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Dawson County JROTC earns designation honor unit distinction
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The students who are a part of the Junior Reserve Officers' Training Corps (JROTC) at Dawson County High School were recently recognized for earning the designation honor unit with distinction during their performance assessment.

Every three years, an army representative evaluates the program via the JROTC Program for Accreditation assessment.

There is a 1-100 grading scale.

"It is to make sure that we are continuously bettering our battalion and moving forward," said DCHS senior and Lieutenant Colonel Sydney McGinnis. "They grade us on a scale in order to determine how well we are achieving that...If you get above a 95 you are considered an honor unit with distinction."

The DCHS unit scored a 95.25 percent during the April 12 assessment.

"We are a pretty young program, so I think it's kind of a big deal," said Major Robert Wiley. "We have only been inspected twice and both times we've been an honor unit with distinction."

The program is seven years old.

For the evaluation process, the color guard presents the colors, there is a service learning brief and a continuous learning brief. The unit can then also choose between a drill demonstration and an in-ranks demonstration, according to McGinnis.

"In our case, we chose the in-ranks where they would just go through and inspect our cadets and their uniforms and also ask questions over general knowledge they should know," McGinnis said.

For the general knowledge portion, cadets can be quizzed on any of their class study materials. Questions can range from who the commander-in-chief is to a particular date for an event in history.

"There is a broad spectrum of questions they ask," she said.

JROTC classes go on three days a week and students participate in a leadership lab on Thursdays and physical training, or PT, on Fridays.

After school events, like the Raiders and the drill team, are voluntary according to Wiley.

The group also fields a rifle team that competes through the Georgia High School Association for athletics.

Beyond that, cadets are able to participate in other after-hours, team-building type events.

They went to a Gwinnett Braves baseball game on April 20 and will host a Memorial Day ceremony in May.