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Northeast Regional School Leaders Hosting Celebration Reception

March 14, 2012 - The Northeast Regional School of Biotechnology and Agriscience is closer to opening its doors to its first class of 9th graders as an early college high school focused on STEM subjects: science, technology, engineering, and mathematics.  Educators will join community and business leaders Wednesday, March 21, to celebrate the new regional collaboration with a reception at the site of the school.

This school will be a first in North Carolina with multiple school districts working together to develop a school that will offer hands-on learning, computers for every student, internships and other experiences to prepare students for college and careers.  Students from Beaufort, Martin, Pitt, Tyrrell, and Washington counties can apply now to enroll in the school in August. Students who will be the first in their families to attend college are strongly encouraged to apply.  

As an early college high school, students will have the opportunity to earn as much as two years of tuition-free college credit along with their high school diploma.  Students will take online college courses through a partnership with NC State University.  

David Peele, chairman of the school's board of directors, and other representatives will provide an update on the plans for the school at the reception March 21 from 6:30 to 8:30 pm at the Vernon James Center.  Space is limited, so please call Cindy Evans at 252-794-2150 to confirm. Sponsors of this event are Roanoke Farm Supply (A Harvey Company), Lilley International, East Coast Equipment, Cherry Seed Farms, Lake Phelps Grain, and Blackland Farm Managers Association.  

Applications to attend the Northeast School are online at www.NERegionalSchool.org and they will soon be available in middle schools in the five counties.  Parents who have questions about the new school can email info@NERegionalSchool.org.  The deadline for applications has been extended to June 1.  

"The new Northeast Regional School is a collaborative effort of state and local leaders to provide wonderful opportunities for our students to gain skills for college and work," said Peele, president of Avoca, Inc. of Merry Hill, the world's premier botanical extraction company.  "This school is truly a boost to the Northeast region, and we encourage parents to consider what this school can mean to your child's future success."

The location of the school, at the Vernon G. James Research & Extension Center in Washington County, will give students opportunities to interact with researchers and other staff of the center.  Approximately 60 rising 9th graders will be selected for the 2012-13 school year.  The following year, rising 7th graders can apply.  Ultimately, the school will include grades 7-13.  

Working to develop this school and make it a model for the state are NC State University, the State Board of Education, and the NC New Schools Project, with strong support from the NC Department of Agriculture, the NC Biotechnology Center, and JOBS Commission.  A board of directors of local representatives, led by Avoca's Peele, meets regularly to help plan the school.  

"The North Carolina New Schools Project is excited to partner with state institutions and local education and business leaders on this new STEM early college high school," said Tony Habit, president of the NC New Schools Project. "This school has the potential to be a model for the state and nation and for the region to reap tremendous benefits from successfully preparing students for college and the workforce."

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