“ I think it is so important for children to understand the things that make America exceptional. I talk to adults all the time and give speeches in a lot of places and so many of them are missing the value, the beauty of what this country is, so that’s why I am so excited that this is coming out to our kids.”  – Alabama State Senator Scott Beason

Beason, along with Gardendale Mayor Othell Phillips, was one of many concerned community members on hand today as 150 students at Gardendale Elementary kicked off the Super Citizen Program in grand fashion.

Made possible by a grant from Alabama Power Foundation, the Liberty Learning Foundation’s Next Great Americans Bus Tour rolled into town and a fully costumed Lady Liberty took the stage to teach and inspire these 5th graders and introduce them to the 10-week Super Citizen Program they will begin when the bus rolls away.

Students will learn lessons in civics, character, financial literacy, career exploration and our Great American Story. They will culminate with a project-based lesson, Torch Teams, that brings learning full-circle and out into the community.

“Students will nominate, carefully select and, ultimately, honor local heroes on stage,” says LLF founder Patti Yancey. “It’s a process that involves the whole community and you can feel the gratitude going both ways.”

Parent Lisa Ramsey described the program this way: “I feel like this is something that is missing in the schools today. Teaching children how to be super citizens and how to make an impact in their community and the fact that they are very valuable to their community and each of us play a role in the community and also to teach them how to show appreciation to those who have paid great sacrifices in our community and in our.” 

Joining parents and press, other business and community leaders attending the kickoff event were: Gardendale City Council members Alvin Currington and Greg Colvert, Jefferson County Schools Deputy Superintendents Dr. Shannon Stanley and Dr. Anna Vacca, Alabama Power’s Birmingham Division’s Business Office Manager Rasheeda Burton, Asst. Area Manager TJ Fincher, Wanda Macon, Karen Bradford, Alicia Rodgers, Tevarius Foster and Roxanne Lang.