It is summertime once again and the one way we know that around Gwinnett Center is the sight of cap and gowns. For graduations this year, there were 13 schools, with over 7,000 graduating seniors and 70,000 family members and friends in attendance. We would like to extend our congratulations to The Class of 2009 and wish them the best of luck in the future.
Graduations are only a small aspect of the partnership that Gwinnett Center has with Gwinnett County Public Schools. Each year, some of our brightest students come to test their knowledge to try and obtain college credit at the high school level through advanced Placement testing. This year, we had over 14,000 students in attendance over the course of two weeks of AP Testing.
In addition, 600 teachers will be at the Gwinnett Center in July, training with Bright from the Start: Georgia Department of Early Care and Learning. Bright from the Start administers the nationally known Georgia Pre-K Program, licenses child care centers and home-based child care, administers federal nutrition programs, houses the Head Start Collaboration Office, distributes federal funding to enhance the quality and availability of child care, and works collaboratively with Georgia child care resource and referral agencies and organizations throughout the state.
It seems that many of our events that involve Gwinnett County teachers seem to come full circle. While those at the beginning of their careers start here, many of them also end their tenures here as well. Each year, the school system honors those that have dedicated their lives to the education of others and rewards them with a banquet held in our Grand Ballroom. It is a small token of appreciation for all that these educators have done for their countless students throughout the years. This banquet is not the end for the retired teachers, because although they are retired, they are still teachers and we know how they like to celebrate. Their retirement banquet is held here annually as well, so everyone can stay in touch despite all of the activities these retirees are finally getting the chance to take part in.