School leaders, community organizations unite to help Hamilton County's highest-need students

City of Chattanooga employee Jason McKinney test fires a straw rocket during a STEM works! presentation during the Community Stakeholder's Professional Development workshop at the South Chattanooga Youth and Family Development Center on Wednesday, May 9, 2018 in Chattanooga, Tenn.

It takes a village, the saying goes - and a village is exactly what leaders of Hamilton County Schools' Opportunity Zone hope to build.

District leaders, principals of the 12 historically under-performing schools that make up the Opportunity Zone, and representatives from dozens of local organizations and agencies gathered at the South Chattanooga Youth and Family Development Center on Wednesday to network, workshop and figure out how collectively they could best support some of the county's highest-need students.

"We want to build community, even with our community partners, so that we are all on the same page," said Melissa Graham, coordinator of community schools for Hamilton County Schools.

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