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Around Cornerstone: News

Wrenn and Manning named 2020 STAR Student and Teacher

Cornerstone Prep is proud to announce its 2020 STAR student, Jana Wrenn of Marietta. Jana nominated Allyson Manning, high school English teacher and secondary English department chair, of Dallas as her STAR teacher.

Wrenn has been a student at Cornerstone for five years. Her involvement at Cornerstone includes Beta Club, Writer’s Guild, and Student Council. She also assists in the Writing Center and is a member of Musical Theatre and the A Cappella chorus. Additionally, she is an intern for the Cornerstone Fine Arts department and is also involved in the Titus 2 Program, where she serves as a mentor to freshman girls. 

Outside of Cornerstone, she volunteers for The Princess Project, a nonprofit organization that contracts Disney princess look-alikes to attend various events and parties, donating funds to the Rally Foundation for Childhood Cancer Research. She is also a volunteer leader of a small group for first and second grade girls at her church.

Although Wrenn is not yet sure where she will be attending college, she intends to pursue a major in creative writing. 

STAR Student Jana Wrenn with STAR teacher Allyson Manning

When asked why she chose Manning as her STAR teacher, Wrenn replied, "While it was difficult to choose just one teacher from amongst all the wonderful teachers I have been blessed with throughout high school, I chose Mrs. Manning as my STAR teacher because since freshman year, she has guided and inspired me to write. In addition to teaching my English class in ninth grade and my current AP Literature class, Mrs. Manning also leads the Writer's Guild. She has been one of the main motivations throughout my high school career to keep writing and doing what I love.” 

Manning has been teaching at Cornerstone for 12 years, and this is her second time being chosen as Cornerstone Prep's STAR teacher.  

 “Jana is creative and passionate, and she is not afraid to speak her mind,” said Manning. “Although she is very intelligent and well-spoken, she is humble and helps others to understand concepts they are struggling with in class. She has been a wonderful part of getting our high school Writing Center off the ground. I admire her ability to write creatively and reach others with her words. Her writing is intriguing and inspires readers to reflect on their own lives, and I respect how she continuously strives to improve each and every year while challenging others to achieve their personal best.”

When asked how she felt after being nominated by Wrenn, Manning said, “It is a very special recognition. Jana is such a well-rounded student who has achieved much during high school, so I was surprised she chose me! I love to see students grow during their time here at Cornerstone, and for someone to think of me when they are receiving this honor is humbling and makes me reflect on how to make each student I teach feel like they are a ‘star’ student in my eyes.” 

About the STAR Program

The Student Teacher Achievement Recognition, STAR, program honors Georgia's highest achieving high school seniors and the teachers who have been most instrumental in their academic development. Since its creation in 1958 by the Georgia Chamber of Commerce, the STAR Program has honored nearly 27,500 high school seniors who have in turn chosen their STAR Teachers to share in this recognition. Every accredited high school in Georgia is eligible to participate in this preeminent student/teacher academic recognition.

To obtain the STAR nomination, high school seniors must have the highest score on any single test date of the SAT taken through the November test date of their senior year and be in the top 10 percent or top 10 students of their class based on grade point average. Nominees’ SAT scores must be equal to or higher than the SAT National Average scores on the Evidence Based Reading and Writing and Math sections.