Five Cherokee County School District students earned top honors at the State Social Studies Fair.

The statewide competition capped off the annual contest through which students explore a social studies area - Sociology/Social Psychology, History, Anthropology, Economics, Geography or Political Science - and complete a research project. The Georgia Council for the Social Studies, which organizes the program, moved the competition online due to school closures and announced winners this week.

CCSD's State Best in Class and Special Award winners are:

Creekland Middle School sixth-grader Huck Wallace won Best in Class for Anthropology with “A Whale of a Tale.” His directing teacher was Denise Shaw.

Hasty Elementary School Fine Arts Academy fifth-grader John Palmieri won Best in Class for Economics with “Do People Know Where Their Tax Dollars Go?” His directing teacher was Kate Messerly. John also earned a prestigious State Special Award: the Georgia Center for Civic Engagement (State YMCA) Award.

Carmel Elementary School fifth-grader Nicholas Sansone won Best in Class for Political Science with “How Technology Has Changed War for Soldiers.” His directing teacher was Julie Ziemecki.

Bascomb Elementary School fifth-grader Heidi Boudreaux won Best in Class for Sociology/Social Psychology with “Who Were the Women Heroes of World War II and What Impact Did They Make?” Her directing teacher was Sonya Turner.

Freedom Middle School sixth-grader Alex Watkins won a prestigious State Special Award: the Jerald Ledbetter Special Award for Archaeology awarded by the Georgia Council of Professional Archaeologists for “Finders Keepers: Should Mungo Man Have Been Reburied?” His directing teacher was Anna Trull.

“Congratulations to these impressive scholars,” Superintendent of Schools Dr. Brian V. Hightower said. “I’m so proud of their dedication to research and the hard work required to create a finished project of this caliber. Kudos also to the directing teachers who assisted them in developing these award-winning entries.”

The CCSD competition featured 89 projects by 121 students, who entered individually or as teams, with 26 first-place winners advancing to the Northwest Regional Social Studies Fair in February.

At the Regional event, in addition to the five winners already noted, four more CCSD students earned first place and advanced to State: Avery Elementary School: Addison Quinn, “Girl Scouts During World War II,” and Celia Williams, “How Does Dance Impact Children?”; Carmel Elementary School: Luke Morawski, “Why Teaching Spanish is ‘Muy Bien’ in Elementary Schools”; Hasty Elementary School Fine Arts Academy: Lillianne Cline, “In an age where form letters are king, are handwritten letters worth the time and effort?”

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