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Charter Schools

Charter schools are an educational reform intended to bring freedom of choice to public education. This freedom allows for growth, flexibility, and innovation. The North Carolina charter school movement began in the mid-1990s and has been controversial ever since.

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Concerned Parents Association

The Concerned Parents Association (CPA) was an anti-busing protest group within the Charlotte-Mecklenburg school system. Though CPA successfully mobilized public opinion, they failed to stop the court-ordered busing. Their influence was greatly reduced after they tried—and failed—to boycott Charlotte-Mecklenburg public schools.

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Palmer Memorial Institute

Nineteen-year old Charlotte Hawkins Brown, an African American educator, started the Palmer Memorial Institute in Sedalia, North Carolina in 1902 to educate elementary and high school students in rural North Carolina.  Named after Brown’s benefactor and friend, Alice Freedman Palmer, the Institute began in an old blacksmith shed. 

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Central Orphanage of North Carolina

Segregated orphanages in North Carolina necessitated the creation of an orphanage for dependent and neglected African American children. An idea for such an orphanage in Henderson, North Carolina was born, when Rev. Augustus Shepard, father of James Shepard the founder of North Carolina Central University, felt burdened when observing the squalid,living conditions of homeless African American children.

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North Carolina Teachers Association

Formed by African American educators in 1881, the North Carolina Teachers Association (NCTA) promoted education as an avenue toward racial progress.  Their membership included educators such as James E. Shepard, founder of North Carolina Central University, and Joseph C. Price, founder of Livingstone College.  NCTA boasted an African American membership that included not only educators but also politicians, lawyers and doctors.

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Sacred Heart Cathedral

Sacred Heart Cathedral is the Mother Church for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Raleigh, making it the spiritual center for Catholics in eastern North Carolina. It is the smallest cathedral in the continental United States. Sacred Heart’s parochial school was desegregated in 1953, a year before the Brown v. Board of Education decision.

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Leonard Medical School

Missionary Henry Martin Tupper founded Shaw University, a private African American college, in 1865.  Within a few years, he realized that a medical school for African American was needed, so in 1880, the university’s trustees established Leonard Medical School. 

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Winona Society

Before the introduction of national welfare in the twentieth century, local charities and mutual aid societies provided financial assistance to the less fortunate and also provided entertainment and social outlets for members. These societies many times worked and cosponsored programs with local churches.  Winona Society was a Charlotte example.

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Moore, Aaron McDuffie

Born on September 6, 1863 to free yeoman farmer parents, Aaron McDuffie Moore used educational opportunities to improve his social condition and to better his community.