Arts + Entertainment

coverKyle Ledford spent years working with at-risk youth and high school dropouts in the Haywood school system. Saving kids was his calling, but it always felt like he was not playing with a full deck.

• Dropout program in jeopardy
• Caught in life’s crosshairs, students struggle not to dropout
• Trying to put a square peg in a round hole? Kyle Ledford’s your man

“The problems these kids were having could not be addressed in and of itself by a school. We couldn’t do anything about getting them a job or providing childcare or getting them housing and clothing,” Ledford said. “I can teach kids all day long, but I can’t do anything about housing and I can’t do anything about food stamps and I can’t do anything about transportation. The school system can’t solve a societal problem. It takes the community.”

fr learningcenter1Despite wild success rescuing high school dropouts and turning their lives around, the Haywood Community Learning Center is on the brink of closing if a funding quandary isn’t solved soon.

fr bucellaThe trials of adulthood came early for Nicole Ferguson.

fr ledfordIf there’s one thing Kyle Ledford is good at, it’s pushing boulders uphill.

fr SRCAShining Rock Classical Academy is considering legal action against a modular building company for not being able to honor its lease agreement with the charter school.

haywoodBudget cuts are forcing Haywood County Schools to lay off 10 teachers and staff at the end of this school year.

haywoodHaywood County school leaders went on record this week patently disputing the allegations in a lawsuit filed last week questioning the motives for closing Central Elementary School.

haywoodHaywood County commissioners are once again standing by their commitment to public education, making good on a long-standing pledge to be one of the top counties in the state in local school funding.

coverA small group of parents had been working quietly for about three years to get the first charter school established in Haywood County, and they were beginning to think they would make it through the process without experiencing the backlash everyone told them was sure to come.  

“Everyone warned us it’s going to be hard, but we thought everything was going great until August,” said Anna Eason, a Shining Rock Classical Academy board member. “We bragged about our community being so wonderful and accepting, but then it came out with vengeance.”

jacksonLeaking roofs, failing heating systems and broken pipes in Jackson County Schools will get some much-needed attention after commissioners voted unanimously to take the first steps toward borrowing as much as $10 million to fix them.

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This Must Be the Place

Reading Room

  • Books that help bridge the political divide
    Books that help bridge the political divide Time for spring-cleaning.  The basement apartment in which I live could use a deep cleaning: dusting, washing, vacuuming. It’s tidy enough — chaos and I were never friends — but stacks of papers need sorting, bookcases beg to see their occupants removed and the shelves…
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