April 24, 2012–On the playground of Flournoy Elementary School in the Nickerson Gardens area of South Los Angeles, students gathered and awaited the arrival of some very special guests. The newest graduating class of the Sunburst Youth Academy was on their way, ready to treat the children of the school to a marching display of pageantry.
As the class arrived to lights and sirens, the children stood and cheered. Once on the grounds of the schoolyard, the students of Sunburst began their presentation. Two platoons of both males and females marched and chanted, with the school children lifting signs of praise and encouragement in the air. The academy graduate’s message was clear: “Stay in school! Stay away from gangs!”
The Sunburst Youth Academy is a partnership between the Los Angeles Police Department and the Army/ National Guard which takes in troubled teens from the inner-cities, and teaches life skills, responsibility and discipline. This five month, live-in academy is federally funded and is the first partnership of its kind between the Department and the Army/National Guard.
The Los Angeles Police Department would like to congratulate the graduates of the Sunburst Youth Academy and wish them well in their future endeavors.