American Graduate Series

WUNC's American Graduate Project is part of a nationwide public media conversation about the dropout crisis. We'll explore the issue through news reports, call-in programs and a forum produced with UNC-TV. Also as a part of this project we've partnered with the Durham Nativity School and YO: Durham to found the WUNC Youth Radio Club. 

These reports are part of American Graduate-Let’s Make it Happen!- a public media initiative to address the drop out crisis, supported by the Corporation for Public Broadcasting and these generous funders:

    Credit CPB
      Project Funders:

    • GlaxoSmithKline
    • The Goodnight Educational Foundation
    • Joseph M. Bryan Foundation 
    • State Farm
    • The Grable Foundation
    • Farrington Foundation

    More education stories from WUNC

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    Education
    10:33 am
    Tue June 10, 2014

    'The Teacher Couch Summit,' Tweet By Tweet

    Senate Leader Phil Berger takes an impromptu meeting with Moral Monday protesters.
    Credit Reema Khrais

    Monday night, 15 Moral Monday protesters sat in front of Senate Leader Phil Berger’s door.  Berger wasn't in his office, so the protesters sat there until the Senate session ended. Soon, State Capitol Police began to usher everyone out. They said that the building was closing, everyone had to leave. Reporter Dave DeWitt was with the protesters. He wrote about what happened next this way:

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    Education
    10:18 pm
    Wed June 4, 2014

    NC Moves Closer To Unraveling Common Core Standards

    Credit Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools

      The House passed a bill on Wednesday that moves the state closer to getting rid of the Common Core standards.

    The bill would form a commission to rewrite the standards over the next year, according to legislators, though they could not offer a clear timetable of when they would be implemented in classrooms. They say students would still learn under Common Core until new standards are in place. 

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    Politics & Government
    8:19 pm
    Thu May 29, 2014

    Senate Budget Plan Would Mean Big Changes To Education And Medicaid

    Credit Government & Heritage Library, State Library of NC / www.flickr.com/photos/statelibrarync/8634329145/

    Senate leaders have released their proposed budget for the next fiscal year. They’re looking to spend about 21 billion dollars. Their plan would make substantial changes to the Medicaid program - and would scale back several state agencies, including the Department of Justice. Senate leaders also proposed hefty pay raises for public school teachers. 

    For months now, Senate leaders have made it very clear that they want to give teachers pay raises. But they’ve been pretty coy about the details until this week.

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    Education
    11:56 am
    Wed May 28, 2014

    Senate Republicans Offer 11 Percent Raises For Teachers Who Give Up Tenure

    Senate leaders gathered for a press conference on Wednesday morning to release a plan about raising teacher pay.

    Senate Republicans released a plan on Wednesday to provide what they call the "largest teacher pay raise in state history." The plan calls for an average 11 percent raise for teachers as long as they give up career status, otherwise known as tenure. Teachers who choose to not give up their job protections would stay on the current pay plan and not receive any increases. 

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    Education
    6:32 pm
    Tue May 27, 2014

    NC Bill Would Trim Funding For School Buses

    Credit Dave DeWitt

     State lawmakers are considering a bill that would reduce funds for school buses over the next five years. 

    The House bill would limit the number of spare buses and their replacement parts, while revising the state inspection process for school bus maintenance.

    The bill’s sponsor, Rep. Julia Howard (R-Davie, Forsyth), says the legislation would make school bus operations more efficient, while saving about $19 million in recurring funds over the years.

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    Education
    3:07 pm
    Tue May 27, 2014

    NC School Districts May Face Problems With Online Tests

    Credit Guilford County Schools

    State officials are warning school districts about technical problems they may face with upcoming online exams. Hundreds of thousands of students may have to go back to paper and pencil for their final exams this month. 

    State education officials say they can't guarantee their computer system will be able to handle the Career and Technical Education exams. The issue would affect about 350,000 students. 

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    Education
    8:38 am
    Fri May 23, 2014

    Sophomore's New Grading Scale Would Make 90+ An A

    15-year-old Adam Geringer poses next to a bill he wrote to change North Carolina's grading scale so that an A is 90 - 100, instead of 93-100.
    Credit Adam Geringer

     In North Carolina, all public schools are required to grade students on a seven-point scale. That means you get an A if you score between a 93 and 100, and a B if it falls between an 85 and 92.

    But one high school student is trying to change that - he says the current scale is unfair and is asking state leaders to consider adopting a 10-point scale instead so that a 90 to a 100 is an A. 

    Members of the Broughton High School debate team begin their practice as soon as most students clear out the Raleigh school. 

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    My Teacher
    5:09 am
    Fri May 23, 2014

    'It's Nice To Have Somebody There Who's Looking To See You Grow Up Positively'

    Northern High School senior Mercy Mensah and athletic trainer Ken "Doc" Brown
    Credit Will Michaels / WUNC

    WUNC is in the midst of a yearlong examination of what it's like to be an educator, called the North Carolina Teacher Project. This week, we're returning to the My Teacher series, exploring what it takes to make a connection in the classroom by asking students to interview their teachers.

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    My Teacher
    5:48 am
    Thu May 22, 2014

    'Through Your Class, I Found Something That I Actually Really Care About'

    Carrboro High School junior Anna Knotek, history teacher Matthew Cone, and junior Maddie Macmillan
    Credit Will Michaels / WUNC

    WUNC is in the midst of a yearlong examination of what it's like to be an educator, called the North Carolina Teacher Project. This week, we're returning to the My Teacher series, exploring what it takes to make a connection in the classroom by asking students to interview their teachers.

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    My Teacher
    5:19 am
    Wed May 21, 2014

    'When The Students Say 'No,' You Say, 'That's Not Acceptable.''

    Northern High School junior Sarah Morrison and English teacher Nancy Duffner

    WUNC is in the midst of a yearlong examination of what it's like to be an educator, called the North Carolina Teacher Project. This week, we're returning to the My Teacher series, exploring what it takes to make a connection in the classroom by asking students to interview their teachers.

    Junior Sarah Morrison says her veteran English teacher Nancy Duffner pushed her to be a better writer and dig deeper for her stories about current events. Mrs. Duffner has been around long enough to witness district consolidation and the changing demographics in northern Durham.

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