WJMS takes top honors (again) at 2017 FFA convention

Accepting the 2017 National FFA Model of Excellence chapter award are, from left, Jesse Cronic, Savannah Page and Michael Howard of West Jackson Middle School.

Accepting the 2017 National FFA Model of Excellence chapter award are, from left, Jesse Cronic, Savannah Page and Michael Howard of West Jackson Middle School.

For the second time in three years, the West Jackson Middle School team is bringing home the highest honors from the FFA national convention.

Named 2017 Middle School Model of Excellence winner at the 90th National FFA Convention and Expo in Indianapolis last week, the Jackson County School System’s team also was the outstanding middle school champion in the national competition in 2015. In addition, WJMS was a top-five finalist in 2013, 2014 and 2016.

The Jackson County students competed against four other FFA chapters, three from Georgia and one from Florida, in a presentation and interview process during this year’s national convention, Oct. 26-28.

Rather than the individual achievements recognized in personal awards, chapter awards are made based on standards that evaluate the experiences provided for all members.

Read more about this amazing team in The Atlanta Journal-Constitution’s Nov. 15, 2017, “Making the Grade” feature by clicking here.

April Davis, who came to the school system as WJMS ag tech teacher and FFA chapter advisor in 2012, accompanied the chapter’s officers to the competition. Chapter President Jesse Cronic and Vice-President Michael Howard were joined by Joseph Ledford, Tray Gooch, Austin Robertson, Lilly Farmer, Savannah Page, Morgan McDaniel and Tiffany Holly.

“West Jackson Middle FFA wanted to get students interested in healthy food options, so they hosted a Georgia-grown taste test during National Agriculture Week,” FFA officials explained in announcing the winners.

“FFA members created two healthy vegetable dips for people to try and partnered with cafeteria staff to serve more than 400 people. This event helped students to see that it is easy to pick healthy snacks that taste good.”

The chapter conducts a leadership workshop, created an outdoor classroom and led a “cooking with care” activity, FFA officials pointed out.

 

Welcome home - our WJMS FFA champs return to the Atlanta airport from nationals in Indianapolis.

Welcome home – our WJMS FFA champs return to the Atlanta airport from nationals in Indianapolis.

Middle school chapters that received high three-star ratings during judging in the summer are eligible to compete for the Middle School Model of Excellence award, the highest honor awarded to a middle school FFA chapter by the National FFA Organization.

 

The students received a plaque in an onstage ceremony during the convention’s second general session on Thursday, Oct. 26.

The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education. Today, there are more than 650,000 FFA members, aged 12-21, in nearly 8,000 chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

WJMS is one of 10 schools in the Jackson County School System, which serves 7,700 students in pre-K through 12th grade. For more information, visit www.JacksonSchoolsGA.org, follow us at http://facebook.com/JacksonCountySchoolSystem/ or at http://twitter.com/JCSchoolSystem.