Dear Parents, Teachers and Community Leaders
Now more than ever it is clear that it is going to take an entire village to educate a child. As the illiteracy and drop out rates continue to increase and African-American high school students consistently rank low on national tests and in college enrollment, the need for programs that challenge and encourage their academic and artistic development also increases. We recognize your hard work and dedication to motivate our students toward a higher level of learning and we are committed to becoming a part of your team.
The NAACP's ACT-SO Program was developed to enhance and showcase the academic and artistic achievement of African-American high school students just as we do their athletic achievements. Since 1978, the NAACP ACT-SO has:
Challenged students to excel and consistently put a spotlight on their efforts and successes
Raised the standard of excellence and expectation among our youth
Promoted a climate of academic and artistic development
Mobilized the adult community to serve as mentors and coaches for students in the areas of the sciences, humanities, performing arts, visual arts and business
ACT-SO is a yearlong enrichment program/olympiad that culminates in a local and national competition where students compete for awards and prizes totaling over $50,000. ACT-SO, the "Olympics of the Mind", seeks to promote positive self-esteem, academic and artistic excellence, positive interaction between our youth and the adult professional community. Furthermore, ACT-SO encourages more African-American youths to pursue higher education.
We need your help in making our outreach efforts to our youth a success. There are three things that you can do:
Let students know about the ACT-SO program by visiting the website and have them apply
Encourage teachers, parents and leaders to identify youth who may benefit from participating in the ACT-SO program
Encourage teachers, parents and leaders to support participating students by helping them to develop their project and rewarding and recognizing their participation in ACT-SO
It is important that students know about this opportunity and resource designed to help them achieve their dreams. There is no cost to participate; however the cost to our society may be great if they choose not to.
The New Jersey State ACT-SO Team