Pitt Co. Schools, ECU, communities joining forces to help students

GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) — Parents, educators and administrators are joining forces in Pitt County to start a conversation that can help students in the area. By taking the conversation out of the classroom, participants hope to encourage creative solutions.

“When we look for solutions to problems, we reach for a book or we look to an expert, sometimes even university professors but they’re external,” says ECU Educational Leadership Professor Matt Militello. “The exchange really flips the script on that. We want to go to the people.”

The exchange looks to encourage the further development and success of students.

“We want to talk to students, elders, parents, teachers and administrators to find out what they need,” says Militello. “What are their stories? We think we can find solutions to local concerns by talking to local people.”

Parents are getting involved in the unique approach and developing quality solutions.

“A lot of times, administrators come into schools and say, ‘this is what needs to be fixed,’ without talking to the people in the community,” says A.G. Middle School Principal Norman McDuffie. “A lot of times, they have ideas as well as solutions that can help the school as a whole improve.”

A key issue parents say they want to work on with their children is talking to one another. Communication is a key component of the workshop.

“A lot of them are not communicating the way that they should and they’re acting out so to be able to gain some insight as to how to better help them understand the growth process,” says Georgia Wilson, who is a parent and educator.

By changing the location of the conversation, more intriguing ideas are coming to light.

“We’re not in a school setting,” says McDuffie. “Ideally, we’re coming to the community to talk about what resources we have as a school as well as a community that can help benefit the students.”

The exchange continues Saturday. This is the second year of the workshop and organizers are hopeful more communities will be inspired to start the conversation.

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