acheivement gap

NAACP: "Don't Resegregate Our Schools"

Right about now, the Chapel-Hill Carrboro NAACP is holding a press conference/rally at Lincoln Center, the administrative home of the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City School System (CHCCSS).  I'm pasting their entire (long!) announcement below as it has a lot of interesting information, including a history of segregation in the school system.

Bridging the Achievement Gap

I am not sure how many folks have read Macolm Gladwell's book, Outliers, but it has a very interesting take on the gap in success between poor kids (often, but not alway minority) and middle class ones.

Expert presentation on Minority Student Achievement

From a press release:

Contact:  Denise Bowling, Assistant Superintendent for Instructional Services, 967-8211, ext. 282
MSA Local Team to host community presentation
The Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools Minority Student Achievement Local Team will sponsor a community presentation by Mychal Wynn, one of the world's premiere authorities on Black male achievement, school improvement planning, closing the achievement gap and college planning.  Wynn will conduct his presentation on Monday, August 4, from 4:30-6:00 pm in the Smith Middle School Auditorium.  Smith Middle School is located at 9201 Seawell School Road.
Participants will learn why identifying, analyzing and understanding the unique societal, home and community variables that impact all students identified as "at risk" is prerequisite to developing holistic and effective strategies for closing the achievement gap and preparing students for college.

"Mr. Wynn has a clear vision that all students can learn at high levels, go to college and be successful in the adult world," said Assistant Superintendent for Instructional Services Denise Bowling. "He renews hope for students, their families and their teachers through his commitment and expertise. He provides a no-nonsense approach and shares a multitude of evidenced-based strategies. We are so pleased to have him work with us."
For more information about Wynn, please visit


Monday, August 4, 2008 - 12:30pm


Smith Middle School Auditorium, 9201 Seawell School Road

Will Changes in OCS Leadership Bring Real Change?

The new board of the Orange County Schools was recently sworn into office. At their very first meeting, the three new board members joined with one of the standing members to vote out the old board chair and vice-chair. They were replaced by two newly-elected members, but the new chairs are far from new to Orange County Schools.

The new board chair is Steve Halkiotis, a former county commissioner and someone who spent his entire professional career in the Orange County Schools, working his way up from teacher to assistant superintendent. The new vice-chair is Tony McKnight, himself also a former OCS teacher.

These changes come less than a year after Pat Rhodes became the district’s superintendent, and like Halkiotis and McKnight he also has previous experience in Orange County.

So we have plenty of new leadership, but I’m wondering if they’ll take our district in any new directions. Can three leaders so tied to the district’s past bring innovative solutions to our contemporary challenges?



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This Week in Orange Politics

It'll be a busy week across Orange County this week. The Carrboro Alderfolks will discuss bicycle-friendliness and the Lloyd Farm propery mediation process, while the Chapel Hill Town Council will get an update on UNC-related development. Both school boards will review the student performance data recently released by the state, while the Hillsborough Town Board will get an update on the Colonial Inn. The county commmissioners will meet with the Mebane City Council on public transportation and the Buckhorn EDD, and will get an update on Southern Branch Library in a serperate meeting.

CHALT and the Sierra Club/Chapel Hill-Carrboro Chamber of Commerce/WCHL will hold candidate forums for Chapel Hill candidates.

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