Press Release Details




October 11, 2022


Dothan, Alabama - October 11, 2022: On Wednesday, October 19, at 3:30 p.m. a ribbon cutting will be held at Heard Elementary for the Bright Key® Academic Dream Room sponsored by the Mike Schmitz family. Heard Principal Tamika Fleming and Bright Key® District Coordinator Brittany Shepard will speak along with Bright Key® Heard Resource Coordinator, Lindsey Ferguson. The Academic Dream Room will provide Heard students with opportunities for academic support and enrichment. 


After several Bright Key® stakeholder meetings at the school, parents, teachers and community members selected tutoring as one of their focuses for Bright Key® at their school. The Academic Dream Room was born from these requests and will serve as a place for learning enhancement, providing one-on-one tutoring and small-group enrichment. 


The program began offering tutoring services in February 2022 that will continue this school year.  Volunteer adults from the community commit time each week to work with the same student over the course of the school year on basic academic skills while building a mentoring relationship with the student. Additionally, a literacy enrichment program provided by Girls, Inc. will serve all girls in 1st - 3rd grades.


The Mike Schmitz family is the Academic Dream Room sponsor for Bright Key® Heard Elementary and has provided support by supplying the room with furnishings and all the supplies needed for academic tutoring and enrichment.

For more information about the Bright Key® program, contact Bright Key® District Coordinator for Dothan City Schools, Brittany Shepard, at (334)589-9148 or

Media outlets are invited to attend the ribbon cutting.

ABOUT Bright Key®

Bright Key® is a partnership between Wiregrass Foundation and Dothan City Schools to pilot an innovative, grassroots community school initiative in area schools  Bright Key® involves school-community stakeholders (teachers, parents, and others) in the identification and implementation of programs and services to maximize the academic potential of every child.  Each school’s program is uniquely tailored to positively impact the children, schools, families and communities of the individual school.  Programs and services will be invited into the schools through a self-sustaining partner model that will continually engage the active participation of the stakeholders.  Bright Key® has been at Highlands Elementary and Selma Street Elementary for over seven years and has expanded to Heard Elementary and Morris Slingluff Elementary where the initiative is in its second year.


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