Communities in Schools program off to a great start

By Scott Bleile

The new Communities in Schools program at Woodbridge Middle School is off to a great start according to site coordinator, Stacey Clark.

Clark, who has been in education since 1994, worked at Woodbridge before becoming a principal at Kent County High School in Maryland and has also worked in the Capitol School District in Dover.

"I want the kids to have fun, but also learn from what this program can bring to the school," said Clark. "We will be bringing in motivational speakers to show the kids how to solve problems in their life as well as dealing with conflict resolution and involving how doing well in school will help."

Communities in Schools had national motivational speaker Ty Howard speak to a full school assembly at WMS during Raider Pride Day on Wednesday, March 9. Howard discussed practical conflict resolution strategies for teens, and shared his eight essentials of "True Greatness."

"This event inspired and empowered the students to do what it takes to go after and capture continuous success in education, school, community, family, healthy choices, positive relationships, and life. They walked away from this engaging hour knowing and believing - I was born to be GRRRREAT!," echoed Clark.

Communities in Schools of Delaware is part of a nationwide network of passionate professionals working in public schools to surround students with a community of support, empowering them to stay in school and achieve in life. Ensuring student success is everyone's job: schools, parents, communities. In over 200 communities across 27 states, we work closely with schools, social services, businesses and thousands of volunteers to get young people the things they need to learn and grow: mentors and tutors, after-school help, family services to stabilize the home. Without these basic supports, kids in need or at-risk are far less likely to succeed and grow into productive adults.

Ty Howard is one of America's most popular and in-demand motivational speakers for teens and young adults. He spent five of his early childhood years in foster care, graduated in the top five percent of his high school graduation class, and served on active duty in the U.S. Navy for 10 years. He excelled in various positions in corporate America, and is now the founder and CEO of InspiraGen Institute, LLC (an internationally recognized and sought-after consulting and communications company for 20 years, based in Baltimore, Md). For more information about Ty Howard and his dynamic teen enrichment programs, visit

"I grew up in a tough neighborhood in Baltimore," Howard told the student assembly. "I saw friends get into drugs and were arrested. I saw my best friend get killed. I was told by my tough mother that education is something people can't take away from you √Čever! I took this to heart and decided that I was going to make something of myself. I made different choices and I wanted to make a difference."

Howard got the students involved with different activities showing them how their choices just in small games made a difference in the outcome. Clark would like for the program to grow by adding mentoring from people in the community and also involving high school students as lunch buddies. With the middle school now in the FOCUS school program, Clark feels that the Communities in School Program will help get Woodbridge Middle School out of the program by helping students with behavior and academics.

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