If you’re a current subscriber, log in below. If you would like to subscribe, please click the subscribe tab above.
Username and Password Help
After Grady County students returned from spring break, Cairo High School principal Chris Lokey announced that senior Amaya McCullough was named STAR Student for the class of 2021.
Fittingly, Amaya told The Red & Black, C.H.S. student newspaper, that she was sitting for a calculus test when she was called out of class to learn of her achievement.
McCollough scored 1,390 out of a possible 1,600 on the S.A.T. to achieve her STAR title.
As part of the honor, the senior selected C.H.S. math instructor Mrs. Brooke Reynolds as 2021 STAR teacher. Mrs. Reynolds applauded Amaya for being an excellent student.
“Amaya is a very intelligent student,” the teacher said. “Her mind works above and beyond. Amaya is like a sponge that soaks in all the knowledge and uses it in ways that are so far out of the box. I am very honored that Amaya chose me as her STAR teacher.”
The 17-year-old explained that she nominated the math instructor, whom she had for Honors Algebra II and Honors Pre-Calculus, because Mrs. Reynolds taught her tips for taking the S.A.T. and also just because she is an incredible teacher.
“It’s very easy talking to Mrs. Reynolds. She tries to make a connection with all of her students. She’s also a great math teacher because she makes the hardest lessons easy to learn,” Amaya said. “She’s just a great teacher all around.”
Amaya is the daughter of Arlene and Gregory McCullough of Cairo. The senior said her favorite subject is math because it comes to her very easily.
A member of the Interact Club, Key Club, National Honors Society, and the Cairo Youth Council, Amaya spends her after-school hours working at Syrup City Nutrition and tutoring her cousins.
Amaya told the R&B that she also enjoys crafting in her spare time.
“I like to make candles, draw/paint, and sew, but my favorite thing to do is print things using my 3-D printer,” she said.
After graduating from C.H.S. in May, Amaya plans on attending Georgia Tech to major in Biomedical Engineering. The senior says she would like to attend medical school after becoming a Yellow Jacket alumna.
The Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) award is an annual honor conferred on Georgia 12th graders by the Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE) foundation. Each STAR student scored highest on the Scholastic Assessment Test (S.A.T.) in one test sitting out of the top 10 percent or top 10 students of their graduating class. The STAR Student traditionally chooses his or her most influential teacher to receive the STAR Teacher award.
Mrs. Reynolds has been teaching at Cairo High School for 10 years and currently teaches pre-calculus and algebra II. This is her second time serving as STAR teacher, the first being in 2016 when Ted Hendrixson selected her for the award.
Last year’s Syrupmaker STAR student was Eli Pryz, with an S.A.T. score of 1,420. Eli chose math teacher Mrs. Kristin Blough as STAR teacher for 2020.