"We think the business community can become more engaged in the public schools," says Randy Collins, President of the Top Virginia Regional Chamber. "There's all types of needs and it doesn't always mean money," he adds.
The schools are asking for help and partnership from the business community.
"Tutoring, mentoring, career fairs," Collins says. "We want to engage more businesses in that the school system has needs that that the business community can help with," he adds.
"I think it's important for the business community as well as parents to understand that after you leave high school the goal is to go on," says Dr. Mike Murphy, Superintendent of Clarke County Public Schools. "Going on usually requires work. We want all of our children to be successful in the world of work," he says.
During the first "State of the Schools" forum, Superintendents Dr. Ricky Leonard of City of Winchester Public Schools, Dr.David Sovine of Frederick County Public Schools and Dr. Mike Murphy of Clarke County Public Schools Highlighted each districts success stories, from test scores to graduation rates, to increased rigor in the classroom. But they also noted the unique challenges each division faces.
It's an effort to bridge two different worlds during an event they all considered a teachable moment.