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Task force holds Minority Achievement Awards Celebration

Posted Monday, November 17, 2008

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Siler City, NC - The Raising Achievement/Closing Gaps Task Force held its fourth annual Minority Achievement Awards Celebration events on Saturday, November 15.

The Celebration honored African-American, Asian, Hispanic, and Native American students who excel and improve academically. During the ceremonies each minority student that scored at level III or level IV on the state end-of-grade (EOG) tests given at the end of the 2007-2008 school year was recognized. 766 students were invited to participate in the Celebration.

The morning event for students on the western portion of the county was held at 10 a.m. at Jordan-Matthews High School. The afternoon event for students on the eastern portion of the county was held at 1 p.m. at Horton Middle School.

Last school year, the Task Force embarked on an ambitious plan to present the most recent achievement gap information to different segments of the community and then collect ideas from the community concerning solutions to the problem of the disparity in student achievement that exists between majority and minority student groups.

From multiple community meetings, strategies identified include increased parent involvement; providing after school tutoring and after school transportation; increased communication between the school and parents, especially translation services for non-English speaking parents; increasing the number of male and minority role models in schools; improving the relationship between parents and teachers/administrators; improving student interest in school; developing a teen center in Pittsboro and supporting the teen center in Siler City; and increasing teacher training in strategies to teach minority students, among others.

The Raising Achievement/Closing the Gap Task Force believes that the answer to improving the achievement of minority students lies in the development of a true partnership between the school and community.

The Task Force is comprised of representatives from the school system, School Board, Health Department, houses of worship and community members. Additional information concerning the Task Force and community forum can be obtained by contacting Henry Foust at or Nancy Harman at

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