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May 3, 2010 4:55 PM by Letitia Walker

Lafayette Student Among 2010 Presidential Scholars


U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan today announced the selection of two graduating high school students from Louisiana as 2010 U.S. Presidential Scholars.

They include:

-- Daniel L. Comeaux of Lafayette, La., who attends Lafayette High School in Lafayette. The teacher chosen for recognition by Comeaux was Dwayne Edwards of Lafayette High.

-- Marjorie E. Bateman of Mandeville, La., who attends Mandeville High School in Mandeville. The teacher chosen for recognition by Bateman was Fan Disher of Mandeville High.

The students are among 141 outstanding American high school seniors that have demonstrated exceptional academic achievement, artistic excellence, leadership, citizenship, and service at school and in their community.  The U.S. Presidential Scholars will be honored for their accomplishments in Washington, D.C., from June 19 to 22.

"These student leaders and scholars show that setting high expectations and striving for excellence pays off," Duncan said. "Their academic and artistic achievements reflect a sense of purpose that we should seek to instill in all students to prepare them for college, careers, civic responsibilities, and the challenges of today's job market."

The 141 U.S. Presidential Scholars include one young man and one young woman from each state, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico, and from U.S. families living abroad, as well as 15 chosen at-large and 20 Presidential Scholars in the Arts.  The White House Commission on Presidential Scholars appointed by the President selected the scholars based on their academic success, artistic excellence, essays, school evaluations and transcripts, as well as evidence of community service, leadership, and demonstrated commitment to high ideals.

For the past 46 years, this prestigious program has honored more than 6,000 of the nation's top-performing students.  Of the three million students expected to graduate from high school this year, more than 3,000 candidates qualified on the basis of outstanding performance on the College Board SAT and ACT exams, or by nomination through the nationwide YoungArts(tm) competition conducted by the National Foundation for Advancement in the Arts.

The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was created in 1964 to honor academic achievement.  It was expanded in 1979 to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the visual, literary and performing arts.

Since 1983, each U.S. Presidential Scholar has invited his or her most inspiring and challenging teacher to travel to Washington, D.C., to receive a Teacher Recognition Award from the U.S. Department of Education and to participate in the recognition events.

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