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Grant renewed for Greater 2nd Mt. Olive Baptist Church

Turner Elementary School students enjoy a trip to the Georgia Aquarium as part of the 2nd Mt. Olive Baptist Church's Community Outreach Center's FLAGG Program.

Turner Elementary School students enjoy a trip to the Georgia Aquarium as part of the 2nd Mt. Olive Baptist Church's Community Outreach Center's FLAGG Program.

ALBANY, Ga. — Over the past 20-plus years, Greater 2nd Mt. Olive Baptist Church’s Community Outreach Center has provided many opportunities for after-school and summer enrichment services for children in Dougherty County.

One of its most recent accomplishments was obtaining a second 21st Century Grant for an after-school program at Turner Elementary School. Greater 2nd Mt. Olive’s first grant was in excess of $975,000 over a period of three years. Those funds were utilized solely for third- through fifth-grade students at Turner Elementary School.

The final year for the initial grant ended this summer; however, it was renewed for $2.2 million over the next five years beginning with the 2012-2013 school year.

The second 21st Century Grant Mt. Olive received is for $1.5 million for first- and second-grade students at Turner. The center is currently in the second year of this grant.

“East Albany has a tremendous need for after-school academic, educational, social and enrichment activities,” Outreach Administrator Leslie Heard said. “So we identified these problems and partnered with Turner to implement a Family Learning Academic Achievement & Growth program. Since poverty has the tendency to foster low educational attainments, the purpose of this initiative is to expand the capacity of the after-school programs to include projects that will offer new experiences to expand the learning opportunities for low-achieving, disadvantaged students, and promote family involvement through offering literacy education.”

Since the inception of the FLAAG Program, Heard said Mt. Olive has always maintained high attendance numbers.

For the 2012-2013 school term, in which the program will begin on Sept. 4, more than 325 students between grades K-5 have already registered. The program will be held every Monday-Thursday from 2:30 p.m. to 6 p.m. and on specified Saturdays from 8 a.m.-2 p.m.

FLAAG not only offers academic enrichment in the areas of reading, language arts and math, it also offers other enrichment activities such as Spanish, sign language, arts and crafts, computer technology, character education and organized sports, among many others.

“We also operate a seven-week Summer Camp Enrichment Program. The camp has proven to be a great success as it helps to prevent gaps in services from the end of school until the beginning of school,” Heard said.

She added that all of the programs have been a great asset to the children of Dougherty County.

“Overall, the FLAAG programs have been a tremendous asset to the Dougherty County School System, Turner Elementary School and the East Albany community as a whole,” said Heard. “We are expecting an incredibly successful year.”

Comments

ittybittyme 1 year, 7 months ago

There should be no grants for these black churches....tired of seeing dollars thrown away on these programs that do not work.

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hotdog 1 year, 7 months ago

Always negative when it comes to things regarding people of color...your name matches your intellect

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ObjectiveEyes 1 year, 7 months ago

If it had been a "white" church, ya'll would be shouting, "separation of church and state!!!"

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Gabrielblows 1 year, 7 months ago

“We are expecting an incredibly successful year.” By whose standards? By what authority? Grants like these are funded by taxpayer dollars. There should be some form of authoritative oversight to regulate and to make sure our tax dollars are not wasted. The current figures for student progress and peformance from schools in this area do not show academic success in any area. What a sham!!!!

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hotdog 1 year, 7 months ago

Exposing children to things/cultures they have not or would not normally see is an important part of the educational experience....continue to do good work Ms.Heard and FLAAG....obviously someone thinks they are doing the right things, the grant got renewed...if you don't think there is oversight on this money then you are sadly mistaken until some people get out of the 1950's mindset Albany will have geniuses posting like this

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 7 months ago

Please elaborate on the oversight of the money. Take all the time you need.

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redneckgourmet 1 year, 7 months ago

How dare you ask such a raycess question, sister. I'm sure we can all trust that amount of money to the same church that organized the signature campaign for the right Rev. Heard's DCSB candidacy. Nothing to see here.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 7 months ago

.....crickets........chirp chirp......chirp chirp............

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redneckgourmet 1 year, 7 months ago

I don't have a problem with a faith-based organization being given money by the government to perform needed community welfare activities. Hopefully the money is spent more on the actual program than the administration of the program. But I'd love to see the outcry if one of the large, white(r) churches was given a grant like this.

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RedEric 1 year, 7 months ago

The by now well known phrase " you didn't build that" comes to mind. Mr. Minister/bishop/paster Heard didn't build that program. He used someone else's money for that. People who worked for that money. Becoming wealthy via money you didn't earn is NOT a message you want to teach fragile children. He is teaching that you ask and the government will respond by giving you money you didn't earn. Use these children to clean the neighborhood for PAY and use the pay the go to that nice place. You, paster/bishop/minister Heard are teaching freeloaders. We have enough of them in this country.

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DoctorDorite 1 year, 7 months ago

I can't really speak of this other than these types of expenditures is another reason we don't buy anything in Doughtery Co. that we don't have to, clothes, vehicles, food, resturants, etc. are all readily available in nearby cities that know what waste of taxpayer money is all about. Its sad and shameful Albany is rotting from within and the citizens don't seem to care anymore how things will eventually turn out.

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Cartman 1 year, 7 months ago

$2.2m? Really? Are you serious?

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VietVet1 1 year, 7 months ago

For the kicker - divide that by the number of students served. And you wonder why this country is so far in debt.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 7 months ago

I think it says $2.2M + $1.5M = $3.7M. WOW there's gonna be a lot of new Mercedes and BMWs rolling around town in the coming months! Albany Motorcars is now taking appointments!

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dingleberry 1 year, 7 months ago

Delighted that I am a participant in such a worthy enrichment program. Exactly who is being enriched is up for grabs, however. According to the 2010 IRS form 990 for the group, "After School and Summer Camp for Students of the Local Community" spent $52,316 which sounds like a very far cry from what the govt gave for the program.

Who knows where the rest of the money went? Looks like Lorenzo goes to Atlanta for his accounting work in filling out the forms and book cooking so perhaps those guys know where it is residing.

I haven't made it to the Georgia Aquarium yet so this article warms my heart. Combined with the $2 million grant being split by the YMCA and DCSS for after school enrichment activities, I suppose, and my heart runneth over with to the point of bursting! America and its taxpayers are fortunate to have $4 million to turn over for the exclusive use of children in two schools and select grades within the schools.

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tywebb 1 year, 7 months ago

i don't have a problem with my tax dollars funding after school educational activities. I don't care if it's for whites, blacks, greens, etc. Programs like this are great for the community in that it helps with the education AND it keeps kids out of trouble (for the most part). BUT, if the numbers you post are accurate (i have no reason to doubt that they are), then that's when I have a problem. My taxes already go to welfare queens for their cellphones and their kids' air jordans. It shouldn't be going to a "pastor" to buy a new car, live in a nicer house, etc. Sister Ruby is right....there has to be some sort of oversight!

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dingleberry 1 year, 7 months ago

And trust me, there isn't any and won't be any.

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gotanyfacts 1 year, 7 months ago

The concept sounds good. Comments, as usual are rather polarized. More details about how academic enrichment is carried out, the quaifications of instructors, schedules to show how the time is spent, and audits of expenditures could quiet the critics. All of this information should already be consolidated if the government, as it should, requires the information in order to assess the program. Common sense suggests that there should be an assessment in place comparing progress of the group attending the program with those not attending. Such info should be available.

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dingleberry 1 year, 7 months ago

Jeez, common sense is an uncommon thing in govt so forget that one!There won't be any assessment comparing anything.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 7 months ago

Who/what is a 21st Century Grant (article should have explained this) and who provides post-Grant oversight on the use of funds? If any..........or is this just another Transfer Payment?

Informed: 21st Century Grant is a federal grant from the U.S. Department of Education. Yep, free money, transfer payment, no oversight whatsoever.

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DoctorDorite 1 year, 7 months ago

Agree, this is a poorly written story with so much info missing but its the daily norm with local media.

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Sister_Ruby 1 year, 7 months ago

Recognize this: There will be Exactly, Precisely the Same Amount of Fiscal Oversight of these Grants totalling $3.7 Million Dollars to Lorenzo Heard et al as there was to Cutliff, to DCSS, to Free/Reduced Meals, and to a hundred other forms of "Transfer Payments" from the Democrat-controlled Federal Treasury to their Favorite Dependable Voting Blocks. Really no other way of looking at it that meets the Sniff Test in the Light of the Past Decade's Experience.

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