By Gwen Sisson
Louisville Municipal Schools Superintendent Ken McMullan said the collaboration that takes place with the Getcha Head in the Game program has “proved so beneficial for the school district.”
“It provides opportunities for businesses, elected officials, school officials, and chamber members to share ideas that prove to enhance educational opportunities for the students of the Louisville School District,” McMullan said.
McMullan said ideas that have been implemented because of the Getcha Head in the Game program include,
- college tours,
- ACT workshops and
- industry tours.
“Future plans to continue to improve students ACT scores by encouraging students to take the test at the middle school level and encourage students to take the test multiple times,” McMullan said. “Research clearly shows students usually improve their ACT scores as they take it numerous times.”
“Getcha Head In the Game is a wonderful program of the Winston County Economic Development District Partnership and is truly an example of ‘partnering’ the community for the purpose of economic development,” said Louisville Mayor Will Hill. “In an effort to expose students to opportunities, community leaders and educators come together to plan college and industry visits along with college preparedness efforts like ACT workshops. The future of the community is in how well prepared our youth are to be tomorrow’s leaders. I would like to commend the Partnership for their efforts in making the most use of the funding and continuing to keep Getcha Head in the Game a part of the community.”
Getcha Head in the Game is a program administered by the Winston County Economic development Partnership that was encouraged by an initial grant from the Appalachian Regional Commission and Mississippi State University. ARC is no longer funding this program, but the organizers will be seeking sponsors for this program for the 2014-15 school year.
Gerald Mills, executive director of the Winston County Economic Development District Partnership, said the program brings together all of the stakeholders in the community involved in high school retention and promotion to higher education attainment.
“Two years ago the program received The Governor’s Cup Award for contributing to an 80 percent increase in higher education attainment,” Mills said. “In addition we have seen dramatic decrease in drop out rates. The program encourages college campus visits, ACT preparation classes ,Mississippi Scholars awards, honor role salute to success programs and other incentives encouraging post secondary attainment.”
Kelli Wall, organizer of the Getcha Head in the Game Committee for the Winston County Economic Development District Partnership said ECCC has helped with this program, which includes an ACT workshop, ACT Prep Test, and provides the instructor along with the criteria for the testing. This is offered to all Winston County students including sophomores, juniors and seniors.
“I think this program is very important and informative to the students because it gives the students ‘tips’ on how to take the ACT and provides information on how to apply for college, along with grants and scholarships,” Wall said. “It is important to us because we have the opportunity to help students and be a part of offering them a better chance at succeeding because these young people are our future leaders.”
Wall said in the four years this program has been instituted in Winston County, dropout rates have decreased.
For more information about the Getcha Head in the Game program, contact Wall at (662) 773-3921.
In the Chamber article on page 1C Kelli Wall should be listed as new incubator manager as she took over for Martha Mills in February of 2014. Martha Mills retired in January 2014 and was recently honored at the Chamber Banquet.