Branch announces NAACP Learning Bridge Program

The Chapel Hill-Carrboro NAACP Education Committee is inviting organizations to partner with us in our efforts to close the opportunity gap for students of color in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro City Schools (CHCCS), which is likely to grow even wider as a result of recent and indefinite school closures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Our plan is to establish the NAACP Learning Bridge Program to address racial opportunity gaps in CHCCS, especially during COVID-19 and its aftermath. Our initial objectives are to work with the schools and other key stakeholders to identify students of color in two housing communities (Elliott Woods and Chase Park) who could benefit from special learning support throughout the summer until December 2020, and provide each student with a volunteer “Bridgebuilder” who will support access to and completion of critical school-based assignments while also connecting the student to additional resources for educational opportunities.

The program’s overall goal is for students served to experience academic growth, and ideally, be prepared for grade-level work in 2020-2021.

We are requesting support from partners in this initiative in a number of ways. Organizations can choose if and how members will participate in any of the following areas of engagement:

• Appoint a member from your organization to serve on the Learning Bridge Program Task Force.

• Help us identify volunteers to serve as Bridgebuilders. These volunteers might be members of your organization or others that you know. Bridgebuilders will be asked to commit to supporting 1-3 students through December 2020. The first Bridgebuilder task will be to ensure students are able to access school assignments through the internet and to tutor (by phone or virtually) or find tutoring for students with their assignments. The second task will be to connect students to other culturally competent learning opportunities, coordinated by The Learning Bridge Program.

• Support the Learning Bridge Program with in-kind donations or with your financial support. Once we are able to meet in person, we do envision providing students with snacks, educational resources, and ultimately, with culturally enriching and competency-building programming.

We plan to conduct our first virtual Bridgebuilder training on Saturday, May 30, 2020, in order to launch the program before the official end of the school year. Once started, we plan to run the program throughout the summer into the academic year.

If you and your organization would like to partner with us, or should you have any questions, comments or ideas to share, please reach out to Dianne Jackson. Dianne can be reached at djackson1262@gmail.com.

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