Jackson County residents realize the value of education – not just for their enrolled children but for the generations past and present that are educated in the primary and secondary schools across the hills and valleys of our county. Each school is unique as each developed to serve the needs of a unique community, but all are united in their desire to provide a quality program for all students served in both the Jackson County District and the Scottsboro City District.
The Jackson County School District with its 18 primary and secondary schools is preparing students for college and/or advanced technical training so they are ready to pursue their personal goals thereby making them ready to enter the 21st Century workforce. They are accomplishing this by creating virtual learning centers offering high quality Internet resources such as the Alabama Virtual Library, which utilizes text databases ranging from African-American History and Culture to World Date Analyst. They also optimize video teleconferencing and online classes, as well as distance-learning laboratories.
Scottsboro City Schools are also on the move providing cutting-edge educational opportunities complete with computer labs, video teleconferencing courses, long distance learning, and classes in robotics inventions. Not only are they offering high tech classes for those whose interests lie in that direction, the Board of Education decided to keep pace with the changing needs of our society and desires of students who need options in our current workforce and economy. Some unconventional classes that are now offered include a cosmetology program. Of Scottsboro’s six schools, Caldwell Elementary, housing grades K-4, is the newest being completed in 2006. Scottsboro High School, which opened in 2002, is a technologically advanced facility. The school houses several computer labs, media center, auditorium, greenhouse, two basketball courts and a new baseball and softball complex.
IMPACT Learning Center, one component of the Greater Jackson County Chamber of Commerce, helps people help themselves. Its credo is apparent in its acronym – IMPACT or Individually Managing Personal Achievement and Career Training. The center’s momentum started with the 21st Century Council. The council was conceived in 1993, when the Scottsboro Rotary Club realized that 42 percent of Jackson County citizens did not have a GED or high school diploma. The Chamber of Commerce realized the workforce was changing from agricultural and textile. With hard work and the use of state of the art computer lab, general classes, and partnering with Northeast Alabama Community College’s Northeast Alabama Adult Education for GED, the 2000 census documented a significant improvement. Currently only 33 percent of Jackson County citizens lack a secondary or GED diploma. This “resource center” is helping to improve educational attainment levels of Jackson County.
Northeast Alabama Community College’s (NACC) enrollment is on the increase. With student growth comes building growth. In 2007, the Heath Education and Technology Center opened. This new building houses health related programs and workforce training programs, including the Alabama Technology Network. NACC Jazz Band has performed in the Alabama Jazz Hall of Fame festival since it was established in 1994. NACC’s theater and literary programs have won numerous awards. Nursing students at NACC consistently have superior pass rates for state examinations.
Earnest Pruett Center of Technology (EPCOT) bridges the gap between school and the workplace. Youth with marketable skills for the job still face the challenge of matching their talent with an employer. For this reason EPCOT enhances educational avenues for students in the Jackson County and Scottsboro City high schools. EPCOT offers advanced training preparing students for the 21stcentury workforce.