South Forsyth Middle School Wins 2019 PAGE Academic Bowl For Middle Grades State Championship

South Forsyth Middle School PAGE Academic Bowl for Middle Grades State Champion team members and their coaches (front row, l-r) Sishnu Balamurali, Owen Cleary, Yugesh Muralidhar and Sudhan Sivakumar, and (back row, l-r) coach Ashley Calloway, Yashi Surapaneni, Shreya Naik, Andy Zhang, Akshur Raghuram, Sammit Deshpande and coach Liz Rushton.

South Forsyth Middle School won top honors at this year’s PAGE Academic Bowl for Middle Grades State Championship competition. The team captured the title at the event held on Saturday, Jan. 26, 2019, at the Arts and Sciences Auditorium on the campus of Georgia College and State University (GC&SU) in Milledgeville, GA. South Forsyth Middle School is a part of the Forsyth County Schools system.

During the morning session of the event, 24 semi-finalist teams from across the state competed in a round-robin competition. Eight teams emerged as finalists and competed against each other in the afternoon single-elimination competition session. The state championship team members are Akshur Raghuram, Yashi Surapaneni, Shreya Naik, Andy Zhang, Sammit Deshpande, Yugesh Muralidhar, Sishnu Balamurali, Sudhan Sivakumar and Owen Cleary. Ashley Calloway and Liz Rushton coach the team.

All eight teams competing in the final rounds earned medals and awards. Other award-winning teams include: Second Place: Chamblee Middle School of DeKalb County School District, coached by John Donegan and Cathy Hirsch; Third Place: North Gwinnett Middle School of Gwinnett County Public Schools, coached by Scott Johnson and Scott Kim; Fourth Place: Five Forks Middle School of Gwinnett County Public Schools, coached by Carla Kuny and Phillip Watson; Fifth Place: Aaron Cohn Middle School of Muscogee County School District, coached by Rebecca Perez; Sixth Place: Mossy Creek
Middle School of Houston County Schools, coached by Carol Kohn; Seventh Place: Oglethorpe County Middle School of Oglethorpe County School System, coached by Penny Miller and Ahna Chastain; and Eighth Place: Inman Middle School of Atlanta Public Schools, coached by Jessica Hughes, Abbi Hurt and William Hunter.

“It takes skill and cooperation to create a successful academic bowl team, and all the students who participated in the state championship competition should be proud of that accomplishment,” said PAGE Executive Director Craig Harper. “We understand the months of study and hard work exhibited by these students and their coaches, and we applaud them. We also appreciate the support of parents and school administrators, all of whom contributed to the success of each team. Finally, I’d like to thank GC&SU and the Collegiate Middle Level Association (CMLA) for hosting our competition at this outstanding university.”

The PAGE Academic Bowl features teams of middle school students fielding questions based on Georgia’s curriculum standards in subjects such as history, mathematics, science, literature and the performing arts. Opposing teams compete against the clock to answer toss-up and bonus questions in order to score points. The goal of the program is to inspire students to excel academically, to enhance student self-confidence and self-esteem through high achievement, and to develop both a team and competitive spirit. Statewide, more than 1,200 students competed at the local, regional and state levels of the PAGE Academic Bowl for Middle Grades. PAGE sponsored this year’s competition, with Georgia College’s Collegiate Middle Level Association serving as host.

The Professional Association of Georgia Educators honors outstanding students and educators and encourages academic excellence through competitive academic initiatives such as PAGE STAR, the PAGE Academic Bowl for Middle Grades and the PAGE Georgia Academic Decathlon.