Source: Education Dive

For a rural, low-income district like Greene County, where funding can sometimes be tight, the challenges are amplified by a lack of resources and access to experiences outside of the immediate community for many students. We have a good relationship with a number of employers in our region, within a 25-mile radius, said Greene County Schools Chief Academic Officer Frank Creech. They sit down together on a routine basis and have conversations around what are the skills gaps that we have, what are the opportunities for students to graduate and come back and work in the surrounding area and stay, to increase the economic development that’s going on in the area. Through those conversations, we’ve developed partnerships with some of the individual employers, and also with funders who have stepped in. And through a collaborative effort, we’ve been able to provide kids with more opportunities, more summer learning, more internships, and even some connections directly into the job market for some of our students who would prefer to do that rather than pursue a four-year college degree. Some specific examples would be a computer integrated machining program that was partially funded through the local community college, Lenoir Community College, as well as the Golden LEAF Foundation.