By Tia Lynn Ivey managing editor
Morgan County High School (MCHS) announced this year’s STAR Student and STAR Teacher last Friday. Elizabeth Cagle, a senior, was chosen as the 2016 STAR Student for scoring a 2160 on her SATs. Cagle selected Joshua Reeves, a history teacher and basketball coach at MCHS, to be this year’s STAR teacher—for the second consecutive year in a row. The STAR (Student Teacher Achievement Recognition) Program rewards students and teachers who have excelled and inspired throughout the course of the year.
“Elizabeth is a very bright young lady with a serious work ethic. I’m glad her hard work has been rewarded through her achievement of STAR Student,” said Jim Malanowski, MCHS principal. “Josh Reeves is the only person I’ve ever known that was selected as STAR Teacher two years in a row! It speaks volumes about the impact he’s having on students’ lives and their learning.”
“We are so proud of our STAR student and her chosen STAR teacher! Elizabeth’s high SAT scores make her our STAR and validate the rigor in our high school programs and classes,” said Sarah Burbach, assistant superintendent. According to Elizabeth, she will attend the University of Georgia next fall to study biology, hoping to one day become a medical researcher. “I would love to end up working at the Center for Disease Control in Atlanta and help find cures for diseases,” said Elizabeth. Elizabeth chose Joshua Reeve’s as this year’s STAR Teacher because of the extra time he took reach out to her. “I had him for history last year and I was very shy,” said Elizabeth. “He would always be yelling at me in the hall, which at first made me mad, because I am shy and didn’t like the attention,” laughed Elizabeth.
“But I then I was really appreciative of him taking the time to get to know me and encourage me to come out of my shell. He’s really great like that.” “It’s an honor to be chosen STAR teacher, especially two years in a row by such wonderful students,” said Joshua Reeves. “Elizabeth was a great student and I am glad to be apart of her high school awards. This isn’t the last award or scholarship she will receive, I am sure. “ The most important thing about education to me is to make the student feel like they are more than a number on a paper or test. Teaching is more about developing relationships and seeing those relationships prepare students for their next step in life.
Reeves began his career at MCHS a decade ago, teaching World History, United States History and International Baccalaureate History of the Americas, as well as serving as the assistant athletic director and head coach of the ladies’ basketball team. Reeves achieved an impressive academic resume himself before landing a position at MCHS. Reeves began his undergraduate studies at Gordon College but graduated from the University of Georgia majoring in Pre-Law and Political Science. Later, Coach Reeves returned to the University of Georgia to earn a Master’s Degree in Social Science Education.
Both Elizabeth Cagle and Joshua Reeves will attend a banquet for the regional STAR students and teachers in Athens on March 22.