Commissioners create program to recognize youth


The Jackson County Commissioners recently voted to create a new award program to recognize youth throughout the county.

Commissioner Drew Markel introduced a program that would include awards for high school and middle school students.

The awards would recognize students’ efforts in leadership, breaking barriers and community service. An award in each category would be presented to three students in high school and middle school for recognition of six students.

The breaking barriers award would recognize students who have overcome significant challenges, he said.

Markel, who is principal of Crothersville Elementary School, said students from public, private and home schools would be eligible for the awards.

Commissioners plan to form a community board that would review applications sent by a sponsor and student.

The community board would then make a recommendation to commissioners, who will approve the recipients.

The students would be presented with a plaque at a commissioners meeting in May.

Markel said he got the idea by speaking with commissioners from other states. He said there was not a countywide award like this from a local government entity.

“I think it’s a good thing for the county to recognize the youth in the community,” he said.

Markel said he would like to do it with the end of the school year, but this year may be difficult given the time it will take to create the program. He said he already has had conversations with local youth organizations to start forming a board.

“It’s going to be hard to get it done in May by now,” he said. “Maybe we can get it ready and have it next year.”

Markel said the awards would also give students an opportunity to discover who their leaders are and to become familiar with county government.

“We want to recognize the youth in the county who are excelling,” he said.

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