpoints.”
This school year's Student Advisor is Creekview High School senior Carson Heath.
Creekview High School’s senior class president, Carson is a scholar athlete who has earned the AP Scholar with Distinction honor, College Board National Rural and Small Town Recognition Award, Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award, University of Georgia Merit Award and Scholar Athlete Award. As a member of the varsity lacrosse team, Carson earned recognition as First Team All-County Goalie and has been a Governor’s Honors Program nominee, state finalist for PTA Reflections and elected to homecoming court. He is a member of the Character.org Leadership Academy, National Honor Society, Beta Club, Mu Alpha Theta math honors society, Rho Kappa social studies honors society, Aeronautics Team, Spanish Club, and Chick-fil-A Leadership Academy. Carson also coaches youth lacrosse, tutors students in math and hands out groceries weekly to those in need at House of Hope.
The Student Delegates are:
Catherine Butterworth of Cherokee High School
Cherokee High School class president for the past three years, Catherine serves in numerous leadership roles at her school. She is president of the Health Occupations Students of America (HOSA) chapter, manager for the football and lacrosse teams and a Student Athlete Leadership Team and Strive for 23 Council member. A three-year letterman in golf and an athletic training student aide, Catherine has earned the AP Scholar Award, Scholar Athlete Award and Most Improved Golfer Award. Catherine works at Chick-fil-A and has interned through the Cherokee County Office of Economic Development and Northside Hospital Cherokee. She volunteers with her school’s food pantry and as a reading buddy at Hasty Elementary School Fine Arts Academy. Through HOSA, she helped host the “Senior Senior Prom” at the county senior center with a 1950s theme.
Erin Bradley of Etowah High School
Erin supports her classmates through leadership and service roles at Etowah High School. She serves as president of the National English Honor Society and as an Etowah Kindness Ambassador and tutors fellow students through the school’s East Wing Tutoring center. Erin also is a member of Key Club, Health Occupations Students of America, Progressive Club and Eagles Connections. In addition to her roles at school, Erin serves as head of the Junior Referee Program for Impact Soccer club through which she teaches younger players about responsibility and professionalism.
Emily Paulson of River Ridge High School
A scholar athlete, Emily plays two sports for River Ridge High School: three years of varsity soccer, including as a member of the 2021-22 State Final Four Team, and two years of varsity basketball, including as a member of the 2020-21 Region Champions and State Final Four Team. She earned the Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award and Georgia Certificate of Merit and was a Governor’s Honors Program nominee. Emily is a member of the Beta Club and National Honors Society and has served on the Greek Orthodox Youth Organization Leadership Team since 2019.
Taryn Lorelai Mareau of Sequoyah High School
Taryn excels in communicative arts, earning numerous awards and recognitions, and is a scholar athlete. She participated in the Governor’s Honors Program for communicative arts, earned state champion and state runner-up titles for Literary Competition, won the district level Optimist Oratorical Contest award and was named to the National Speech & Debate Association’s Top 25 Public Forum Debaters list. She has earned letters for her service to Sequoyah High’s debate team, chorus and varsity soccer team, as well as an academic letter, AP Scholar with Distinction Award and Superintendent’s Key Scholar Award. Taryn serves as president of National Honors Society and the school’s Junior Optimist International Chapter, which she founded. Founder of the school’s Model UN and co-founder of the Student Empowerment Club, Taryn also is a member of Student Government and the Women in STEM Club.
Lydia Lord of Woodstock High School
Lydia has earned honors for academic excellence, dramatic talent and Spanish language skills. A member of the Woodstock High School drama club and Thespian Troupe, Lydia has been named to the Georgia High Schools Association’s All-Star Cast and earned Woodstock Drama’s Outstanding Actress Award. Lydia, who has earned her school’s Spanish Award and English Award, has twice participated in the Diverbo Pueblo Inglés, through which she traveled to Spain to teach Spanish teenagers in an English immersion program. She also is a member of the National Society of High School Scholars and Student Government Association and has earned the Superintendent's Key Scholar Award and Georgia Certificate of Merit.
During its work session, the School Board heard presentations from the Office of Curriculum and Instruction on new initiatives underway this school year including working to enhance English language arts curriculum for grades K-12, implementing the Future Ready Graduate profile and offering more professional development focused on blended learning strategies.
The School Board also:
• Recognized Etowah HS Air Force JROTC Lt. Col. (Ret.) Stephen Bergey as the international 2022 Overall AFJROTC Instructor of the Year winner. Read more here;
• Recognized the Creekview HS aeronautics program team for placing in the top 10 at The American Rocketry Challenge National finals. Read more here;
• Recognized Indian Knoll ES and Liberty ES as national Character.org character education award winners. Read more here and here;
• Recognized Boston ES and Little River ES as winners of the National PTA School of Excellence Award. Read more here;
• Recognized CCSD high school students for 2022 Georgia Career and Technical Instruction competition first-place state awards. Read more here;
• Recognized CCSD employees and volunteers honored by the Georgia PTA with state awards. Read more here;
• Recognized the Woodstock High School baseball team as the Georgia High School Association 7A State Champions. Read more here;
• Recognized the CCSD 2022 Bus Driver of the Year and Innovation Zone School Bus Drivers of the Year. Read more here;
• Recognized the CCSD 2022 School Nurse of the Year and Innovation Zone School Nurses of the Year. Read more here;
• Recognized the CCSD Department of Special Education 2022 Employees of the Year Awards. Read more here;
• Recognized the CCSD 2022 Coach of the Year and Innovation Zone Coaches of the Year. Read more here;
• Recognized Liberty ES Principal Sandi Harrison as a Cherokee County Chamber of Commerce "Top 10 in 10" Honoree. Read more here;
• Recognized Clayton ES and R.M. Moore ES STEM Academy as Georgia School Bell Award Winners. Read more here;
• Approved the renewal of Partnership Agreements with the City of Ball Ground and Cherokee County Council of PTA;
• Approved the final reading of the state-mandated School Board Policy on divisive topics;
• Approved monthly financial reports for June and July;
• Approved out of state travel by staff;
• Approved out of state and overnight field trips;
• Approved the state-required capital outlay funding application for HVAC system improvements for Creekland MS, Hasty ES Fine Arts Academy and Woodstock HS;
• Approved special lease agreements; and,
• Approved the monthly personnel report.