Golf Pros Introduce Pinevale Elementary Students To New Sport, Active Lifestyle

By: Winnie Wright; Press Release Email
By: Winnie Wright; Press Release Email

Winnie Wright
April 29, 2014

Valdosta, GA - Kids at 19 local schools are getting the opportunity to tee up for the very first time,

Professional golfers in Valdosta for the South Georgia classic joined the first tee and Georgia Power to bringing golf to schools in Valdosta, Lowndes, Brooks, and Colquitt County Schools. The first tee national school program introduces students to golf as well as core values and healthy habits. Valdosta City Schools says the program will teach kids to play a new sport, while also encouraging them to remain active throughout their lives.

"You don't know who's here. We may have the next professional women's or men's golfer. Or we may even get them a scholarship to a major university that the never would have gotten, so you never know what an introduction, a seed being planted can do for them", says Bill Love with Valdosta Board of Education.

Georgia Power provided the funding for the program and says they hope to introduce the first tee to 1,000 schools in the Southeast over the next five years.

Press Release

Valdosta, Ga. (April 28, 2014) – The First Tee, in partnership with Georgia Power, is proud to announce that elementary school students in 19 area schools will begin delivering The First Tee National School Program as part of physical education instruction. The schools receiving the program are Valdosta City schools, Colquitt County schools, Lowndes County schools and Brooks County schools.

A demonstration of the program is taking place tomorrow at Pinevale Elementary at 10 a.m., where Superintendent E. Martin Roesch will be joined by representatives from Georgia Power and professional golfers in town for the South Georgia Classic.

The First Tee National School Program introduces students to golf and The First Tee Nine Core Values and Nine Healthy Habits in each lesson. Students engage in safe, fun lessons and activities that lead to motor skill development while gaining an introduction to a lifelong recreation and health-enhancing activity.

Physical educators at these 19 schools received in-person professional development training in January, as well as developmentally appropriate equipment and curriculum. At the training, teachers learned how to deliver The First Tee National School Program within their P.E. program and how to integrate character education and healthy choices along with basic golf instruction.

Fifteen of the 19 elementary schools have implemented The First Tee National School Program in association with Georgia Power, the largest subsidiary of Southern Company, through an extension of Southern Company’s longstanding relationship with the PGA TOUR. Southern Company is The First Tee’s Education Patron. Southern Company and Georgia Power have partnered to bring The First Tee National School Program to 128 schools in Georgia. Southern Company has committed to launching The First Tee Program at 1,000 schools in the Southeast over the next five years.

The South Georgia Classic generously provided funding for the four additional schools.

“We’re proud to help bring the very successful First Tee National School Program to new students in several Valdosta area schools,” said Terri Lupo, South Region vice president for Georgia Power. “Georgia Power has a strong history of encouraging new education initiatives across the state and we look forward to continuing to support the work of The First Tee in Valdosta and surrounding communities.”
The character education lessons taught through The First Tee National School Program – honesty, judgment, respect and responsibility – are consistent with the principles that guide the employees of Georgia Power and its parent, Southern Company. Georgia Power’s and Southern Company’s customer-focused business model is guided by SouthernStyle – the company’s value proposition that includes Unquestionable Trust, Superior Performance and Total Commitment.

Georgia Power has long supported education initiatives leading to a better-trained, highly motivated workforce, helping to ensure a sound economic future for Georgia.

For more information about The First Tee National School Program, visit

About The First Tee

The First Tee ( is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit youth development organization whose mission is to impact the lives of young people by providing educational programs that build character, instill life-enhancing values and promote healthy choices through the game of golf. With its home office at World Golf Village in St. Augustine, Fla., The First Tee reaches young people on golf courses, in elementary schools and at other youth-serving locations.

Since its inception in 1997, The First Tee has introduced the game of golf and its values to nine million young people in all 50 United States and select international locations. The First Tee’s Founding Partners are LPGA, the Masters Tournament, PGA of America, PGA TOUR and the USGA. Shell Oil Company is The First Tee’s Founding Corporate Partner and Johnson & Johnson is its Legacy Partner. Former President George W. Bush serves as honorary chair.

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Media Contacts:
Jennifer Steedley, Valdosta City Schools

Jane Fader, The First Tee

Amy Fink, Georgia Power

Area Schools Delivering The First Tee National School Program

Valdosta City schools: J. L. Lomax Elementary, Pinevale Elementary, S. L. Mason Elementary, Sallas Mahone Elementary, W. G. Nunn Elementary

Colquitt County schools: Cox Elementary, Gifted Center, J.M. Odom Elementary, Norman Park Elementary, Okapilco Elementary, R.B. Wright Elementary

Lowndes County schools: Clyattville Elementary, Dewar Elementary, Hahira Elementary, Lake Park Elementary, Moulton-Branch Elementary, Pine Grove Elementary, Westside Elementary

Brooks County schools: Quitman Elementary

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