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Ballou HS alum offers job training for recent grads with numerous unexcused absences

Ballou High Schoolalum Ray Bell (ABC7)

Ballou High School alum Ray Bell often gives back to the community, as founder and CEO of the H.O.P.E Project.

This time he is offering to provide training in information technology to recent grads, after learning about 7 On Your Side’s investigation.

We found that at least 26 students graduated with more than 100 unexcused absences last school year.

“It bothered me,” said Bell.

“I signed a Mayor’s order directing the OSSE, our state education department and regulator, to review district-wide policies and investigate specific allegations at the school level,” said Mayor Bowser in a letter to residents on Friday.

“My concern is not getting to the bottom of what happened, my concern is for the young people, who unfortunately…no one has said anything about how we’re going to help them,” said Bell.

Bell believes it’s possible to find success without a college degree.

“Our company….did well over a million dollars in revenue last year and I’m a product of Southeast. I’m a product of Ballou,” said Bell.

He plans on recruiting at least 25 students from Ballou’s Class of 2017, that will receive top-notch training and help with basic skills.

“These are our young people. they should not have to walk through this city…unprepared to go out and compete against this highly skilled workforce here in Washington, D.C,” said Bell.

Click here to contact the H.O.P.E project.

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