As the bus climbed Ivy Road, the eighth-graders on board pulled out phones, their eyes and cameras glued to the campus coming into sight.
Over the speakers, a teacher explained how at the University of Virginia, students call the campus “the Grounds.” As the bus wove through it all, the teacher pointed out the football stadium, the dorms and the students, walking to class with backpacks slung over shoulders.
“That’s what we want you to do,” Jeff Williams told students.
It is a message that Williams and others have been repeating, over and over, to students at Lucy Addison Middle School.
National trends predict students like those at Addison — where almost 90 percent of students qualified for free or reduced lunch last year — are less likely to graduate from high school or enroll at either two- or four-year colleges.
Teachers and administrators want to buck those statistics.