Some Mount Airy School system teachers and students recently received a bit of a surprise when they had the opportunity to meet Gov. Pat McCroy during a two-day conference in Raleigh.
The students and teachers were there at the invitation of the North Carolina State Board of Education, which wanted to see and hear from the Mount Airy individuals regarding the school system’s involvement in the Math and Problem-based/Project-based Learning for Student Success (MAPSS) program.
Mount Airy was one of five school systems to have some of its officials spend two weeks in training at Wake Forest University over the summer as part of a the program. There, city teachers have received training, coaching and support as they implement programs into their classrooms. During this time the focus revolved around how problem-based and project-based learning can be implemented in the K-8 math classrooms.
The program is being funded by a grant, which also includes Davidson County, Lexington City, Alamance-Burlington and Randolph County schools and lasts for the next three years. The work that Mount Airy teachers have already completed regarding this grant is what garnered the interested of state officials.
As a result, local students and teachers were asked to take part in the recent state board of education fall planning and work session at the Wake Forest Biotech Place, Forsyth Technical Community College and Salem College, all in Winston-Salem.
“MACS was honored to be asked to be a part of this important opportunity in which we highlighted our literacy approach as well as our problem-based learning mathematics approach,” said Dr. Kim Morrison, chief academic and innovation officer for Mount Airy schools.
The students took a part of the problem-based learning activities on Day 1. The state board members walked through their rooms and watched them solving complex mathematical problems.
A surprise, to both teachers and students, following their presentation was a visit from McCrory, who entered the building to give a speech in another area and came to their area first. He talked with the students, encouraging them and showing his support by chanting “Go Bears,” said Morrison.
“The students and teachers were nervous and excited…They really enjoying showing everyone how much they are learning and how it applies to the real world. Mount Airy City Schools is committed to excellence and we are elated that the state has recognized how fabulous our students and teachers are here in Mount Airy,” said Morrison.
Many of the visitors expressed an interest in visiting the district and seeing firsthand the work in Mount Airy.
Reach Eva Queen at 415-4739 or on Twitter @MtAiryNewsEva