Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia on June 29, 1975 · Page 87
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Sunday Gazette-Mail from Charleston, West Virginia · Page 87

Charleston, West Virginia
Issue Date:
Sunday, June 29, 1975
Page 87
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Page 87 article text (OCR)

Yes, that's fog by dawn's early light (left photo) and Judy Miller Kerns starts daily mission. In photo below, pupils at Left Hand Elementary chat with Judy difficulties to trouble spots in home-school interaction. The counseling van "pilots" are Mrs. Carol Ford and Mrs. Judy Miller Kerns, assisted by their aide, Mrs Norma Allen. They've been briefed already on the day's mission in the offices of the project director, Asst. County Supt. Lonme Canterbury, a former airman, incidentally, who made the switch to education after his Air Force career. Before the week is over, they will log more than 1,000 miles on the back roads of Roane County behind the wheels of their vehicles. Project DRIVE is a prize-winner that has proved itself Its theory-into-practice utility was tested closely fpr.three years before it was validated by out-of-state experts for possible adoption by school districts across the U.S. Happily, the recent honors awarded the project have prompted scores of earnest inquiries from districts coast-to- coast with problems and needs similar to Roane County's. The State of New Mexico, for example, distributed literature about DRIVE to every district within its borders. Honors are nice, but now it's time for another take-off. First, Counselor Ford taxis out of view, fog lights mushing the nearly- morning haze. As,an observer, you, climb into the "co-pilot" seat of Judy Miller Kern's van and watch the central office building slowly slide back into the gray distance. The Thumbs Up gesture is your salute to Norma Allen on the sidewalk and, perhaps, an old admiration for David Niven's Stiff Upper Decent Sort integrity (If if s something else, well, there's a big hospital down the road and maybe they'll tell you about it. Who knows? Maybe it's Charmaine and those hot dogs). And maybe ifs the too-early hour of the morning, but the Important Mission image persists. There are no victory decals on the van hood for every rural child helped -- like those shot-down stickers the clubby Leftenants and Old Beans painted on the Spad fuselage cowlings. Perhaps there should be, but instead there's only the project's title and sponsorship by ESEA III and Roane County Schools lettered on the sides of the van. " Nqwyou're underway. Targetfor Today - L e f t Hand Elementary School. And, yes, it's far from London, chaps. A quick glance over your shoulder reveals that the van" interior was designed for total utility in individual and group couseling sessions, storage and: delivery of books, supplies, testing, and other guidance materials prescribed for the children. The wall map back at central .off-. Project DRIVE serves more than 1,000 students in seven elementary schools, some in hard-to- locate areas little changed by modern trends. In addition to direct guidance services to the children, the project .assistsfeachers with various workshops on professional growth, case study conferences, testing, referral and consulting services. Also, the counselors spend considerable time visiting the homes of parents when there is a perceived need to do so. Each summer, a special weeklong camp at Jacksons Mill for the county's sixth graders is held, largely to heighten their awareness of personal self-worth and concern for others. This activity of DRIVE involves parents, volunteers, local businesses, teachers, and college- level educators from state institutions. The ESEA III project was launched in 1971 after a careful needs assessment overseen by State Supt. Daniel B. Taylor and other Department of Education officials, including Title HI Administrator C.O. Humphreys and members of the state couseling and guidance staff. With the careful planning of former Roane schools Supt. John Kingery, the project showed promise almost from its inception. Its success over the years prompted the following from the National Assn. of State Advisory Council Chairmen when the "Ex- cellence in Education" citation was awarded: "Your project has challenged, probed, stimulated, and explored educational practices to insure a meaningful learning experience for the participants. The project is a nationally significant innovation that holds promise of revolutionizing patterns of contemporary education." The earlier-won Educatioal Pacesetter citation praised DRIVE'S "record of success'in areas relating to innovativeness, pupil achievement, cost effectiveness, and program administration." In simpler terms, the educators mean: It helps kids, it works beautifully, and it's affordable by school districts with modest means. The van inches down a semi- road, a seven-G slant at least, and pulls out of it at Left Hand Elementary School. Destination reached, the real work is about to begin. It's recess time and the children of the hills rush gleefully to greet Mrs. Kerns as she alights from the vehicle. . ; · -"-.v;.:. ..· · - . - · - : - - · Tomorrow, another mission to another school. The kids are squealing happily and you think about those national awards. Maybe there should be a French general on hand to pin a medal and place kisses on somebody. If yon recall, Errol and David always blushed boyishly in that scene. Well, David did, at least Old Errol didn't blush much. Just ask Charmaine. ice "headquarters" with all with all those colored pins showing inquiries for information about the project reinforce the "dawn patrol" reverie. This two-van "squadron" in a single year has been validated, lauded by several major educational agencies, honored with an Educational Pacesetter Award and only recently, won an Excellence m. Education citation from the National Assn. of State Advisory Council Chairmen. As the fog lifts, the roads grow narrower, the hills steeper, and the hair-pin curves more frequent. Mrs. Kerns calmly negotiates them with the cool aplomb you lost after the first climbing turn Suddenly, you've been intercepted! Unidentified Strolling Cow at Three O'clock Low, headed for the middle of the road! Your skipper tells you that wandering livestock normally is a bigger menance to navigation than other vehicles, in her experience. She gives; the critter a short burst: of horn-fire and it peels off to the left, put of the zone of combat. You give it a mean Curse You; Red Baron look and resume co-piloting. Flushed with victory, you start firing .50-caliber questions to the driver about the project. And you get answers: . The Great Green Machine works for you even when you M. The Great Green Machine can send you four paychecks a year. And if you deposit these "paychecks" back into The Great Green Machine, your total savings will double in just a Jew years. We figure you work hard enough for your money. Ifs about time your money did something nice for you; It's against the law to print your own money. But with The Great Green Machine you get the next best thing. Tfe Gnat fin * west Virginia BUILDING* LOAN association IK MMNK AT MM MM «3» OiMrrtar St.VClMrlwtMi, W. V«./nwiM 343-4*13

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