In Focus @ GWA

A news bulletin for the families of George Walton Academy

January 14, 2021

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Key Deadlines & dates

  • Admissions Testing/No school for K3-K5 ONLY: Jan. 15
  • School Holiday, MLK, Jr. Day: Jan. 18
  • Winter Senior Nights: Jan. 15 & 19
  • Red Cross Blood Drive: Jan. 29
  • GWA Open House: Sunday, Jan. 31
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Real World Learning

As upper school students began their Winter Term experiences last week, over 75 juniors and seniors engaged in internships with businesses all over northeast Georgia in a variety of vocations. These fields include medicine, engineering, government, education, law enforcement and business.


Students who are participating in an internship are required to work at least thirty hours per week to help simulate a normal work week which allows them to experience all that each job has to offer. Senior Claire McNulty, working at the Georgia Capitol said, “I’ve learned that working in government gives you the opportunities to shape how certain issues are addressed in the community.” While many of our students discover a passion in the field they choose, others find that they may need to rethink their future career plans. Either way, this opportunity is a valuable one that others may not experience until college or beyond.


Our intern sponsors have expressed their appreciation for our students and the positive presence they have brought to their workplace. Liberty First Bank President Lee Garrett said, “We have been thrilled to have Will Herren here at Liberty First the past two weeks. He is what I would expect from a GWA student: eager, punctual and well-mannered. We hope we have provided a small glimpse of life in the banking and business world. The pandemic has minimized some of our plans for Will, but he has been very receptive and flexible to the changes. We were grateful to have had the opportunity to spend time with a student with a bright future as he has helped us re-focus and see our business from a young person’s perspective.”


As we work to prepare students for life beyond George Walton Academy, this program allows students to take lessons from school and apply them in a real-world setting. Junior Noah Hicks, working in engineering said, “The sense of community at GWA helps me to relate with people at the work sites. I’ve also been able to use the communication skills that I’ve learned from my experiences at GWA.”


Additionally, we are grateful for all of those within our local and state communities who have partnered with GWA and our students to give them experiences that will make them further equipped for future success!


Peggy Jordan

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Learning About Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

As part of their unit on non-fiction books, our first, second and third graders are learning about the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. during their time in the library this week. Mrs. Ratliff read a biography about his life to second-grade students and gave them a chance to ask questions about the civil rights leader and the incredible changes he brought to our society. They wrapped up the lesson by completing a worksheet to reinforce the facts they learned about Dr. King and created “I have a dream” headbands.

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Preparing to Launch

Students in Mr. Cole's Winter Term Trebuchet 101 class are using machine design and engineering principles from the 14th century to build their counterweight trebuchets. We can’t wait to see the completed designs and watch them launch!
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Exploring the Elizabethan Era

Mrs. Croker’s seventh-grade Social Studies classes have been learning about the rise of European nation states in the 1500’s. As a part of the study, Ms. Robinson, our director of school counseling, was invited to visit the classes to share stories about Elizabeth I of England.

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Chemistrees

Mrs. Schlumper’s eighth-grade Physical Science classes made “chemistrees” from salt crystals. The crystals mixed with water form a supersaturated solution that will travel up the tree and when the water evaporates, a precipitate is formed, leaving a beautiful crystal tree to be enjoyed!

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Unprecedented Season for Swim Dawgs

Congratulations to freshman swimmer Jake Stout! He qualified for state competition last Friday in the 100 yard backstroke. His qualification made the 12th event GWA has earned this season! The team expects to qualify in other events this weekend at Chamblee Charter School. The GHSA State Championship will be held on Thursday, February 4, 2021 at Georgia Tech Natatorium.

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Friday Night Hoops

The Bulldogs face the Indians from Tallulah Falls tomorrow night starting at 4 p.m. with JV girls. Vouchers will be required to attend and the varsity games will be livestreamed (link below). Senior basketball players and senior cheerleaders will be recognized after the JV boys game. Go Bulldogs!


https://youtu.be/75suO2TNAtM

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All-County Honors


The following GWA varsity football players have been named to the 2020 All-County Team:


First-team Offense:

-Jackson Ellerbee

-Adam Head

-Jake Whitten


First-team Defense:

-Trae Adkins

-Dominic Williams


Second-team Offense:

-Gavin Hall

-Lawson Steele


Second-team Defense:

-Austin Head

-Bradyn Sorrow

-Carter Payne


Honorable Mention:

-Austin Cole

-Laythan Folgman

-Michael Dagenhart

-Will Bailey

-Russell Hunley


Head Coach Shane Davis is named Walton County Coach of the Year. Congrats to all!

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Field House Refresh

Our upper school students and athletic teams have a new and improved space for improving their own strength and fitness. The recent field house weight room refresh includes new full-length windows to bring in more light, upgraded flooring, brand new equipment, and a fresh coat of paint.

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SAVE THE DATE! Spring sports photos will be taken during the day on February 10 and 11. More details to follow.

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Youth Track Registration Begins

Youth track registration is now open and will close on Friday, Jan. 29. Please use the link below if you would like to register your child. Youth track will include boys and girls, grades 1st-5th. Practices will be on Monday, Tuesday and Friday after school at GWA from 3:00-4:00 p.m. (Lower school students will be picked up from their class and walked down to the track by Grace Martin).


The registration fee is $100. Please make the check out to George Walton Academy and send it in to the front office. You can also drop the check off in the Athletic office at any time. Track meets will be held on Saturdays and will start the third weekend in February. Please contact Grace Martin if you have any questions.


https://forms.gle/eLxQM9M7eFrpM6eG9

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Click HERE for athletic events on the GWA January calendar.
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Let's Dance!

Beyond the Bell DANCE classes are now being offered for lower school students. The cost for each class is 65.00/month.


  • K4/K5: Monday, 3:15-4:15 p.m., KDANCE Combo Class
  • 1st /2nd Grade: Tuesday, 3:15-4:15 p.m., Combo Class
  • 3rd-5th Grade: Wednesday 3:15-4:15 p.m., Combo Class
  • 2nd-5th Grade: Thursday, 3:15-4:15 p.m., B-Boyz Breakdance and Hip-Hop Class


Email Stacy May at smay@gwa.com with any questions or to sign up.

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Now Accepting Donations for Our Silent Auction!

Do you provide services, own a vacation property or are you artistically talented? If so, all of these are great options for auction items! "Will you donate?"


Click HERE to access a donation request form to print and fill out. Please donate auction items by February 1 to ensure they are in the Silent Auction when it goes live!

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Help Us Spread the Word!

We are excited to invite prospective families to our GWA Open House on Sunday, January 31! The event runs from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Please share the news with your friends and neighbors. Prospective families will need to email admissions@gwa.com to reserve a specified time to attend. Face coverings are required, we practice social distancing, and we will be limiting attendance for each session. Our admissions team will share general information, provide campus tours and answer questions. We can’t wait to meet new families and show them all that George Walton Academy has to offer!
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Perception Not Intent

By Lynn Robinson, Director of Counseling Services


I remember a time when people were told, “If you haven’t got anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” I think that “rule” came about, because people of that time understood one important thing: Language, whether spoken or written, is about the perception of the reader or listener, not about the intent of the speaker or author. Those who make or write public speeches weigh their words carefully. They craft their message so that when they have an audience, their message is less likely to be misunderstood.


Hastily published or spoken words, especially those used in the heat of anger or frustration, can be hurtful to others, and once they are “out there,” they cannot be taken back. In the turbulent time in which we live, we must remember that one of the great things about our GWA community is that it consists of people with differing opinions and ideas. Allowing for these differences makes us a strong community that lets compassion and respect rule the day. We owe that to each other.


As we move into the coming weeks, let us be kind.

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International Trade

Mrs. Carver’s art students created “My Town” trading cards to exchange with students in Russia. They drew a picture representing their hometown on the front and signed their name in both English and Russian (with some help from Mrs. Garren) on the back. The cards will be sent to a partner school in Russia and our students hope to receive cards from students at that school.

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Today's In Focus is proudly sponsored by Bulldog Kia (www.bulldogkia.com). Interested in advertising through our Corporate Partnership program? Contact Jeanie Beach at jbeach@gwa.com or call 678-635-3812.
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