Thumbs Up! - Oct. 14

There are three in Marietta, and one each in Covington, Roswell, Cumming, Gainesville and Preston. These eight public schools in Georgia were chosen for the 2013 National Blue Ribbon Award. In Preston, Webster County High School stands alone as the only public high school in the state to be tapped for the prestigious designation. The school has only been in existence for a little over five years, but its 121 students, along with the staff, have garnered a national award and no small one at that. With the excellence this school is displaying, the families of Webster County are fortunate to have WCHS as the launching pad for the future of its youth. Well done.

For the 19th year, the Albany Fire Department held its Kids Fire Safety Day event at the Albany Civic Center. With the help of different characters and some great amateur acting, children were taught about matches and lighters, escape plans, smoke detectors, safety in the kitchen and much more. From the preschooler to the third grade student, all eyes were on the characters from the Fire Prevention Justice League and the Firestarter Gang. About 4,000 children attended the event, taking home much of what they learned that day. As Chief James Carswell said, “You can’t measure the fires you prevent.” Just knowing that any number of fires will be prevented is plenty of reason for the AFD to keep coming back.

The Worth County Achievement Booster Club held its second pinning ceremony recently. Each of the 295 ninth grade students met with parents, administrators, classmates, teachers and community leaders for a ceremony pledging to graduate on time with their fellow freshmen. The adults promised to support the efforts of the students. While the ceremony cannot insure the entire class will graduate together, the pinning just might help a young person that is struggling to give second thought to giving up and dropping out. It is great to see this particular achievement boosted at Worth County High School.

Cancer is not a candidate for Thumbs Up!, but the Cancer Coalition of South Georgia certainly deserves recognition. A six-week campaign called Cancer STOMP proved to be a success in its inaugural fundraising efforts. A total of $13,000 was raised to fight against cancer. With Albany’s campaign completed (for this year), the Cancer Coalition plans to move its STOMP to other communities within its 32-county service area. Considering all proceeds from the events stay right here in South Georgia, this is a fundraiser worth supporting.

An ad that runs frequently in The Albany Herald merits your attention. It is small and isn’t designed to sell anything, but its sentiment is far more valuable than the paper and ink used for printing. In case you’ve missed it, this is how it reads: “Parents — Work hard, pay your taxes and obey our laws. Be an example to your children.” Thank you, Darsey Family Foundation, for this simple but strong message.

Lee County High School Trojans are having an outstanding year on the football field. Playing the game, however, is not all linebacker Dextric Green does on Friday. This young man, along with several other teammates, travels to Kinchafoonee Primary School to read to the children. The kids enjoy it, the teachers appreciate it and Green says the children inspire him. Thumbs Up! to you, young man, both on the field and in the classroom.

The Albany Herald Editorial Board