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Let's give a hearty congratulations to Dr. Kecia Ray, recently featured online as a "global hero in education."

Kecia is in charge of Learning Technology for Metro Schools, which means she helps teachers, schools, and the district integrate technology into curriculum and the classroom. Of course she does so much more than that, like designing and launching MNPS Virtual School.

For Dr. Kecia Ray, creating a classroom for today’s students means a complete re-imagination of what the classroom can and should look like. And technology is just one component. “My work is focused on increasing the use of technology in classrooms, both formal and informal,” she says. “I have worked with museums to redesign environments into more engaging learning spaces for informal learning, and I’ve worked with higher education and K12 to rethink teaching and learning.”

Currently, Dr. Ray works in the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools as the Executive Director of Learning Technology. “A focus of our department is to design blended learning environments in our schools,” she adds. Two years ago, Ray and her team designed the state’s first diploma-granting high school, and they are currently planning to redesign classrooms and instruction to incorporate blended learning models and project-based learning into K-12 classrooms.

The article also includes an in depth interview with Kecia where she talks about her dreams for educational technology in Metro Schools and the world.

Read the full article.


Congratulations to the outstanding Croft Orchestra and director Anna Maria Miller on being selected to perform at the 2013 Tennessee Music Educators Association State Conference in Chattanooga. Many superior ensembles applied, and Croft was chosen to perform at the April 2013 conference.


The Hillwood High School faculty and Academy business partners celebrated as one big happy familiy this week, recognizing the schools’ successful Academies and the national honors they've won.

Hillwood High was recognized as a "Triple Crown" school for having three Academies awarded ‘model’ program status, the highest level, by the National Career Academy Council. Academy coach Emily Hughes received a stating ovation for her hard work and dedication to help mold and shape each academy.

The Academy of Art, Design and Communications, the Academy of Business and Hospitality and the Academy of Health Sciences were all recognized as model programs. Each model academy will received a $1000 check, listing on the national website, and a banner to display in the school.

Congratulations, Hillwood!

Hillwood Triple Crown Celebration
The Hillwood family celebrates together.
Emily Hughes receives her award
Academy Coach Emily Hughes receives her award... and a standing ovation.


The Middle Tennessee Reading Association is the local council affiliate of the Tennessee Reading Association. Several Metro School teachers hold positions with the association.

  • Angel Viera, literacy coach at J.E. Moss Elementary, has been named the 2012-2013 President-Elect of the Tennessee Reading Association.

  • Melanie Collins, teacher at Bordeaux Enhanced Option Elementary, assumed the office of Vice President of the Tennessee Reading Association for the 2012-2013 school term. Collins will become President-Elect during the 2013-2014 school year. She is also serving as Middle Tennessee Reading Association treasurer.

  • Sandra Smith-Hitt, teacher at Robert Churchwell Elementary, will serve as the 2012-2013 Treasurer of the Tennessee Reading Association.

  • Anita Armstrong, literacy coach at Cole Elementary, is serving Tennessee Reading Association as the 2012-2013 Recording Secretary.

  • Holly Perez, teacher at Donelson Middle School, is the president of Middle Tennessee Reading Association for 2012-2013.

  • Jana Crosby is the new state coordinator for the Tennessee Reading Association charged with overseeing and planning many activities for our association.

  • Eileen Steeples of Robert Churchwell is serving as membership chair for Middle Tennessee Reading Association.


Nine Metro Schools educators, including teachers and coordinators, took a ride with Sally Ride Science Academy sponsored by ExxonMobil. Through this program, each teacher will learn new and innovative strategies to help raise student interest in science subjects and careers.

Congratulations to the following teachers selected for the Academy:

  • Nicole Kloor-Janz, Maxwell Elementary

  • Hildateri Parks, Lakeview Elementary

  • Amanda Sheaffer, Tom Joy Elementary

  • Shauntel Jennings, Isaac Litton Middle

  • Stephanie Lankford, McMurray Middle

  • Carlene Taylor, Martin Luther King Jr. Magnet

  • Mary Jane Woomer, DuPont-Hadley Middle

  • Ernestine Saville-Brock, MNPS Mathematics Coordinator

  • Sarah Baker, MNPS Science Coordinator

These fine educators join 260 others from across the country.

The Sally Ride Science Academy was founded by Dr. Sally Ride, the first American woman in space. The academy is dedicated to assist teachers in raising student interest in science. The program, based on research, shows that introducing young students to various science careers and scientists can spark interest and make the study of science more meaningful.


High honors came for two of the district's principals this summer. Dr. Nancy Meador, principal of Madison Middle School, was elected President of the National Association of Elementary School Principals (NAESP). Not long after, Ruby Major Elementary principal Teresa Dennis was chosen to serve on the NAESP Board of Directors!

These are high national honors for Ms. Dennis and Dr. Meador, so a big, hearty congratulations to them both! They will serve NAESP and represent our district well.


Deloris BurkeA Metro Schools alumna educator is spending her summer in the deep end of a huge pool of knowledge in our nation's capital, all to help other teachers in the classroom.

Deloris Burke, formerly principal of McMurray Middle School, is honored to participate in the Library of Congress Teaching with Primary Sources Summer Teacher Institute. Burke was selected from more than 300 candidates to participate in this week-long program in Washington, D.C.

During the program, Burke is working with Library education specialists and subject-matter experts to learn effective practices for using primary sources in the classroom, while exploring some of the millions of digitized historical artifacts and documents available on the Library’s website. This session will also include instruction on using primary sources from the World Digital Library website, established by the Library of Congress, endorsed by 
UNESCO and launched online. in 2009. The site contains cultural materials from all 193 countries in UNESCO with expert commentary in seven languages.

The Library of Congress, the nation’s oldest federal cultural institution, is the world’s preeminent reservoir of knowledge, providing unparalleled integrated resources to Congress and the American people. The Library serves the public, scholars, Members of Congress and their staffs—all of whom seek information, understanding and inspiration. Many of the Library’s resources and treasures may also be accessed through the
Library’s website.


Frank L., 11th grader at Hume-Fogg Magnet High School, was recently awarded a $1,000 scholarship and the opportunity to attend the Al Neuharth Free Spirit Journal Conference at the Newseum in Washington, D.C. this summer!

The scholarship is given to rising seniors interested in pursuing a career in journalism and who demonstrate qualities of a “free spirit.” Frank and other students will take an all-expense paid trip the conference where they will learn the vital role of the First Amendment as a cornerstone of democracy and how to inspire students to pursue journalism careers.

Frank earned the honor for strong writing in both his essays and collected works from the school newspaper, The Knightly News.

Congratulations, Frank!


Dozens of young musicians will light up the stage at the 2012 Keep the Music Playing All-Star Concert. Hosted by CMA and organized by the Nashville Public Education Foundation and Metro Schools, the concert will feature some of the district's finest young musicians. Recording artist Chris Young will host the concert and special guest Suzy Bogguss will be on hand to help celebrate. CMA will also announce the 2011 CMA Music Festival donation to music education through the CMA Foundation and the Keep the Music Playing initiative. Since 2006, CMA has donated $4.7 million in funds and musical equipment to Metro Schools through Keep the Music Playing.


Five MNPS educators were selected to attend the Sally Ride Science Academy this past summer! This group is now training others in the district. Check out the news release issued by the Academy:

The Sally Ride Science Academy brought to you by ExxonMobil announced that five educators from Nashville were selected to learn new, innovative strategies to raise students’ awareness of and interest in science and science careersSally Ride Science Academy - Five MNPS educators selected to attend.

Teachers from Metro Nashville Public Schools attending the Academy include:

  • Sarah Baker, Science Coordinator for MNPS

  • Theresa DuLaney, teacher at Bellevue Middle School

  • ReGina Etter, STEM Instructional Designer

  • Marti Moore, teacher at Ross Elementary School

  • Robby Yates, teacher at Lakeview Elementary School

The Academy is a partnership between Sally Ride Science, founded by the first American woman in space, Dr. Sally Ride, and ExxonMobil.  The program educates teachers and counselors about the importance of introducing young students to science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) careers, showcases diverse role models in those careers, and provides pathways to incorporate STEM career awareness in the classroom. The Academy was held in San Diego.

Educators were selected by district administrators based on their qualifications, dedication to inspiring students at an early age, and overall commitment to enhancing the teaching profession. The participants are among 275 educators from around the country attending additional Academy sessions this summer.

“I’m thrilled to announce the selection of these fine educators,” Ride said. “Research shows that introducing young students to the wide variety of science careers available, the many paths to becoming a scientist, and the vibrant women and men working in science today makes girls and boys more likely to stay interested in science and to consider a science career. By partnering with ExxonMobil, we’re equipping educators with the necessary tools to encourage students to pursue math and science in higher education and beyond.”

The Sally Ride Science Academy utilizes a train-the-trainer model that prepares Academy graduates to train other teachers in their district during the 2011-2012 school year.  Graduates and their trainees will receive sets of the Sally Ride Science Cool Career book series for use in their classrooms.  Since the inaugural Academy in 2009, the Academy has trained more than 395 educators in 41 districts spanning 14 states and the District of Columbia. Those educators have since returned to their districts and trained more than 2,700 additional educators using Academy materials.

“Programs like the Sally Ride Science Academy brought to you by ExxonMobil will help transform the perception of scientists and science-based careers and inspire young people to take up careers in these areas,” said Truman Bell, senior program officer for education and diversity, ExxonMobil. “It’s our responsibility to ensure that every child feels inspired and competent in these subject areas to face the challenges of the future.”

The Sally Ride Science Academy is part of ExxonMobil’s investment in math and science education in the United States. The company supports numerous other initiatives that encourage students to take an active interest in careers in the math and science fields; support the professional development of highly qualified teachers and promote involvement of women and minorities students.



Overton High School Class of 2011 graduate Markus "Mookie" Betts has big plans in his near future. The short stop was the 5th round draft pick of the Boston Red Sox!

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