African-American and Latino children in Wake County perform significantly worse than their Asian and Caucasian peers in the WCPSS on every measure of educational success. Moreover, compared to Caucasian students, African American students are retained/held back four times as often,have a three times higher drop out rate, have a 26% lower four-year graduation rate,1 and are 14% less likely to plan on going to a four-year college.
New research suggests that by September, most students will have fallen behind where they would have been if they had stayed in classrooms, with some losing the equivalent of a full school year’s worth of academic gains. Racial and socioeconomic achievement gaps will most likely widen because of disparities in access to computers, home internet connections and direct instruction from teachers.
And the crisis is far from over. The harm to students could grow if schools continue to teach fully or partly online in the fall. We need consistent leadership to listen to parents and educators to effectively guide our students through these times.
By 2025 75% of all jobs will require some college, and we need our students to be ready for those exciting jobs. Starting from the time they enter preschool, students should have a great education and real world experiences that prepare them for success after high school. Money and circumstance should not stop students from doing what they want in their future. Every student should be prepared to go to college or make the decision to pursue a career pathway.
- College aligned expectations and coursework: high quality preschool, investment in early literacy in primary school, and concurrent and dual enrollment, AP, and IB in secondary school
- Career access: job shadowing, apprenticeships, and internships through programs such as CareerConnect and partnerships with local organizations
- College and career staff and partnerships: staff actively counseling students to help them navigate postsecondary options with organizations.
Schools should reflect the communities they serve.
I know that parents must be partners in shaping inclusive school communities. I know that at their best, students, families, and communities know school as a safe and welcoming place. We can support families by providing wrap around services and meaningfully engaging parents as partners. Parents are experts in their children and can be the best advocates for their child’s success.
- School based family liaisons at all schools in Wake county
- Community based partners with direct service providers and after/before school programs
- Parent programs to strengthen home-to-school connection
- Culturally competent schools
In the classroom, instruction must be aligned to the unique student profile of students. We must ensure investments are being made from a district level lead to the highest quality learning environments and experience for all students, and especially those with high needs. This means supportive classrooms for students and quality infrastructure in our school buildings!
- Whole child investment: socio-emotional services
- Targeted support for students with learning differences, emerging multilingual students, and gifted and talented students
- Small class sizes
- Principal leadership and teacher development