Anniston High School is working with the State Department of Education and Johns Hopkins School of Education on a project called “Getting to the Finish Line.” Today, faculty from Johns Hopkins University visited with more than 10 schools from a number of regional districts from across Alabama at the Anniston City Meeting Center to figure out what educators need to do to make sure students stay on track to High School graduation, college, and then career. According to Johns Hopkins University The Everyone Graduates Center Department Director Joanna Fox, ninth grade is the time when students begin the process of dropping out. Johns Hopkins School of Education Research Professor Dr. Robert Balfanz who was the event’s featured presenter says Anniston High School is one of the leading schools in the effort. He adds that Anniston is one example of a school engaging its students and helping them to a health outcome. Anniston High School’s faculty and administration says the regional meeting was created out of a 2 year grant for promotion coaches. They say the meeting is an opportunity to talk about additional tools for keeping kids in school and focusing on incentives to keep the students focused. Anniston City Schools Superintendent, Darren Douthitt, says the school system is going back to the basics and learning ways to include parents to help teachers help their kids. This meeting is one of the first meetings of the school year from the schools in the project this year.