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FMSA exhibits in Scarecrows in the Garden

FMSA exhibits in Scarecrows in the Garden

Flower Power Flora is one of 150 wild and crazy life-size characters on view at the Atlanta Botanical Garden's annual "Scarecrows in the Garden." She was created by a group of First Montessori School of Atlanta Middle School girls and Art Teacher Theresa Dean. This is the third year FMSA has participated in the fun event.

"Flower Power" was an expression coined by the American Beat poet Allen Ginsberg in 1965 as a means to transform war protests into peaceful affirmative demonstrations. Flower children embraced the symbolism by dressing in clothing with embroidered flowers and vibrant colors, wearing flowers in their hair and distributing flowers to the public.

Flora's skeleton is made of PVC pipe, and her plastic pumpkin head is covered in peach felt. Students Rachel Newman, Clementina Eterovic, Carlin Blake, Chandler Ross, Rachel Strickland and Lane Cannon cut foam flower and peace signs and glued them to the scarecrow's clothing.

HOPE helps make GA Tech the best deal in the U.S.

HOPE helps make GA Tech the best deal in the U.S.

ATLANTA -- A new study will serve as a great new recruiting tool at Georgia Tech.

Smart Money Magazine ran the numbers and found Tech offers the best academic deal in the country.

"There's definitely a high-range salary that goes with jobs offered to Georgia Tech students," said third-year student Ashley Wright. 

Smart Money found Tech's class of 2009 spent $87,810 in tuition over four years and now earn a median salary of $59,000.

Older Tech grads in their 30's have a median salary of $102,000, and their tuition was much lower.

"I do have some loans to pay back," said student Alex Sohani. "If I have a salary like that, it wouldn't be too hard to do that."

Path2College scholarship coloring contest ends Sept. 30

Path2College scholarship coloring contest ends Sept. 30

ATLANTA -- Georgia children in Pre-K through 5th grade can now color their way to a college scholarship from the Path2College 529 Plan.

In honor of College Savings Month, the statewide college savings program is hosting a coloring contest with a $1,529 scholarship at stake.

To win the money, children must color a picture of Hootie the Wise Old Owl and complete a sentence: When I graduate, I'm going to be a ________.

Download the picture of Hootie here.

Entries must be postmarked by Sept. 30 and must be received no later than Oct. 5. More information about the contest can be found at path2college529.com.

A winner will be randomly chosen in mid-October.

GSU's music school gets multimillion-dollar gift

GSU's music school gets multimillion-dollar gift

ATLANTA -- The Georgia State University School of Music has received a multimillion-dollar gift to support music students, faculty and programs.

The planned gift comes from Atlanta alumna Aileen M. Valianos and her husband Chris. Aileen Valianos holds a bachelor's degree and an M.B.A. from the university.

Aileen Valianos owns an insurance company, and her husband leads a mediation, arbitration and counseling practice. They say they've attended a number of productions by GSU's School of Music in recent years and have been inspired by the enthusiasm of the faculty and students.

The School of Music enrolls about 450 students representing six countries and 21 states. It has 40 full-time and 30 part-time faculty. Concentrations include performance, music education, music management, music recording and technology, composition, and jazz studies.

Big Brothers Big Sisters unveils new home

Big Brothers Big Sisters unveils new home

ATLANTA -- Big Brothers Big Sisters of Metro Atlanta has a new home.

The mentoring program will hold a ribbon cutting Thursday at its new 25,000-square-foot facility in Midtown.

PHOTOS | Big Brothers Big Sisters has a new home

"This building called us," BBBSMA president and CEO Janice McKenzie-Crayton said Thursday from the building's mentoring room, where children can meet with their adult mentors after school and on Saturdays. "It's a space that speaks to any age."

McKenzie-Crayton said the decision to move the headquarters from Edgewood Avenue to Peachtree Street will make the program more accessible for children in need, as well as adults who wish to work with them.

Gov. Deal announces 9 education grants

Gov. Deal announces 9 education grants

ATLANTA -- Gov. Nathan deal has announced $19 million in education grants for programs meant to improve student performance.

The grants were given to nine partnerships that can combine local education officials, charter schools, businesses and nonprofits to create programs for students.

The winners of the grants include the Georgia Charter Schools Associations and the Lake Oconee Academy. That partnership sought money to develop programs to recruit and train teachers and leaders for charter schools.

Officials at the Georgia Leadership Institute for School Improvement and Paulding County schools sought funding for a similar effort focusing on securing good teachers for the public schools.

Prudential Spirit of Community Awards searching for top volunteers

Prudential Spirit of Community Awards searching for top volunteers

ATLANTA -- Georgia students in grades 5-12 are encouraged to apply for the 2013 Prudential Spirit of Community Awards.

The awards program began searching for its next batch of honorees this week. Recipients of the award are young people who have made meaningful contributions to their communities through volunteer service.

"We have been recognizing youth volunteers since 1995 and still, every year, we're amazed by the stories of exemplary community service," Prudential chairman and CEO John Strangfeld said in a statement. "We look forward to honoring the top youth volunteers of 2013 for their selflessness, their initiative and their dedication to changing communities for the better."