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5 Cobb students named Gates Millennium Scholars

5 Cobb students named Gates Millennium Scholars

COBB COUNTY, Ga. -- Five high school seniors from Cobb County have received the 2013 Gates Millennium Scholarship.

The award, which covers four years' worth of tuition and fees for any college or university in the country, is awarded annually to some of the best and brightest minority students in the U.S. Money for the program comes from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.

Cobb County's Gates Millennium Scholars include:

Campbell HS
Queentela Benjamin

Kennesaw Mountain HS
Jayson Toweh

South Cobb HS
Brittany Davis
Halimo Hasaan
Nnennia Magazwu

(CCSD CobbCast)

School is (almost!) out in Cobb County

School is (almost!) out in Cobb County

COBB COUNTY, Ga. -- The last day of school is fast approaching in metro Atlanta, with some districts dismissing as early as this week.

For Cobb County Schools, the last day is Thursday, May 23.

Other last days of school in the Atlanta area include:

Thursday, May 16
Barrow County

Friday, May 17
Clarke County

Wednesday, May 22
Atlanta Public Schools (traditional)
Cherokee County
Gwinnett County

Thursday, May 23
Clayton County
Decatur City
DeKalb County
Fulton County
Rockdale County

Friday, May 24
Bartow County
Buford City
Carroll County
Coweta County
Fayette County
Floyd County
Forsyth County
Griffin-Spalding County
Marietta City
Newton County
Paulding County

Cobb school board approves tentative budget

Cobb school board approves tentative budget

MARIETTA, Ga. -- Efforting to cut more than $86 million dollars from next year's budget, Cobb County school board members wrestled for nearly two hours before adopting a tentative budget.

Stressing that changes can still be made before a final vote next month, members have agreed to eliminate 182 positions through attrition.

Teachers are looking at five furlough days which will be taken on instructional days meaning parents will have to find other arrangements for their children on those days.

While class sizes will not increase for elementary students, Cobb's middle schools and high schools will take on an extra student per class.

A bit of good news for teachers.  The proposed cuts first talked about numbered more than 300.  They'll also receive half a year worth of step increases, or raises.

School district announces graduation schedule

School district announces graduation schedule

MARIETTA, Ga. -- Graduation is right around the corner for high school seniors in Cobb County.

The school system has announced the graduation dates, times and venues for its high schools. Family members and friends who can't attend the actual ceremonies can purchase DVDs and, in most cases, watch live Web broadcasts of the events.

Visit cobbk12.org for information on how to watch the graduations or order DVDs.

Graduation ceremonies include:

Allatoona HS
Friday, May 24 at 9 a.m.
Allatoona Stadium

Campbell HS
Friday, May 24 at 7 p.m.
KSU Convocation Center

Harrison HS
Saturday, May 25 at 10 a.m.
KSU Convocation Center

Hillgrove HS
Thursday, May 23 at 8 p.m.
KSU Convocation Center

NASA employees to visit Harmony Leland ES

NASA employees to visit Harmony Leland ES

MABLETON, Ga. -- Students at Harmony Leland Elementary School will get a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity this week.

Two representatives from NASA's Johnson Space Center in Houston will speak to 4th and 5th graders about STEM careers.

Dr. Regina Blue and Janet Stewart will be at the Mableton elementary school on Wednesday, Apr. 17. They will share their experiences in space with the students and encourage them to look into jobs in math, science and engineering.

The two NASA speakers will also provide appropriately-themed space goodies for the children.

Local athlete playing in Final Four for Wichita State

Local athlete playing in Final Four for Wichita State

MABLETON, Ga. -- Kevin Ware isn't the only local athlete to play for a Final Four team.

Wichita State standout Tekele Cotton will face Ware's team, the Louisville Cardinals, Saturday at the Georgia Dome.

RELATED | Atlanta prepares for Final Four

Cotton graduated from Whitefield Academy in Mableton. Whitefield's basketball coach, Tyrone Johnson, describes the Wichita State sophomore as "a man of honor, as well as integrity."

Although Whitefield is known as a basketball powerhouse, the team never won a state championship while Cotton played there.

"We won the year before he came and the year after he left -- not because of Tekele!" Johnson said.

Still, Johnson sees Cotton as a role model for younger players, because he manages to stay humble even while helping his team achieve a national ranking.

Cobb educators learn about bullying prevention

Cobb educators learn about bullying prevention

COBB COUNTY, Ga. -- Teachers and administrators from more than 40 Cobb County schools recently participated in a bullying prevention seminar.

The training session, which was sponsored by the school district's Prevention Intervention Center, taught best practices for handling bullying in classrooms.

Many of the county's schools are already taking steps to end bullying.

At Cooper Middle School in Austell, art teacher Amy Zschaber's students created a digital campaign with slogans and graphic posters calling for their classmates to stand up to bullies. See some of the artwork at cobbcast.cobbk12.org.

Belmont Hills Elementary School in Smyrna uses Second Step, a program that helps elementary and middle school students sharpen their social-emotional skills.