The Spring Convening of the Asheville Buncombe Middle Grades Network was held at UNC Asheville on May 17, 2019. This annual event brought together more than 100 community members, families, and students representing Asheville City Schools, Buncombe County Schools, University of North Carolina Asheville, Western Carolina University, Asheville-Buncombe Technical Community College and a host of health, social service, and youth services community partners. We were also joined by community school leaders from Durham, Knoxville, Nashville, and Chattanooga.
We continued our focus on uplifting Student and Parent Voice Leadership with a featured panel of local middle school students, a parent and teacher who are using their leadership skills to help ensure that our community schools are safe, welcoming, and compassionate for ALL families.
Two students from Erwin Middle School highlighted the leadership opportunities that they have taken on this year, including participating on a hiring committee at the school and serving as welcome ambassadors for new students. An Asheville Middle School (AMS) parent and teacher from the Parent Leadership Program shared how they formed a partnership that is changing students' lives.
"I see Aleesha (the parent leader) as my co-teacher," said Chelsea Barolet, AMS AVID Teacher. "She supports these kids in so many important ways." Aleesha plays a vital role in the AMS School community, showing parents the "Just Do It" attitude that she lives by and that they have a place in school as well."