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Mebane Charitable Foundation to contribute additional funding

MEBANE — The Mebane Charitable Foundation has approved a grant of $90,000 to support Davie County’s 2016 Read to Achieve summer camp for third graders who have failed to meet state requirements in reading to advance to the fourth grade.

During the summer of 2015, more than 30 percent of the county’s non-proficient students reached the required reading achievement score to move on to fourth grade, while other campers received extra assistance during the school year with another 15 percent of those students passing the Read to Achieve test in the months following camp.

“While a 30 percent success rate may not seem extraordinary to people not close to education, and more specifically the Read to Achieve program, that rate is far better than those being reported by the majority of school systems in North Carolina,” said Larry Colbourne, president of the Mebane Charitable Foundation. “After seeing firsthand the quality of delivery and instruction at the Read to Achieve summer camp held in Davie County Schools in 2015, partnering with DCS again in 2016 was an easy decision for my board.”

This is the third year the foundation, located in Mocksville, will partner with Davie County Schools to fund the intensive four-week camp, which this year will also include struggling first- and second-graders as mandated by the North Carolina Department of Instruction. Based on the state’s funding allotment, Davie County Schools anticipates serving 80 third graders along with 60-70 first and second graders.

Noel Grady-Smith, executive director of curriculum and leadership development for Davie County Schools, attributes the success of the program to the implementation of both Hill Center Reading Achievement Program sessions and A+ Schools Instruction during the summer program and subsequent school year which created a consistent foundation for student achievement. A student teacher ratio of 8-1, working in small groups based on individual needs,  was also extremely beneficial to the struggling readers.

“With funding provided by the Mebane Foundation combined with state funds, students attending the 2016 Read to Achieve Camp will actively learn through the arts, receive tailored instruction in Hill Center Reading sessions, and work in small groups with literacy coaches during the challenging four week-program,” Grady-Smith said.

“Thanks to the continued investment of the Mebane Foundation, this summer our DCS Read to Achieve Camp will build upon the strength of our specialized curriculum taught by highly accomplished teachers to boost reading and achievement levels in third graders as well as selected first and second graders,” she added.

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