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SCOE Recognized for Innovative County Government Efforts

Honored for Implementing Innovative County Government Programs

Jacqueline Byers, Vicki Talo, Inez Reyes, and Steve Wringley

L-R: Jacqueline Byers, NACo Director of Research; Vicki Talo, SCOE/AmeriCorps Service Member; Inez Reyes, SCOE Project Specialist; and Dr. Ste​ve Wrigley, Director of the Carl Vinson Institute of Government.

The Sacramento County Office of Education (SCOE) has been recognized by the National Association of Counties (NACo) for implementing innovative county government programs to better serve area residents. The 2009 Achievement Awards winners were recognized July 26 during the NACo's 74th Annual Conference and Exposition in Nashville/Davidson County, Tenn.

This year, the Sacramento County Opportunity Knocks Truancy Prevention Program was the recipient of the NACo 2009 Achievement Award.

SCOE, in conjunction with the Department of Human Assistance and various high schools, identifies students who receive public assistance and have a history of being truant from school. The Opportunity Knocks program offers a job to those students who agree to go to school. In addition, the program offers mentors and, in some cases, Regional Occupational Program (ROP) classes to support the students in their efforts to stay in school. The students may continue in the program as long as they are not truant. There are additional incentives for those who have perfect attendance and are in good academic standing.

The Achievement Award Program is a program that recognizes counties for improving the management of and services provided by county government. Since the program's inception in 1970, the Achievement Award Program has honored hundreds of county government initiatives that have improved service delivery, achieved greater cost efficiency, provided finer customer service, and helped to develop a better-trained work force.

This year's winners represent 30 states and 123 counties. "In a year where we saw more applications than in the past four years, counties once again demonstrated their resilience and their ability to work harder in tough times," said Jacqueline Byers, NACo's Director of Research. "Many of these programs were amazing. Smart, efficient and cost effective!"

NACo is the only national organization that represents county governments in the United States.