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Pierce is Certified Literacy Community Program Participant

By JASON DEAL, Staff Writer
The Blackshear Times

Pierce County received its Certified Literacy Community Program (CLCP) designation during a proclamation presentation at Blackshear City Hall Friday. 

The CLCP is a state-certified campaign aimed at mobilizing communities to improve literacy. CLCPs are about economic development, workplace skills, parents able to help their children with their homework, people able to understand and follow prescription medicine directions for themselves and their children, being able to read a map or road sign, immigrants acquiring English language skills and anyone acquiring computer skills.  CLCP is about lifelong learning and acquiring a new skill at any point in life. 

Pierce is one of 78 counties and two cities in the state to receive the designation. 

Beverly E. Smith, assistant commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia, Billie Izard, executive director of the state’s CLCP and Mary Flanders, first district representative of the Technical College System of Georgia and chairperson of the adult literacy committee were on hand for the ceremony. 

A proclamation and road signs designating Pierce County as a CLCP were presented to Danielle Ray, local chairperson of the CLCP program.

Dr. Glenn Deibert, president, Dr. Steve Pearce, former vice president, (now grant program support coordinator with the Office of Adult Literacy at TCSG, and Andy Brannen, economic development coordinator, all from Okefenokee Technical College, were on hand for the ceremony. 
Pierce County’s CLCP collaborative effort included the Family Connection organization, the Pierce County Board of Education and the Pierce County Industrial Development Authority. Individuals involved in the effort were also recognized. 

Jason Lefevre, former director of Pierce County Family Connection, served as emcee for the event. Current Family Connection coordinator Stephanie Bell was out-of-town and unable to attend.

Various county, school board and city leaders were also on hand for the event. Created in 1990 by the Technical College System of Georgia (TCSG) and the Georgia Council on Adult Literacy (GCAL), CLCP asks a community to establish a non-profit collaborative to promote, support and enhance community literacy efforts locally.  

CLCPs work with students in high school to prevent drop-outs.  They promote adult literacy services, recruit and retain adult literacy students in the classes and provide a support system to students and literacy providers alike.  Communities with CLCPs are able to have more workplace programs as well as higher enrollment, higher retention rates and more graduations for adult education students.

To be eligible for the certification, a community must meet five standards:

  • securing the commitment of all leading public and private community organizations to the literacy campaign
  • creating and sustaining public demand for a literate community
  • achieving new enrollment in the program each year
  • assessing and documenting progress and publicly recognizing the incremental economic, social and cultural benefits of literacy skills improvements achieved within the community
  • and developing a program capable of being sustained for the community to achieve and maintain the designation.

Photo:
Beverly E. Smith, assistant commissioner of the Technical College System of Georgia (TSCG) for adult education (l-r), Billie Izard, TCSG executive director of the certified literate community program, Danielle Ray, Pierce County chairperson of the CLCP program, and Mary Flanders, first district representative of the TCSG and chairperson of the adult education committee are shown with a proclamation securing the county’s certified literacy community program (CLCP) designation.

Photo:
Shown are local residents who helped Pierce County secure the certified literacy community program (CLCP) designation. They include Theodore Mackey and Evangelist Pauline Brown, both members of the Family Connection Collaborative, Dr. Steve Pearce, grant program support coordinator with the Office of Adult Literacy at TCSG, Matt Carter, executive director of the Pierce County Industrial Development Authority, Bobbie Johnson, Pierce County Family Connection, Jason Lefevre, former director of Pierce County Family Connection, Danielle Ray, chairperson of the Pierce County CLCP program, Yvette Newton, director of federal programs for the Pierce County Board of Education and Christa Larson, parent involvement coordinator for Pierce County Schools. 

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