An International Studies Elementary Charter School fifth grader recently scored a perfect 350 points on her Georgia Writing Assessment.
Celebria Peacock is the daughter of Robert and Raquel Peacock. Robert serves as a financial analyst with Installation and Environment Division, Marine Corps Logistics Base Albany, and Raquel works as a child care provider at the Child Development Center, MCLB Albany. The 11-year-old received a trophy during an honors ceremony at her school, May 17.
Celebria's milestone occurred during the Georgia Department of Education's performance-based writing assessments. The assessments are administered to students in grades three, five, eight and eleven, according to the Georgia Department of Education's website, www.doe.k12.ga.us/Curriculum-Instruction-and-Assessment/Pages/Georgia-Writing-Assessments-.aspx.
According to the website, student writing samples are evaluated on an analytic scoring system in all grades to provide diagnostic feedback to teachers, students and parents about individual performance. The assessment consists of an evaluation of each student response from an assigned topic. Students are allowed about two hours to write their essays.
An honor student in Evangela Dawsey Jones' class, Peacock wrote a persuasive agreement to her assigned topic, "Should Vending Machines Be Allowed in Schools?"
"Celebria was well prepared by her parents," Jones said about her student's achievement. "She had tremendous support from them. She was very focused and independent. I have never seen a perfect score in all my years as a teacher.
"Celebria is an outstanding student in all academic areas as well as sports and she is team player," Jones, who has taught for 18 years, continued. "It is evident she is able to communicate effectively and she will be able to use these skills for the rest of her life. I look forward to seeing her accomplish even greater things in her future."
Dr. Zeda George, head of the school, described Celebria as a model student.
"This is the first time I'm aware of that a person has made a perfect score on the fifth grade writing assessment at this institution," George said. "We had honors day at which she was presented with a trophy honoring her major accomplishment.
"We wish her the best in her educational endeavors and we were happy to have her in our building and her parents a part of our family," George added.
The youngest of five siblings - three brothers and one sister - Celebria's parents both applauded their daughter's accomplishment.
"I feel great because I gave her a challenge," Raquel said. "Last year I used to help her with her homework and she hated that. I told her 'I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt and I'm going to let you be responsible and do things on your own.' This year she really proved herself and I'm so excited and proud of her."
Robert mentioned that when he first found about her perfect score he didn't know it was a big deal.
"I'm really excited and very surprised because like my wife said, since she started school we always had to help her with her homework," he said. "This year she just reached for the stars and she really outdid herself.
"For her to make straight A's for the whole school year and turn around and get a perfect score on the writing assessment test is really good," Robert said. "I'm not a writer. I'm a math guy. I'm very proud of her."
Celebria characterized her emotions upon receiving the topic for her writing assessment as good "because I really wanted vending machines in my school and other people in my class did also. When I was writing I felt kind of nervous because I thought all my time was running out and so I just started looking around (but) I stopped looking around and started writing."
She added that she felt good about receiving a perfect score, but didn't think she would receive one.
"During honors day I got the biggest trophy," Celebria said, noting she will be honored at her church, Harvest Kingdom Jubilee Ministries, Albany, Ga., June 23. "I had really smart people in my class (who) were in the gifted program and they got all A's."
The honors student doesn't consider writing to be her strongest subject, and instead cites math and science as her best ones.
Her four siblings, who are 13, 22, 23 and 25 years old, set the example for her, Celebria remarked.
"They told me to pay attention in class and get my work done instead of following the wrong crowd, just like my brother (who) is in the gifted program," she said.
In the fall at her new school, Radium Springs Middle Magnet School of the Arts, Albany, Ga., where she will be in its performing arts program, Celebria hopes to run track, play basketball and soccer, get all A's, compete for the gifted program as well as try out for softball.