On August 3, 2018, Governor Kay Ivey announced that Greene County High School has been selected as an official Alabama Bicentennial School in a ceremony in the Old House Chamber of the State Capitol. Greene County High School is one of 200 schools selected to receive this special designation and receive a grant to fund a community project developed by the school.
Launched by Governor Ivey in December 2017, the Alabama Bicentennial Schools Initiative encourages all public, private, and homeschool students and teachers to participate in the celebration of Alabama’s 200th anniversary of statehood in 2019. In early 2018, all K-12 schools in Alabama were invited to submit a proposal that engages in outreach and improvement projects to connect their classrooms with their local communities.
From a competitive pool of nearly 400 proposals, 200 schools were selected to be official Alabama Bicentennial Schools and receive $2,000 grants to support the implementation of their projects. Additionally, 56 schools received honorable mentions and $500 grants. Schools were chosen through a review process involving committees of local educators, community leaders, and private citizens.
Representing all corners of the state, the selected schools have developed a wide variety of projects that will make meaningful contributions to their local communities.
The concept for this project came about as Mr. Burnette worked to write an article on local history for his 12th grade American Government class. Several people told him bits and pieces of the stories of people in Greene County who participated in historic events. What if everyone who had a story to tell could have their stories categorized by event and published on a website that anyone could access? What if high school students conducted the interviews and submitted the stories to Rho Kappa (history honor society) members who edited and corrected for grammar and spelling, then posted the stories to be shared with the community and students for generations to come? This is the proposal that Mr. Burnette wrote that received the grant.
“The Bicentennial Schools Initiative is not only a special way for students to take part in celebrating our 200 years of statehood, but also an opportunity for them to engage within their communities. It fosters a love for the state they call home, and it instills in them the courage to make a difference,” said Governor Ivey.
The Alabama Bicentennial Schools Initiative is presented in partnership by Alabama 200, the Alabama Department of Archives and History (ADAH), and the Alabama State Department of Education (ALSDE).
Beginning parameters for interviews:
Each interview is to be recorded (audio, no video) and transcribed. Transcriptions will be reviewed by Rho Kappa members to verify that the transcript is accurate and that any portion that is not first person is grammatically correct. Words and phrases that are in dialect that would be difficult for an outsider to understand should be translated in parenthesis.
A current photo of the person being interviewed is acceptable, but a photo of the interviewee at the time of the event is preferable. Photos that the interview subject provides may be acceptable, as long as they are not copyrighted or professional work.
After we complete the first few interviews and the editing process, we will meet to discuss and create more specific guidelines before extending this project to all students.
Students will earn service hours with this project that will apply to Rho Kappa requirements. In addition, anyone who earns service hours on this project may request a letter for college attesting to those hours.