Working to help teachers help teachers

By Todd Cohen

CARRBORO, N.C. — High-need public schools — those with a large percentage of students living in poverty — typically lose at least half their teachers every year, compared to a loss of 15 percent of teachers at the average U.S. public school.

To help reduce teacher turnover, the Center for Teaching Quality in Carrboro has begun working on a pilot project with 12 high-need public schools in South Carolina to make it easier for excellent teachers to share their teaching strategies with colleagues.

“Not just in the U.S., but in the best-performing systems of education around the world, you will find very sophisticated systems of teacher development,” says Barnett Berry, founder and CEO of the Center for Teaching Quality. “We know that the systems that work the best create opportunities for teachers to develop and use their knowledge of children to solve their problems of practice.”

Founded in 1998 as the Southeast Center for Teaching Quality, at the time an arm of General Administration of the University of North Carolina System, the Center in 2005 became a separate nonprofit and got its current name.

It operates with an annual budget of $3 million and a staff of 15 employees, and is shifting its business strategy to at least double, from 15 percent now, the share of revenue it generates from fees for services, and to reduce, from 85 percent now, the share it gets from foundation grants.

The Center works with state education agencies, schools districts, other nonprofits, businesses, and networks of schools to find ways to help good teachers become leaders in efforts to improve public schools.

The Center supports professional development of teachers that helps them measure their impact and share their knowledge with other teachers and administrators in “virtual communities of practice” and through systems of “collective leadership,” Berry says.

“Most teachers are very much siloed from each other, with very few opportunities for even our our best teachers to share their expertise with their colleagues,” he says. “We have excellent teachers and excellent teaching going on, but it doesn’t spread from classroom to classroom.”

Realigning education resources to support more professional development also is  critical, Berry says.

In Singapore, with a school system that ranks among the best in the world, teachers have 15 hours a week to plan with their colleagues, Berry says. In the U.S., most teachers get less than two hours a week for planning.

And for every 100 educators in the Singapore schools, 75 are teachers, compared to 45 to 50 in the U.S., he says.

In Jefferson County, Ky., the Center has worked with 30 effective teachers to create online study groups to share their teaching expertise with 1,500 other teachers in the school district, which includes 180 schools, 6,000 teachers and 100,000 students.

And two years ago, the Center worked with teachers in 15 schools in the Daytona school system in Volusia County, Fla., to improve their own teaching practices and those of their colleagues. In just one year, Berry says, student achievement in those schools improved 10 percentage points.

But metrics alone will not be enough to persuade elected officials, educators or the public about the value of shifting resources — such as reorganizing the school day and making more time for teachers to lead — to enable good teachers to teach another, Berry says. Also critical, he says, is finding ways to help good teachers use technology and social media to raise awareness about their work and its impact on students.

“We’re certainly cognizant of the mountain we’re trying to climb,’ Berry says. “We cannot do this alone.”

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Nonprofit news roundup, 01.26.18

Autism Society gets $2.5 million

The Autism Society of North Carolina is getting a donation of $2.5 million from the Evernham Family-Racing for a Reason Foundation to support IGNITE, a peer-to-peer program in Davidson for young adults with high-functioning autism or Asperger’s Syndrome.

The Foundation generated the funds through the sale at auction in Scottsdale, Ariz., of a 2017 Ford GT donated to it by businessman Ron Pratte.

With the donation, the Autism Society will open a new location of IGNITE.

North Carolina Bar Foundation getting final bequest gift

The North Carolina Bar Foundation is getting the final of three gift payments totaling nearly $1 million from the estate of the late Charles D. Dixon, and has designated the funds to the NCBF Endowment’s Legal Aid of North Carolina Fund, which Dixon helped launch in 2007 with a lead gift of $100,000.

Proceeds from the endowed gift will underwrite a dedicated position in the Morganton office of Legal Aid of North Carolina. The office serves Alexander, Avery, Burke, Caldwell, Catawba, McDowell, Mitchell, Watauga and Yancey counties in northwest North Carolina

The Foundation already has received gifts of $132,218 and $750,000 from Dixon’s estate, and expects a final gift of about $100,000.

Dixon, a Hickory attorney who practiced for over 60 years with Patrick, Harper & Dixon, died in 2016.

College students, faculty volunteer for community projects

Students and faculty from High Point University joined community members on Martin Luther King Jr.s’ birthday on January 15 in 33 service projects throughout the city, contributing over 1,500 hours on projects ranging from community gardens, painting, and cleaning community centers, to clothing drives and preparing and packaging meals.

Puritz to chair investment committee for N.C. Outward Bound School

Scott Puritz, managing director and co-founder of Rebalance IRA in Palo Alto, Calif., and Bethesda, Md., has been named Chair of the North Carolina Outward Bound School’s Investment Committee.

N.C. Legislative Black Caucus Foundation gets sponsor

Greg Lindberg, founder of Durham investment company Eli Global will serve as a Signature Sponsor of the North Carolina Legislative Black Caucus Foundation for the next five years.

Duplin County groups get disaster funds

Duplin County Community Foundation received $2,500 from the North Carolina Community Foundation Disaster Relief Fund and will give $1,250 to Duplin Christian Outreach Ministries and $1,250 to East Duplin Christian Outreach.

Nonprofit news roundup, 01.19.18

Appalachian State gets $5 million

Appalachian State University in Boone has received a $5 million grant from The Leon Levine Foundation in Charlotte and is naming its new building that will house its Beaver College of Health Sciences the Leon Levine Hall of Health Sciences.

Arts Council to launch annual fund and series

The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County will launch its 2018 Community Fund for the Arts and its new Creative Conversations Network Series on January on January 29 at an event featuring Christian Gaines, executive director of ArtPrize, an international arts competition held annually in Grand Rapids, Mich.

The free event will be held at 5:30 p.m. at the Hanesbrands Theater at 209 North Spruce St. in Winston-Salem.

Leading on Opportunity names executive director

Stephanie Kripa Cooper-Lewter, former vice president of initiatives and public policy for the Sisters of Charity Foundation of South Carolina, will join Leading on Opportunity in Charlotte as executive director on February 20.

Congdon elected chair of High Point Chamber

David Congdon, CEO and vice chairman of Old Dominion Freight Line, has  been named chairman of the Business High Point – Chamber of Commerce for the next two year.

He succeeds Scott Tilley, head of The Tilley Group, a financial advisory firm through Merrill Lynch, who served as the Chamber’s inaugural chairman.

Under Tilley, the Chamber has grown by nearly 200 members.

Burleson joins Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation 

Johnny Burleson, former associate dean for advancement at the School of Government at the University North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and assistant executive director of the School of Government Foundation, has joined the Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina Foundation as director of strategic partnerships.

SECCA names new curator of art

Wendy Earle, curator of collections and exhibitions at Museum of the Southwest in Midland, Tex, has been named Curator of Art The Southeastern Center for Contemporary Art in Winston-Salem.

Ryan to keynote sit-in program at N.C. A&T

April Ryan, a White House correspondent and CNN political analyst, will be keynote speaker for the 58th Annual February One Sit-In Commemorative program hosted by North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University in Greensboro on February 1 at 8 a.m. in the school’s Alumni Foundation Event Center.

Tickers are required for the free event, which  and available in the University Ticket Office.

Gilliam to chair Heart & Stroke Walk

Franklin D. Gilliam Jr., chancellor of the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, has been named chairman of the 2018 Greater Guilford Heart & Stroke Walk that the American Heart Association host on UNC Greensboro campus on May 19.

The event aims to reach 5,000 walkers and raise $500,000 to fund heart disease and stroke research and prevention education this year.

Martin named president-elect of national hospice nurses group

Beth Martin, senior director of medical services for Hospice & Palliative Care Charlotte Region, has been named president-elect of the National Hospice & Palliative Nurses Association.

N.C. Disabled American Veterans gets $11,000

The North Carolina Disabled American Veterans has received $10,795.20 from Covelli Enterprises, the largest franchisee of Panera Bread.

The company raised the funds in November through contributions from customers at 15 Panera Bread locations in Greensboro, High Point, Burlington, Kernersville, Winston-Salem, Clemmons, Boone, Hickory, Salisbury, and Mooresville.

Race for the Cure set for May 5

Komen North Carolina Triangle to the Coast will host the 22nd Annual Susan G. Komen Triangle Race for the Cure, presented by Duke Cancer Institute, on May 5 at The Frontier in Research Triangle Park.

High School Athletic Association teams with Moe’s

Moe’s Southwest Grill locations in the Triangle are the 2018 Official Triangle Fast Casual Restaurant Partner of the North Carolina High School Athletic Association.

Support for people with brain injury

By Todd Cohen

RALEIGH, N.C. — An estimated 200,000 people in North Carolina, or about two percent of the population, are living with the long-term effects of brain injury, with an average lifetime cost of care for a moderately injured young person with brain injury totaling over $4 million.

Yet state lawmakers allocate only $2 million a year specifically for services for traumatic brain injury, or about $10 per person with a disability related to brain injury.

Working to provide support for people affected by brain injury, and to raise awareness about its impact, the need for more funding, and ways to help prevent it is the Brain Injury Association of North Carolina.

“It’s life-changing for the person, and for the family many times,” says Ken Jones, executive director of the Raleigh-based Association. “The life that they knew prior to the  brain injury is different than life after the injury.”

Individuals ages 15 to 24 suffer the highest numbers of severe traumatic brain injuries, which are the leading cause of death and disability among young people in the state, the Association says.

Males are 1.5 times more likely to sustain a brain injury than are females, and falls and motor-vehicle accidents are the top two causes of brain injuries.

Brain injuries can affect an individual’s emotions, cognitive or physical abilities, or decision-making skills. Many individuals affected by brain injury experience short-term memory loss.

Founded in 1984 and operating with an annual budget of $675,000 and a staff of 10 people, the Brain Injury Association receives about half its funding from the state, 40 percent from the federal government, and about 10 percent through private fundraising.

Its main fundraising activity has been a walk-and-wheelchair event targeted to families affected by brain injury, but a subcommittee of its board is developing a new fundraising strategy aimed at the general population.

The Association provides 160 training sessions a year serving a total of 6,000 brain-injury survivors, professionals and families, and also provides an annual conference for each of those groups. And it provides education sessions on concussions at 10 schools.

The Association also hosts a resource-and-referral hotline and website that field a total of 6,000 phone calls and email messages a year.

To raise awareness, it hosts events, such as Strike Out Concussion days last year at Carolina Mudcats and Asheville Tourists baseball games. And it distributes a weekly e-blast and quarterly newsletter to about 2,000 subscribers.

Jones, former CEO for Eastpointe Human Services, a managed-care organization that serves 12 counties in Eastern North Carolina, is not a registered lobbyist but spends a lot of time in the Legislative Building in Raleigh.

Last year, he talked to state lawmakers about the impact of a proposed bill that would have eliminated the requirement that adults riding motorcycles wear helmets. The bill did not pass.

North Carolina is the leading state in the U.S. for lives and money saved as a result of its universal, mandatory helmet law, Jones says. In 2010, helmet use in the state saved $163 million for every 100,000 registered motorcycles.

In the short legislative session that begins in April, Jones will be talking to lawmakers about the need to increase funding for individuals with brain injuries to support not only medical treatment, but also residential care and integrating survivors back into the community.

The Association also supported a change in Medicaid funding that will affect 107 individuals in the state on a pilot basis over three years starting this year, providing reimbursement for care that can be delivered at home or in an outpatient clinic rather than a hospital or nursing home.

“This could happen to any individual and any family,” Jones says. “There is very little support. A family ends up caring for the individual, in severe cases 24/7, or the individual becomes part of the public system in an institution.”

Nonprofit news roundup, 01.12.18

Cary Rotary Club event to support hunger relief

The Cary Rotary Club will host its 15th annual Chili Dinner fundraiser on January 26 at Kirk of Kildare Presbyterian Church at 200 High Meadow Drive in Cary.

The event, featuring meals meals prepared by Whole Foods Market, aims to raise $44,000 to support local hunger reliefs and support over 94,000 meals throughout the world, over $11,000 to support local hunger relief efforts

Big Hair Ball to benefit Family Service

The Guild and Junior Guild of Family Service of Greensboro will host the sixth annual Big Hair Ball on January 27 at the Elm Street Center in downtown Greensboro.

Honorary chair for the event, which will include a cocktail reception, silent auction and runway fashion show, is Lindsey Auman, and platinum sponsors are Lenny Peters Foundation/Bethany Medical Center and Woodruff Family Law Group.

Methodist Home to host gala

The Methodist Home for Children in Raleigh will host its gala, A Winter’s Tale, on January 27 at The Raleigh Convention Center Ballroom, featuring speaker Jimmy Wayne, a country musician and author.

New ballet to focus on infertility, miscarriages [photos]

Infertility and miscarriages will be the focus of (MIS)CONCEPTION, a new dance show that Royal Expressions Contemporary Ballet in Greensboro will introduce on February 3 at the Odeon Theater at Greensboro Coliseum at 4 p.m.

Following the premier of the show, which will tell the true stories of three women who have dealt with infertility and miscarriages, the women and healthcare professionals will talk about infertility and miscarriage.

The show is funded with support from Lincoln Financial, ArtsGreensboro and an anonymous donor.

Me Fine Foundation names development director

Katie Todd, former director of digital strategies for the North Carolina League of Conservation Voters, is joining the Me Fine Foundation in Princeton, N.C., as its first full-time development director.

Center for Volunteer Caregiving to host gala

The Center for Volunteer Caregiving in Cary will celebrate receiving the George Maddox Award from the state Department of Health and Human Service at The Center’s annual fundraising gala on February 9 from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m. at N.C. State University Club in Raleigh.

Duke gets $5 million to endow dean’s chair

The law school at Duke University in Durham has received a $5 million grant from The Duke Endowment in Charlotte to has established a named chair the dean’s position.

The first James B. Duke and Benjamin N. Duke Dean of the School of Law will be David F. Levi, who has served as Duke Law’s dean and a professor of law since 2007.

Levi plans to step down as dean on June 30. The university is conducting a search for his successor, who will occupy the endowed chair upon appointment.

Ronald McDonald House benefits from gift drive

CBRE|Triad partnered with Hirschfeld Industries, Samet Corporation and Apex Systems in a Christmas drive that donated $1,250 worth of presents and gifts to the annual Santa’s Workshop at Ronald McDonald House of Winston-Salem.

More than twenty employees participated in the fundraiser.

Teacher grants available

February 15 at 5 p.m. is the deadline for submitting applications for grants of up to $2,500 each from The Winston-Salem Foundation for professional development for educators from -pre-kindergarten through 12th grade in the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools.

Nonprofit news roundup, 01.05.18

ABC of NC gets $1.5 million for new clinic

ABC of NC Child Development Center in Winston-Salem has received a $1.5 million grant from the member-funded State Employee Credit Union Foundation to support construction of the SECU Autism Clinic at ABC of NC, a 26,000-square-foot facility that will house diagnostic, therapeutic, and behavioral services for hundreds of children with autism in the Triad.

The organization, which plans to complete construction of the new facility by August 2018, has raised over $6.1 million on a campaign to raise $6.5 million to build the clinic, as well as a 3,500-square-foot activities building and improvements to an existing school building.

ABC of NC, which serves 350 children a year and employs 60 people, expects to more than double its capacity and staff size within two years.

New food bank alliance aims to promote food security

All 10 food banks in both Carolinas have formed an alliance, Feeding the Carolinas, that aims to raise awareness and promote food security for people in need in the two states.

Members of the North Carolina Association of Food Banks and the South Carolina Association of Food Banks approved the new alliance last August 201

The new Alliance will work to build coordinated relationships with farmers and growers in the Carolinas to help increase fresh produce and perishable foods available to food banks in both states.

It also aims to develop initiatives to save costs, mainly involving transportation of food, and to launch a joint billboard campaign in the two states to increase visibility of Feeding America Food Banks.

High Point health funder gives $252,000

The Foundation for a Healthy High Point has awarded $251,557 in grants to local organizations and nonprofits the focus on the health and wellness for High Point residents, with roughly 80 percent of the funds going to programs that address behavioral health.

Triad Community Kitchen to open second restaurant

Triad Community Kitchen of Second Harvest Food Bank plans to open a second restaurant this spring on the first floor of BB&T’s corporate headquarters at 200 West 2nd St. in Winston-Salem.

The opening on Providence Kitchen, a cafe-style eater, will mark the expansion of the Culinary and Life Skills Training and Hospitality Residency program of Triad Community Kitchen, which already operates Providence Restaurant & Catering.

Holiday program raises nearly $200,000 for children’s hospital

The Santa’s Elves program has raised nearly $200,000 to support initiatives at Brenner Children’s Hospital at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center since the program was created 20 years ago by Mar Alspaugh, now 85 and a retired administrative employee at Wake Forest Baptist.

Leukemia & Lymphoma Society chapter getting $14,000

The Fourth Annual Triangle Oktoberfest at Booth Amphitheatre in Cary raised $14,000 for the North Carolina chapter of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society, the designated partner of the event, which was hosted by the Apex Sunrise and Cary MacGregor Rotary Clubs.

Family Service gets donated books

Family Service of the Piedmont received over 1,000 books collected by students at High Point University for its Healthy Start program, which works with pregnant women and new parents.

The student, in the leadership development class taught by David Bergen, chair of the department of human relations, collected the books for children up to age five in a project focused on literacy.

The book donation was the largest ever for the Family Service program.

Salvation Army gives Christmas bags to 1,500 kids, families

The Salvation Army of High Point prepared bags, filled with toys and stockings, distributed at Christmas to over 1,500 children and families in need.

Habitat homeowners pay off mortgages

Fifteen Habitat Greensboro homeowners paid off their mortgages in 2017 and took full ownership of the homes they helped build.

To celebrate, several of the homeowners burned mortgages over open flames on December 15.

Students raise $15,000 for gifts for kids

Students at High Point University raised $15,000 through offerings at weekly services in the Charles E. Hayworth Memorial Chapel this fall to buy toys, clothes and necessities requested by 154 children through the Angel Tree Program of the Salvation Army.

ArtsGreensboro awards $13,000 for school arts projects

ArtsGreensboro awarded 15 grants totaling $13,000 for arts project in public, charter and private schools the Greensboro area serving students from kindergarten through 12th grade.

The Wells Fargo Teacher Arts Grant grants program is supported in part with funds from Wells Fargo Bank and its Arts in Education Fund.

Forsyth County children enroll in free book program

Over 1,200 children in Winston-Salem and Forsyth County have enrolled in Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, which provides children a free book, delivered to their homes each month, from their birth to their fifth birthday..

In 2017, state lawmakers included $3.5 million in the first year of the state budget, and $7 million in the second year, for Smart Start to administer the program across North Carolina.

Homeless getting sleeping mats made of recycled plastic

Winston-Salem Police and United Way of Forsyth County will distributed to homeless individuals over 100 sleeping mats made of yarn from plastic bags — or “plarn” — that were created through Operation Bedroll, a collaboration among Greensboro’s Field Operations, Library and Police departments to keep non-recyclable materials out of landfills and provide a safe place for homeless individuals to sleep.

Since the collaboration began in 2016, over 4,000 people have learned how to make plarn, keeping an estimated 212,000 plastic bags out of landfills.

Based on data collected in January 2017, 453 people were experiencing homelessness in Forsyth County, including 25 who were without shelter.

Animal shelter receives donated items from businessman

Harold Jones of Reidsville Truck & Trailer Repair made a donation to Rockingham County Animal Shelter that includes 250 pounds each of dry dog food and dry cat food; 50 cases each of canned dog good and canned cat food; and 200 pounds of kitty litter.

United Way donor gets new auto

Neil Doss, an employee with the City of Burlington, was selected to receive a new car from one of six Alamance County dealerships through a raffle that serves as an incentive program for donors to United Way of Alamance County.

Participating dealers were Cox Toyota; Dick Shirley Chevrolet Cadillac Mazda; David Westcott Buick GMC; Flow Companies of Burlington; Flow Honda; and Stearns Ford.

Students provide blankets for charity

Students in several grades at Forsyth Country Day School teamed up for a service project to provide handmade fleece blankets for Samaritan Ministries in Forsyth County.

Cooking competition to benefit Lucy Daniels Center

The Lucy Daniels Center in Cary will receive all proceeds from Cooking for Classic, a competition launched in 2017 that begins January 22, with semifinals January 29 and 30, and pits eight chefs in head-to-head matchups to win a restored classic 1949 pickup truck.

All competitions will be held at 1705 East, an event venue of Rocky Top Catering, at 1705 East Millbrook Road in Raleigh.

February 23 is deadline to submit award nominations

February 23 is the deadline for submitting nominations to The Winston-Salem Foundation for The Winston-Salem Foundation Award, which recognizes visionary leadership and includes a $10,000 cash grant to a charity selected by the winner, and for The ECHO Awards, which recognizes people who build social connections, with winners receiving $1,000 to donate to a charity of their choice.

Recipients of both awards will be announced at the Foundation’s Community Luncheon on May 2.

Arts Council names five new board members

The Arts Council of Winston-Salem and Forsyth County has named five new board members, including Steve Berlin, a partner at Kilpatrick Townsend Law Firm; Drew Gerstmyer, an architect at East Coast Capital;  Richard Geiger, president of Visit Winston-Salem; Jason Kaplan, associate vice president for space and master planning at Innovation Quarter;  and Camille Kluttz-Leach, vice chancellor and chief of staff at Winston-Salem State University.