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High schools honor STAR students, teachers

By Staff
May 30, 2002
Area STAR students are selected from each high school based on academic excellence, scores on the American College Test (ACT) and scholastic averages. Each STAR Student selects a STAR Teacher who has influenced his or her education. The 2002 honorees submitted for publication this spring were:
Meridian High School
STAR Student Laura B. King is the daughter of Raymond and Carron King of Meridian.
She is a member of the National Honor Society, the Anchor Club, Interact Club, the Marching and Symphonic Band, Fellowship of Christian Athletes, the Academic Team, church choir and other youth and community service groups.
She plans to attend Mississippi State University and major in biology.
Meridian High School's STAR Teacher is Joe E. Johnson of Meridian, an 18-year biology teacher who received his bachelor's degree from the University of Southern Mississippi and his master's degree in science education from Mississippi State University.
Johnson was named Teacher of the Year in 1990 and Favorite Teacher in 1986, 1987, 1988 and 1989. He has been named a STAR teacher four times.
West Lauderdale High School
Elizabeth A. Harmon is the daughter of Gary and Rebecca Harmon of Bailey.
She attended Governor's School in 2000 and Girls' State in 2001, and served as a Mississippi State Senate page in 2001. She has won about 15 regional- and state-level science fair awards, as well as local and regional awards in the Fleet Reserve essay contest.
Harmon was voted Most Likely to Succeed 2001-2002, and is a member of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes and other student groups. She has been a member of the math and science team, captain of the Scholars Bowl Team and a varsity volleyball co-captain.
She plans to attend Mississippi State University and major in either pediatrics or journalism.
The West Lauderdale STAR Teacher is Nettie F. Mayatt of Collinsville, a 34-year biology teacher. She received her bachelor's degree from the University of West Alabama and her master's degree in education from Mississippi State University. She is a master teacher certified through the National Board for Professional Teaching.
Mayatt was a Mississippi Teacher of the Year finalist in 1990, Mississippi Biology Teacher of the Year in 1990, a Mississippi Tandy Scholar in 1999, a Mississippi Presidential Award recipient in Math and Science Teaching in 2001, an Alan A. Barton Excellence in Teaching Award winner in 1998 and an Intel Excellence in Teaching Award recipient in 1998. She has been named a STAR Teacher four times.
Newton County High School
Kery McDill has been named STAR Student for 2002.
She is the daughter of Layne and Cathy McDill of Decatur. She graduated from high school with a 4.0 grade point average and scored a 32 on her ACT.
She has been selected Miss Newton County High School, Most Likely to Succeed and Best All-Around student. She was chosen to the WTOK Channel 11's All Scholastic Sports Team. She served as Beta Club president and scrapbook editor this year. She was president of the high school band, reporter of Mu Alpha Theta, cheerleader co-captain and a member of the varsity tennis team.
McDill has been a class officer for four years and served as senior class vice-president. She received the "I Dare You Leadership Award" and was a Magnolia Girls' State Delegate. She scored third individually at the East Central Community College Math Competition.
She is a member of the Math and Science Team and has received academic awards in Accelerated English I, Accelerated English II, Accelerated English III, Physical Science, Family and Individual Health, Geometry and Trigonometry. She plans to attend East Central Community College and major in Education.
STAR Teacher Bonnie R. Nichols is a 20-year English IV, Advanced Placement English and creative writing teacher. She is married to Ken Nichols, director of pharmacy at Jeff Anderson Regional Medical Center and they have two children Taylor, 16, and Dylan, 11.
Nichols received her associate's degree from ECCC and her bachelor's degree in secondary English education from Mississippi State University. She is a member of the National Council of Teachers of English and has been selected to "Who's Who Among American High School Teachers." She serves as chairman of the school's English Department. She was also selected as STAR Teacher in 1996.
Clarkdale High School
STAR Student Cody L. Ellis of Meridian is the son of Alanea Steele and Roy Ellis.
He was a member of the Spanish Honor Society, Clarkdale High School band, the football team and he received the Woodmen of the World Award. He was on the Superintendent's List and is a member of the National Honor Society. He plans to attend Mississippi State University and pursue a career in computer programming and game design.
Clarkdale's STAR Teacher is Joann G. Herrington, a 30-year advanced placement English and social studies teacher. She earned her bachelor's and master's degrees, and received her education specialist degree, from Mississippi State University. She is a national board-certified teacher. She has been named STAR teacher nine times.
Enterprise High School
STAR Student Farrah A. Robinson is the daughter of Ann Robinson.
She was an Honor Roll Student, a member of "Who's Who Among American High School Students" for three years, a U.S. National Mathematics Award winner, a Woodmen of the World Award recipient and a member of The National Honor Roll.
She was a member of the Beta Club, and served as secretary/treasurer of the Students Against Drunk Driving chapter. She served as a librarian's aide at Enterprise Public Library. She plans to attend Meridian Community College and Mississippi University for Women, pursuing a career in accounting and management.
Enterprise High School's STAR Teacher is Sharon Rose D'Angelo of Meridian. She is a five-year language arts teacher. She received an associate's degree in liberal arts from Meridian Community College and a bachelor's degree in elementary education from Mississippi State University, graduating magna cum laude.
D'Angelo was a high honors student, a President's Scholar, a member of Phi Theta Kappa and was inducted into MCC's Circle of Excellence. She was voted Clarke County Teacher of the Month twice and was a member of Kappa Delta Pi. She is the Junior Beta Club sponsor and is on the school's Relay for Life team. She is also listed in "Who's Who Among American High School Teachers."
Lamar High School
Carrie Jones has been named Lamar School's STAR student for 2002. She is the daughter of Mike and Paulette Jones of Meridian.
She has served as Lauderdale County's Junior Miss for 2002 and was third alternate to Mississippi Junior Miss for 2002. She is a member of the Beta Club and served as National Honor Society president. She is a member of Mu Alpha Theta, the French Honor Society, Fellowship of Christian Athletes and was editor of the annual staff.
Jones participates in prison ministry, Matthew 25 Ministry, Youth Choir and the Praise Band. She is undecided as to what college she will attend, but plans to major in biochemistry.
Lamar's STAR Teacher is Phyllis Skipper of Meridian, a 23-year advanced placement calculus and geometry teacher. Skipper received an associate's degree from Meridian Community College and a bachelor's degree from the University of Southern Mississippi.
Skipper has been chosen as Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year, AP Calculus Exam Reader and is listed in "Who's Who Among America's Teachers" and "Who's Who Among American Women." She has been named STAR Teacher four times in the past.

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