Mr. Jay Smith, the Greater Tallahassee Chamber of Commerce Chair, spoke at the March 23rd Leon County School Board meeting about how the Chamber is seeking to improve the community by focusing on jobs and education. Smith stated this approach is rooted in the belief that the “success of business will drive a higher quality of life for all of our community.”
Smith brought to the Board’s attention the Kindergarten Classroom Adoption Program, which is planned to begin in the fall of 2021. The Chamber is working with the Superintendent to partner Leon County School kindergarten classrooms with a business. “The adoption is not just financial, it is time, it’s working in those classrooms and supporting them with what they need individually in each classroom,” said Smith. This is to ensure each child, in each classroom, understands that the community cares and supports them.
Also, Smith noted that the Chamber is working closely with Amos P. Godby High School seniors on a program called Beacon, to assist them in completing forms for the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). Smith went on to say the completion of the application is a solid indicator that a student will go on to college. According to the National College Access Network, 84% of high school seniors that complete the application immediately enroll in post-secondary education.
Lastly, Smith discussed the Leon County Schools for the Best and Brightest award. He noted that this year there was a record high of 161 high school senior applicants for the award. The Best and Brightest has recognized a total of 2,283 high school seniors and 505 8th graders to date, awarding $793,000 in scholarships. The Best and Brightest is sponsored by Envision Credit Union, Sachs Media, and other supporters. The award ceremony will take place on May 12th at 6:30p.m.