Alamance Achieves’ education data show school challenges


United Way of Alamance County​ partners with Alamance Achieves​ fighting for the health, education and financial stability for all of Alamance County.


By Jessica Williams, Times-News, Nov 29, 2018 at 4:49 PM


Poverty, reading and math comprehension rates, graduation rates to be targeted in organization’s planning


Almost half of all Alamance-Burlington third-graders weren’t prepared to move on to fourth grade math and reading classes at the end of 2017–2018.

This and other data were revealed in the 2018 Baseline Report from Alamance Achieves, a nonprofit organization focused on improving education in Alamance County by addressing issues at four key stages of a child’s development: kindergarten readiness, academic progress, high school graduation and career success.

The data show:

  • Around one in three Alamance County children lives in poverty.
  • Only 38 percent of children entering ABSS kindergarten classes met developmental benchmarks in text comprehension, according to 2017 data.
  • In reading, 53 percent of third-graders scored at grade level on End-of-Grade tests. Only 43 percent of third-graders scored at grade level in math.
  • In 2017, 325 students from ABSS’ 2012–13 freshman class did not graduate. The four-year graduation rate for the school system is 82.4 percent — 4.1 points lower than the state average of 86.5 percent.
  • In Alamance County, the average income for an individual with only a high school diploma is $25,776. A family of two (e.g. a single mother and child) needs $40,246 to make ends meet. A family a four needs $59,169.

Schools, nonprofits, government agencies, churches and other organizations will pool their resources to address these challenges under the leadership of Alamance Achieves’ Steering Committee. It consists of 14 members across ABSS, the county, Elon University, Alamance Community College, and surrounding businesses and nonprofits.

Gathering baseline data was step one in the process of tackling these issues. Now, they’ll work on proven solutions. Alamance Achieves launched in November 2016 and hired Executive Director Tyronna Hooker during summer 2017. Hooker is a former ABSS and state Teacher of the Year who spent 10 years at Graham Middle School. For more information about the organization, visit

Reporter Jessica Williams can be reached at or at 336-506-3046. Follow her on Twitter at @jessicawtn.