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Chalmette High School Senior Continues School’s Legacy of National Merit Semifinalists


Media Contact: Alexis Pritchard

Date: 09/19/2022

Phone: 504-301-2000


Chalmette High School Senior Continues School’s Legacy of National Merit Semifinalists

Chalmette, LA - Another school year means another National Merit Scholarship Semifinalist at Chalmette High School. Recently, 12th-grader Coby Barrow was recognized for this prestigious honor, granted to the nation’s most promising seniors.

Coby was one of over a million students nationwide to take the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test, or PSAT. Semifinalists are ranked among the highest performing high school students in the state and the top one percent in the nation. Over 90 percent of the Semifinalists are expected to attain Finalist standing and will vie for millions of dollars in scholarship money. 

Coby, an honor roll student at the top of his senior class, has a 4.19231 grade point average and a near perfect 35 on his ACT score. A product of St. Bernard Parish Public Schools, Coby attended J. F. Gauthier Elementary School and St. Bernard Middle School before entering Chalmette High School. During his school career, Coby has been an active member of a number of clubs, including Student Council, 4-H, Beta Club, and Key Club. 

A stand-out player in Academic Games for six years, Coby has also represented the district as a member of St. Bernard National Teams. Last year, Coby was rated as one of the top ten players in the nation in Academic Games.

Kelli Watson, an Assistant Principal at CHS, said Coby is truly committed to academic success. 

“Coby has taken Advanced Placement courses and has been able to maintain his grade point average while taking the most rigorous courses we offer,” she said. “He is an impressive young man.”

Jonathan Palazzolo, a teacher at CHS and a coach of Academic Games, said Coby exemplifies the success that comes with hard work.

“Coby is a joy to be around and very deserving and qualified for this national recognition,” Palazzolo said.

Coby credits his teachers and family for their support and attributes his success on the PSAT to his ability to focus and his desire to do well. After graduation, he hopes to attend MIT to major in computer science en route to a career as a software engineer. 

Superintendent Doris Voitier congratulated Coby on his achievement and applauded the Chalmette High School administration and staff for their excellence in rigorous academic coursework.

“We are proud of Coby and happy that he has continued Chalmette High School’s success with National Merit. Voitier said. “We have had many outstanding scholars recognized for this distinction and are proud that Coby has continued that legacy of academic excellence in our schools.” 

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