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NEWS RELEASES 1997-98 :: JANUARY 13, 1998


The North Carolina Partnership for Accelerated Schools recently received two grants: first, a $20,000 grant from Philip Morris Companies Inc. Teacher's First Initiative to provide on-going training and mentoring for parents and teachers in participating schools; and second, a $70,000 grant from the Z. Smith Reynolds Foundation Inc. for expansion of Accelerated Schools in North Carolina.

The NC Partnership, a collaborative effort among Public Schools of North Carolina, local education agencies and teacher education programs, is a comprehensive approach to school change. Its three key ingredients include creating a unity of purpose among parent, teachers, support staff, students, administrators, the school district and its local community; shared decision making and empowerment; and identifying and building on strengths of the entire community. The program emphasizes freedom, innovation, cooperation and the special qualities of each child.

Accelerated Schools began at Stanford University in 1986, and began to North Carolina in 1993 when three schools were launched in Durham. The project has reached more than 1,000 schools in 40 states and has 10 satellite centers for training.

There are 11 Accelerated Schools in North Carolina, located in the following: Asheville City, Caldwell County, Durham Public Schools, Franklin County, Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools and Wayne County. Teacher education programs working with the project include NC State University and East Carolina University. North Carolina also is one of the 10 national satellite centers.

The Z. Smith Reynolds grant, which seeks to improve educational inequities experienced by minority children, includes a planning grant for expansion of the project in North Carolina and also will provide training and mentoring for local school communities. Training topics will include the Accelerated Schools process, powerful learning, assessment of student achievement, using the inquiry process for shared decision making.

For more information, contact Janis Carroll at the Partnership office, 919.807.3300, Education Building, 301 N. Wilmington St., Raleigh, NC 27601-2825.

About the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction:
The North Carolina Department of Public Instruction provides leadership to 115 local public school districts and 126 charter schools serving over 1.5 million students in kindergarten through high school graduation. The agency is responsible for all aspects of the state's public school system and works under the direction of the North Carolina State Board of Education.

For more information:
NCDPI Communication and Information Division, 919.807.3450.