Montevallo Elementary starts first honor chapter in county

By KATIE HURST/ Staff Writer

MONTEVALLO — Eight students at Montevallo Elementary School were honored Nov. 2 as they were inducted into the school’s new chapter of the National Elementary Honor Society.

School principal Annie McClain said the chapter is the first of its kind in Shelby County. While high schools and middle schools often have chapters, Montevallo is the first school to have an elementary chapter.

The eight fifth-grade students inducted were Price Alexander, Edwin Anthony, Daqwan Bryant, Hunter Eldridge, Jessie Evans, Andrea Lavin Fuentes, Grace Stermer and Jordynn Thomas.

Students were chosen for the program based on academic scores, said Lauren Sheehan, chapter advisor. Each student was required to be in the 90th percentile on standardized reading and math scores, have at least a 90 percent cumulative average in math for their fourth grade year and score a 3 out of 3 overall on their reading assessment.

“We wanted to recognize our children that have strong academic records,” Sheehan said. “They’ve worked hard and truly deserve it.”

The new inductees are required to retain their scores throughout the year and participate in four chapter service projects in the community, Sheehan said.

McClain said she’s planned for an elementary honor society chapter for two years and watching the students walk across the stage and sign their name in the honor society book was a dream come true.

“It took all I could do to hold back tears,” she said. “I know how hard my students work and it does my heart good to see them honored.”

She said she hopes offering the distinction will inspire other students to study hard in order to join the society, not only in elementary school but in middle school and high school as well.

She said starting students’ desire for academic success early is something other schools should also consider.

“It’s not about being noticed, it’s about distilling the drive for academic sufficiency,” she said. “It’s a commitment to education. If we can do that, then we’ve won.”