Volunteers encourage students to stay in school

September 11, 2010 9:41:58 PM PDT
Seventy-five high school dropouts have promised to return to school, all because of a pep talk from some Houston city leaders and athletes. Houston independent school district held its seventh annual "Grads within Reach" walk today. More than 1,000 volunteers spent the morning walking through Houston area neighborhoods knocking on more than 1,300 doors contacting students who had dropped out of school.

Mayor Annise Parker, former Mayor Bill White and former Rockets players Robert Reed and Rodney McCray were part of today's effort.

"We are going to become the first school district in this country to create a no excuse culture across our school system," said Houston ISD Superintendent Dr Terry Grier.

The volunteers talked about the district's new twilight academy to help students take classes at night and on weekends.

The effort was started right here in Houston and has grown to include school districts in at least seven other cities.