2021 STAR Students & Teachers

2021 Star Students from Apalachee and Winder-Barrow High Schools

The PAGE Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) program is proud to announce the 2021 Region STAR Students and STAR Teachers. 

STAR Students:

  • Ishan Patel, Apalachee High School
  • Madison Ann-Marie Reeves, Winder-Barrow High School

STAR Teachers:

  • Jessica Knight, County Line Elementary School
  • Jessica Steedley, Winder-Barrow High School

The Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) program honors Georgia's highest achieving high school seniors and the teachers who have been most instrumental in their academic development. To obtain the STAR nomination, high school seniors must have the highest score on any single test date of the SAT and be in the top 10 percent or top 10 students of their class based on grade point average.

Each high school STAR Student is asked to select her STAR Teacher and explain the impact the teacher had on their educational career.

Ishan Patel will be the Apalachee 2021 Class Valedictorian. When he graduates on May 26, he will also cross the stage with two degrees from the University of North Georgia: an Associate of Arts with Distinction and an Associate of Science with Distinction. He was also named to the University of North Georgia's Presidents List for all semester enrolled, which required enrolling in 12 or more credit hours every semester and making no grade lower than B. He is a National AP Scholar and National Commended Scholar. Ishan has committed to Georgia Tech for computer science, where he will be a first-year student with 77 transferred credit hours. 

Ishan selected Ms. Jessica Knight as his STAR teacher. Ms. Knight was Ishan's 4th and 5th grade teacher at Yargo Elementary School. Ms. Knight was named Yargo Teacher of the Year in 2016, where she teaches gift students and upper elementary grades (3rd-5th). She has taught for eight years in Barrow County, and she is now at County Line Elementary. Ms. Knight earned her bachelor's degree from Georgia State. She also completed her Master's of Education in Learning, Design, and Technology and earned her Specialist in Gifted and Creative Education from the University of Georgia. 

Madison Reeves is in the top 5 students of her graduating class at Winder-Barrow High School. She's served as the copy editor for their award-winning yearbook for the past two years and as business manager for three years. She was selected as the 2019 Hugh O'Brian Youth Leadership State Ambassador for WBHS. Madison has been actively involved in Sources of Strength through the counseling office, which aims to promote mental health awareness and resources to students and teachers alike. She will be attending the University of Georgia next fall to study psychology with a focus on mental health, and she plans to pursue a master's in Professional Counseling. 

Madison chose Ms. Jessica Steedley as her STAR teacher. Ms. Steedley was Madison's academic adviser for all four years of high school, as well as her Chemistry teacher. Madison appreciated how Ms. Steedley was always supportive of her and utilized her optimistic attitude to help Madison see the positive in challenging situations. Ms. Steedley has been a science teacher at WBHS for 16 years. She completed her bachelor’s degree in Science Education from the University of Georgia and her Master’s Degree in Educational Technology from Walden University.

The STAR Program, created by the PAGE (Professional Association of Georgia Educators) Foundation unites educators with the business and civic community to honor academic excellence. The Barrow Chamber of Commerce supports this program annually to recognize the students and teachers. 

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