LEE COUNTY, Miss. (WCBI)–Lee County has applied to join the statewide Excel By 5 program. A group of representatives from the county met last Tuesday(8-28) to complete the application. The Excel By 5 initiative sets standards for communities to improve children’s overall well-being by age five. Once the standards are met, the community is awarded as a “certified early childhood community.” The Excel By 5 board will meet in October to vote on whether to accept Lee County’s application. If chosen, it will join 35 other Mississippi communities working for the certification. Nine areas have already been certified, including Monroe County, West Point, and Oktibbeha County.