February 7, 2023 – Five graduating seniors in the Carroll County School System have been named STAR students at their respective high schools for the 2022-2023 school year and were recognized by the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce at its annual STAR Student and Teacher Recognition Breakfast.
The STAR program, administered statewide by the Professional Association of Georgia Educators, recognizes the student who has the highest SAT score in his or her graduating class at each high school each year.
Each STAR student selects a teacher who has had the most influence on his or her academic achievement during the entire school career. This teacher is honored as the school’s STAR teacher.
The awards were presented during the chamber’s membership breakfast which was held at the Carroll County Schools Performing Arts Center.
“We are grateful for the opportunity to partner with the Carroll County Chamber of Commerce to recognize our STAR Students and STAR Teachers,” Carroll County Schools Superintendent Scott Cowart said. “We know these students will continue to achieve success after graduation and will develop into leaders in our community. We also congratulate our STAR Teachers and acknowledge their commitment to being premier and making a difference in the lives of students.”
The STAR breakfast honored STAR students and teachers from Carroll County Schools, Carrollton City Schools and Oak Mountain Academy.
Bowdon High School
Will Rainwater is the STAR student at Bowdon High School. Rainwater is the son of Alan and Traci Rainwater and is a member of both the National Honor Society and the National Spanish Honors Society at BHS. He was voted “Best All Around” by his classmates. Rainwater is Team Captain for BHS Baseball and was twice voted first team All State in Baseball. He is a member of the Leadership Committee for the state champion BHS Football team. After graduation, Will plans to attend the University of Georgia. Rainwater selected Rebekah Phillips as his STAR teacher. Phillips is a 13-year veteran educator, including the last three years teaching fifth grade. She is Bowdon Elementary School’s current Teacher of the Year and is nationally STEM certified.
Central High School – Mia Caldwell
Mia Caldwell is the STAR student at Central High School. Caldwell is the daughter of Matthew and Clancy Caldwell and is a member of the Beta Club, the National Honor Society and Central’s art club. Caldwell was named a National Rural Scholar. After graduation she plans to attend the University of West Georgia. Caldwell selected Scarlett Gilland as her STAR teacher. Gilland is a retired 32-year veteran English/Language Arts teacher at both Central Middle School and Central High School. She is nationally board certified and was named to Who’s Who Among American Teachers three times.
Mount Zion High School – Justin Ware
Justin Ware is the STAR student at Mount Zion High School. Ware is the son of Marcus and Tabitha Ware and member of both the Beta Club and the National Honor Society. Ware was a Georgia Certificate of Merit recipient and twice nominated for Governor’s Honors. He is band captain and plays varsity basketball and tennis. After graduation, he plans to attend the University of Georgia.Ware selected Adam Watts as his STAR teacher. Watts is a 19-year veteran educator who teaches math and coaches soccer at MZHS.
Temple High School – Aayush Patel
Aayush Patel is the STAR student at Temple High School. Aayush is the son of Yakin and Sunita Patel, a member of the National Honor Society and captain of the academic team. He has played football and esports and participated in the Junior Chamber of Commerce. After graduation, Patel plans to attend the Georgia Institute of Technology. Patel selected Shandrika Bromfield as his STAR teacher. Bromfield is a 22-year veteran educator with the last 12 at THS. She teaches a number of advanced math classes, as well as college math to dual enrolled students.
Villa Rica High School – Carina Solis
Carina Solis is the STAR student at Villa Rica High School. Solis is the daughter of Anthony and Tiana Solis, editor of Origami Review and senior editor of Polyphony Lit, a student-run international magazine for high school writers and editors. She is a National Winner in Poetry for the Scholastic Art & Writing Awards and a varsity track and cross country athlete. An accomplished writer, her debut chapbook, “Daughtersong,” was released this month by Bottlecap Press. Solis selected Sunshine Yarbrough as her STAR teacher. Yarbrough is in her sixth year teaching after a career in corporate training, quality assurance and technical writing. Yarbrough teaches American Literature and AP Psychology.
Selection criteria for the STAR students includes the highest SAT score on a single test date and a ranking in either the top 10 percent of their class or the top 10 students in their class based on grade point average.