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92% of DeKalb students pass Ga. High School Writing Test

92% of DeKalb students pass Ga. High School Writing Test

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. -- Nearly 92 percent of high school juniors and seniors in DeKalb County passed the Georgia High School Writing Test in 2012.

DeKalb's 91.7 percent is very close to Georgia's 93 percent, up from 91 percent in 2011 and 88 percent in 2007, when the more rigorous test was rolled out.

Students must pass the annual writing assessment to receive a high school diploma. A perfect score is 350; a student must earn at least 200 points to pass. They may take the test multiple times during their junior and senior years.

A breakdown for each DeKalb County high school is as follows:

Arabia Mountain HS
299 students took the test
98.7 percent passed the test

Cedar Grove HS
186 students took the test
89.8 percent passed the test

Chamblee HS
316 students took the test
97.2 percent passed the test

DeKalb County Court to announce Division V Art Challenge Contest winners

DeKalb County Court to announce Division V Art Challenge Contest winners

DECATUR, Ga. -- The winners of the second annual Division V Art Challenge Contest will be announced by DeKalb County State Court Judge Eleanor L. Ross on Monday, December 4.

At 4:00 p.m. at the DeKalb County Courthouse Courtroom C, middle and high school students will learn how their work ranked. Around 36 pieces including pencil drawings, watercolor and photographs were submitted from around 15 schools.

Judge Ross will select winners based on creativity, through the promotion of children and the community. When the contest ran, Ross contacted Elizabeth Epps, the Visual and Performing Arts Coordinator for the K-12 DeKalb County School System. Epps spread word of the contest to all schools in DeKalb County.

Tucker HS basketball court dedicated to former coach

Tucker HS basketball court dedicated to former coach

TUCKER, Ga. -- Tucker High School will dedicate its basketball court to legendary former coach A.Z. Johnson.

A dedication ceremony will be held at the school at 5 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 8.

Coach Johnson graduated from Tucker High in 1937 and went on to receive a bachelor's degree in social studies from Oglethorpe University in Brookhaven, where he was the leading scorer on the basketball team. He has since been inducted into the university's Sports Hall of Fame.

During his 32 years coaching in DeKalb County -- 21 years at Tucker High and 11 years at Chamblee High -- Johnson became one of the winningest high school basketball coaches in Georgia, with an overall record of 501 wins and 274 losses.

The Atlanta Tipoff Club awarded Johnson a Lifetime Achievement Award in 1997, and the Georgia State Legislature passed a resolution honoring his life and career in 2000.

Special state funding adds 49 school busses in DeKalb County

Special state funding adds 49 school busses in DeKalb County

DEKALB COUNTY -- The DeKalb County School District is adding 49 new busses to its fleet, without impacting the general budget.

Funds given from the Georgia Department of Education and the Georgia State Financing and Investment Commission will make it easier to transport DeKalb's 62,000 students to and from school each day, according to DCSD.

The Board of Education approved the purchase of the busses at a meeting on October 8. The Blue Bird busses carry up to 72 passengers. As of now, 20 Blue Bird busses have passed inspection and have arrived ready-to-use. The rest of the busses will be put to use over the next several weeks.

"Our mechanics and drivers work diligently to care for and maintain our fleet of more than 850 busses, but it can be challenging with the incredible volume of miles that we drive each day," DCSD Bus Fleet Director Anthony Jackson said.

According to DCSD, its busses travel 11 million miles in one year.

Look for JROTC cadets collecting for the Empty Stocking Fund Nov. 3-4

Look for JROTC cadets collecting for the Empty Stocking Fund Nov. 3-4

More than 2,000 JROTC cadets from 30 metro Atlanta high schools
to participate in historic fundraising effort

On Saturday, November 3rd and Sunday, November 4th, visitors to metro Atlanta Kroger stores are likely to be met by a smiling, uniformed JROTC cadet with an Empty Stocking Fund logo, as more than 2,000 cadets representing 30 metro Atlanta high schools’ JROTC programs will be working outside metro Kroger stores to raise awareness of and contributions for The Empty Stocking Fund, an Atlanta-based, Atlanta-serving non-profit organization that has been providing holiday gifts to Atlanta’s neediest children since 1926. 

Confused over the Charter School Amendment?

Confused over the Charter School Amendment?

ATLANTA -- If you're confused about Amendment One on this year's general election ballot, you're not alone.

Wednesday we asked some early voters in Cobb County what they thought of the wording, which asks:

"Shall the Constitution of Georgia be amended to allow state or local approval of public charter schools upon the request of local communities?"

"It was a bit confusing," said voter Brett Atkinson.

Voter Larshaun Williams said she would not have understood it without doing a lot of homework first.

"Definitely," she told 11 Alive, "I would not have known which direction to go."

Even more confusing to some is the wording of the preamble, just before the actual amendment question:

"Provides for improving student achievement and parental involvement through more public charter school options."

There's now a lawsuit claiming that preamble wording is misleading in favor of the amendment.

2 Chick-fil-A employees win $1,000 scholarships

2 Chick-fil-A employees win $1,000 scholarships

TUCKER, Ga. -- Two employees at the Northlake Festival Chick-fil-A in Tucker have been selected to receive this year's Chick-fil-A Leadership Scholarship.

The $1,000 scholarship is given annually to Chick-fil-A team members across the country who go above and beyond in their jobs and in the classroom.

Tucker's winners, Nick Pallas and Lauren Spratte, have both worked for Chick-fil-A for more than four years. Pallas is a member of the Class of 2014 at Georgia State University, where he is studying finance. Spratte is majoring in marketing at the University of Georgia's Terry College of Business and is scheduled to graduate in the spring.

"These students have had a positive influence on our business for many years and both have the potential to accomplish great things," Brad Spratte, operator of the Northlake Festival restaurant, said in a statement.