Return to Headlines

Cumberland County Superintendent and Leadership Team Meet with Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina to Discuss Funding Affecting Native Students in Consultation meeting

April 15, 2024

Lumbee MeetingLumbee Tribal Chairman John L. Lowery, Tribal Council members and the Lumbee Tribe Administrative Team met with Cumberland County Schools (CCS) Superintendent, Dr. Marvin Connelly, Maria Ford, Executive Director for Federal Program for CCS and Coordinator of Indian Education, Candace Revels on Tuesday to discuss tribal consultation in the Cumberland County School System.

Tribal Chairman Lowery and the tribal leadership said Cumberland County Schools is on track and is demonstrating how tribal consultation should work and that consultation and collaboration is what you do all year with your students. “The Lumbee Tribe appreciates Cumberland County Schools leadership meeting with us and consulting,” said Lowery. “We look forward to the great partnership we have with them.”

Tammy Maynor, Lumbee Tribe Director of Governmental Affairs, said the meeting was a meaningful consultation and demonstrated the care of Cumberland County Superintendent Dr. Connelly and his staff. “They gave an absolutely thorough presentation about where they are, what they're doing, and how they use all federal programs to benefit Lumbee Youth.” said Maynor.

The presentation by Cumberland County included a look at projects such as a recent Powwow, which was hosted by the school system through Indian Education. The district has partnered with Project IndigeChoice to work with the Lumbee Tribe to ensure their children participate in the tribal programs. The team also looked at data, which included that Cumberland County saw the graduation rate of Native Students rise from 72 to 80% from 2019 to 2023. The overall rate is 86%. The district also provided a counselor and a full time social worker for the program, which freed up Indian Education dollars.

"I am grateful for the opportunity to meet with the Lumbee Tribe and for our continued partnership." said Dr. Connelly. "Our discussions underscored the strides we're taking in Cumberland County Schools to bolster the Indian Education Program. With a focus on equitable practices and student success, we're ensuring every student has the support they need to succeed."

Tribal Council member Wendy Moore (District 5) said she was impressed by the presentation and she feels Dr. Connelly cares and he is going the extra mile. “I love their Eagle Feather Ceremony for Cumberland County and they are taking the concept of ”It takes a village” and they are applying it,” said Moore. “They are working with parents through the parent committee and they have strong relationships with parents and so they understand the importance of education. And because of this participation, overall their participation has doubled.”

For more information on the Lumbee Tribe of North Carolina, click here.