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Thumbs Up! - June 9, 2013

Editorial

In most cases, placing fourth is commendable but not headline news. Not so in the case of Darton State College’s Athletics Department. The National Alliance of Two Year College Athletic Administrators voted the Darton State College Cavaliers as the No.4 athletic department in the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) in its winter sports poll. Darton earned this ranking by sweeping its conference in basketball, wrestling and swimming and diving. Along the way, three national champions were named, one in wrestling and two in diving. The basketball team won its first conference and district championships in over a decade. Sophomore Michelle Mitchell became the Lady Cavalier’s first NJCAA First-Team All-American. A look at the NJCAA website revealed that there are 415 colleges in the program. Congratulations on such a high ranking.

In part, the mission of Albany Advocacy Resource Center’s Adult Day Program is to “ensure that people with developmental disabilities experience valued roles in the community by providing services and training that supports individual choices and opportunities.” The program’s success lies in part with the community’s willingness to be a part of the lives of those served. And so it was last week when the Albany Panthers, their mascot and the Feline Dance Team spent time with the consumers at Adult Day. There were photo opts and autographs and simply a time to visit. This was the second visit from the Panthers and an exciting event for some of the team’s biggest fans. Thank you for taking time out to make a difference.

Back in 2012, Albany Mayor Dorothy Hubbard issued her “Call to Service.” The initiative calls all citizens to do their part in making the community a better place to live. From picking up litter to reporting crime, the “call” is wide open for any ideas. Last month one resident and businessman put his own spin on the idea. Artesian Contracting Co. President Glenn A. Singfield presented funding to five nonprofit groups. Samaritan Clinic, GraceWay, Strive2Thrive, Meals on Wheels and the National Youth Sports Program, each of which provides amazing service to the community, were tapped for the company’s generosity. Mayor Hubbard was all smiles, as were the recipients.

The Lee County Public Library has a program that will make a huge impact on a child’s future academic success and there is absolutely no cost involved. Children from birth to the day they enter kindergarten are eligible to participate in “1,000 Books Before Kindergarten.” Books are read to the child and recorded in a reading log. When the first log is full, simply return it to the library and pick up the next one. Registration is available at any Lee County Library branch.

Speaking of reading ... Sharon Siniard’s 7th-grade class at Worth County Middle School topped off the school year with two national reading awards. The first award designated the class as a Model classroom by the Renaissance Learning Company when over 90 percent of Siniard’s students maintained an overall average of 85 percent on Accelerated Reader (AR) quizzes for a 12-week period and engaged in independent reading for 20 minutes daily. The class went on to receive Master Class status when over 90 percent of the students maintained an overall average of 90 percent on AR quizzes for 18 weeks while independently reading for 25 minutes daily. Thumbs up, one and all!