For more than three decades, WakeEd has advocated for excellent educational opportunities for all students in the Wake County Public School System (WCPSS). To accomplish this, our programs aim at continual growth for students and educators. Learn how our programs make WakeEd work:

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Early Literacy

The importance of children’s early literacy development cannot be overstated. Third grade is a turning point for children. Up to that point, they are learning to read, beyond that they are reading to learn.

We are committed to helping Wake County children reach this important milestone. 

Our Partners Read program places community volunteers in elementary schools to read with struggling first and second grade students.

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WakeEd serves on the leadership team for WAKE Up and Read, a community-wide collaborative aligned with the national Campaign for Grade-Level Reading. Program efforts address school readiness, summer learning loss, school attendance, and health and wellness.

WakeEd is the fiscal sponsor for the annual WAKE Up and Read Book Drive. In 2016, we collected more than 1140,000 books for 7,100 children in 10 high-need elementary schools and 20 childcare centers.

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STEM is more than a trend, it is a great need across the country and here in the Triangle where we have so many science and engineering companies. 

WakeEd coordinates programs with the Wake County Public School System, and STEM businesses and organizations, to deliver programs that enhance educator skills in STEM content delivery. This makes for a more well-rounded workforce, but also enriches and enlivens academic and co-curricular programs in Wake County schools.

World Café brings business leaders together with educators to match financial and in-kind resources with learning. At this annual event, schools have an opportunity to network and meet businesses looking to invest time and resources in STEM education. Then schools have an opportunity to present in the “Idea Crucible” for a chance win up to $3,000 in funding for the best STEM project.

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SummerSTEM is a collaboration between WakeEd, WCPSS, and business and organizational partners in the RTP area. During a week in summer, WCPSS educators are embedded in companies, meet with college professors and are paired with another WCPSS to help coach them. SummerSTEM is more than professional development. it is a way for educators to engage in hands-on experiences designed to bring real-world lessons to the classroom.

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US2020 is focused on increasing access to STEM careers for girls, underrepresented minorities, and low-income children. As the North Carolina partner for this program, WakeEd provides professional development opportunities for teachers in STEM by connecting them with resources at area STEM-related businesses.

WakeEd’s World Cafe and SummerSTEM programs were nationally recognized by US2020 for Excellence in Public-Private Partnerships.


Teacher Grants

Above all, we support teachers so they can achieve the dreams they have for their students. Through our Teacher Innovation Grants program, our supporters have invested $1.5 million in cutting edge learning experiences for students.

 Each year, classroom and team grants are awarded to inspired educators who ask the question, “What would happen if?”

These grants represent education venture capital to nurture unique projects. These new ideas that evolve into best practices that improve education across the county.

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