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Head Start students salute nations Thursday

By Kathy Jefcoats

kjefcoats@news-daily.com

FOREST PARK — Clayton County Head Start program's annual salute to nations is set for Thursday starting at 9 a.m.

Each class in each of the county's three Head Start centers studied a nation and will dress the part for festivities that will start with a parade.

The International Day Celebration Program started in 2004 under the leadership of Clayton County Head Start Director Eme Isok-Nsuk. Isok-Nsuk is responsible for about 352 Head Start students in Clayton: about 200 at the South Avenue center, and the rest split between Riverdale and West Street centers.

"I think it is a great way to bring the community together and to close out the program at the end of the year," she said. "We've had quite a year, but got through it with the community's support."

After the parade, classroom winners will be announced.

Part of the celebration is the recognition of volunteer parents. Gary Johnson, South Avenue Center manager, said the awards are given based on the number of hours the parents give during the year.

"We, at Head Start, are dedicated to children and families," said Johnson. "They are [modest-income] families, and any way we can help them out, we will. We work hard to get the students ready for the next level, which is kindergarten."