• 1973

    March 12– The Community Education Board met for the first time, including the Model City Coordinator

    March 26– Goals of hiring a full-time director and opening two pilot schools in city and county were established

    June 22– Dr. Don Butler is hired by Community Education Board as the first director of Community Education

    September 5– Phone survey conducted  to obtain information on community school programming

    Fall– First classes offered and first theater production presented

  • 1974

    June– Interlocal agreement signed between Bowling Green Independent and Warren County Public school districts, the city of Bowling Green, and Warren County Fiscal Court in support of Community Education


  • 1975

    March– Enrichment classes offered in 14 schools and centers with 1,100 participants

    October– Enrichment classes offered in 13 schools with more than 70 activities and more than 7,000 participants

  • 1976

    September– Pam Sarrett is hired as Community Education director


  • 1978

    August– Karen Schmalzbauer becomes the new director of Community Education.

    Fall– 86 Enrichment classes are offered throughout the city and county

  • 1979

    Fall– Volunteer program initiated


  • 1979-1980

    Enrichment classes offered at 24 sites

  • 1980-1981

    Enrichment classes offered at 31 sites


  • 1983

    Summer– A summer program for children initiated

    Fall– After-school program began at McNeill Elementary

  • 1984

    Winter– After-school program began at Potter Gray Elementary


  • 1985

    Fall– Youth Volunteerism program initiated

    Winter– Rape Crisis Center started; ACTION grant funded latch-key program

  • 1989

    Fall– After-school care expands to four more sites; Youth program serves 565 youth who performed more than 10,000 service hours


  • 1990

    January– Magic Me tutoring program begun at Girls’ Club

  • 1991

    Mayor’s Youth Service Awards

    Summer– Super Summer Club offered at two elementary schools

    Fall– After-school care expands to a total of seven sites


  • 1992

    Community Education loses its home due to fire and water damage at High Street Community Center

    November– Frank Brown is hired as Community Education director

  • 1993

    Summer– Full day, all summer programming offered

    Nancy Firkins is hired as the new Community Education director.

    Fall– After-school care offered in nine schools serving 350 children


  • 1994

    Summer– Full day, all summer programming served 200 students at two elementary schools

  • 1995

    Service-learning initiated at the Alternative School; after-school care offered in 12 elementary schools


  • 1996

    Youth Activities Program began to serve middle school youth during summer; kindergarten wraparound (K-Care) program served half-day kindergarten students at McNeill Elementary

  • 1997

    K-Care expands to four sites; AmeriCorps VISTA Service Learning program in middle and high schools; after-school care grew to 14 sites with 530 students


  • 1998

    Along with co-sponsor Western Kentucky University Resource and Referral Department of Childcare Services, the first-ever Stand for Children Day is held in Bowling Green-Warren County.

  • 2000

    June– Debi Wade Jordan selected as executive director of Community Education

    September– Collaborated with Bowling Green Independent School District to offer two 21st Century Learning Center after-school programs; the total number of after-school programs increased to 15 and one before-school program; 838 children served in all mentioned programs


  • 2001

    Spring– Offered on-line enrichment classes for the first time

    August– Offered after-school programs at 16 elementary schools; offered before-school programs at three elementary schools; received state Department of Juvenile Justice Delinquency Prevention grant to offer after-school programming at Bowling Green Junior High School; began after-school program at Moss Middle School; 1,075  children served in all mentioned programs

  • 2002

    Spring- Enrichment classes continue to grow; continued to offer on-line as well as traditional courses serving 667 participants for 2001-2002

    Summer- Community Education offered two elementary all-day, all summer Super Summer Clubs and one middle school Youth Activities Program serving about 500 children; returned to offering summer enrichment classes for the first time in several years

    August- Added an after-school program at Drakes Creek Middle School; served a total of 1,223 children in all before- and after-school programs at 16 elementary and three middle schools; Community Education employees now number 10 full-time staff members, about 120 part-time staff members, and several enrichment instructors


  • 2005


    • Served 1,270 children and youth in before- and after-school programs
    • Awarded service-learning mini-grants to teachers and staff in both school districts
    • Provided anti-bullying, service learning, developmental assets, volunteer and volunteer management training. Enrichment classes offered in two long sessions (spring and fall) and two short sessions (winter and summer)
    • Along with co-sponsor Bowling Green High School Youth Service Center, the first Summer Activities Fair was held for summer camps/programs for students in K-12th grade
  • 2006

    February– Hosted first adult spelling bee fundraiser – Spellabration – to address decreasing funding and increasing costs for programs.


  • 2007

    October– Purchased property from Dr. Clark Carthrae to build a permanent home for Community Education. The building was designed by Ben Holton of Williams Associates Architects and was constructed by Smith and Smith Contracting.

  • 2009

    November- Hosted ribbon cutting for the new office building at 1227 Westen St.


  • 2010

    Fall– Created Teen Angel, a Christmas assistance program, to meet the needs of teenagers who no longer qualified for assistance through another long-standing program. Partnerships with the BGISD and WCPS’s Youth Services Centers, the Ministerial Association, Vision- a multi-agency Council, and other local agencies were forged to create this program which served 98 teens this first year.

  • 2012

    Fall- Added school-age programming at the newly constructed Jody Richards Elementary School


  • 2016

    Fall- The first-ever Blockbusters at the Ballpark, Community Education’s new fundraiser, is held at the Bowling Green Ballpark (home of the Hot Rods) to replace the long-running Spellabration. The blockbusters shown were “Star Wars: The Force Awakens” and the Disney animated movie, “Big Hero 6”.

  • 2018

    Fall- Added school-age programming at the newly constructed Jennings Creek Elementary School. Before-school programs are now in nine schools and after-school programs are now in 19 schools.


  • 2019

    Fall- Debi Wade Jordan retired after more than 19 years as Executive Director. Bill Oldham, long-time Community Education board member and previous Advisory Council member, was hired as the new Executive Director.

  • 2023

    April 15– Celebrated our 50th Anniversary with an Open House reception, a BG Chamber ribbon cutting, and a joint proclamation between the City of Bowling Green and the County of Warren, KY celebrating the milestone.

    June 13– Celebrated the 25th Anniversary of Stand for Children Day with a BG Chamber ribbon cutting and a joint proclamation between the City of Bowling Green and the County of Warren, KY celebrating the milestone held at the Club Room of the Bowling Green Ballpark.

    June 15- Held the 25th Anniversary of Stand for Children Day at the Bowling Green Ballpark, sponsored by American Bank & Trust, Bowling Green Kiwanis Club, and WellCare. The event was attended and celebrated by 939 people.