NASHVILLE – Nash-Rocky Mount school board members received encouraging news from system administrators Monday in regard to the district’s International Baccalaureate Program as well as the Tar River Academy.
The IB program, offered at Rocky Mount High School, offers a curriculum of study recognized internationally and teaches students how to think creatively, study intently and hone their writing and public speaking skills in to order graduate college and be career ready, said Robin May, the district’s director of secondary education.
IB students take their assessments, which are internationally benchmarked, during their senior year.
May said 84.7 percent of the graduates of the Rocky Mount High School IB Program have earned their diploma.
“We have really focused over the last couple of years on growing IB and making sure we get the message out about the program across the district – not just to the middle schools that feed into Rocky Mount High School, but also to students at all of the other middle schools,” May said.
Eleven high school freshmen from feeders outside the Rocky Mount High School feeder have enrolled in the program, May said, bringing the total number of freshmen enrolled to 65.
“We have tremendously increased our numbers just through communicating and getting out into the community and sharing the story of IB,” May said.
The success of the Tar River Academy, the alternative school serving students with behavioral issues, also has seen great success, May said.
“We graduated 13 students in January,” May said “We have approximately 40 students that are on schedule to graduate in June. These are students that, if we did not have the alternative setting in place, we could potentially lose.”
The Tar River Academy allows high school students to graduate with a 21-credit diploma.
“We are trying to catch our at-risk students who are not on target to graduate from their traditional high school with a 28-credit diploma,” May said.
School board members also voted unanimously to appoint board member Reginald Silver as the district’s representative on the Strategic Twin Counties Education Partnership Board of Directors.
“The Strategic Twin Counties Education Partnership was initiated by a resolution from the five elected bodies in the area – the Nash and Edgecombe commissioners, the (Rocky Mount) City Council and the two school boards from Nash and Edgecombe,” Nash-Rocky Mount Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Anthony Jackson said. “At our last meeting, the (STEP) Board of Directors amended the bylaws to have each of those bodies recommend one individual to serve on the board.”
Silver has been involved with the STEP Initiative from the beginning, Jackson said.