To help schools, Bush Center works the middle

Posted Friday, Aug. 30, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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Laura Bush’s love always has been education, from her days as a schoolteacher and librarian to her days as first lady.

The new George W. Bush Institute in University Park continues that legacy of work in education reform, and this year one of the lucky beneficiaries will be a public middle school in southeast Fort Worth.

Uplift Mighty Preparatory, part of the Dallas-based Uplift Education school system, is one of only three schools chosen nationwide for expert help through “Middle School Matters,” the second major education reform initiative though the George W. Bush Presidential Center and Library.

Along with a middle school in the East Texas town of Lindale and another in Erie, Pa., Uplift Mighty was chosen from a field of 44 schools for classroom visits by experts and researchers.

The three schools were among eight finalists chosen in June to draw up plans to help prepare children for high school, graduation and college.

The goal of “Middle School Matters” is courageous: “to act as a catalyst for transforming the middle grades.”

At the most trouble-prone turning point in children’s education, the Bush Institute hopes to reform middle school education and accomplish more in those grades.

The program has help from the University of Texas at Austin’s Meadows Center for Preventing Educational Risk. Middle School Matters is funded in part by foundations including the Sid W. Richardson Foundation of Fort Worth.

Uplift Mighty, temporarily on South Beach Street and one of two Uplift system middle schools in southeast Fort Worth, is also funded in part by the Richardson Foundation, the Rainwater Chaitable Foundation, Inc., and the Mary Potishman Lard Trust.

It can’t have hurt that one of the school board members is Fort Worth investor George P. Bush.

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