As API enters the seventeenth week publishing Anchored in Alabama, our team continues to be encouraged by the stories we hear from you and from local media. It is clear that our faith communities and businesses are stepping up to today’s challenges.
We continue to say “Thank You” for your support of this publication. As always, we hope you find it uplifting.
Anchored in Alabama, Week Seventeen
1. Mobile Charter School Bucks District Plan, Offers In-Person Classes
ACCEL Day and Evening Academy, Alabama’s first charter school, is gearing up for students to return to classrooms even as Mobile County Schools shift to online-only instruction. ACCEL is also offering a virtual option over Zoom for students and parents who are concerned about in-person interactions. Headmaster Dr. Jeremiah Newell told NBC 15 that the ACCEL staff has “approached this challenge with an abiding commitment to the success of our students and a willingness to think outside the box to ensure that takes place.” The most important thing, Dr. Jeremiah said, is that “students are not left to teach themselves.” “While we cannot promise normalcy,” he added, “I am confident that as we pull together, there will be nothing we cannot overcome.”
2. Childersburg Principle Goes Viral With COVID-19 Health Video
As we are inundated with monotonous health videos from work and school, sometimes it helps to be creative when publishing a message about how to be careful and protect one another from COVID-19. One Alabama principal took that idea to the next level. Childersburg High School Principal Dr. Quentin Lee has gone viral in the last few days with his musical parody of M.C. Hammer’s “Can’t Touch This”, where Dr. Lee sings about the different COVID-19 health policies at his high school. His musical abilities have garnered over 3.8 million views on Youtube and have been featured on both USA Today and CNN.
3. Birmingham Businesses Offer Schooling Options to Parents
With many schools shifting online, working parents are looking for options. Several Birmingham-area businesses are providing alternatives to these parents. The Magic City Eplex near Irondale will allow children to come in from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. for $150 a week to work on school. Their events coordinator, Eva Seidel, told ABC 33/40 that they will have “a place for 50 students to come out, be in a spaced-out socially distant desk, be able to get their work done on their own curriculum… [along with] subject assistants which can be our employees who are college students learning to be teachers or substitute teachers from surrounding districts.” Alabama STEM Education in Bessemer is likewise providing a program that will last during normal school hours (8:30 am-2:45 pm) and cost $75 a week.
4. $40 Million FedEx Distribution Center Coming to Jefferson County
FedEx recently announced that it is bringing a distribution center to Bessemer along with nearly 300 jobs. The Memphis-based company is expected to invest about $40 million into the hub. Local leaders hope this expansion and those of other companies, such as Amazon and Publix, will drive the continued economic growth in the Birmingham metro.
5. Birmingham Police Surprise Son of Fallen Officer with a Birthday Party
The Birmingham Police Department (BPD) Facebook page was full of surprise and happy birthday wishes on Wednesday when the BPD came out to show support for the son of a fallen officer. Wytasha Carter was a Sergeant with the BPD when he was killed in the line of duty in 2019. The officers came out with bags full of gifts for the young man to make his day memorable.
6. King’s Home Receives Grant from Million Dollar Round Table Foundation
The Million Dollar Round Table Foundation provided King’s Home, a shelter to children, young mothers, and women in central Alabama seeking refuge from domestic violence and homelessness, with a $5,000 grant to help purchase a newer 18 passenger van. King’s Home President, Lew Burdette, said that the organization “provides transportation to about 300 residents each year. Needless to say, we really rack up the miles (250,000 plus) transporting 300 youth, women and children to doctor’s appointments, school, work, etc.” They are extremely grateful to the Million Dollar Round Table Foundation.
This is a reader-submitted story.
Anchored in Alabama is a weekly publication and selected news aggregate of the Alabama Policy Institute that is updated every Wednesday. If you know of a story that could be highlighted in this publication and would like to submit it for review, please email communications@alabamapolicy.