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SCORE is looking for inspirational school stories and wants to hear from Tennessee students! Students in grades 4 - 12 are invited to participate in a one-to-two page essay contest and share their inspirational experience from the classroom. Check out the details below.


Chadwell Elementary School hosted its first Academic Vocabulary Bee for the second, third and fourth grade students. Students prepared by studying the State Academic Vocabulary word list for Reading and Math. Chadwell teachers and literacy coaches planned rigorous activities to help students learn definitions and the origins of words. The Bee included a written test followed by two rounds of oral testing.

Congratulations to the winners and participators. All winners received an Apple iPod!

  • Michelle M. – 2nd grade runner–up

  • Diana A. – 2nd grade winner

  • Linda L. – 3rd grade winner

  • Ordonte S. – 3rd grade winner

  • Sierra H. – 3rd grade winner

  • Jamare W. – 4th grade runner up

  • Nancy D. – 4th grade winner


Cole and Kirkpatrick Elementary Schools participated in the first-ever debate championship May 10, at the Estes Kefauver Building in downtown. The debates were held in federal courtrooms, with five teams from each school debating. Each school’s debate team consisted of 4th grade students with one 3rd grader.

The topic of the debate was “Parents should not be held legally responsible for their children’s poor choices.” Kirkpatrick argued the affirmative and Cole the negative. Kirkpatrick Elementary took home first and second place and Cole placed third. This was only the second debate between these two schools. This was the first year for each team of elementary students, coaches and principals.

Congratulations to both teams!


It’s not a science fair. It’s a STEM Fair, the first of its kind in our city, and it’s changing the face of Nashville.

Metro Nashville Public School students compete against one another individually and in teams using videos, presentations, and on-site demonstrations to see which of their projects has the best potential to improve the city.

Don’t come expecting to find science fair stand-bys like plaster volcanoes and three-panel display boards. The Metro Schools STEM Competition is a district-wide high school event. Students have worked with Nashville’s top STEM professionals to share their ideas, investigations and recommendations to “Change the Face of Nashville.” At the competition, individuals and teams will use videos, presentations, and on-site demonstrations to showcase the project with the best potential to improve the city in any of five categories: Science, Technology, Engineering, Math, STEM Career.

Stratford STEM Magnet High School will host this inaugural competition on May 16.

More information about registering to compete and other contest details
can be found here. The deadline to register is Tuesday, May 1, 2012.

Stratford STEM Logo


High school students got a crash course in running a business from Junior Achievement and a team of business professionals acting as mentors.

Teams from Antioch, Cane Ridge, Glencliff, Hillwood, McGavock, and Maplewood took part in the JA Titan Business Challenge presented by Catepillar Financial. The team from Cane Ridge came out on top, besting teams from Metro schools and some from out of county. McGavock was close behind in second.

Congratulations to all who took part!

JA Titan Business Challenge

From a full Junior Achievement press release:

Nashville—On a typical business day in April, 20 companies sold products, developed product innovations, analyzed financial reports, implemented marketing plans and donated to charity. However, these companies were anything but typical—they were run by high school students and all business was performed virtually.

On April 24th, 60 students from eight different high schools in three Middle Tennessee counties competed in the JA Titan Business Challenge presented by Caterpillar Financial and hosted by Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee (JA). In teams of 3, 20 student-led companies vied to become the most successful company.

Student participants hailed from Antioch High School, Cane Ridge High School, Glencliff High School, Hillwood High School, McGavock High School, and Maplewood High School in Davidson County; Pope John Paul II High School in Sumner County; and Mt. Juliet High School in Wilson County.

Cane Ridge High School took first place in the JA Titan Business Challenge. McGavock High School placed second and Pope John Paul II High School finished third. Teams scored points based on business strategy and overall company performance.

Prior to the event, students received the 7-session, JA Titan classroom-based program which introduces critical economics and management decisions through an interactive computer simulation and was taught by volunteers from Caterpillar Financial and FirstBank. Only the top team from each classroom was invited to compete in the JA Titan Business Challenge.

The winning team from Cane Ridge was mentored by Ritzon Fernandez of Caterpillar Financial Services, who taught the program in the classroom and then coached the students through their decision-making during the competition. He explained, “The JA Titan game is extremely intricate, from basics such as setting price, to deciding on capital expenditures, to monitoring the cost of holding inventory. You don’t realize how much the students have learned in such a short time until you watch them go in with a business strategy, make these complex decisions, and then continuously adjust their strategy according to their competition.”

Most of the students received the program through a business management or marketing class at school. Teacher Amanda Davoli of Antioch High School said she provides the JA Titan program to her students because “it is a natural fit with the business principles students are already learning” in her classroom.

“The JA Titan Business Challenge allows students to put together all the components of running a business and helps them understand how all these aspects combine to make a business successful,” said Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee President Trent Klingensmith. “Not only does the JA Titan Business Challenge give students a chance to learn and interact with each other in a fun environment, it also gives a competitive advantage because they have a better understanding of how a business operates before they enter the workforce.”

Students agreed that the JA Titan experience will be helpful to them in the future. Kelsea Sullivan, a student at Cane Ridge High School, wants to major in business in college. She said, “The lessons I learned in class through JA Titan were applied in a business setting in the competition. I was really applying my learning.”

Rina Dervishi, also a student at Cane Ridge, said the competition “gave me an idea of how the real world will be and what will be important.”

JA Titan is just one of the classroom-based programs Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee provides to students in Kindergarten through high school. These programs promote financial literacy, work readiness, and entrepreneurship through interactive, volunteer-led curriculum. More than 30,000 students will receive JA programs in their classrooms during the 2011-2012 school year.

About Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee: Locally, Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee, a franchise of Junior Achievement USA® (JA), provides in-school and after-school programs for students which focus on three key content areas: work readiness, entrepreneurship, and financial literacy. Through a dedicated volunteer network, Junior Achievement offers classroom-based programs, JA BizTown, JA Job Shadow, and the JA Company Program to students in Kindergarten through high school. Founded in Middle Tennessee in 1957, Junior Achievement now operates in 18 counties in the region, reaching over 30,000 students annually in over 2,000 classrooms throughout Middle Tennessee. For more information, visit www.janash.com.

About Junior Achievement USA® (JA) Junior Achievement is the world's largest organization dedicated to giving young people the knowledge and skills they need to own their economic success, plan for their future, and make smart academic and economic choices. JA programs are delivered by corporate and community volunteers, and provide relevant, hands-on experiences that give students from kindergarten through high school knowledge and skills in financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship. Today, JA reaches four million students per year in more than 120 markets across the United States, with an additional 6.5 million students served by operations in 117 other countries worldwide. Visit www.ja.org for more information.


Grecia EsparzaAcademy at Hickory Hollow student Grecia Esparza knows her languages! She won two national awards by taking two very difficult foreign language exams.

Grecia won first prize in the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese level 5 bilingual exam and 3rd place in the American Association of Teachers of Spanish and Portuguese level 4 bilingual exam contest. She even earned a bit of prize money for the 1st place honors.

Grecia entered the exam at her previous school (Hume-Fogg Magnet High School), but is current a student at the Academy. The exams are a national competition assessing knowledge of vocabulary & grammar.

Way to go, Grecia!


Cole Elementary School fourth grade debate team will participate in a debate on Saturday, April 28, at 10:00 a.m. in Vanderbilt University’s Calhoun Building. Cole’s debate team has had a successful year, competing in various debates with Kirkpatrick Elementary School. Cole's three teams will debate against three teams from Kirkpatrick Elementary School. The top three teams will go on to compete in the finals on Thursday, May 10. The topic of the debate will be “Parents should not be held legally responsible for their children’s poor choices.”

Good luck to all teams from both schools!


Congratulations to two Croft Middle School eighth grade language arts students for winning the Tennessee Law Enforcement Officers Associations Essay contest!

Zoe M. and Naba A. both received one hundred dollars for their essays on Tennessee Law Enforcement, with both students writing in the subject on “Why I will say No to Alcohol and Drugs.” Zoe and Naba were two among six Metropolitan Nashville Davidson County student winners. Croft Middle Principal Juana Grandberry surprised to the students with their checks during the morning announcements live on WCMS television broadcast.


Three students from John Early Museum Magnet Middle represented their school at the State Tennessee History Day last Saturday.

La’Charsha W., Mitchell M. and Noah R. competed with six other districts in the state competition. La’Charsha won first place in individual performance category and will compete at the National History Day competition in Washington, D.C. in June. This is a huge honor as she not only had to write and perform her script about a topic in history, but she also had to create a bibliography of primary and secondary sources, complete a process paper, and complete an extensive interview with the judges. Mitchell M. won third place for his website and will be an alternate at the National History Day competition.

Congratulations to all the winners and participants!

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