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Chief’s Diploma Program launches

COVINGTON — The Dr. Annise Mabry Foundation announces the launch of the Chief’s Diploma Program (CDP). With underwriting by a team of philanthropic angel investors, the program brings together educators, police departments, and city officials throughout Macon County to help adult learners earn their high school diplomas.
Each of the county’s four police departments nominate five adult learners from their communities to participate in CDP’s inaugural year. CDP officials will create individual learning plans for each student, drawn from Mabry’s successful Tiers Free Academy model. Academic mentors will coach the students throughout the program.
“I developed Tiers Free Academy as a framework for homeschooling students who weren’t thriving in traditional schools,” notes Mabry. “But it’s perfect for adult learners. It’s self-paced, which gives adults the freedom they need to organize their days, and it’s mastery-based, which ensures that their diplomas mean what they say. Those diplomas are much more valuable than a GED.”
The numbers bear her out. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, high school graduates earn upwards of $1,600 a month more on average than GED holders. They’re far more likely to attend college, and to stick with it past their first semesters. The military also prefers a diploma: the military-service dropout rate for GED holders is nearly twice that of high school graduates.
Those figures are especially significant in Macon County, whose high school graduation rate is lower than both Georgia’s and the country’s overall. A workforce with more diploma holders is simply more competitive. And that means a stronger local economy, with all the associated benefits.
Those benefits aren’t lost on county police. When Marshallville Police Chief Ronald Jackson saw how successful Tiers Free Academy had become, he saw an opportunity to extend his own Cops in Community program. He and Mabry began a conversation that quickly led to a draft version of the CDP.
Montezuma Police Chief Eric Finch Sr. and Oglethorpe Police Chief Rachael Hart immediately recognized the life-changing potential that this program could have in their communities.
“A partnership with Dr. Mabry simply made good community sense,” said Hart.
To attend the Chief’s Diploma Program Information Session, register with the following police departments: Marshallville Police Department, Montezuma Police Department, Oglethorpe Police Department, or Ideal Police Department. To learn more about how Macon County stands to benefit from the Chief’s Diploma Program, or for more information about Tiers Free Academy, contact Annise Mabry at drmabry@tiersfreeacademy.org, or at 650-741-5019.