Inside Williford Elementary School in Rocky Mount NC you will find a center of learning with many of the traditional icons and interior cues that most of us have come to recognize – like classrooms, gym, music room, and of course the library.  Corridors highlight positive messages throughout the building and famous quotes are reinforced against the schools most colorful blues and freshly colored yellows. It is obvious that the school’s pride and commitment to its community starts early and ends when a parent and child close the gate to the playground as the sun goes down.

Often starved for resources and budgets, several of those classrooms have been closed as shrinking school districts struggle to find ways to retain and remain competitive to parents.  Yet the “turn around” problems schools face today, isn’t a new one, nor is it a time to turn inward.  Determined to not just transform WIlliford, Principal Kendrick Alston is set on making big changes to boost the home of the Wildcats.

Those changes include of course an improvement team, behavior program, and the exploration of innovative programs designed to empower youth to excel in school, become great problem solvers and lead productive lives by learning to become producers vs consumers.

Identifying a community partner in Rocky Mount to lead this innovative endeavor was easy as Boys and Girls Club Tar River Region, Executive Director Ron Green shared a similar vision to ensure a positive experience for club members every day, including  serving community teens and youth with club and after-school programs geared towards today’s learning needs and tech interests.