By Curt Yeomans
Clayton County Public Schools' first-ever golf tournament fund-raiser, for Superintendent Edmond Heatley's Scholarship Fund, is still a week away, but the event's organizer is already predicting success.
Luvenia Jackson, the district's special assistant to the superintendent, said 26 of the 36 available team slots in the tournament have been filled. Businesses, she added, including Allan Vigil Ford Lincoln Mercury, and AirTran Airways, have lined up to sponsor the event, either through financial support, or by donating items to be won by golfers.
The scholarships that will be funded by proceeds from the tournament will go to a graduating high school senior from each of the county's eight high schools, to help offset college costs, such as paying tuition and buying textbooks, Jackson said.
"We are pleased with the response that we've gotten from the community so far, especially since it's the first event of this nature that we've done," Jackson said. "I would say it's a success."
The golf tournament will be held on April 23, at the Lake Spivey Golf Club, which is located at 8255 Club House Way, in Jonesboro. Teams can still sign up, at $100 per player, by downloading an application from the Clayton County Public Schools web site, www.clayton.k12.ga.us/. Applications should be sent to "Luvenia Jackson, Clayton County Public Schools, PSA Golf Tournament, 1058 Fifth Ave., Jonesboro, Ga., 30236."
Jackson said the school system is still seeking a title sponsor for the event, which will be granted to the person, or business, which makes a $10,000 contribution to the event.
Among the prizes that can be won by golfers at the tournament are a car from Allan Vigil Ford Lincoln Mercury (golfers must hit a hole-in-one, on a specified hole to be eligible), and plane tickets, to an unspecified destination, from AirTran Airways, according to Jackson.
She also said the scholarships are a new thing the school system is doing to support students as they move on to college. The scholarships will be in the amount of $1,000 each, Jackson said.
"This is a very innovative initiative on the district's part," Jackson said. "We've not had a fund-raiser to have scholarships to help send students to college before."
Students, who receive the scholarships, will be chosen from those who have a "B" grade-point average, or higher, have given back to their community in a positive way, and have had good attendance and behavior records throughout their k-12 education careers.
Scholarship applicants also will have to write an essay, on a topic to be decided by district officials. The essays will be judged by a committee of school system officials, according to Jackson.
Overall, Jackson said the kind of student in line for the scholarship is someone "who has been serious about his or her future, and a student who realizes education doesn't begin in high school."
On the Net:
Clayton County Public Schools: http://www.clayton.k12.ga.us/