N.C. A&T Works with Guilford County Schools to Build Community Education Center

07/13/2022 Academic Affairs

EAST GREENSBORO, N.C. (July 13, 2022) – Guilford County Schools (GCS) Superintendent Sharon L. Contreras and North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University Chancellor Harold A. Martin Sr. are pleased to announce that the district and the university are working with Gateway Research Park Inc., a joint venture partnership of North Carolina A&T and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, to build a Community Education Center. The facility will be used to address the negative impact of COVID-19 on the district’s students, families, staff and community.

The Community Education Center is envisioned to provide flex spaces with tutoring, adult education and community meeting rooms for students and adults. The center is expected to open in 2024.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has disproportionately impacted our communities and disrupted the workforce,” said Contreras. “The new Community Education Center will increase the potential of accelerating learning by serving as a high-dosage tutoring hub for students and will provide professional, high-tech learning spaces for GCS teachers and leaders.

“The center will further provide in-demand job training for parents and community members,” she said. “We are excited to work with North Carolina A&T State University to design a facility that prioritizes professional development, academic support for students, access to high-speed broadband connectivity for families, and workforce development opportunities for our parents.”

Martin echoed those sentiments.

“The data consistently show that student learning suffered across the country during the worst of the COVID pandemic when in-person instruction was not available,” said Martin “This center represents a proactive approach to do something about it. Our multi-institution collaboration will directly impact the students and families of Guilford County, and North Carolina A&T is proud to be playing a significant role in that service to our neighbors and this community.”

The Community Education Center is in the planning stages. It is targeted to be located at Gateway Research Park’s South Campus, 2901 E. Gate City Blvd., and is a critical component of the GCS Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief plan funded by COVID-19 federal relief dollars approved by the North Carolina Department of Public Instruction.

Two weeks ago, at the urging of the Guilford County legislative delegation, the North Carolina General Assembly included a provision in the state budget to allow Gateway Research Park to enter into a lease agreement with the Guilford County Board of Education for a minimum term of 50 years, a requirement for the use of federal funding to build the center. The budget was signed by Gov. Roy Cooper on July 11.

At its July 12 meeting, the Guilford County Board of Education authorized GCS staff to execute appropriate documents to effectuate the creation of a 50-year lease for the Community Education Center on the campus of Gateway Research Park.

Media Contact Information: jtorok@ncat.edu

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