Odenville Middle School said government associations from middle schools normally do not compete against high schools at leadership conventions like the one her students attended earlier this month in South Carolina.

"My students have been asking me for three years if they can run against high school students," Williams said. "We decided to take on that challenge. We took campaign materials with us, such as wristbands, T-shirts, flyers. The other schools from Alabama that went with us helped us campaign as well."

It paid off for them – at a conference that featured over 60 schools and 1,500 students, OMS won an election against two student government organizations, one from Florida and one from Louisiana. Williams said it is the second time a middle school has competed against a high school and won.

It is the sort of uncommon achievement that marks students in St. Clair County. For that, we can only stand and applaud.