05/02/13 — Funding cuts will eliminate extra classes this summer

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Funding cuts will eliminate extra classes this summer

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on May 2, 2013 1:46 PM

The only summer school classes offered by Wayne County Public Schools will be held for about 100 students at Dillard Middle School, officials say.

"We do not have funding from the legislators for any students except for the Race to the Top grant," said Kim Copeland, director of middle grades education, performing arts and Race to the Top, which is a federal program that provides grants for states to encourage school systems that are creating conditions for education innovation.

A variation of the grant, at Goldsboro High School, has run out, she added, but Dillard Middle still qualifies and funding will be applied for the summer enrichment program -- but only for 100 students from that school.

"All of the students at Dillard are given an opportunity and then screened and placed," Mrs. Copeland said. "We choose 100 of them based on academic need."

The 10-day remediation and enrichment program will run from July 9-24, operating on a four-day week and no Friday classes. Bus transportation, along with breakfast and lunch, will be provided.

Because the school building at Dillard is being rewired this summer, another location will be used for the classes, Mrs. Copeland said.

Teachers are currently being hired for the program, in the areas of English, math, science and social studies. There will also be activities in technology and computer instruction, as well as physical fitness opportunities.

Summer school opportunities have shrunk dramatically in the past decade as money has dried up.

In 2009, the county schools were forced to cancel a full summer school program. But a two-year commitment made the previous year by the county commission allowed them to hold classes for kindergarten through second grade.

In 2010, stimulus funding pumped new life into the program, providing fully staffed classes at all middle and elementary schools.

But last year, the program was only offered at two schools, Dillard and Goldsboro High, funded through three different grants.