American Graduate

Arts & Culture
8:21 am
Fri August 30, 2013

Youth Radio: Gang Life Puts Dead End In Sight

Kamaya Truitt-Martin was a reporter with WUNC's Youth Radio Institute this summer.
Credit WUNC

This summer WUNC has been working with six youth reporters as part of the Summer Youth Radio Institute in our American Graduate Project.

There’s a dangerous game playing out in North Durham neighborhoods every day.  Dashaun Richardson, one of my old classmates, spends most of his time in a neighborhood around Dowd Street, just a few blocks from the WUNC studios. He knows that winning this game means surviving and losing comes with real consequences.

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Arts & Culture
6:00 am
Fri August 23, 2013

Youth Radio: Burmese Refugees Help Each Other Out In Carrboro

Akib Khan was a reporter with WUNC's Youth Radio Institute this summer.
Credit WUNC

Original story: Akib Khan Looks Into The Growing Community Of Burmese Refugees In Carrboro.

This summer WUNC has been working with six youth reporters as part of the Summer Youth Radio Institute in our American Graduate Project.  Akib Khan moved with his family to the U.S. from Dhaka, Bangladesh when he was nine years old. He reports on the Burmese refugee community in Carrboro.

Abdul Hussain and his family came to Carrboro in July. Hussain grew up in Burma. He says when he was 13, the local government made false allegations against him, forcing him to flee his homeland and that this happens to many minorities in Burma. He lived in Malaysia for years before finally being granted asylum in the United States. When he arrived, the first thing he did was look for something familiar—as a Muslim, he wanted to find a mosque.

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Arts & Culture
5:00 am
Fri August 16, 2013

Youth Radio: Hargraves Center Director Nate Davis Considers Retirement, After 25 Years

Jerell Davis, a Youth Radio reporter this summer at WUNC, reports on his grandfather's role at the Hargraves Community Center.
Credit WUNC

This is the first in a series of stories from WUNC's Youth Radio Institute, a group of high school students who spent five weeks this summer reporting on issues that matter to young people in North Carolina.

Growing up I had two homes: my grandparents’ house and the William H. Hargraves Center in the Northside neighborhood of Chapel Hill. My grandfather, Nate Davis, lived at both. He’s worked at Hargraves for 40 consecutive years and helped make it a true community center.

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4:34 am
Wed August 14, 2013

Teachers, Universities Will Hurt From Loss Of "Master's Bump"

Teachers will no longer be able to raise their salaries by earning a master's degree.
Credit Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools

The automatic salary bump that comes when teachers earn a master's degree is going away.

Michael Martin is a teacher. His wife is a teacher’s assistant. They love their jobs and work in adjacent rooms in their school in Buncombe County, teaching special needs students and raising three kids of their own. But their life’s work comes with a real-world sacrifice, here in the state that ranks 48th in the country in teacher salaries.

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5:00 am
Mon August 12, 2013

Guilford Middle School Students Getting Tablet Computers This Week

Math teacher Melissa Tatum is one of 900 educators who has been trained on the tablet computers. She plans to use Brain Pop in her classroom this fall.
Credit Jeff Tiberii

Middle school students in Guilford County are getting tablet computers this week, thanks to a federal grant.


One of the largest classroom technology initiatives in U.S. history is underway in Guilford County. This week middle school students can begin picking up their tablet computers and get comfortable with the devices prior to the start of classes.

Teachers have been learning the ins and outs of these Android-based tablets all summer.

"There is also an encyclopedia on here, all kinds of different things that come preloaded," said Eric Loveday, 8th grade science teacher at Southwest Middle School.

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2:14 pm
Thu August 8, 2013

High School Grad Rate Hits All-Time High

For the second year in a row, the state high school graduation rate hit an all-time high.
Credit Malate269 / Wikimedia Commons

It’s hard to find bad news in this year’s graduation report from the Department of Public Instruction. More than 83 percent of high school students who began as freshmen four years ago graduated in four years or less. That’s up two points from last year - the previous all-time high.

Since 2006, the four-year graduation rate has gone up 15 points.

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5:28 am
Thu August 8, 2013

State of the Re:Union - Dropouts To Graduates & Summer In Sanctuary

The Care Center part of 'Dropouts to Graduates' on State of the Re:Union
Credit Emily Fitzgerald

Over the next few days WUNC will present a series of American Graduate Specials from State of The Re:Union. These programs air on Thursday at 12N & 9p with a a second program on Friday at 12N & Saturday morning at 6.

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The State of Things
12:27 pm
Tue August 6, 2013

How Does The "School-To-Prison Pipeline" Work In North Carolina?

Y.E. Smith Elementary School visit the Nasher Museum
Credit / Photos by Duke Photography

A panel of experts join Frank Stasio to discuss the School-To-Prison Pipeline In North Carolina

During the last several years, you may have heard the phrase "School-to-Prison Pipeline" pop up in conversation. It will often be used in discussions regarding the "Zero Tolerance Policy" and armed resource officers in schools. What the school-to-prison pipeline refers to is a number of policies and practices in place that push children from schools into the criminal justice system.

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7:19 am
Tue July 16, 2013

Guilford County's First Summer Literacy Camp

Each morning the summer literacy program begins with a Harambee, a Swahiliword meaning “let’s pull together”.
Credit Jeff Tiberii

Guilford County Schools is holding a literacy camp for the first time this summer. It is aimed at improving reading for children living in unstable homes.

Getting kids to read in the summer has long been a challenge for many grown-ups.  With outdoor activities, camps and family trips, too often books remain closed until the fall. For kids who are living in homelessness and in unstable home environments, the challenges can be even greater. A new summer literacy program in the Guilford County Schools is trying to change that. The goal is for students to maintain or even improve their reading level, build confidence and complete six books.

After breakfast in the cafeteria at Greensboro College about 50 fueled faces file into an exercise studio for an unconventional morning routine. Each weekday for the next month the literacy program begins with Harambee a Swahili word meaning “let’s pull together.”

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Poetic Justice
7:30 am
Fri June 14, 2013

Poetic Justice: Words From Phoenix Academy

Sacrificial Poets CJ Suitt and Will McInerney reflect on a spoken word project at Phoenix Academy in Chapel Hill

This past school year, WUNC partnered with the group Sacrificial Poets on a series of after-school writing workshops.  The goal was to help young people tell their own stories using poetry, performance art and now, radio.  This past semester, poets Will McInerney and CJ Suitt taught a small group at Phoenix Academy, an alternative school in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro School District.  They produced this poetic reflection on the experience.

Phoenix academy sits on a curve of Merritt Mill Road in Chapel Hill. Many students here will be victims of the school to prison pipeline, stereotyping, and other forms of marginalization that render them invisible with no control over how they are seen and in some cases how they see themselves, gifted with vision and insight.

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