As of today, all the major educational institutions in Transylvania County – Transylvania CountySchools, Brevard Academy, Blue Ridge Community College and Brevard College – are fully operational with classes and extracurricular activities underway.
One of the reasons these educational entities serve our community so well is the community support they receive. Given the stagnation, or in some instances a decline, in funding from government sources, community support is more important than ever.
Naturally, parents are most likely to devote time and money to their children’s K-12 schools because they will reap a direct benefit. That, however, occurs in most communities. What separates this community is the vast number of people who have no progeny in the schools and colleges to which they donate their money, time and talents. That support comes in many forms.
High school students have been participating in fall sports since the beginning of this month. While many head coaches are teachers, many assistant coaches and some head coaches are not teachers. They are either retired or work at a job outside of the school system, but help coach our young athletes.
In the classroom is where many students need extra assistance. With the reduction in teacher assistants over the years, it’s more difficult for teachers to spend time with students who need additional help. That’s where volunteers can be a great help. One organization that provides reading assistance is the Augustine Literacy Project - Brevard. It will hold its annual volunteer tutor training Aug. 29-31 and Sept. 4-7. To contact the group, call Wendi Adair at (828) 508-2254 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Other opportunities exist throughout the Transylvania County School system to volunteer. To volunteer, go to the school system’s website, tcsnc.org, and scroll down under “programs” to find out how to volunteer.
Residents also can contribute financially through various organizations. People can contribute to the BackPack Buddies or school supply closet. Other organizations give scholarships. For example, the Connestee Falls Scholarship Program has awarded thousands of dollars of programs over the past few years. The Transylvania County Schools Educational Foundation (TCSEF) gives grants to teachers and alumni in college.
Supporting what people view as traditional education is not the only way to be involved. Brevard College offers numerous events open to the general public. Blue Ridge Community College is offering a number of continuing education classes for adults this fall. Classes include a wide range of topics, from automotive inspection and computer technology to foreign languages and dance. Call (828) 883-2520 for more information. These institutions can make our lives richer and adults should take advantage of what they have to offer us.
We all benefit from an educated citizenry. The best countries, best states and best cities all have an educated citizenry. Since school is now in session at all levels, we encourage residents to become involved in enhancing the education of others or continuing their own.