PAGE Recognizes South’s STAR Student and Teacher at the Forsyth County Banquet

STAR+Student+and+Teacher+ceremony.+%28From+left+to+right%29+Local+sponsor%2C+Scott+Rohem+gifts+senior+Naisha+Roy+and+Mr.+Kevin+Denney+with+the+STAR+Student+and+Teacher+awards.+This+banquet+occurred+at+the+University+of+North+Georgia+Cumming+Campus.

Photo used with permission from Naisha Roy

STAR Student and Teacher ceremony. (From left to right) Local sponsor, Scott Rohem gifts senior Naisha Roy and Mr. Kevin Denney with the STAR Student and Teacher awards. This banquet occurred at the University of North Georgia Cumming Campus.

Maggie Craig, Associate Editor

On Thursday, February 10th, the Professional Association of Georgia Educators (PAGE) held their annual banquets for the Forsyth County Student Teacher Achievement Recognition (STAR) Students and Teachers at the University of North Georgia (UNG) Cumming Campus.

At the banquet, local sponsor Scott Roehm presented South Senior Naisha Roy and IB Coordinator, Mr. Kevin Denney, with the STAR Student and Teacher diplomas, respectively. 

PAGE gives this prestigious recognition to senior students who meet a specific standard of academic qualifications such as achieving the highest SAT score in their graduating class and being in the Top 10 of their class rank, among other requirements.

Naisha Roy was selected as STAR Student as she exhibited all these qualities and prospered academically throughout her four years in high school. 

When she learned about her achievement, Roy said, “Honestly, I felt confused at first because Mr. Denney congratulated me, and I had no clue why he was doing so. However, when I found out what the award was and that I had won it, I was so proud and also surprised.” 

Roy continued, “My favorite part by far was when the entire counseling department came down and congratulated me and told me I would be able to pick a STAR Teacher to take with me. It felt like the perfect way to be able to give back to my teachers the same way they’ve taught me all through high school because I most definitely wouldn’t have done well on the SAT without them.” 

Video used with permission from Naisha Roy. At the banquet, Roy makes a speech as to why she chose Mr. Denney as her STAR Teacher. In the video, Roy talked about Mr. Denney's dedication to teaching and fostering conversation.

Roy chose her International Baccalaureate (IB) History teacher, Mr. Kevin Denney, to accompany her as South’s 2022 STAR Teacher. At the banquet, she made a speech where she explained her selection for STAR Teacher. 

“[Mr. Denney] is genuinely one of the most kind, funny, sweet teachers I’ve had,” she announced at the ceremony. 

Furthermore, Roy continued to explain how the IB Coordinator, Mr. Denney, continues to advocate for the program at South. Roy expressed her gratitude towards the IB program, describing it as “the best decision” she made in her high school career. 

Mr. Denney has been teaching at South for 19 years, and his position as the IB Coordinator has allowed him to cross paths with many bright and brilliant students such as Roy. 

“Naisha is the nicest student I have ever met,” Denney said. “[She is] bright, very articulate, and what I like about her most is that she argues about everything, and it is awesome. She is by far one of my favorites.” 

Mr. Denney and Roy have worked closely together for the past two years through the IB program. He served as both her Theory of Knowledge and IB History teacher, and they have built an unbreakable bond through their many shared passions, such as philosophy and discussion.

There couldn’t have been a better pair to represent South as STAR Student and Teacher due to their many contributions to the IB program and to SFHS.