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Give a round of applause to this year's winner and runner up in the Kathryn C. Mitchell Spelling Bee.

The Bee was held last week and Jeremy G. of DuPont Hadley Middle School came out on top. Christine L. from Meigs Middle Magnet followed closely behind as runner-up.

2013 Spelling Bee Winners
(L-R) Tracy Hardin, President of The Links, INC. presenting our Spelling Bee winner with a $500.00 Check from Dr. and Mrs. Carver G. Wilcox, daughter and son-in-law of Dr. Kathryn C. Mitchell; Jeremy G., Spelling Bee Winner-DuPont Hadley MS; Dr. Lora Hall, MNPS; Christine L., Spelling Bee Runner up- Meigs Magnet Middle School; Toni Davis, Representing The Links, INC and the Charles Davis Foundation that donated a $250 check to the runner up

Oh, and by the way - the winning word was VENTILATE. VENTILATE. Shall I use it in a sentence?


John Early Museum Magnet Middle was transformed into a museum to showcase work done in the past nine weeks.

This was an opportunity for students to share and show off work to parents, teachers and their fellow students. It was also is a wonderful chance to experience what the museum theme has to offer.

Grade Level Themes:

  • 5th Grade: The Way It Was.

  • 6th Grade: The Power Of...

  • 7th Grade: The Perspective Of...

  • 8th Grade: The Way It Was, The Way It Is, and the Way It Shall Be


From Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee:

Oliver Middle School students spent all day Monday learning about capital resources, imports and exports, the importance of budgeting, and the characteristics of entrepreneurs. They studied foreign currency, created business plans, set personal budgets and crafted résumés. Students learned all of this not from their teachers, but from businesspeople.

More than 60 employees from 23 area companies took over the school on December 17th, leading interactive programming on financial literacy, work readiness and entrepreneurship through a JA in a Day event hosted by Junior Achievement of Middle Tennessee.

“JA in a day at Oliver Middle School is a wonderful day for our students. Students get to play math games and make advertisements for products, which helps develop critical thinking skills and stimulates their creativity. Students also get to know a variety of community professionals who are interested in furthering students’ educations in unique and thoughtful ways. Thank you, Junior Achievement,” said Linda Latter, Counselor at Oliver Middle.

Sue Kessler teachers students for JA in a Day

Dr. Susan Kessler (center), JA Associate Board Member and Executive Principal at Hunter’s Lane High School, and Andrew Davis (right), Assistant Principal at Hunter’s Lane High School, volunteer at Oliver Middle School.

Junior Achievement provides hands-on programming that connects what students are learning in the classroom to the real-world. Offered to students in Kindergarten through high school, JA programs combine discussions and group activities into lessons that help students understand the important role education plays in a successful future.

JA in a Day combines all six lessons of JA’s middle school programming into one day, instead of spreading the lessons out over several weeks. Having dedicated volunteers take over the entire school ensured all 860 students in the Metro Nashville school received the lessons at the same time on the same day.

JA of Middle Tennessee President Trent Klingensmith said, “Being able to reach every student in four grades with JA’s message of financial responsibility and workplace skills is incredible. As an organization, Junior Achievement is grateful to the volunteers who helped inspire hundreds of students at Oliver Middle to take the steps today that will lead to success in life and the workplace down the road.”

Several volunteers participating in Oliver’s JA in a Day were JA Board Members. Associate Board Member Jaclyn Carney of Radsource had a great experience. She said, “my teaching partner and I spent the day with a great group of 23 eighth graders...this day was so rewarding as it allowed me the opportunity to engage with the next generation and challenge them to start thinking about what it means to own their own economic success. The lessons and activities provided to us by JA were visibly impactful as they empowered these students to open their minds, think about their future, and begin the important journey of self-discovery. From evaluating their own skills, values, and interests in thinking about future career options, to balancing a budget, to understanding the difference between credit and cash, the value of education, and many things in between, I feel as though each student walked away from this JA in a Day experience with an increased level of self knowledge and the important foundation from which to build upon their own economic success. I am confident that because of JA in a Day, each of these 23 students were exposed to priceless lessons that challenged them to think outside the walls of their eighth grade classroom and dream big!”

The teachers and students at Oliver Middle School are no strangers to JA volunteer experiences. This marked the fourth year in a row the school has opened its doors to host a whole-school JA in a Day event for its middle schoolers.

Junior Achievement hosts other JA in a Day programs throughout Middle Tennessee. Companies and schools interested in participating should contact JA Director of Programs Andy Schenck at 615.627.1186 or andys@janash.com.


Metro Board Representative Elissa Kim at Head 2012Metro Board Representative Elissa Kim is proving her support for students and staff in the district. Kim recently spoke at Head Middle Magnet School's Pastries With Parents. A staunch advocate for quality public education, Kim shared her history with parents as well as her excitement of helping take Teach for America nationwide.

Kim is also conducting a “listening tour” through which she will assess the needs of parents, students, and educators in District 5. After her presentation, parents had the opportunity to ask questions and share insight. 


P.U.R.P.L.E. Girls Goodlettsville MiddleThey call themselves the P.U.R.P.L.E. Girl’s, but their community may be more inclined to call them good citizens and servants. 

Fifteen Goodlettsville Middle ladies, grades six through eight, are part of a special mentoring group (P.U.R.P.L.E.: Pursuing Uniqueness, Responsibility, Purpose, Leadership, & Education) that aims to serve the community. Thanksgiving weekend, the girls volunteered at The Women’s and Children’s Shelter and served dinner to more than 200 homeless women and children. The project proved to be a powerful, and fun, experience!


Cameron Middle School leaders are making great strides in building parental involvement. Earlier this month, school leaders hosted a math and literacy night in conjunction with Lipscomb University that drew more than 100 people. Families were able to visit 24 interactive booths created by Lipscomb University College of Education graduate students. All of the activities were inspired by the book Among the Hidden by Margaret Peterson Haddix which Cameron students are currently reading as part of the school-wide genre study of dystopian-themed science fiction. The activities allowed the book to come to life for students and their families and demonstrated activities that can be done at home to make reading and math more fun. 


We want to give a big shout out to Lakeview Elementary Design Center and W.H. Oliver Middle School, both of which were awarded Music Makes Us education grants from the Nashville Singers. Check out the news release below.

Lakeview Design Center & Oliver Middle School Receive Music Education Grants from The Nashville Singers, Inc.

Nashville, TN - Lakeview Design Center and W.H. Oliver Middle School were each announced as recipients of a $500.00 Music Makes a Difference music education grant from Nashville Singers in May of this year. The formal presentation took place at the Nashville Singers annual Season of Harmony concert on November 17 at Hillsboro High School. 

Since being founded in November of 2008, the philanthropic mission of Nashville Singers has been to enrich lives through support of music education in our schools and the community. To support this mission, the chorus funds several programs, including a free singing lessons program entitled Acappella Academy, music education grants, middle and high school master classes, and the Educator of the Future college scholarship created for students pursuing a music education degree.

Upon hearing the announcement, Carol Crittenden, Visual and Performing Arts Coordinator for Metro Nashville Public Schools (MNPS) remarked, "The Nashville Singers have not only been an incredible financial support for grant recipients in Metro Schools, but the members have also given of their time and talents to support our music students. This is the type of commitment and partnership we greatly value."

Jay Steele, Associate Superintendent for MNPS High Schools added, "A rich curriculum that includes the arts is very important for all students in Nashville and MNPS is very fortunate to have such supportive partners like the Nashville Singers."

Kim Marie Folsom of Lakeview Design Center stated, "I am so thankful for the Nashville Singers, who provide help for students in need, through music education. They realize that music teaches math, language, history, reading and science in a fun environment. I am so grateful for their support."

Franklin J. Willis of Oliver Middle School added, "The Oliver Middle School community advocates in the importance of music education in students' lives. Receiving this award not only serves as monetary gain to fund the new chorus program, but motivation to meet the challenge of engaging students in finding their own voice through music. It is truly an honor to be a recipient of the Nashville Singer's Music Makes a Difference Grant. I look forward to future collaborations with Nashville Singers and the Oliver Middle School Chorus."  

Other dignitaries on hand for the presentation and concert included Laurie Schell, Director of the Music Makes Us education project, Margaret Campbelle-Holman, Executive Director of Choral Arts Link, and Peter Bird, President and CEO of the Frist Foundation.

About Nashville Singers

In their first four years, this volunteer group has grown from four to 15 singers, learned 42 songs, released their first CD, racked up 50 performances for 32 organizations in seven counties across Tennessee, and produced a successful concert series which attracted attendees from 36 cities in eight states across the USA. Their concert audiences have ranged in size from a few hundred to 4000 people. Their diverse repertoire spans many genres. Their philanthropic mission is to enrich lives through support of music education in our schools and the community. This support comes in the form of music education grants, college scholarships, master classes in area schools, and an annual free singing lessons program called Acappella Academy. Nashville Singers has awarded $2500 in music education grants and scholarships in the last two years. The Nashville Singers, Inc. is recognized by the IRS as a tax-exempt 501(c)3 non-profit organization. For more information about Nashville Singers, visit them online at www.nashvillesingers.org.


Head Runners for Mayor's 5K

Head Middle Magnet School participated in the Mayor’s 5K on Sunday, Nov. 19. Andrea Hawkins, 8th grade science and physical science teacher, organized the event. School faculty and several families ran or walked. Congrats to Joshua Rice, 6th grade math teacher, and Sarah Diehl, 7th grade math teacher, for finishing with the fastest times at 29 minutes and 32 minutes respectively.


Two days before the Thanksgiving holiday, it’s a pretty fair assumption that turkeys are on JEMMMS Mummy 2012
the minds of many. But at John Early Museum Magnet Middle School, a different type of fowl has students preoccupied.

As part of a unit on Egyptian culture, the students are studying mummies. Nothing really new there, but what IS new is that students are actually mummifying chickens. Check out the photos below of the project-based lesson in action!

John Early Museum Magnet Middle School gives students a chance to learn rigorous academics in the setting of a museum. The school teaches and implements museum methods including inquiry, critical thinking, projects, interpretation and hands-on analysis of objects. It relies on the integration of the arts across the curriculum to further engage students, and it enlists the help of curators and educators from more than 30 museums, historic sites and organizations in the midstate.


Mark North

Mark North, Sports Fan & President of

The Fans, Inc.

Middle School Athletics

Middle school sports provide great after-school opportunities for students. It keeps them busy; teaches them discipline, sacrifice, teamwork, and structure; and promotes school spirit.

Congratulations to the Middle School City Champions for the fall sports:

  • Volleyball – JT Moore Middle

  • Girls’ Soccer – Meigs Middle

  • Football – Smithson-Craighead Middle

Congratulations to all our middle school student-athletes!

Middle School Pep Rally … Putting the Pep in the Rally

Last week’s pep rally at Head Middle School featured TSU’s marching band. The Aristocrat of Bands made its annual visit to Head and added its incomparable flair to the school’s pep rally extravaganza. The band at TSU is a great community partner and a source of pride for all Nashville.

News from the TSSAA…Award Winning Administrators

The TSSAA awarded Athletic Director of the Year for the Middle Tennessee Region to Chip Sullivan of Hunters Lane and the Principal of the Year to Hillwood’s Dr. Steve Chauncy. Congratulations!

News from the TSSAA…District Realignment

The TSSAA changes the districts every four years and have announced the proposed changes to the Districts for 2013-2017. The biggest news is that Hillsboro will join District 12AAA.

District 12AAA will feature:

  • Antioch Bears

  • Cane Ridge Ravens

  • Glencliff Colts

  • Hillsboro Burros

  • Hillwood Hilltoppers

  • Hunters Lane Warriors

  • McGavock Raiders

  • Overton Bobcats

In the football playoffs, Glencliff, Hillsboro and Hillwood will compete in the 5A classification while the other District 12AAA teams will compete in 6A.

District 10AA will feature:

  • East Nashville Eagles

  • Hume-Fogg Blue Knights

  • Lipscomb

  • Maplewood Panthers

  • MLK Royals

  • Pearl-Cohn Firebirds

  • Stratford Spartans

  • Whites Creek Cobras

In the football playoffs, East and Stratford will compete for the 3A championship; while Maplewood, Pearl-Cohn, and Whites Creek will compete for the 4A championship.

The realignment will be approved within the next week or so, and the new districts begin play in the fall of 2013.

-- Mark North

MNPS: The First Choice for the Incomparable Flair of School Spirit



Two Gra-Mar Middle School students recently saw their first bylines. The students wrote editorials that were printed in a special election issue of the Tennessean Sunday, Nov. 4. The students had been studying the Electoral College vs. Popular Vote. They participated in mock elections with real voting machines and heard from several locally elected officials.

Meahwhile, Murrell School held a Mock Election Monday, Nov. 5. The students had been discussing the democratic process, what it means to vote, why voting is important, looking at a voting machine, and encouraging their parents to vote. Each student had the opportunity to vote by paper ballot.


Lady Liberty has landed ... at McMurray Middle School! The statue came to life to teach students a brief lesson in history and help them find their place in our country's future. The 30-minute theatrical lesson was part of the Next Great Americans Tour sponsored by the Liberty Learning Foundation.

Lady Liberty McMurray 2012


The award-winning Band program at Oliver Middle School recently performed at a Veteran’s Celebration Nov. 5.  Not only did they entertain the crowd with music, the students also shared artwork and essays they wrote about freedom and patriotism, as well as hand-written thank you notes to veterans. 

The bands’ musical tributes were powerful and moving and included a student-created slideshow that accompanied all of the musical selections. The concert concluded with a tribute to all of the branches of the armed forces followed by an encore of “Stars and Stripes Forever.”

Although still relatively young, the Oliver Middle School band has received numerous accolades including recognition as a National Commended Winner and State Winner in the Mark of Excellence National Wind Band Honors Project in 2009 and 2010. The band consistently receives Superior ratings at MTSBOA adjudications and are seven-time recipients of the Tennessee Bandmasters Association Sweekstakes Award.  

Oliver Band celebrates veterans


Rose Park Math and Science Magnet Middle School won the highly coveted SCORE Prize, a statewide award that recognizes dramatic improvement in student achievement. Rose Park won in the middle school division.

Click to read the official news release issued by SCORE.


McKissack Middle School and Paragon Mills Elementary are this year’s big winners in the Healthy Classroom Challenge sponsored by the Office of Coordinated School Health and United Way during Child Health Week. The goal of the challenge was to demonstrate in a two-minute video how teachers and students incorporate physical activity into their daily classroom routine. Angela Lyles and Barbara Laifer and their classes got creative with a Family Fued-style competition at McKissack and a Feelin’ Good Dance Party at Paragon Mills. 

For their winning projects, each teacher was awarded an iPod Nano and $100 gift certificate.  The students were awarded a healthy snack celebration along with a United Way t-shirt, lunch bag, water bottle and football. Congratulations to all of the participants!


A group of 25 principals from China observed classes and toured the John Early campus Wednesday morning. They were part of an exchange that had hosted several Nashville administrators. John Early served as one of four schools that the group visited over the course of the day. After sitting in on lessons on creative writing, the Underground Railroad, and algebra the administrators met with a panel of parents and museum partners for a Q & A session. The museum theme and process were of particular interest to the delegation who observed examples of learning and student-created exhibits.

Chinese Principals pose with John Early Faculty


Oliver Middle School’s chorus recently performed at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center for the Regions Free Day of Music, an event created to showcase talent in the Nashville community. Oliver was the only middle school group selected to perform!

According to choral teacher Franklin Willis, “our students have risen to a new level of artistry. I am extremely proud of the quality performances the students had yesterday. Each concert we continue to display great vocal technique, expressive singing, stage presence, and focused energy on the stage. With each performance, the students are taking ownership/pride in their accomplishments, thus making them true musicians in their own right.”

Oliver Middle School at Regions Free Day of Music 2012


Gra-Mar Middle School is opening its doors to all for a special Pancake Breakfast! Saturday, Oct. 27, from 8 - 10 a.m., you are invited to join students and staff in the school cafeteria for a stack of pancakes paired with sausage or bacon. Cost is $5. Proceeds will benefit the Gra-mar cheerleaders.


West End Middle School’s Giant Yard Sale Is October 27th! 

Proceeds from this huge sale will support West End International Baccalaureate World School and its wonderful arts, science, music and athletics programs.

Anyone can donate items to the sale - new or gently used furniture, household items, clothing, Halloween costumes, shoes, books, toys, bikes, athletic equipment, electronics.  All items must be clean and in good working order.  Drop off dates will be Sat. and Sun. October 20 and 21 from 9:00 to noon each day; Thurs., Oct. 24 from 8-10 am; 4-6 pm and Friday, Oct. 25 from 8 am to 7 pm.

Sale hours on Saturday, October 27 will be 7:00 am to 2:00 pm. Cash, checks or credit cards will be accepted.


Rose Park Magnet Middle School is up for quite an honor; the school is one of three middle schools in Tennessee in the running for the second annual SCORE Prize. Winners will be announced Monday, Oct. 8, at the Ryman Auditorium. The ceremony begins at 6 p.m.

The award recognizes one school at each tier, as well as one school district that have shown dramatic improvements in student achievement. If selected, Rose Park will receive $10,000.


Haynes Donation 2012 - the Alliance for Women and Media and Ford Motor Company presented a donation to Haynes MiddleYoung ladies at Haynes Middle Health/Medical Design Center have a little added incentive to investigate media-related jobs! At an assembly featuring News Channel 5 Anchor Vicki Yates, the school was presented with a special monetary donation from the Alliance for Women and Media and the Ford Motor Company. The Alliance and Ford have partnered to encourage young women to explore careers in media.


Students at Croft Middle School stepped back in time to celebrate Harvest Days at the Croft Ladies at Harvest DaysNashville Zoo. This marked the 10th year the school has participated in the celebration that takes visitors back in time.

The actors and singers who entertained the large crowd of visitors at the Croft House included Frederick Douglass, Sojourner Truth, Tea Party Girls, The Boys from Bull Run, The Croft Sisters, and many more. Student Anne D. celebrated women’s right to vote with a special song about the passing of the 19th Amendment to the Constitution.


It was raining eggs at Head Middle Magnet this week. Students participated in the annual Egg Drop led by 7th grade science teacher Dwayne Hardin. The goal was to build a device that would protect the egg as they were dropped from the top of the gym roof. All students participated and were given a science grade for their projects.

Contraptions of toothpicks, peanut butter, Styrofoam and marshmallows were among the most creative.


In a countdown to the 2012 Presidential Race, Gra-Mar Middle School students are learning by doing! The students will participate in a special voting assembly Wednesday, Oct. 3, at 3 p.m. State Representative Brenda Gilmore and State Senator Joe Haynes will serve as guest speakers. Students will participate in debates and mock electoral voting and winners will be selected for President and Mock Electoral Vote.


IB World SchoolIf you've wondered what all the fuss is about with International Baccalaureate, you'll get answers and then some next Tuesday at Hillsboro High School.

Hillsboro is hosting an IB Information Night for everyone in Nashville to learn more about this presigious, internationally recognized academic program. There will be displays of student projects, sessions about the Middle Years and Diploma IB Programmes, and an in-depth panel discussion about how colleges view an IB diploma.

Come see why Hillsboro cluster schools are the best option for your child. We hope to see you there!

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

5:30 p.m. - 7:35 p.m.

Hillboro High School


The Nashville Public Library Foundation invites all Davidson County High School students (ages 13-18) to submit a very short story in honor of the 2012 Nashville Public Library Literary Award recipient, Margaret Atwood.

About the contest

Students are asked to write an original and creative story of no less than 5 and no more than 10 sentences inspired by Margaret Atwood’s The Handmaid’s Tale or this photo:

The Handmaid's Tale

Three finalists and the winner will be honored at the Literary Award Public Reading on October 27. One winner will receive the grand prize of a Kindle and $50 Amazon gift card. Finalist stories will be published on the Nashville Public Library Foundation website.

 View complete rules and entry guidelines.

Entries will be accepted

September 20 – October 4, 2012

Entries may be submitted online



Mail one printed copy of submission to:

Nashville Public Library Foundation

Essay Contest

615 Church Street

Nashville, TN 37219

Handwritten entries will not be considered. Finalists will be notified beforehand. Winners will be announced at the NPLF Literary Award Public Reading on Saturday, October 27. Contact Stephanie.Koehler@nplf.org with questions.


Parents, students, teachers, school partners, and the Metro Nashville Election Commission jumped into a whirlwind of excitement at the John Early Museum Magnet Middle School Open House. It served as a celebration of the start of a new school year and a formal introduction of the school’s new administration - Mrs. Rise’ Pope, JEMMS Open House 2012principal, and Mrs. Tanya Whittaker-Coleman, assistant principal. The night also served as the grand opening of the JEMMMS  Museum Room which currently embodies the theme “It’s All Greek To Me.” If that’s not enough, school leaders also used the night to kick off the school’s voter registration drive! School staff is working closely with Janet King and the Cumberland View Homes to register new voters.

Open House was highlighted with several school partners including PNA, Castles, ASET, TennCare and Girls Inc. All were strategically positioned to share information, answer questions and meet parents. Cumberland View also provided transportation for parents to the Open House. 

John Early’s Open House was a united effort to bring teachers, parents, partners, and the community together to build an atmosphere of excellence at John Early Museum Magnet Middle School. And from the sounds of things, it did just that!


Science Carnival at Head MS

Vanderbilt Student Volunteers for Science held a science carnival after school at Head Middle Magnet Friday, Sept. 7. Students enjoyed making their own ice cream, exploring optical illusions, and discovering the identity of “mystery” substances to name a few activities. A special thank you to Vanderbilt for sponsoring this interactive event!


In August, 16 Oliver Middle School musicians were featured singing and playing with Carrie Underwood on the CBS special Teachers Rock. The TV special paid a musical tribute to America's teachers and serves as a fundraiser for the "Teach for America" program. Dierks Bentley, Josh Underwood with Croft - a group of Croft students perform with Carrie UnderwoodGroban and pop group Fun. were among the other artists seen on Teachers Rock. Teachers Rock also featured personal recollections from Dave Grohl, Usher and Maroon 5's Adam Levine and James Valentine. Some well-known actors also appeared on the program, including Meryl Streep, Viola Davis, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Jennifer Garner, Jack Black, Morgan Freeman and Matthew Morrison.

The students from Oliver were selected from a wide pool of musically gifted children. They ranged in ages from 10-12 and represented the wonderfully diverse culture of Oliver Middle School. Susan Waters and Katie Harrah, Band Directors, Franklin Willis, Choir Director and Delores McCreery, Drama Teacher all collaborated to select the 16 students to sing and play along with Underwood. 

The performance was pre-taped on Opry Stage A for the Friday night broadcast. The students worked with Underwood's musical director for about two hours on the back up vocals, percussion parts and clapping responsibilities. During lunch the students, teachers and parents were treated to a catered lunch and were able to mingle with the production crew. After lunch, Underwood's band came on set and the rehearsal continued. Late in the afternoon, Underwood joined the group on stage and performed the song "Nobody Ever Told You" four times with the students. Afterwards the students posed for photos with Carrie Underwood and each received an autographed photo. That’s what we call a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity!


McMurray Middle School's eighth grade students are getting "Money Smart!" The school has been chosen to participate in FDIC's Money Smart for Young Adults. Megan Polk, FDIC Supervisory Examiner, is teaching the class along with two of McMurray's teachers, Anne Marie Desruisseau and Beth Haggard.  This program is based on the award-winning Money Smart adult financial education curriculum that assists graduates with money management practices and financial confidence.  It is also aligned with educational standards for all 50 states.

The students at McMurray will learn the basics of handling their money and finances, including how to create positive relationships with financial institutions. This will equip them in their formative years with the basics of financial education and can give them the knowledge, skills, and confidence they need to manage their finances once they enter the real world.

Money Smart for Young Adults consists of eight instructor-led modules. The materials also include an optional computer-based scenario that allows students to complete realistic exercises based on each module.


PU logoFrom middle school expectations to youth safety, parents can learn ways to help their children succeed in school this Saturday at the first Parent University of 2012-13! While parents are is sessions, students will be offered tutoring services. Doors open at 9 a.m., with the first session starting at 9:30. A continental breakfast will be served. Click here for more.


Tennessee Titan Sen'Derrick Marks made a surprise appearance at DuPont Tyler Middle School this week for the team's first official Titans Tuesday! The defensive tackle talked to the students about the importance of getting an education and setting goals.

 Marks at DuPont Tyler - Tennessee Titan defensive tackle surprises students at DuPont Tyler Marks at DuPont Tyler - Tennessee Titan defensive tackle surprises students at DuPont Tyler 


I.T. Creswell Magnet Middle School student Ally G. is sharing her voice to help launch Expect More Achieve More, a new statewide coalition aimed at creating awareness of higher academic standards in Tennessee. Specifically, the coalition will work to promote the state's adoption of Common Core Standards


Limitless Library Slogan Winner - Rose Park student SundusIf you haven't checked out Nashville's Limitless Library lately, you should! The site now boasts the system's catchy, new slogan "The future is in your hands, make it limitless," penned by Rose Park student Sundus C. Sundus is an avid Limitless Libraries user.

Limitless Libraries is a partnership between Nashville Public Libraries and MNPS, launched in 2009 under the direction of Mayor Karl Dean. Thousands of students in all Metro Schools use the system daily to access online literature, DVDs, CDs, and more.


Mark North

Mark North, Sports Fan & President of

The Fans, Inc.

Middle School Sports – Game Time

Middle School Fall Sports start this week. The North Sports Report Middle School game of the week is Haynes Middle Design Center at Bailey STEM Magnet Middle football game. Middle school student-athletes today = MNPS high school stars of the future. I’ll see you there.

Volleyball – These Girls Got Hops…or The Sky’s the Limit

The North Sports Report was amazed at the astonishing skill and leaping ability of the volleyball student-athletes as I cheered on the Overton and Cane Ridge volleyball teams. When you go to a volleyball game, be sure you arrive early enough to see the warm-ups. Amazing! The precision and teamwork of the digs and sets along with the grace and power of the high-flying monster spikes underscore the tremendous athletic ability of MNPS student-athletes. Volleyball – Can you dig it?

Alumni Alert

The North Sports Report bumped into Madison High fullback Greg Morgan Friday night. Greg serves as a TSSAA official and was the referee for the Hillwood vs. Antioch game last Friday. Greg famously scored a touchdown in Madison High’s 1979 Tobacco Bowl victory over Cumberland County. By famously, I mean… the North Sports Report vaguely remembers hearing about it.

Football Friday Night…Last Week’s Game

The North Sports Report is on a roll when it comes to picking the game of the week. Hillwood High School’s stadium, the fans, cheerleaders and band provided a great atmosphere to watch football, and the game went right down to the wire – another barn-burner for the game of the week. Antioch Bears quarterback Raekwon Hosey had a spectacular performance with 209 yards rushing including touchdown runs of 63, 58 and 15 yards plus a touchdown pass of 33 yards. Here’s an understatement…high school football is great family entertainment.

Hillwood High School football pregame - the National Anthem at Sunset
A beautiful pre-game National Anthem at Hillwood High School.

Friday Night’s Game of the Week – September 7, 2012

This week’s Game of the Week has the North Sports Report heading to Green Hills to witness the East Nashville Eagles visit the Hillsboro Burros in this week’s only game pitting two MNPS teams. It promises to be a tough battle to the very end.

In other action:

  • Antioch Bears travel to Centennial;

  • Cane Ridge Ravens head to Ravenwood;

  • Glencliff Colts welcome Lebanon;

  • Hillwood Hilltoppers host Father Ryan;

  • Hunters Lane Warriors travel south to Brentwood;

  • Maplewood Panthers go to Riverdale;

  • McGavock Raiders are at home against Franklin;

  • Overton Bobcats take a short trek over to Lipscomb;

  • Pearl-Cohn Firebirds travel to BGA;

  • Stratford Spartans play at Brentwood Academy; and

  • Whites Creek Cobras host Davidson Academy.

The MNPS home games are at Hillsboro; at Glencliff; at Hillwood; at McGavock; and at Whites Creek. Games start at 7:00pm. Enjoy a game near you!

-- Mark North

MNPS: The First Choice for High-Flying Monster Spikes


Middle school students are getting a little extra support this year, and it comes in the form of a new grading philosophy. The district adopted a new grading policy that is encourages grading for learning. But what exactly does that mean? 

The key changes are:

  • Grades reflect subject comprehension.

  • Grades are not just based on traditional tests – teachers are expected to use multiple forms of assessment such as projects, presentations, portfolios, etc. Of course, tests are still given, but students are now able to demonstrate comprehension through various assessment methods.

  • No more zeros! Students who do not turn in homework will be given additional opportunities to complete the assignment and show mastery. 

  • Extra credit is no longer given.

Want to see the new grading at work in DuPont Hadley Middle? Check out this story by News Channel 5 reporter Aundrea Cline-Thomas.


John Early Museum Magnet Middle School

It's more than just a name. John Early Museum Magnet Middle School is actually transforming into a museum - and you can come gawk at the exhibits!

The first exhibit, called It’s All Greek to Me, looks at the legacies and influences of the Ancient Greek culture in America and in Nashville.

Sections of the exhibit include:

  • a voter registration booth

  • 1/18 scale model of The Parthenon

  • an interactive politcal cartoon exhibit

  • examples of Greek architecture in Nashville

  • Kids Korner with fun activities

  • Community Corner with information and resources.

Students, their families, and members of the Nashville community are invited to go through the exhibit on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 10 am to 12 pm. Please call 291-6369 ext. 104 to schedule a tour.


Bailey STEM Magnet Middle Open House a- a photo of Principal Christian Sawyer with students

Bailey STEM Magnet Middle School held their inaugural Parent & Scholar Open House last night, Aug. 23. Dr. Christian Sawyer, principal pictured below with students, presented the new school vision to a huge crowd of parents. Families were able to capture the STEM culture of Bailey STEM through a demonstration by the full-time scientist Dr. McKissic, introduction of the teachers by the Bulldog cheerleaders, and a beautifully sung version of the mission statement performed by the Diversity Choir.


Love exploring new cuisines? You have two chances to do just that and show your support for two beloved Nashville middle schools!


Mariachi offered at Wright Middle, Glencliff High as part of the Music Makes Us education program

Music education in Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools is becoming even richer this year with the launch of a mariachi program at Wright Middle and Glencliff High Schools as part of the Music Makes Us music education project. Alan Lambert, an experienced mariachi educator, is the mariachi program director.

"Mariachi music is what gives Mexico and its people its identity. It is vibrant and passionate like no other music in the world. The young and old love it just the same and feel so proud to be able to express themselves in this great country that gives them the opportunity to learn the music in the schools," said Grammy-winning mariachi artist Jose Hernandez. "I have seen it change lives and look forward to seeing this genre blossom in the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools under the leadership of Alan Lambert who is well-known for developing quality mariachi programs in Texas."

Lambert brings his passion for music and education to Metro Schools from the Grand Prairie (Texas) Independent School District where he was the director of the district’s mariachi program for grades 6-12. Under his leadership, the district’s mariachi program expanded from two to 11 campuses and his students performed at venues ranging from school auditoriums and nursing homes to the Texas State Fair and Cowboy Stadium.

“I am excited about the mariachi program in Metro Schools. Our mariachi students will make wonderful music, but I expect much more than that. I have high standards for their academic success and community service,” Lambert said. “I want students to earn top honors at music competitions and to continue their educations after high school graduation.” 

Music Makes Us: The Nashville Music Education Project is a public/private partnership among Metro Schools, Mayor Karl Dean,The Recording Academy and music industry leaders in Nashville. The initiative is moving Metro Schools beyond a traditional performance-based music curriculum to an expanded curriculum that includes diverse music genres. The vision is for music instruction that is sequential, high quality and relevant to the learning interests and needs of pre-K-12 students.

“Music Makes Us is very fortunate indeed to have a music educator the caliber of Alan Lambert offering a mariachi program at Glencliff and Wright,” said Nancy Shapiro, senior vice president with The Recording Academy. “It is the first of many new classes that will make music education in Music City the best in the nation. We welcome Mr. Lambert and thank him for sharing mariachi with our students. It will be an enriching and life-changing experience for them.”

An El Paso native, Lambert started and led the first All-Region Mariachi program in North Texas sanctioned by the Texas Music Education Association. His students’ musical excellence was noted in performances at the Mexican consulate and the Latino Cultural Center.

Lambert served as a volunteer, board member and eventually a teacher for the non-profit Creative Planet School of the Arts in California before joining the faculty at Wilson High School in East Los Angeles as a special education teacher. Previously, he had a career in marketing, fundraising and operations in the United States and Germany working with AT&T and the New York and Brooklyn Philharmonics.

Lambert received a bachelor’s degree in music from Texas Tech University and a master’s degree in music from New Mexico State University. He holds a music education certificate from California State University and an educational leadership and principal certificate from the University of Texas.

The Metro Schools mariachi program was introduced in May with concert performances from Jose Hernandez and from the Veterans Juvenil de America Mariachi. Mariachi is a term used to describe a group of strolling musicians performing a style of Mexican music, a member of such a band and their music.

Wright Middle School is a zoned middle school at 180 McCall Street off Nolensville Road. Nearby Glencliff High School is also a zoned school at 160 Antioch Pike.

Music Makes Us is under the overall direction of Jay Steele, associate superintendent of high schools. The staff also includes Laurie Schell, director; Dr. Nola Jones, music coordinator; and long-time Metro Schools educator Carol Crittenden.


American Idol Ticket Winner

Congratulations to Jose G., seventh grader at Neely’s Bend Middle School, for winning the American Idol vs. Vaccinations contest. Jose along with three additional guest will enjoy and evening of singing at the American Idol Live! contest, Sunday, Aug. 12, at Bridgestone Arena.


Apollo Middle School received a helping hand from more than 40 volunteers from Nashville Tools For Schools. Nashville Tools for Schools and community members were on hand to build and install desks for the school’s auditorium.

Nashville Tools For Schools (“NTFS”), in partnership with Metro Nashville Public Schools and members of our community, exists to provide the best possible learning environment for our young people and to demonstrate the community’s dedication to our educational system. We want to give each and every student in the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools the best education possible. Nashville Tools For Schools is committed to small maintenance and construction projects within our public schools, projects such as building desks or installing shelving, projects which empower our schools children and protect our schools resources.

Much more information is available on the
Nashville Tools for Schools website.


What a day! The first day of school in 2012-13 was a whirlwind for parents, educators, and everyone in or near a Metro school.

We had new schools opening (Cane Ridge Elementary, The Cohn School, The Academy at Opry Mills), others in new locations, and thousands of students coming to our schools for the first time.

At the end of the day (or half-day, if you like), things moved pretty smoothly, with one teacher even describing it as "the smoothest, most positive I can recall."

We went all over the city taking photos at several schools. Parents also sent in pictures of their children heading to school. They're all collected below in a Flickr slideshow.

Elsewhere online, parents, teachers, and the community were all a-buzz about the first day, sharing their experiences with us as the morning went on. We've collected them all together in a Storify story that includes several more pictures. Read the story here.

Thanks to everyone who made Day One such a success. The start of school is always a big day, and thanks to our wonderful families and community for helping out!


They're a piece of every child's imagination, and several of our Metro students learned to build and control them this summer at Robocamp 2012. But no need to fear: these robots are built for peace.

Bailey STEM Magnet Middle School held RoboCamp July 9-13. Teachers from Bailey, Litton Middle School and Stratford STEM High School led rising 5th-7th graders through the process of building a robotic arm to use in a competition at the end of the week. The students also learned to solder on a circuit board for an electronic siren. A trip to the Nissan factory in Smyrna provided students the opportunity to see robots in action. The students stopped at Home Depot on the way back to school for an “Inventor’s Tour” of the Home Depot in East Nashville where they explored alternative uses for different materials in the store. The competition on Friday put the students’ robotic arms to the test as they competed as teams and individuals.

Thanks to all the educators who made this free summer camp possible and to all the campers who had an amazing time building robots!


Several Metro students have been working on math class work during the summer, even winning awards!

Thirteen Metro Schools participated in the Metro Nashville Summer Math-a-lon and earned Apangea Math Points for their school.

Apangea Math provides one-student-to-one-teacher differentiated math instruction through a unique integration of proprietary tutoring technology and live, online certified teachers. As a web-based solution, Apangea Math can be accessed from any computer with an internet connection – ensuring students can learn math anytime, anywhere.

Here are the Metro Summer Math-a-lon schools and scores:

  • Margaret Allen MS – 11,507 Apangea Math School Points

  • East Literature Magnet – 10,608 Apangea Math School Points

  • John F. Kennedy MS – 4,322 Apangea Math School Points

  • John T. Moore MS – 4,547 Apangea Math School Points

  • Madison MS – 2,408 Apangea Math School Points

  • Gra-Mar MS – 1,124 Apangea Math School Points

  • Thurgood Marshall MS – 736 Apangea Math School Points

  • Rose Park MS – 237 Apangea Math School Points

  • Wright MS – 95 Apangea Math School Points

  • Haynes MS - 42 Apangea Math School Points

  • Bellevue MS - 25 Apangea Math School Points

  • Apollo MS - 46 Apangea Math School Points

  • DuPont Tyler MS - 18 Apangea Math School Points

Students had several options to choose from after collecting the points. Fifty-seven percent of the Apangea Points earned were donated to a charity of the student’s choice. Charities included:

  • A Soldier’s Child Foundation

  • Big Brothers Big Sisters

  • United Way

  • Wounded Warrior Project

  • The Boys and Girls Club

  • Make-A-Wish Foundation

  • Special Olympics

  • Habitat for Humanity


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.


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.


When I arrived at the newly renovated Isaac Litton Middle School, principal Tracy Bruno was fleeing the spray of a lawn sprinkler deployed to help the parched and newly planted landscaping. The grass may not have been prepared for the drought, but the school is prepared for more students and a higher profile in its East Nashville neighborhood.

“We are the epitome of a neighborhood school, right here in the middle of all these houses,” Bruno told me. And it’s true. Litton sits nestled between small, residential streets like Winding Way and Littonwood Drive right off Gallatin Pike.

The renovations that have taken place over the last year and a half have transformed the school into a building that looks practically new – and that’s because a lot of it is. The main office has been expanded. The library has a massive bank of new windows opening to the front lawn. The cafeteria is brand new and full of natural light. And the gym – once completely disconnected from the main building – has now been built out with new entrances, a new concession stand, and a host of new classrooms underneath it for fifth grade and related arts classes.

Click "Read more" for photos and the full story of Litton's neighborhood transformation.


Dr. Antoinette WilliamsDr. Antoinette Williams, principal of Gra-Mar Middle School, has been named Tennessee Association of Middle Schools Middle Tennessee Administrator of the Year. Dr. Williams was awarded this honor during the Tennessee Association Middle School Conference this summer. She was given the honor for her accomplishments in providing Sustainable and Relevant Teacher Professional Development, Success in Transforming Low Achieving Schools, and Improving Student Achievement.

Congratulations, Dr. Williams!


Don't leave your school hanging! Update your contact info today!We say it often: it is very important for schools to have your correct address and phone number.

How important? This important:

When report cards were mailed home after school ended a few weeks back, nearly all of them arrived on time and at the right house. But more than 2,700 were sent back because of incorrect addresses.

How to Pick Up Your Report Card

Those families who have not yet received report cards can pick them up at their school. Parents must bring proof of residence with them so school staff can verify who you are and also correct your address in their records.

Any report cards not picked up by July 13 will be sent to Central Office (2601 Bransford Avenue).

Your school will soon be in contact with you about this.

Oh, and while we have your attention, why not
give your school a call to update your address and telephone number?


Metro Schools brought home three honors at the Parthenon Education Awards this month.

  • Parthenon Teacher of the Year - Nancy Ives, Charlotte Park Elementary School

  • Parthenon Student of the Year - Mitchell Mielnik - John Early Museum Magnet Middle School

  • Parthenon School of the Year - Hillwood High School

School of the Year is not an annual award and Hillwood is only the second school to receive this honor. The photo below shows Parthenon Education Director DeeGee Lester presenting the Parthenon School of the Year Award to Daniel Shelton, student representative for Hillwood’s Academy of Art, Design and Communications.

Parthenon School of the Year Award


Expect a few phone calls from us this summer. When you answer there will be the familiar recorded greeting “Good evening, Metro Schools families.” What comes after may determine whether or not your child can attend school next year.

When school starts Wed., August 1, 2012, any student entering the seventh grade must have an updated Tennessee Immunization Certificate showing a recent tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis (Tdap) booster and verification of immunity to varicella (chicken pox). Without it, students will not be allowed to attend school.

That’s why we’re urging everyone to take care of these requirements now, not later. Have your child vaccinated and give the updated certificate to your school before summer break starts. It’s easier for everyone and takes another item off your summer to-do list.

The Metro Public Health Department offers immunizations required for school each Monday through Friday at its three Health Centers. Health officials emphasize that children with insurance coverage should visit their own healthcare provider for these shots, along with an added benefit of getting an annual well child physical exam. Tell your neighbors, friends, co-workers, and church groups. Send it to your neighborhood list-serv. Announce it at your next PTA meeting. It’s important information for the entire community.

Go to your family doctor or one of the three Public Health Centers to make arrangements for your child to receive these immunizations. Then when the phone rings with our friendly reminder, you can go on with your evening. For full information about required immunizations and where you can get them, call your child’s healthcare provider or visit the Metro Public Health Department website:


Music education is getting a big bookst at Lakeview & Oliver thanks to an influx of cash from the Nashville Singers.

These schools have been awarded the
Music Makes a Difference Education Grant. It will fund a new chorus program at Oliver and help fund music classes at Lakeview.

From Oliver's Choral Music Teacher Franklin Willis:

The Oliver Middle School community advocates in the importance of music education in students' lives. Receiving this award not only serves as monetary gain to fund the new chorus program, but motivation to meet the challenge of engaging students in finding their own voice through music. It is truly an honor to be a recipient of the Nashville Singer's Music Makes a Difference Grant. I look forward to future collaborations with the Nashville Singers and the Oliver Middle School Chorus.
Nashville Singers started the Music Makes a Difference Education Grant to help support music education in our schools and the community. The program is designed to provide financial assistance to school music programs serving “at risk” youth.


You may have heard a lot about Common Core Standards recently. They represent a huge shift in how subjects are taught across all grades. Here in Metro Schools we started implementing Common Core in middle schools some time ago, and now some of those first educators to use the curriculum will help train others in our district.

The Houghton Mifflin Lead and Learn Organization, led by nationally recognized Doug Reeves, has approved 25 MNPS educators as certified trainers for middle school Common Core Standards in English Language Arts and Mathematics.

SEE a list of the certified trainers in Metro Schools.

These trainers have gone through a rigorous preparation process, concluding with a juried presentation evaluated by Lead and Learn consultants according to a challenging performance rubric. These 25 educators are now licensed to train middle school English language arts and mathematics educators within Metro Schools using the exclusive research based materials developed by the Reeves' organization, and will have access to all future materials, research, and resources to use with our educators in MNPS.

This is not only a huge honor for these teachers, but a big boost to the implementation of Common Core in MNPS. We now have many more in-house resources for training, information, and research in this major shift in educational curriculum. Great work!


Do you know...

  • What your child will do this summer? (Metro Parks/Others)

  • What are your school options? (Student Assignment Office)

  • How to keep your child safe in the community and in social media, including electronic resources for students and parents?

  • What new standards your child will be required to master next year? (Information on new Standards)

  • What school immunizations are required? (Metro Health/MNPS)

  • What will be the Metro Planning updates for our community? (Metro’s Planning Dept)

  • How to plan for your child’s education? (Katie Morgan, EdSouth)

If you are looking for answers to these questions and more, specialists will be available to give you answers.

Antioch Middle School

5050 Blue Hole Road

Thursday, May 17th

6:00 p.m.


Made weekend plans yet? Don't bother! We know what you'll be doing.

Grammy nominated mariachi star José Hernàndez is giving a FREE performance at Glencliff High School this Friday night! He'll be joined by the Veterans Juvenil de America Mariachi Band from Rio Grande City, Texas.

It's all a fundraiser for the Music Makes Us Mariachi program kicking off next year. This new program will bring middle and high school students into the world of mariachi, practicing and performing in school ensembles. Donations will be accepted at this free concert event.

This is a wonderful opportunity to not only enjoy a free concert, but to support a budding music program that could change the lives of young students. Don't miss it!!

La música nos hace Mariachi

Music Makes Us Mariachi Concert






Congratulations to you and your student who is about to finish 6th grade! There is one last requirement before your student can begin 7th grade.

Students currently enrolled in a Tennessee school and entering the 7th grade in August 2012 must provide the school an updated Tennessee Immunization Certificate with proof of two additional immunizations:

  1. Tetanus-diphtheria-pertussis booster (“Tdap”):not required if a Td booster dose given less than 5 years before 7th grade entry is recorded on the DTaP/Td line

  2. Verification of immunity to varicella; (2 doses or history of disease)

The Metro Public Health Department and Metro Nashville Public Schools encourage you to get these immunizations NOW to avoid long waits in clinics and doctor’s offices. Below are some suggestions of places to get your child immunized before school begins:

  1. Your private health care provider

  2. The Metro Public Health Department (addresses below)

Lentz Public Health Center

311 23rd Avenue North

Nashville, TN 37203

(615) 340-5616

Walk-In Hours

East Public Health Center

1015 East Trinity Lane

Nashville, TN 37216

(615) 862-7916

Walk-In Hours

Woodbine Public Health Center

224 Oriel Avenue

Nashville, TN 37210

(615) 862-7940

Walk-In Hours


The law requires parents provide an updated immunization certificate to the school before the student can start 7th grade. You will only need to have proof of the two additional immunizations mentioned above on the updated immunization certificate. You can turn in the certificate to your child’s school as soon as you have it completed.

For more information you may contact:

Metro Public Health Dept.

Immunization Program


Metro Schools Customer Service Center


Remember 2-4-7:

2 Immunizations

Be 4 my student

Can start 7th grade

To view in Spanish, click here.


After a nationwide search for outstanding educators, Metro Nashville Public Schools Innovation Cluster has selected school principals, called iLeaders. Four are new to their schools and six are veterans; all are charged with leading dramatic improvement at Innovation Cluster schools.

  • Bailey STEM Magnet Middle - Dr. Christian Sawyer (New)

  • Buena Vista Enhanced Option Elementary - Michelle McVicker (New)

  • Robert Churchwell Museum Magnet Elementary - Jahi Rohrer (New)

  • John Early Museum Magnet Middle - Risè Pope (New)

  • Napier Enhanced Option Elementary - Dr. Ronald Powe (Returning)

  • Gra-Mar Middle - Dr. Antoinette Williams (Returning)

  • Margaret Allen Middle - Dr. Dorothy Gunn (Returning)

  • Cameron Middle - Chris Hames (Returning)

  • Jere Baxter Middle - Dr. Corey Walker (Returning)

  • Brick Church Middle - Chirelle Jefferson (Returning)

Learn more about the Innovation Cluster on its website.

What are iLeaders?

“iLeaders are an elite group of educators committed to transforming Innovation Cluster schools into exceptional schools,” said Alan Coverstone, director of Innovation Schools. “These iLeaders will analyze data and implement strategies to improve student achievement at each school. We want rapid results and will work with teachers, students, parents and the community to achieve them.”

Who are our new iLeaders?

McVicker is a product of Metro Schools as a member of the first graduating class of Hume-Fogg Academic Magnet High School. She began her teaching career at Norman Binkley Elementary and then moved to Bordeaux Elementary where she taught sixth grade until becoming the outreach manager for Nashville Public Television. In 2004, she joined Rutherford County Schools as school technology specialist. In 2007, she became an assistant principal in Murfreesboro City Schools, splitting her time between Hobgood Elementary: A NASA Explorer School and The Discovery School. During her tenure, both schools have been recognized for student achievement. Hobgood is 13th in the state and second in Middle Tennessee for improving student achievement in Education Consumers Foundation rankings.

McVicker earned an associate’s degree from Columbia State Community College and a bachelor’s degree from David Lipscomb University, both in elementary education. She holds a master’s degree in counseling from Trevecca Nazarene University and the Ed. S. from Tennessee Technological University.

Rohrer has five years’ experience in school leadership in New York, the British West Indies, and Washington, D.C. He joined DC Prep in 2010 as an instructional coach and became executive principal of the school’s Benning Elementary Campus in 2011. Previously, he was regional director of Potomac Lighthouse Public Charter School, also in Washington. In the British West Indies, he was the principal of the Teacher Gloria Omololu Institute. He began his career as a Teach For America Corps member in New York where he was a semi-finalist for the New York Sue Lehmann Award for teaching effectiveness. He has four years of elementary teaching experience.

Rohrer holds a bachelor’s degree from Middlebury College, a master’s degree in elementary education from Pace University, and has completed the Principal Leadership Program at Teachers College, Columbia University, where he also earned the M.Ed. He is the first African-American to win the overall title at the United State Alpine Skiing Junior Olympic Championship and was on the U.S. Olympic Development Ski Team.

Sawyer returns to Metro Schools from Louisiana where he worked to integrate 21st century learning technology into classrooms. He taught at Hillsboro High School and served as "Teacher in Residence" at Vanderbilt University's Peabody College of Education, where he taught in the Teaching and Learning in Urban Schools program. He has been an instructor of Geopolitics at the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth, and an Atlantik-Bruecke Fellow studying German-American relations with the Tennessee Department of Education. He was named 2006 National Outstanding Social Studies Teacher of the Year by the National Council for the Social Studies and the 2006 Tennessee Outstanding Social Studies Teacher of the Year. In 2008, he received both the Tennessee Distinguished Educator honor and Nashville’s "Educator Award" from the Mayor's Commission on People with Disabilities.

He has written and edited curriculum, including books on Human Geography. He is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of the honors program at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He earned master’s and doctoral degrees from Vanderbilt’s Peabody College of Education and Human Development.

Learn more about the Office of Innovation.

Metro Nashville’s Innovation Cluster schools are “priority” schools in the bottom 5 percent of Tennessee’s schools based on proficiency rates in math, reading, and science. Under the new statewide accountability system, these schools must improve student achievement at twice the rate of the rest of the district to remain under district governance.


School for Science & Math at Vanderbilt


Twenty‐six students from thirteen area middle schools have been selected for the School for Science and Math Class of 2016. Students were selected on the basis of test scores, grades, personal essays, teacher recommendations, and in‐person interviews. These students are the sixth class to begin the program.

SSMV allows students to spend one full day per week studying with scientists and experts at Vanderbilt all through high school. Find out more on


the School's website.


See the full 2016 Class.


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


When it comes to growth from year to year, Meigs is number one!

The magnet middle school was recently named the top performer in all of Tennessee when looking at growth in testing scores over a three-year period. The Education Consumers Foundation has been analyzing TVAAS data in its 'Tennessee Project' to find out just how effective our schools are.

As parent David Kern said, "This speaks volumes about the hard-working teachers at Meigs and even more about the strong leadership."

Congratulations to the students, faculty, and families at Meigs!


Bottle rockets may be child’s play to some, but to NASA and students at Bailey Middle Magnet, Cora Howe Middle and Wright Middle schools, they are serious business. The space agency has awarded its 2012 Educational Engagement Award to a combined team of Vanderbilt University engineering and education students for their work with about 500 students in the three Metro schools.

Nine mechanical engineering students in the Aerospace Club worked with six students in Vanderbilt’s Peabody College of Education and Human Development to develop lesson plans for the middle schoolers. The Peabody students teach in Metro Schools as part of their teacher licensure requirements.

Together, the Vanderbilt students taught teams of Metro students scientific and engineering concepts and then worked to design, construct and launch the rockets. Metro students calculated their rockets’ altitudes based on the rockets’ time aloft and the group from each school with the highest-flying rocket earned a visit to Vanderbilt, including a tour of engineering laboratories, workshops, project demonstrations and lunch.

Bailey STEM Magnet Middle School is part of a K-12 science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) continuum that includes Hattie Cotton STEM Magnet Elementary, Isaac Litton Middle, and Stratford STEM Magnet High School.

This post is based on an online article “Engineering, Peabody effort lands NASA STEM outreach award”
www.news.vanderbilt.edu. Posted with appreciation to Brenda Ellis and Vanderbilt University.


Fifth and eighth grade students are getting their hands dirty and drawing from all of their subjects in a service project that ties academics to gardening and to their community.

With the help of teacher Dr. Boone and the East Nashville Community Garden group, the fifth graders are planting different herbs and crops to understand how multiple factors influence the growth rate of each particular species of plant. The eighth graders are learning about pH levels through acid and base testing to see what conditions will work best for their plants so Bailey can have the best garden possible. The older students will then share what they have learned with their peers, giving both groups a deeper understanding of the concepts involved with growing a successful garden.

The happy conclusion to this experiment is that the families and community of Bailey get to enjoy in the fruits of the students’ labor. The fifth grades will open their very own restaurant using recipes they’ve researched and herbs, fruits, and vegetables from the garden. Their math skills will work overtime as they set up the menu for opening day, which is Bailey’s Student Celebration Day on May 15th. Not only will participants enjoy fresh, healthy foods, but visitors can see “STEM-ulating” demonstrations, investigations, and projects done throughout the year by students from Bailey.

Bailey Garden Project   Bailey Garden Project

Bailey Garden Project

Bailey STEM Magnet Middle School Student Celebration Day

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

9:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.

2000 Greenwood Ave, 37206


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!


Mckissack Middle School’s Oasis Program has been awarded the Mary Catherine Strobel Volunteer Award in the category of "Civic Volunteer Group Award". The school has approximately 65 students who participate in the program that aims to teach life skills, increase healthy behaviors, and create a sense of purpose in each teen through its issue-based, skill-building curriculum. The program, which also includes a significant volunteer component, is now in its 15th year.

This year, Mckissack students have contributed more than 1,000 hours of service to a variety of Nashville nonprofits, civic organizations, and schools. The students addressed many issues in the community through service such as feeding the homeless, boxing food and care packages for the needy, making cards for law enforcement officers, and much more. Congratulations Mckissack Oasis Program Students!

McKissack Oasis Strobel Award 2012


Deborah Shull of Antioch Middle School is this week’s News 2 Teacher of the Week! See why she is such an asset to Antioch during News 2’s 10pm newscast Thursday, April 12. You can also catch a replay Friday morning, April 13, during the 6am newscast.  


The band program at McKissack Middle School will host its inaugural Jazz Festival this Thursday, April 12, at 6 p.m., in the school auditorium.


Kimberly Woodard Apollo MS - 2013 teacher of the year finalistKimberly Woodard, eighth grade science teacher at Apollo Middle, is among the top in her class, and for good reason! The district Teacher of the Year finalist says she feels “overwhelmed and truly honored to be considered” for the award.

Woodard was inspired to teach by her fifth grade teacher, Robert Mitchell, who showed the class how to be an adult advocate for students. Woodard says he taught them life lessons beyond the academic setting.

Now in her 14th year of teaching, Woodard says the parts she enjoys most are developing relationships with the students and the creativity she is able to employ daily.

“When a teacher has established relationships with his/her students it cultivates an atmosphere of trust,” Woodard says. “I have found that when students know that you genuinely care about them as individuals, they are not only more compliant, but more motivated to learn. On the other hand, my ability to be autonomous and creative as a teacher is just as rewarding. I really enjoy creating authentic and interesting science lessons for my students.”

Woodard attended Tennessee State University where she received a bachelor’s degree in biology as well as a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction. She received a second master’s in educational leadership from Trevecca Nazarene University.

When she isn’t teaching, Woodard is generally found giving back to her community. She frequently volunteers at the Sexual Assault Center, Nashville Rescue Mission and Hickory Hollow Towers, an assisted living facility in Antioch. She also works monthly with the ladies of the Nashville Metropolitan Alumnae Chapter of Delta Sigma Theta Sorority, Inc., to feed homeless women.

Next Friday, find out why Stratford teacher Simyka Carlton feels she was born to teach!   


YouthSafetySummit2012AmbassadorsBeing outdoors in Tennessee in the spring is unbeatable, but current and future middle school students and their families stepped inside Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School on Saturday, March 24, for the second annual Youth Safety Summit.

Rodger Dinwiddie, Nashville’s nationally known expert on preventing bullying, set the tone for the day with an informative, interactive keynote address that earned high marks from families in attendance.

Breakout sessions built on this year’s theme, “Setting the Foundation for Success: Middle School Transition, Myths and Realities.”  Data Coach Marla Smith led a discussion to help parents understand their children’s performance data; Sam Davidson with Cool People Care and Jo An Scalf of Nashville Public Television advised students on smart use of the Internet;  Principal Ron Woodard of Maplewood High School and Drs. Jahangir and Sethi with Vanderbilt University Medical Center discussed preventing youth violence through positive relationships; and Gini Pupo-Walker with Metro Schools moderated a discussion on family and community involvement in schools.

The district’s 12 zoned high schools sent student Ambassadors to the event to share information about their schools and the district’s Academies of Nashville program that prepares students for college and career.

In the final session, a panel of high school juniors and seniors advised middle school students to get involved in school activities and to work hard because “high school begins in middle school and college begins in high school.” The Board of Education event ended with remarks from Board Vice Chair Mark North.


Saturday, March 31, the Cameron High Alumni Association is hosting its inaugural Taste of Cameron Fundraising event. The event will be held from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m., in the Cameron gym.


Congratulations to all students who participated in the MNPS Middle School Science and Engineering Fair this year! The year's big winners are posted below.


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Eighty students at Brick Church Middle School have been inducted into the second installment of Team Terminator, a group of students who are recognized for being proficient or advanced on school assessments!  That brings the school's total number of Team Terminator members up to 219 for the school year!

The students work hard to make the necessary gains to become a member of this elite team of students. For their efforts, they are rewarded with a t-Shirt and get to participate in a special induction ceremony. They will also receive extra privileges throughout the school such as dances, movies, first in the lunch lines, and first dismissal. The goal is to keep the students striving to make those gains.

Brick Church Team Terminator 2012


SCORE Annual Report 2012 at West End - students, staff and state leaders listen to Former Senator Bill FristStudents and staff at West End IB World Middle School proudly hosted a group of Tennessee leaders and education reform activists today. SCORE, the State Collaborative on Reforming Education, selected the school as the backdrop of its 2012 Annual Report on the State of Education in Tennessee. In selecting a site to release the annaul report, SCORE noted that West End is one of the highest performing schools in the state:

West End Middle School, where the report release was held, is one of the top performing schools in the state, and has made dramatic gains in narrowing the black-white achievement gap, the Hispanic-white achievement gap, and the economically disadvantaged/non-disadvantaged achievement gap. The school is part of Metro Nashville Public Schools.

SCORE collaboratively supports Tennessee’s work to prepare students for college and the workforce. They are an independent, non-profit, and non-partisan advocacy and research institution, founded by former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Bill Frist.


Metro Schools is hosting its second annual Youth Safety Summit, and this year, it's all about loving middle school! Students will also get a glimpse of what's in store when the transition to high school. Students representing The Academies of Nashville, located in all 12 zoned high schools, will be on hand to share their experiences with the younger peers. Parents will learn how to understand test scores, be more involved, and stay safe online.

CLICK HERE to See What's on the Agenda


McKissack Mentoring Program 2012 - a group of 8th grade girls who participated in a new mentoring programA new mentoring program at McKissack Middle aims to help 8th grade females focus on self-esteem, culture and pride, and fulfilling their legacies.  The first three sessions were was conducted by school social workers, Jessica Bell and Cate Westfall, a representative from Conexion Americas, Cecilia Gomez, and a Nashville professional singer, Myshel Wilkins.  The students were inspired by the message given by each guest speaker. The mentoring program will continue through the end of the year, focusing on: Relationship Building, Finances & Budgeting, Sisterhood/Teambuilding Exercises, and Mock Interviews.

Miss Fisk and her royal court recently visited McKissack Middle School. They began the Miss Fisk McKissack 2012 - Miss Fisk and her royal court visit McKissack 8th gradersday sharing why they chose to attend Fisk via the schools morning newscast. Next, the group stopped by each 8th grade classroom to share valuable lessons on college, career, and respect for oneself and others. Miss Fisk and her court were escorted to each classroom by McKissackStudent Council President Tatiyana Coleman. 


West End IB World Middle Schools is one of 100 winners nationwide, out of 2,500 submissions, to receive a $500 gift card from Home Depot as part of the 2012 Youth Garden Grant. West End was chosen because its gardening program “…reflected the importance of garden programming to cross-curricular studies, environmental education, and health and nutrition while demonstrating the important role gardens play in the lives of students, teachers, and the community.”

Last year, West End IB World School was one of five programs selected from more than 220 applicants across the U.S. to receive a $2,500 award and more than 300 vegetables and herbs from Burpee Home Gardens and the “2011 ‘I Can Grow’ Youth Garden Award. To date, West End Middle School has received $3,000 in garden grants.


Mark your calendars! MNPS middle school students will show off their exemplary science projects at the MNPS Middle School Science & Engineering Fair Showcase and Awards Ceremony. The event will be held at Rose Park Math and Science Magnet School, Tuesday, March 20. The showcase begins at 7:30 p.m., with an awards ceremony following at 8 p.m.

Students whose projects received Exemplary ribbons or top placement will be on hand to talk about their work and answer questions. The students receiving Exemplary ribbons will also be recognized during the Awards Ceremony and trophies will be awarded to top projects in each category.

Click through for a full list of students with Exemplary projects.



Apollo Middle School received a Recognition Award at the Tennessee State Special Education Convention, held Feb. 17.  The school was awarded for outstanding efforts with Inclusion in Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools.  According to Principal Jon Hubble, "We are very proud of our efforts to be a fully inclusive school." 

Inclusion is the offering of services for Exceptional Education students in a general education classroom. Learn more about inclusion and how the district is increasing inclusive services here.


Students at John Early Museum Magnet Middle School and Meigs Magnet School took more than a dozen medals home from the regional History Day Competition held at Middle Tennessee State University. The students competed in five categories including research paper, exhibit, documentary, website, and performance. Those who placed are now eligible to compete at Tennessee History Day in April. The state competition will be held at War Memorial Auditorium and Legislative Plaza. 


John Early Museum Magnet Middle School students and their families attended a special workshop at the school in which they learned how to preserve, restore, and care for their family treasures. The event was hosted by Belmont Mansion and Tennessee State Museum and brought local experts to the school to teach the students and their families.

Terrianna H. and her mother Geannette were paired with Candace Adelson, Ph.D., Senior Curator of Fashion and Textiles, from the Tennessee State Museum. The mother-daughter duo learned how to preserve a quilt made by Terrianna’s grandmother. They also learned the history of quilting, how her great-grandmother sewed the quilt, what the quilt represented and the life and times of people, such as her great-grandmother, who made and used quilts. 


Forget March Madness! Croft Middle School will celebrate March with “March Mathness” to get students ready for TCAPS.  Each grade level will compete with weekly math problems.  The week of Feb. 27, the “Sweet 16” teams will compete for positions in the “Elite Eight”. The following week, those teams will then compete for the “Final Four” slots. Starting March 12, the Final Four teams will battle for a spot in the Top Two, and the week of March 19, the entire school will watch as the Top Two teams go head to head in the championship round. David Lipscomb University will sponsor a pizza party for the championship teams the week of March 26. 


The Oliver Middle School Wind Ensemble has been chosen to represent Tennessee in a performance at the College Band Directors National Association/National Band Association Southern Division Conference.  This Conference is happening this weekend, Feb. 23-25, at Kennesaw State University in Kennesaw, Georgia.  The selection process was via CD recording and resume submission. Oliver was selected over dozens of other ensembles from around the country. The ensemble will perform Saturday morning, Feb. 25, for hundreds of Band Directors from Louisiana, West Virginia, Virginia, North and South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia and Florida.  Congratulations, Oliver!

Oliver Wind Ensemble Picture 2012


Wednesday, Feb. 15, Miss Tennessee, Erin Hatley made a special appearance at McKissack Middle School! Ms. Hatley, a native of West Tennessee and student at the University of Memphis, placed 10th in the 2012 Miss America pageant this past January and travels around the state as the Governor’s Ambassador for the Character Education trait of Citizenship. McKissack Student Council sponsor Ms. Jacklene Robinson invited the reigning Miss Tennessee to speak with students on topics such as making and reaching goals, bullying, and volunteering to build self-esteem. McKissack’s student council officers sat on the panel with Miss Tennessee and escorted her on a tour around the school. The highlight of the show was Miss Tennessee singing a portion of the song she sang in the Miss America pageant, and a short rendition of the late Whitney Houston’s, “I Will Always Love You.” The students left the assembly with great ideas for how they can help their communities, and also received signed autographs from Miss Tennessee.

Miss Tennessee visits McKissack 2012 - the current Miss Tennessee visited with students


Bailey STEM Magnet Middle School is hosting a community blood drive. Check out the flyer below for details.


Madison Middle School is opening its doors for parents and community members to share their thoughts in an anti-bullying community forum. The event will be held Tuesday, Feb. 28, from 6 - 7 p.m., in the gymnasium at Madison. Guest speakers include Taylor Stratton School Counselor Dr. Nancy Lara and Madison Middle School Counselors Lindsay Mosayebi and Cedric Dewayne Webber. Representatives from the Madison Police Precinct, MNPD Youth Services, the District Attorney's Office, Juvenile Referee Department, and Tennessee Safe Schools will also be on hand to answer questions and join in the discussion.


Donald Davis, master storyteller, will be visiting J. T. Moore Middle School Tuesday, Feb. 28. There will be a community event at 7 p.m., in the Moore library. The event is sponsored by the PTO and is free for everyone to enjoy.  



Oliver Middle School has "smashed" its competition and earned one of 20 spots nationwide in the NBC and iTheatrics Smash: Making a Musical program. The network and theatre education company teamed up to create sustainable music theatre programs in public schools. Participating schools will receive training from Broadway master professionals and materials for the schools.


Friday, Jan. 20, a select group of Head Middle Magnet School students from Mr. Paul Sparks' fifth grade math class participated in the Block Kids Building Program. Individual students were given 40 minutes to construct a building with Lego blocks. The structure that was created by each student was judged on design, rationale, and practical use. Students had to explain their design and any other feature they built within the design under the rationale category. Quinn T. was the winner of this building contest. In addition to a cash award, his design will now advance to the regional competition.

Head Block Building 2012 - students in a block building competitionHead Block Building 2012 - students in a block building competition


Mylayla S., an 8th grade student at Goodlettsville Middle School, was chosen out of thousands of participants across the country to win the Apangea Math Holiday Math-a-Thon. She will receive a Barnes & Noble e-Reader (color) and a $50 Barnes and Noble Gift Card to get her library started. Mylayla’s math teacher is Mr. David Brooks. Congratulations!


Apollo Middle School is doing something right in the math department! For the second year in a row, the 5th grade intervention class has won Apangea's Tennessee Volunteer Math Cup. The students will keep the highly coveted Volunteer Cup Trophy, they will be the beneficiaries of an Apangea Math sponsored pizza party, and every student in the class will receive an Apangea Sport-Pak and t-shirt.

Several students at other schools were also awarded for outstanding individual success. Divya D., a student at Rose Park Magnet Middle, won the individual portion of the contest by correctly completing more questions than any other student in Tennessee! She passed 154 lessons between Dec. 5 and Jan. 8. For her hard work, Divya received an iPod Nano.

Meanwhile, Lu Z., a student at J.T. Moore, was also a winner in the individual contest. He was awarded an iPod Shuffle. And Michael A., at JFK Middle, was awarded a $25 Best Buy gift card for his excellent performance.

Congrats to all of the winners!


This is exactly what we mean when we say MNPS is creating a 'College Going Culture' in our schools!

More than 1,000 students and parents came to school on a Saturday to get a head start on preparing for the ACT. Pearl-Cohn High School started hosting these Saturday sessions last semester and brought in 400-600 students every week!

This semester's classes started with the biggest crowd ever, and principal Milton Threadcraft is confident that many students and more will continue to come each Saturday through the end of the year.

These classes are open to all students in Metro schools. Students who attend will get breakfast and be split up into different seminars covering different sections of the test. Even middle school students are welcome to join in if they want to get an early start on their ACT preparations.

Classes start promptly at 7:00 a.m. each Saturday, so don't be late! Dr. Threadcraft told us that students need to come on time and ready to get serious about the ACT. He says that his students at Pearl-Cohn are already seeing results: so far this year more Pearl-Cohn students have scored a 20 or above than all of last year!

ACT Prep Classes

Pearl-Cohn High School

Every Saturday

7:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.

See hundreds of students in action learning how to score well on the ACT.

WATCH a NewsChannel5 story on Saturday ACT classes!


Tuesday, Jan. 10, 56 Metro Schools 5th and 6th graders will vie for the title of district spelling champ. The students have qualified for the Metro-Kathryn C. Mitchell Spelling Bee. The competition begins at 9 am, and will be held at Meharry Medical College in Kresge Resources Center.

Trophies and prizes will be awarded to the first and second place winners. The winning schools will also receive trophies. The two top spellers will advance to the Davidson County Spelling Bee, Feb. 7.


UPDATE: Litton Middle School will remain at the Dalewood campus for the remainder of the 2011-12 school year. Unexpected delays in the renovations happening at the Litton building mean the school cannot move this month, as was previously expected.

Litton families moved to the Dalewood building more than a year ago while renovations started at their school. The construction process has been delayed, largely due to an unexpectedly high amount  of rain this fall and winter.


Nutrition Services - Healthy meals at every school, every day.Congratulations to seventeen of our school for winning the USDA's Healthier U.S. School Challenge Award! The HUSSC Award is given to schools across the country for exemplary steps, leadership and team work used to make changes to the schools’ nutrition environment. This includes the quality of the foods served; the offering of more nutritious, healthier choices; and, enhancing their physical activity program.

Awards are given broze, silver, and gold. Winning schools receive a HUSSC award plaque, a banner to display, and a small monetary incentive award of $500 to $2000. The names of these schools are also added to the HUSSC awardees list on the Team Nutrition HUSSC website.

Here are the winners:

  • Glenview Elementary School (Gold)

  • Bordeaux Enhanced Option Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Cole Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Harpeth Valley Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Haywood Elementary School (Bronze)

  • I.T. Cresswell Arts Magnet (Bronze)

  • John F. Kennedy Middle School (Bronze)

  • Jones Paideia Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Lakeview Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Lockeland Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Margaret Allen Middle School (Bronze)

  • McGavock Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Pennington Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Rosebank Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Ross Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Shwab Elementary School (Bronze)

  • Stanford Elementary School (Bronze)

Congratulations to you all!!


The Isaac Litton Lions will be back in their home den this January. The school moved to the Dalewood campus more than a year ago while the Litton building underwent a series of renovations. But the time has come to move back home!

The newly renovated Litton Middle School building will officially open on January 17, 2012. The school was originally scheduled to move over the winter holidays, but an extra-rainy fall delayed construction just a little bit. The move will now happen over the Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday weekend, with students reporting to the Litton Middle building on January 17.

We're so happy to have the Lions back where they belong, and hope the new renovations just add to their successful school year!

Here is a map of the Isaac Litton Middle School building, opening on January 17, 2012:

View Larger Map


West End IB World School is competing for a $5,000 grant to help solve hunger in the school community. Through the Brookside Foods Giving Back Challenge: Call for Community-Based Organizations, the students have submitted an “IDEA” that revolves around the expansion of the school’s community garden. If selected, West End will add raised beds and a greenhouse to the existing community garden, which will allow the students to grow more vegetables and herbs. The produce will be packed into students’ backpacks and sent home for health weekend meals.

Click here to see West End’s video and cast your vote.Voting is open until December 9, 2011, 2:00 p.m.


The TSU Aristocrat of Bands made a quick stop at Head Magnet Middle School to help kick off the Fall Festival. The band played several of its hit tunes and had the students on their feet.

TSU Band at Head - the band helps kick off the fall festival   TSU Band at Head - the band helps kick off the fall festival


It's no secret Metro Schools is in the midst of district-wide transformational change, and our middle schools are no exception! The district is placing a heavier focus on educating the whole child, not just one aspect of adolescent life. And the difference is palpable.

In a series of short videos (found here), hear why students and staff say the new philosophy is making a real difference. You can also catch the full 22-minute piece Sundays at 11:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., or Wednesdays at 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. on NECAT's IQTV10, cable channel 10.

To see more videos produced by Metro Schools, visit us on YouTube.


December is here and you can't escape those familiar holiday tunes playing in malls, on the radio and TV.

Shake it up this year and escape the old standards by taking in one of the many fine performances by Metro students! Below is a listing of some of the performing arts events happening in Metro Schools in December. If you're looking for the holiday spirit or something a little outside the norm, take your pick and support our young artists!

  • December 1 - Nashville School of Arts - Tastes of the Season - 6:00 PM

  • December 2-3 - Antioch High School Dance Department presents “Cats in Motion” - 7:00 PM

  • December 5 - McKissack Band Concert - 6:30 PM

  • December 8 -Jere Baxter Middle School Fall Band Concert - 5:00 PM

  • December 8 - Dodson Elementary 3rd Grade PTO Show - 6:00 PM

  • December 8 - East Literature Magnet HS Choir Concert - 7:00 PM

  • December 8 - NSA Fall Orchestra Concert - 7:00 PM

  • December 8 - Hillsboro HS Music Department Concert - 7:00 PM

  • December 9 - DuPont Tyler Middle School Band Concert - 7:00 PM

  • December 9-10 - Nashville School of Arts Fall Dance Show - 7:00 PM

  • December 11 - Creswell Dance Department presents “Nutcracker - All Jazzed Up” - 6:00 PM

  • December 12 - Goodlettsville MS Band Concert - 5:30 PM

  • December 12 - Joelton MS Holiday Concert - 5:30 PM

  • December 15 - Eakin Holiday Program - 10:00 AM - 2:00 PM


Out of more than 900 applications, four MNPS 5th graders were the big winners of the RESPECT contest sponsored by Kinnard, Clayton & Beveridge, a Nashville-based law firm.

Sam F. of East Literature Magnet Middle and Alexa M. of Apollo Middle tied for third. Both were Marshall Respect Winner - a student at Thurgood Marshall was the 3rd place winner in Nashville lawfirm RESPECT contestawarded $300, and their teachers were awarded $400. The students were able to select a charity of choice that would also receive funding. Sam chose St. Jude’s Children’s Hospital while Alexa chose Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Both organizations were awarded $300.

Placing 2nd was Elijah B., a student at Thurgood Marshall Middle School (pictured right with teacher Stephanie Cafferky). Elijah was awarded $600; his teacher received $800, and The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society was awarded $600.

Susannah L., a student at Meigs Magnet Middle, claimed 1st place and was awarded $1,000. Her teacher also received $1,000, as did her charity, St. Jude’s Children Hospital.



Mark North

Board Member &
Sports Fan Mark North

Middle School Sports

Middle School athletics provide after-school opportunities to exercise; hone skills; and build characteristics of teamwork, sacrifice, dedication and perseverance – not to mention a sense of pride, appreciation, and enthusiasm for your school and your classmates.

Fall Sports: Middle school soccer coaching legend David Allen led Meigs to its seventh straight Girls Soccer City Championship. Coach Allen also coaches Hume-Fogg’s Boys Soccer team and was named high school Coach of the Year by The Tennessean a couple of years ago. Congratulations to Coach Allen and the Meigs girls soccer team.

In the other fall sports, Smithson-Craighead enjoyed an undefeated season on its way to the City Championship in Football. Meigs spiked its way to reign as Volleyball City Champions – Can you dig it?

Congratulations to all students, parents and coaches for another successful fall sports season.

Basketball and Wrestling: Winter Sports start next week. You can find a middle school basketball game almost every Tuesday and Thursday until February. I will gather some Wrestling schedules and provide an update next week.

Cheerleading: The next time you attend a middle school sporting event, make sure you notice the athleticism, coordination, and teamwork of some of the hardest working teams in sports – the cheerleaders.

High School Basketball

Last Thursday’s Metro Basketball Jamboree at Hunters Lane reminded me that nothing compares to the sound of a high school gymnasium during basketball season – the buzz of the crowd, the cheerleaders, the ball bouncing on the hardwood …. Walking into a gym on game night just makes me smile. I can’t help it.

Brush with Fame: I recognized one of the basketball referees as former professional wrestler George Gulas, son of famed promoter Nick Gulas and longtime tag team partner of legendary wrestler Tojo Yamamoto. That took me back to my childhood.

Football Playoffs

Pearl-Cohn Firebirds scored on a kickoff return and defeated Harpeth to advance to the state quarterfinals this Friday. The Firebirds travel to CPA for a rematch of a late season barnburner. Go Firebirds!!!

Maplewood Panthers sealed a victory over Liberty Tech with a late-game interception return for a touchdown. The Panthers host White House Friday night in quarterfinal action “amongst the maple trees.”

Pick a team and follow it.

-- Mark North

MNPS: The First Choice for Teamwork


Tuesday, Nov. 15, Rose Park Math & Science Magnet School held its first Family Math Night and Rose Park Family Night 2011 - more than 200 students and parents attended the open houseOpen House for prospective parents, which more than 200 students and parents attended. Rose Park’s Numeracy Coach, Carol Lampkin explains, “The objective of Family Math Night is to engage parents and students in active, purposeful learning, and see that math is FUN! It also gives our students the opportunity to confirm their knowledge and demonstrate mastery of math standards while allowing them to enhance their leadership skills.”

Participants rotated through various stations that were all created, set up and facilitated by Rose Park students. These stations included problem-solving and real-life application math games that can also be done at home.

Rose Park Magnet Principal, Risè W. Pope was extremely pleased with the turn out, saying, “At Rose Park Math & Science Magnet Middle School, we are serious and committed to providing opportunities to explore Math and Science. Events like this further demonstrate that our students are passionate and dedicated to the rigorous math and science curriculum that we have in place."


Jessica Oliver of I.T. Creswell Middle Arts Magnet School has been named the News2 Educator of the Week! Jessica was featured on the evening and morning news. To see what makes her stand out in the classroom, check out the News2 Educator of the Week site.

Jessica will also be in the running for News2 Educator of the Month. The mid-state community votes for their favorite. During the month of October, Betsy Cate of Norman Binkley Elementary was voted News 2 Educator of the Month! So check out Jessica's story and vote! 


HG Hill Recycling Winners - staff recognized during UT-South Carolina football game

H. G. Hill Middle School has been awarded $500 and was recognized during the UT – South Carolina football game!  They were one of the schools chosen in the Good Sports Always Recycle Contest thanks to the hard work of students, teachers and staff in the school’s Life Skills program. The school also received a commemorative plaque and two tickets for a faculty member or parent and student representative to attend the football game.


Oct. 27, Apollo hosted a hugely successful Family Math Night. More than 300 people attended the event where they not only learned to make fraction bar kits at our Fraction Fiasco and measure the dry ingredients to a chocolate chip cookie recipe at our Cookie Kitchen, but they also were treated to a production put on by the school’s fifth grade band, before heading to the gymnasium to exercise their bodies and minds at our Math Olympics. At the end of the night, everyone settled down to a nice pizza party and multiplication rap! The teachers, students, and families had a great time, and the staff was extremely pleased and excited with the level of support and participation from our families, the community, and the school. Go Astros; that’s the Astro spirit!


A 7th grade science classroom at J.T. Moore Middle School recently transformed into a miniature cancer center for the day. Thanks to Vanderbilt Scientists in the Classroom, the students actually spent a two-week period working to prevent cancer growth. To read what happened and what the students learned, check out the full blog post on Vanderbilt Center for Science Outreach's site.


Oct. 13, Head Middle Magnet School held its annual Egg Drop!Head Egg Drop

Every Head Magnet student made a container that would not only survive a fall from the top of the gym, but would also hold an egg that would survive the drop as well. Many parents came to watch the vessel their child created be dropped from the top of Head’s gym. The parents wanted to see if the container that carried and hopefully protected the egg survived the fall without breaking or cracking.


West End IB World Middle School is gearing up for a Gigantic Yard Sale! Oct. 29, the community is invited to come out and shop. The goal is to raise money to purchase new technology for the classrooms and other educational materials to help West End students achieve academic success. More details are below.


Save the date! Oct. 27, from 6 - 7:30 p.m., you can shop some of the finest art and jewelry in Nashville. I.T. Creswell Middle Magnet Arts School will host its inaugural Benefit Art Auction. Faculty and staff, as well as community members, have donated one-of-a-kind pieces of art, handmade jewelry, blankets, scarves, ornaments and more to the auction.

While there, guests will also enjoy a student art exhibit, face painting, and hot chocolate. All proceeds benefit the school's art program and will be used to purchase art supplies. If you would like to donate an item to the auction, contact Carrie Bryant at carrie.bryant@mnps.org, or 291.6515 ext. 1213.


Croft students perform during Harvest Day at the Nashville Zoo

For the 8th year in a row, Croft Middle School students performed at the annual HARVEST DAYS at the Nashville ZOO. Despite the dreary weather, the students put on the best performances for the visitors. Students performed excerpts and songs from Clara Barton, Tea Party Girls, Sojourner Truth, Rebel Yell Boy, Fredrick Douglas, a Union and Confederate soldiers on the way to Bull Run,19th Amendment speakers, the Croft Sisters and many more. It was a great experience for the students to have this opportunity as well as a treat for the Zoo visitors!


  1. Cómo motivar a su hijo a ser exitoso
    26 de septiembre - Cane Ridge High School
    29 de septiembre - Glencliff High School
    6:00 P.M.

    ¿Quiere motivar a sus hijos a sacar altas calificaciones pero no sabe cómo? ¿Quiere usted mejorar su relación con sus adolescentes? ¡Venga a aprender sobre la autoestima y cómo motivar a los jóvenes a ser exitosos! Todos los padres latinos que tienen hijos en la escuela media/secundaria y la preparatoria (middle /high school) son bienvenidos a este taller en ESPAÑOL. Habrá cuidado de niños mayores de 3 años, refrigerios y una rifa.

  2. Cómo comunicarse con la escuela de su hijo
    3 de octubre - Cane Ridge High School
    6 de octubre - Glencliff High School
    6:00 P.M.

    ¿La maestra de su hijo ha pedido una reunión con usted y no sabe qué hacer? ¿Tiene su hijo problemas en la escuela y no sabe con quién hablar? ¡Venga e infórmese con nosotros! Todos los padres latinos que tienen hijos en la escuela media/secundaria y la preparatoria (middle /high school) son bienvenidos a este taller en ESPAÑOL.. Habrá cuidado de niños mayores de 3 años, refrigerios y una rifa.

  3. Prevención de drogas y pandillas (“gangas”)
    10 de octubre - Cane Ridge High School
    13 de octubre - Glencliff High School
    6:00 P.M. 

    ¿Discute regularmente con su adolescente? ¿Quiere prevenir que su hijo recurra a las drogas o las pandillas/gangas? Venga e infórmese con nosotros! Todos los padres latinos que tienen hijos en la escuela media/secundaria y la preparatoria (middle /high school) son bienvenidos a este taller en ESPAÑOL. Habrá cuidado de niños mayores de 3 años, refrigerios y una rifa.

  4. Derechos y responsabilidades de los padres en las escuelas
    24 de octubre - Cane Ridge High School
    27 de octubre - Glencliff High School
    6:00 P.M.
    Glencliff High School, 160 Antioch Pike, Nashville

    ¿Quiere saber sobre sus derechos como padre de familia en las escuelas? ¿Ha escuchado sobre nuevas escuelas en su barrio y quiere saber más detalles ? Venga e infórmese con nosotros! Todos los padres latinos que tienen hijos en la escuela media/secundaria y la preparatoria (middle /high school) son bienvenidos a este taller en ESPAÑOL. Habrá cuidado de niños mayores de 3 años, refrigerios y una rifa.

  5. Preparación para la universidad /Ayuda financiera
    31 de octubre - Cane Ridge High School
    3 de noviembre - Glencliff High School
    6:00 P.M.
    Glencliff High School, 160 Antioch Pike, Nashville

    ¿Quiere que su hijo vaya a la universidad? ¿Quiere aprender sobre la ayuda financiera para la universidad aun para estudiantes indocumentados? Venga e infórmese con nosotros! Todos los padres latinos que tienen hijos en la escuela media/secundaria y la preparatoria (middle /high school) son bienvenidos a este taller en ESPAÑOL. Habrá cuidado de niños mayores de 3 años, refrigerios y una rifa.


  1. Encouraging your Child For Success
    September 26 - Cane Ridge High School
    September 29 - Glencliff High School
    Time: 6:00 P.M.

    Do you want to motivate your children to get good grades but don’t know how? Do you want to improve your relationship with your teens? Come and learn about self-esteem and how to motivate your teens to be successful! All Latino parents with children in middle and high school are welcome to this workshop. Childcare for children 3 years old and up will be offered, as well as refreshments and a raffle.

  2. Communicating with your Child´s School
    October 3 - Cane Ridge High School
    October 6 - Glencliff High School
    Time: 6:00 P.M.

    Did your child’s teacher request a parent-teacher conference and you don’t know what to do? Is your child having problems at school and you’re not sure whom to speak with? Come and learn with us! All Latino parents with children in middle and high school are welcome to this workshop in Spanish. Childcare for children 3 years old and up will be offered, as well as refreshments and a raffle.

  3. Drug and Gang Involvement Prevention
    October 10 - Cane Ridge High School
    October 13 - Glencliff High School
    Time: 6:00 P.M.

    Do you argue with your teen a lot? Do you want to prevent your teen from getting involved in drugs and gangs? Come and learn with us! All Latino parents with children in middle and high school are welcome to this workshop in Spanish. Childcare for children 3 years old and up will be offered, as well as refreshments and a raffle.

  4. Parental Rights and Responsibilities at School
    October 24 - Cane Ridge High School
    October 27 - Glencliff High School
    Time: 6:00 P.M.

    Do you want to learn about your rights as a MNPS parent? Have you heard about new charter schools opening in your neighborhood and want to learn more? Come and learn with us! All Latino parents with children in middle and high school are welcome to this workshop in Spanish. Childcare for children 3 years old and up will be offered, as well as refreshments and a raffle.

  5. College Preparation/Financial Aid
    October 31 - Cane Ridge High School
    November 3 - Glencliff High School
    Time: 6:00 P.M.

    Do you want your child to go to college? Do you want to learn about financial aid for college, for documented & undocumented students? Come and learn with us! All Latino parents with children in middle and high school are welcome to this workshop in Spanish. Childcare for children 3 years old and up will be offered, as well as refreshments and a raffle.


If you're not hard at work with Hands on Nashville Day, take the kids down to the Parthenon for Celebrity Storytelling!

Each Saturday morning a different local celeb will read a 20 minute story of Greek Mythology at the feet of the golden statue of Athena in the main room of the Parthenon. Following the reading, a Parthenon intern will offer an activity to enhance the reading, as recommended by the National Reading Panel.

Here's the best part: It's 100% free and families who attend can stay and enjoy the Parthenon afterward!

This week's celebs are Woody & Jim from 107.5 The River. Upcoming stars include news anchor Demetria Kalodimos, the Nashville Symphony's Giancarlo Guerrero and country singer Ketch Secor.

The program will continue every Saturday morning at 10:30 a.m. from now until November 12. Full details in the flier below.


John F. Kennedy Middle School will be hosting the annual Tennessee Association of Middle Schools annual conference on Saturday, October 8, 2011 from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Kennedy is located at 2087 Hobson Pike in Antioch.
TAMS is an educational service organization. Part of that service is to provide regional or "drive-in" conferences during the school year for middle level educatiors. These conferences promote trend, concepts, and methods that deal with pre-adolescents through the exchange of ideas, materials, and expertise.
For registration information contact:
Kenya Teague 501-7900 ext. 1111
The cost of registraion is as follows:
TAMS Membership (new or renewal)    $20.00 per person
TAMS Member conference registration  $10.00 per person
Non- member conference registration    $25.00 per person


meigs 11Wow, talk about a big response - Hands on Nashville Day has set a new record with more tha 1,600 people already signed up to help beautify Metro Schools!

The 20th annual Hands on Nashville Day is this Saturday, September 24, at 54 different schools. Volunteers will plant, paint, repair, rake, dig, and mulch until the schools look brand new inside and out. All of this volunteer labor is estimated to make a $145,000 economic impact.

To make it all happen, the Department of Maintenance and Operations has prepared:


  • 1,400 gallons of paint

  • 1,700 paint brushes

  • 504 rolls of tape

  • 380 plastic drop cloths

  • 400 roller covers and roller frames

  • 440-4 ft wood paint handles

  • 432-5 gallon buckets

  • 884-1 gallon pails

  • 8 bush / limb cutters

  • 450 yards of mulch

  • 65 wheelbarrows

  • 100 rakes

  • 80 shovels

  • 35 hedge trimmers

It's not too late to sign up, either. Head over to the Hands on Nashville website to register and get ready to work on Saturday!

Volunteers will be rewarded with the CMT One Country Celebration at 3rd & Lindsley at noon. There's really no reason to not sign up!



We want to show off our Academies of Nashville and are throwing open the doors of Cane Ridge High School for an open house this Friday! Come see first hand how the Academies work and what students are learning inside.

The open house is from 4:00 p.m. - 6:00 p.m. on Friday, September 23. Full details in the flier below.

More open house announcements from other high schools are coming soon!


A/BIf you are the parent of a middle school student this year, you've probably already heard about the changes made to your child's school day.

Middle schools have adopted a form of block scheduling, which allows for extended instructional time in the core subjects of reading and mathematics. Students will receive instruction in those two subjects every day, with science and social studies offered on alternating days.

This new schedule also builds in an hour of additional instructional time - in the form of remediation or enrichment - for students who could benefit.

Full details of this schedule at the link.


New to Nashville? Enrolling in Metro Schools for the first time? We can help you register!

New Student Registration Week runs from Monday, August 1 to Friday, August 5. Student registration must be completed at your assigned school. We recommend contacting your school before you register.

What do you need to bring with you to register?

  • Birth Certificate or acceptable proof of age;

  • Immunization (vaccination record) on a Tennessee Certificate of Immunization Form;

  • Physical examination (within one (1) year of the beginning of school)

  • Proof of residency (current utility bill, lease, etc.)

  • Social Security Card (optional)

  • Recent Report Card (optional)

The immunization information is particularly important. Full information on immunizations and the immunization certificate is available here.

The first day of school is Thursday, August 11. We have a lot more answers to your Back to School questions in our Back to School Guide for 2011-12.

See you on August 11!


This fall, Jere Baxter Middle School will begin the transition into a teacher-led school. Dr. Corey Walker will serve as interim principal in the first year. To learn more about what this means for Jere Baxter, check out the video  with Associate Superintendent of Middle Schools Dr. Lora Hall.


To help with the immunization requirements for incoming 7th graders, kindergarteners and pre-K students, Metro Schools has teamed up with the Metro Public Health Department for a special clinic where your child can get all of the immunizations that he or she needs. They will also be able to get the immunization certificate required for entry into school this fall. For a full list of the new requirements, click here.


Friday, June 17, incoming 5th graders at John F. Kennedy Middle School will "graduuate" from the inaugural “Rising Star” Summer Camp.

The program is designed to make their transition from elementary to middle school as smooth as possible and a rewarding experience.  The camp focused on skills such as: Math, Language Arts, Reading, Science, Computer, Social Development, Time Management, and Goal Setting.  The camp was be led by school administrators several fifth grade teachers.  One of the school counselors also led a session on character education skills.


In 2009, Rose Park Math and Science Magnet Middle School was named a National Blue Ribbon School for continued growth and success in student achievement. But what did the school do to earn such a prestigious honor? And what are they doing to ensure excellence this year, and for all years to come? Check out the video for a sneak peak inside Rose Park.


In 2009, Rose Park Math and Science Magnet Middle School was named a National Blue Ribbon School for continued growth and success in student achievement. But what did the school do to earn such a prestigious honor? And what are they doing to ensure excellence this year, and for all years to come? Check out the video for a sneak peak inside Rose Park.


Thursday, Nov. 18, Apollo Middle School celebrated the grand opening of D.A.S.H. - The Digital Academy for Success in High School. The academy, which serves all 8th graders, incorporates technology into learning. This year's 8th grade class at Apollo became the first in the district to receive laptop computers for learning. Students also have access to iPods, wiki spaces, SMART boards, and other interactive learning tools.


Throughout the week of Nov. 15, students at Croft Middle Design Center learned first hand the importance of college and selecting the right career. Students heard from a variety of local businessmen and women, including School Board Vice-Chair Mark North! Check out the video.

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