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Championship Westover team source of pride

Too often, high school success is measured with scoreboards and stop watches. Far too seldom it is measured in non-sports arenas. Westover Comprehensive High School this past weekend brought a state title to Dougherty County, and it is an accomplishment that should have everyone in the community beaming. Westover's literary team took top honors in the state literary meet to claim the Class AAA state championship.

In communities all across Georgia -- and throughout the nation, for that matter -- you often will see signs about how those communities are the proud homes to state champions in high school football, basketball, baseball and other sports.

What Westover accomplished in claiming its first-ever state championship in literary competition should be seen in the same proud light. The execution that the Westover team performed was just as demanding as the effort that athletic teams put in. The work that the literary team's coaches -- Polly Stadnick and Selena Bentley -- did to get their team in the position to win is just as impressive as any championship football coach's prep work.

Will Dougherty County officials post signs at the county line bragging about this state championship? Without a doubt, they should.

A student athlete who is star running back or a high-scoring power forward will become a household name in a community. That should also be true for students like Max Moye, who earned a perfect score in boys essay; William "DJ" Childs, state runner-up in boys dramatic interpretation; Meera Kuntawala, runner-up in girls extemporaneous speaking; Alex Donnan, third place in boys solo; and state qualifiers Katie Donnan, girls dramatic interpretation; Chelsea Basley, Marlene Gordon and Shemia Patterson, girls trio, and Alex Donnan, Chris Massey, Austin Moody and Dustin Tilley, boys quartet.

These students are stars in their own right, and their accomplishment has brought credit to their school, the school system and the county as a whole.

We congratulate the team members, their families, their coaches and Principal William Chunn for the state championship they brought home. It was, as Chunn noted, quite a feat to achieve.

We're proud of the marvelous jobs that each of you did in claiming this first state title. You are fine ambassadors for the community and examples of what is right with education. Congratulations, state champs!