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WCPS & CSS of Wayne County recognized for video highlighting supports and success

This past summer, the Wayne County Public Schools (WCPS) Department of Communications & Public Relations, in partnership with Communities Supporting Schools (CSS) of Wayne County, produced a video which helped launch CSS of Wayne County to among the top 22 national finalists in the Chick-Fil-A Foundation’s “True Inspiration Awards” grant competition. On Friday, February 1, WCPS received a Blue Ribbon Award for Effective Communications from the North Carolina School of Public Relations Association (NCSPRA) for this video, titled “A Community of Support: From Failure to Firefighter.”

“Steve Smith, the district’s Video & Digital Marketing Specialist, produced and edited this video and collaborated directly with Gene Jackson and Barbara Wilkins from CSS of Wayne County in order to craft an outstanding video story,” states Ken Derksen, WCPS Communications & Public Relations Officer. “While there are success stories of varying levels occurring each and every day in all of our schools, this award winning video went further by elaborating on a significant success story which could have only occurred though community partnerships.”

This past Friday, school public relations professionals from across North Carolina convened in Greensboro for the annual NCSPRA Blue Ribbon Awards for Effective Communications ceremony. WCPS was one of 31 districts across the state to receive a NCSPRA award.

“This video captured the impact and success that the CSS of Wayne County’s ‘Success Coach’ program and other wrap around services can have for WCPS students,” states Mr. Smith, “By telling the story about ‘Travis,’ a Goldsboro High School graduate and now a City of Goldsboro Firefighter and EMT, those watching the video were able to see firsthand how CSS of Wayne County supports can dramatically turn a student’s life around.”

Through its partnership with WCPS, CSS of Wayne County has eight “Success Coaches” who provide one-on-one support to elementary, middle and high school students “at risk” of dropping out of school. In addition to the Success Coach program, CSS of Wayne operates three community-based programs including the Teen Court, a Mediation program and a Community Service program. All of the programs focus on helping WCPS students stay in school and to successfully graduate.

“The fact that our organizations work so closely together to provide services for our students speaks volumes for how we can accomplish the best outcomes for the students that we serve in this community,” states Selena Bennett, Executive Director, CSS of Wayne County. “This video highlights each of the community partners who have worked extremely hard to reach our students by working together. We are very fortunate to have these relationships and are appreciative of Wayne County Public Schools for their support in helping produce an award winning video to educate and increase awareness about our programs.”

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