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4-29-05 – Local educators say less than 80% of Sherman adults have a high school diploma and only 20% have a college degree. Those numbers ring true in many Texoma towns and teachers are working on new programs to increase the success rates of graduating seniors.
"In African American children, especially males, the dropout rate is higher for that group of students than other groups. We want to make sure that we're doing everything that we can in our district," said Dr. Al Hambrick – Assistant Superintendent of Sherman Schools.
Studies show African American students face the most hurdles. Thursday, Sherman Schools asked author and Education Consultant Mychal Wynn talked to students at Fred Douglas School.
“Particularly boys believe that football will get me into college, but forgetting that it's math and science that will get me through college," said Wynn.
He told parents and students they must create a culture of success and focus on academics; not just athletics.
Often, say educators, the post-high school emphasis is on getting a job, not going to college.
“One of the most important things in order for a student to achieve academically is the parent: how is that parent encouraging the student to go to school?” said Dan LaBruyer – a Sherman Independent School District At-Risk Counselor.
School officials say more programs, like Thursdays, will be held in the future.