Giving Students Opportunities to Shine
June 3, 2011

When students have the opportunity and support to achieve their dreams wonderful things can and do happen. Just look at Scotty McCreery, the 17-year old high school junior from Garner, North Carolina, who just became the next American Idol.

Scotty has an amazing voice and was encouraged throughout his life by his family and community to pursue his singing dream. What a living testament he has become to millions of young people across the United States and the world that hard work and belief in your dreams can make them come true.

North Carolina's 2012 Principal of the Year Rob Jackson relayed a story about three juniors he inherited at his school who were told by their former principals that they didn't have the credits to graduate with their class. These students didn't give up nor did their teachers give up on them, and with lots of hard work and perseverance and yes, a strong belief, they were able to earn the necessary credits to graduate on time.

I am sure we all know of stories of students who when given the opportunity and support were able to reach academic goals they didn't believe were possible, provide a community service that has touched untold numbers, or lived a personal dream like Scotty.

It is imperative that we not only provide students with a curriculum that is rigorous and relevant but also many opportunities to explore their talents and shine. That way, when our students graduate from high school they are career and college ready and have the confidence they need to achieve their dreams!




June St. Clair Atkinson
State Superintendent