Special to Iredell Free News

Speak Life & Live recently held an appreciation lunch for the teachers who stepped up to the challenge at Statesville High School this spring. As most know, the COVID-19 pandemic exacerbated the educational gap.

After having a conversation with Todd Scott, the president of the Statesville Branch  NAACP, the nonprofit learned that over half of the members of the Class of 2021 at Statesville High School were in jeopardy of failing their senior year and not graduating 

Speak Life & Live sent out a clarion call to teachers, including retired teachers in our community, to help tutor the seniors and get them back on grade level.

“Our goal was to get as many seniors as possible to walk and graduate,” Executive Director Leslie Morrison said. “The response of these teachers was immediate and they were committed to the task, meeting Tuesday through Thursday for over six weeks. They accepted the call, met the challenge, and 24 out of 24 seniors who came through the Speak Life & Live, Gems/Gents Tutoring program graduated.”

After that amazing success, these volunteers tutored underclassmen and brought them up to grade level. This coming together of the hearts and minds does certainly demonstrate the African proverb that it does take a village to raise a child.

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