Best in Class for Feb. 22

North Gwinnett High School band student Victoria Bethel placed first in the Carolina Trumpet Festival at the University of North Carolina-Greensboro. Students at the high-school, undergraduate, and graduate level competed for a chance to perform in concert and win a new trumpet. Victoria beat out 14 other students and earned a new Shires custom made C trumpet.

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Grady High School's Mock Trial team has won the regional championship for the 15th straight year. The Grady Draggins defeated the Atlanta International School on Feb. 12 at the Fulton County Courthouse. Troy Kleber and Archie Kinane won best attorney roles for their presentation, and Madeline Lansing and Olivia Kleinman won best witness roles. During the mock trial competition, students reenact a trial, complete with prosecutors, defense attorneys, defendants and witnesses before a panel of professional attorneys and judges. The Atlanta school will now compete for the state title March 16-17 at the Gwinnett Justice Center in Lawrenceville.

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Mount Vernon Presbyterian School in Sandy Springs has earned high marks from the Georgia Chapter of the U.S. Green Building Council. The school received the award for Leadership in Energy Efficiency. As a LEED Silver certified School, Mount Vernon has an innovative heating and cooling system using geo-thermal wells located beneath the Upper School football field. The result: a significant reduction in electricity use and a savings of 40 percent on the school's electrical bills. Because the school has two campuses, Mount Vernon was able to compare energy use on a square foot basis between the conventional air-conditioned buildings and the newer Upper School on the Glenn Campus.

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The Dodgen Science Olympiad team finished second in the Booth Middle School Invitational, which includes teams from Georgia, Alabama, Tennessee and Ohio. The Cobb County school's team also recently won the state regional competition and will now advance to the state tournament next month at Southern Polytechnic State University. Jeff Miller is the team coach.