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Support students as they return to class
In the pulpit
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Summer vacation is over. It may have been a short, hot break, but it’s time to hit those books once again.
On Thursday, Liberty County School System students will return for the 2010-11 academic year. No doubt, some students are looking forward to the first day. Others may not be ready to go back.
While the start of a new school year is exciting, some children may be feeling doubtful and anxious. Perhaps they’ll be attending a new school and don’t know exactly what to expect. Each school year presents different challenges.
Young people must deal with so many perplexing things. In the ever-changing society in which we now live, they must be flexible. While children may sometimes act “cool” and mature, they are often uncertain and frightened by the things they encounter.
We, as adults, must remember that they need guidance, love, assistance and prayers. Whether you have a child in the school system, we all have responsibilities to help our children.
Many community organizations and churches are reaching out to school-age children. Volunteers are assisting students, helping them gather school supplies and providing encouragement and guidance.
Every July, Evangelist Lavonia LeCounte of Fellowship of Love Church of God in Christ in Allenhurst sponsors the annual Back to School Rally at Briar Bay Park in Riceboro. The rally, which began 12 years ago, has blossomed into an event that garners television, radio and newspaper coverage. It also is one of the county’s most well-attended events.  
LeCounte said she understands how important it is to help children as they embark on another school term. On July 10, she spearheaded this year’s rally. The event serves as a motivator to get everyone ready for the new school year. During the rally, children were treated to a program by Larry “Gator” Rivers of the Harlem Globetrotters and given free school supplies and health checks.
Members of the Nu Rho Omega Chapter of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority in Hinesville recently had a back-to-school rally at Regency and Raintree apartment complexes in Hinesville. Children were given school supplies and free information.
The Long County community also is helping students prepare for school. St. James Baptist Church in Ludowici had a back-to-school rally yesterday. According to St. James Pastor Dr. James Evans, children received free school supplies, food, information and played games.
As our children prepare themselves emotionally and mentally for another school term, let’s do all we can to ensure their educational experience is one they will long remember. Pray for their safety and well-being at school. Students should not have to worry about being bullied or ridiculed on the bus or at school. Let’s rally around them so they can become good citizens who give back to and build up their communities.

Anderson is the author of “Lack of Knowledge” and “Dare to Soar.”
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