Public housing to Ph.D.: W-S native offers map to learning
, By BRIDGET EVARTS
The Chhonkle Stiff Writer
Dr. Steven Lamont Ray didn't know that there war anything wrong
with his public school education until he tried to use it
At that time, the Winston-Salem native had long since graduated from
Atkins Senior High. He was thousands of miles away from both
Kimberly Park Terrace, where he grew up, and Vietnam, where he served
a tour of duty in the Air Force.
Ray was enrolled in Los Angeles City College, almost 10 years out of
high school, with the intention of taking some business daises
But he soon learned that secondary school had not prepared him for
higher education, at least not at the standards he had learned to expect in
"The concept of mastering material wasn't very clear to me," said lUjt
Somehow, he realized, he had made it through school without a firm edu
Ray wasn't content to write off his deficiencies to his public housing
background. He had made it out of high school with satisfactory grades.
So what was the problem?
"It dawned on me that my skills were really, really lacking," said Ray,
presently an Air Force major about to be made lieutenant colonel.
Delving into his learning history, Ray discovered that though he knew
how to spell certain words, he had no idea how to correctly use them in
a sentence. The consequences of this deficiency went beyond English and
writing courses, though. He found himself at a loss in mathematics class
See UAOWIO ON M
75 cents WlNSTON-SALEM GREENSBORO HlGH POINT Vol. XXIII No. 45
forsyth cnty pub lib The choice for African-American News and Information L ^
6 60 W 5th st # q ?: *' 'i? frr?*? ? - - , ... .
Charter school bill passes N.C.
House with bipartisan support
By BRIDGET EVARTS
The Chronicle Staff Writer
In an unusual show of cross-party support, the
North Carolina State House passed an amended
charter school bill last week that removes the cap on
the number of charter schools statewide and includes
preferences for the children of school founders and
The state originally set a maximum limit of'100
charters that could be granted in North Carolina.
The House bill would allow additional charters to
schools with populations comprised of at least 75
percent at-risk, special needs or dropped-out stu
The bill also extends placement priority to the
children of charter school founders and teachers. The
original legislation and current state Senate bill main
tain that charter school slots are chosen by a lottery
The House bill's bipartisan support may be due in
part to the deadline legislators are trying to meet.
Some of the 34 charter schools approved statewide
had set opening dates for this month.
"A number of these provi
sions we really need for charter
school implementation this
year," said Rep. Steve Wood, R
High Point. Wood introduced
the House bill earlier this year.
Rep. Pete Oldham of
Winston-Salem is one of many
Democrats who formerly voted
against charter school legisla
tion. Nine of the 22 Democrats
who voted July} in favor of the
bill, including Oldham, were
At the prompting of several
local charter school supporters,
Oldham asked that the prefer
ences be built into the amended
legislation. He said that the
charter school founders were
concerned that parental support
for charter schools would dry up
See BIPARTISAN on AA
(AT Phmtm/MmgmUm SmSt)
An omodooal mayor ilitf Harvay Johnson
stands at atHnttoi as ths Mississippi stats
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swamwj wwamwwm WrVViy WW pRfFHIH WW WW
National Antham an Monday, July 7, 1997
during Hto inaugural esrsmantss far ths
mayor and ssvon city tountil mambars In
Jatksan, Miss. Johnson is tho capital city's
first Afrkan-Amorkan mayor.
first black mayor j
BY GINA HOLLAND
ASSOCIATED PRESS WRITER
JACKSON, Miss. (AP) ? Mississippi's capital city
swore in its first black mayor Monday on the steps of a
plantation-style City Hall built more than a century ago
Harvey Johnson promised to remember the civil
rights struggles that set the stage for his victory last
month in his second run for Jackson mayor. 1
"I can't forget from whence we've come because if we
forget that then we stand a chance of repeating history.
We're not going to repeat that history in Jackson, Miss.," j:
he said. ? ??;
More than 1,000 people crowded the magnolia tree
lined lawn for the nearly two-hour ceremony that includ
ed gospel music and a symphony performance. ;
"I can remember in the mid-60s we were forbidden to
stand here, couldn't go in the building," Claude Mclnnis,
a Johnson campaign worker, said of Jackson blacks.
"The Deep South has changed."
See sunroa on A6
Present & Future
BY CAROLE WEATHERFORD
High Point Correspondent
Funeral director W.W. Hoover has seen 'em
come and seen 'em go. Businesses, along
Washington Drive, that is. Hoover, 95, has
^^heen a fixture on the street since the turn of the
century. He remembers the Kilby, Hinton and
Henley hotels, McCloud's grocery store.
Flake's cafe and
I Summons dry
his funeral home
at 113 E. Washington Dr., Hoover has not only
witnessed the passing of some prominent resi
dents, but also the near demise of a once-thriv
ing commercial hub.
Now he is seeing even more changes ? this
time for the better. The city of High Point is
implementing a 12
point action plan to
transform inner city
communities like the
time home ownership
programs are key to
Since 1993, the city has
purchased and rehabil
itated six substandard
homes tor sale to hrst-time homeowners.
Further, to reduce dumping and loitering, the
city built 10 homes on vacant lots in the neigh
borhood. "This expands the city's tax base,"
explains community development and housing
director Reggie Barker.
City programs not only benefit first-time
homeowners, but longtime residents, as well.
Twenty homeowners have received loans total
ing $428,000 for renovation and improvement.
The city has spent another $270,000 rehabili
tating 15 substandard rental properties. "There
is a need," says Barker, "for standard housing."
To lessen drainage runoff onto private
property along Fourth Street, the city is mak
ing drain improvements. The city also funds
public services like those provided by
Washington Drive Resource and Enrichment
Center, a decidedly bright spot that is the
brainchild of funeral director Lois Powell.
While the community development and
housing department funds housing initiatives,
the Neighborhood Service Center encourages
community empowerment. The Rev. Ron
Wilkins, center coordinator, helps organize
neighborhood meetings and neighborhood
watch programs. Residents' concerns, Wilkins
indicates, range from crime to garbage collec
tion. Political involvement, he believes, is cru
cial to community empowerment. He urges
residents to attend City Council meetings, zon
ing hearings and public forums where decisions
are made and policies are set.
Barker and Wilkins would like to see a
wider variety of businesses along Washington
Drive. Both cite the new Becky's and Mary's
Restaurant at 731 East Washington Drive as a
sign of progress.
The soul-food restaurant, owned by sisters
See PrMMit on A4
Mary Francit Ingram co-own* Roeky'a and
Mary'a Roataurant with har alitor Robotco
By BRIDGET EVARTS
The Chronicle Staff Writer
Local nonprofit executive
Vernon Robinson announced his
bid for the Winston-Salem board
of aldermen last week.
Robinson will seek the South
Ward seat currently held by
Repub-lican J. Hugh Wright.
Wright, who will not run for
reelection, has publicly endorsed
Robinson is executive director
of the North Carolina Education
Reform Foundation, an organiza
tion that champions the charter
school movement and other reme
dies for problems in the public
school system. He ran unsuccess
fully for State Superintendent last
Robinson is building his cam
paign for alderman on an anti-tax
"1 am committed to keep
money with the families who
earned it so they can take care of
family and voluntary charitable
obligations," said Robinson.
He announced his bid on July
3, dubbed by
"Cost of Go
of the aver
to local, state
and federal taxes and regulated
fees; thus, income earned from
Jan. 1 to July 3 is essentially hand
ed over to government entities.
To date, no one has challenged
the aldermen who represent pre
wards. Aldermen Joycelyn V. *
Johnson and Nelson Malloy Jr., of
the East and North Wards respec- ;
tively, have filed for reelection. ' "
Northeast Ward Alderman Vivian
Burke has not filed, but indicated *
that she will seek reelection.
Robinson is a graduate of the
Air Force Academy and a former
professor at Winston-Salem State
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