Class Act Teacher Helps Troubled Students

Jan Hammock is a teacher at the Elmore County Alternative Program (ECAP). It's where kids with behavioral problems are sent. Under her instruction and care they gain empowerment.  ECAP counselor Monica Harrison says, "I can do math, I can do science; because really most of the kids who come here have never had that before, or felt that school was important or anybody cared enough to show them some individual attention."

Based on what they did wrong, students come to ECAP for between ten days to a whole academic year. It's an arrangement that could hamper many teachers.  ECAP director Rodney Rodie says, "it takes a very special person to come in here and work and do the things that are required. The teachers here have very little time to themselves, they have no planning periods. They really have to want to do this job, they have to be devoted to the job."

Hammock teaches every subject at every grade level. By mixing in compassion and encouragement, she's able to rack up success stories. "I see them out now, they're grown up, some of them are in college, they have jobs they have families and by and large they're doing a good job of what they're doing. So I would say we have many successes, not all of the time, but it's exciting to see children that you've taught even here that have turned their life around," says Hammock.

She has a background that gives her a special connection to kids, back in the 1970's, she and her husband ran a community center in Tallassee.