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So far Matt McGee has created 15 blog entries.

Welcome Cohort 2023 U


New 6th Graders begin their Reach Journey Our new Cohort of 6th Grade Scholars has begun their studies with Reach for Excellence.  Most years, students are recommended by their teachers to apply for the Reach for Excellence program during the Spring of their 5th-grade year.  In March, school closures delayed the usual application process but did not prevent us from receiving applications from gifted and dedicated young people. Cohort 2023 U (Reach for Excellence Cohorts have been identified alphabetically since 2003) includes students from Atlanta, Clarkston, Chamblee, Doraville, Lithonia, [...]

Welcome Cohort 2023 U2020-11-20T10:48:26-05:00

Alumni Spotlight


Jessica Melgarejo Devins, Cohort 2008 F Tell us the story about how you came to Reach for Excellence… My catechism teacher recommended me to the program through my childhood church (Holy Cross Catholic Church). I applied and was lucky enough to be selected. What memories from Reach for Excellence stand out to you? I remember the friends I made, some of whom I still keep in touch with. I remember the trips to several schools and universities, especially UGA. These trips instilled a desire in me to attend these schools. Without these trips and this attention, I [...]

Alumni Spotlight2020-10-15T13:40:55-04:00

Congratulations to Debra Hood-Booker


Debra Hood-Booker named Teacher of the Month Congrats to veteran Reach for Excellence teacher Debra Hood-Booker for being named Teacher of the Month, representing St. Peter Claver in the Archdiocese of Atlanta. Debra is currently the Administrative Assistant, Art Teacher, and Director of the Extended Day Program at St. Peter Claver Regional Catholic School. Debra is a fantastic resource for Reach for Excellence students. She teaches Art, Algebra, and SSAT prep, but her extensive civic service experience makes her a unique source of wisdom and guidance. She has worked as an AmeriCorps NCCC and AmeriCorps VISTA volunteer and [...]

Congratulations to Debra Hood-Booker2020-11-13T14:37:37-05:00

Alumni Spotlight


Sean Allen, Cohort 2013 K Sean Allen, Cohort 2013 K, attended Westlake Math & Science Magnet High School graduating in 2017. He is now at Georgia State University as a member of the Class of 2021. Sean is a Finance Major at GSU’s Robinson College of Business Administration and was recently named to the Summer 2020 President’s List.  "I always reflect back on my experience as a REACH scholar and how that changed my outlook on learning and achievement. I remember [Mrs. Dessables] asking me about my future educational plans and to be honest as an 11 [...]

Alumni Spotlight2020-09-18T08:46:20-04:00

Meet Our Teachers


Sheronda Hardy How long have you taught with Reach for Excellence? I have taught with Reach for Excellence for 13 years.  It doesn’t seem like that long because really it is fun, moreover in the summer!  Over the course of this time, I have had some of my BEST teaching experiences.  Also, within these thirteen years, I have seen the program evolve.  Every year it gets better and better. What do you teach? I teach 8th grade Georgia Studies.  I LOVE it!  Teaching Georgia Studies to my favorite level of students, middle school, is so rewarding.  It is during [...]

Meet Our Teachers2020-09-21T09:19:11-04:00

Pivoting to Online Learning During the Pandemic


Reach for Excellence adapts to serve students Like all educational institutions, Reach for Excellence pivoted to continue providing service during COVID-19. We know that the need for academic and social engagement has never been greater, especially for students from families who lack financial resources and attend school in low-income neighborhoods. We remained committed to providing our academic enrichment program despite the challenges. Reach teachers are certified educators, serving in public and private schools throughout the metro Atlanta area.  We benefited from their experience with online learning at the onset of school closures [...]

Pivoting to Online Learning During the Pandemic2020-09-22T08:52:27-04:00

Alumni Spotlight


Genie Arcila, Cohort 2006 D Tell us the story about how you came to Reach for Excellence… I enrolled in Reach for Eexcellence because my brother was already in the program after a teacher had recommended him for it. What memories from Reach for Excellence stand out to you? I remember when RFE took us on college tours. I had always heard about the idea of college and people believed that it was in my future. But as a person of color, I didn't see myself at school or in my teachers. When I went on the [...]

Alumni Spotlight2020-09-18T09:10:50-04:00

Meet Our Teachers: Christopher Michaud


Meet Our Teachers: Christopher Michaud How long have you taught with Reach for Excellence? I have taught at REACH for 3 years. What do you teach? I teach computer science and engineering to 7th, 8th, and 9th-grade scholars. Where did you go to school? That is an interesting question. I completed degrees at three Universities: Temple University: Bachelor of Music George Mason University: Master of Arts in Music Georgia Institute of Technology: Master of Science in Computer Science How would you describe yourself in middle school? I was a quirky student interested in music, math, acting, and [...]

Meet Our Teachers: Christopher Michaud2020-08-27T09:00:03-04:00

Alumni Spotlight: Jared Alexander, Class of 2007, Cohort E


Alumni Spotlight: Jared Alexander, Class of 2007, Cohort E Tell us the story about how you came to Reach for Excellence. My mother was looking for an enrichment program to ensure I was getting the best instruction year-round while keeping me ahead of my public school’s curriculum. What memories from Reach for Excellence stand out to you? The majority of the schools I attended were primarily black. RFE was my first time having classmates from vastly different cultures. I remember we had a culture fair in which students set up displays representing the different countries they (or [...]

Alumni Spotlight: Jared Alexander, Class of 2007, Cohort E2020-07-31T12:57:34-04:00

Congratulations Class of 2020, Cohort R!!


Congratulations to the Reach Class of 2020, Cohort R! On Saturday, August 1, Reach for Excellence celebrated the Class of 2020, Cohort R, with a drive-by graduation ceremony.  These 28 graduates are residents of DeKalb, Gwinnet, Fulton, and Rockdale Counties.  They displayed their tenacity and drive throughout this last summer as Reach for Excellence converted to distance learning.  This cohort boasts acceptance to the following college preparatory programs throughout Atlanta: Banneker High [...]

Congratulations Class of 2020, Cohort R!!2020-08-03T15:44:11-04:00

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