To celebrate the completion of their 10-week Super Citizen Program, students at Heritage Elementary School received graduation certificates, took the Super Citizen Pledge and honored a whopping 19 local heroes from stage.

This year students learned crucial lessons in civics, character, financial literacy, careers and social studies. And in the final piece of the prorgam, they formed “Torch Teams” to nominate and honor the everyday heroes we met today.

“Torch Teams,” is a project-based learning activity that brings lessons full-circle and out into the community,” says Tawanna Vickers from the Liberty Learning Foundation. “In a day and age where ‘heroes’ are worshiped for their celebrity status, YouTube antics or for getting in trouble, these students are here reading essays about veterans, mentors and teachers. It’s what keeps us working so hard for this next generation.”

Madison Mayor Troy Trulock was also on-hand to help celebrate and took to the stage to congratulate students. He reiterrated the message that they are already an important part of their communities: school, family, Madison, Alabama and the United States.

It was an emotionally charged and fitting conclusion to the program made possible by Liberty Learning Foundation and sponsors Belk Huntsville, Jane K. Lowe Foundation and the Madison County Commission.