Metro Schools Family Engagement Summit Welcomes Parents and Educators

Today Metro Schools presented the family engagement summit “Welcoming Schools, Welcoming Families” with many parents, educators and national guest speakers at the Martin Professional Development Center. The one-day seminar brought together 250 people from 115 different Metro Schools, 10 departments, 15 community organizations and three international organizations all working to help bring families and educators closer together.

“We are very fortunate to have so many families willing to do the hard work of getting involved in their schools,” said Gini Pupo-Walker, executive director of family and community partnerships at Metro Schools. “Engagement is one of the foundational building blocks of a great school, and working together we can make all schools welcoming places where parents are valued as active contributors to education.”

Seminars were focused on increasing the capacity of school-based staff to partner with families and community organizations for student success. There were 20 unique workshops to give practical strategies for outreach, communications and supports for families.

Metro Schools also released the Welcoming Schools Walkthrough Tool at the Summit. This diagnostic tool provides schools with the opportunity to evaluate family engagement practices, policies and communications. It outlines concrete strategies to create more welcoming school environments.

This year’s keynote speaker was Carrie Jasper, director of outreach to parents and families at the U.S. Department of Education.

Other notable speakers included Jamie Farnsworth from NBC Universal and creator of the “Parent Tool Kit” website and mobile applications.

North Sports Report – October 23, 2014

by Mark North, president of The Fans, Inc

Teachers are Always There

At halftime of the most exciting football game of the year, the North Sports Report ran into one of his former teachers. Rita Bradley taught me at Neely’s Bend Elementary School many years ago, taught all three of my children several years ago, and asked about each of them by name on Friday. It’s amazing how teachers remember all those students. So, why was a retired elementary school teacher at Vanderbilt Stadium for the East Nashville vs. Pearl-Cohn showdown? Well, she’s a big fan of East Nashville superstar running back Lennox McAfee, one of her former students at Neely’s Bend. When I got home from the game, I grabbed the old Neely’s Bend yearbooks from the shelf and did some investigative reporting. Sure enough, there’s Lennox McAfee alongside his kindergarten classmates.

As I reflected on the thrilling game, the talented student-athletes, the electric atmosphere, and the huge crowd, I kept coming back to the thought of Ms. Bradley and the beautiful notion that teachers become their students’ biggest fans.

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Football Polls

With two weeks left in the regular season, three MNPS teams are ranked in the Top 10 in the state. Hillsboro is undefeated and ranked 4th in 5A; East Nashville is undefeated and ranked 3rd in 3A; and Pearl-Cohn is ranked 9th in 4A.

Middle School City Champs Defying Gravity and Looking for the Sweep

Congratulations to the J.T. Moore Middle School Lady Matadors Soccer and Volleyball teams that both won City Championships this week.

Region Final: Girls Soccer

The Hume-Fogg Lady Blue Knights host White House at West End Middle School tonight for the girls soccer Region Championship. Hume-Fogg will play in the Sectionals on Saturday, looking for their second state tournament trip in four years.

Football Friday October 24, 2014

Only two regular season games remain, and the stakes keep getting higher as teams battle for playoff spots. This week, the North Sports Report will be at Nick Coutras Stadium on the Overton campus as the Overton Bobcats welcome the 7-1 McGavock Raiders with playoff position on the line.
In other action:

  • Antioch Bears travel to Hunters Lane Warriors in a key District 12AAA matchup;
  • Cane Ridge Ravens host Hillwood Hilltoppers;
  • Undefeated Hillsboro Burros play at home against Glencliff Colts;
  • Stratford Spartans host Marshall County;
  • East Nashville Eagles look to stay undefeated as they face Nashville Christian;
  • Pearl-Cohn Firebirds welcome FRA; and
  • Maplewood Panthers head to east Tennessee to play Alcoa.
  • Whites Creek Cobras have the week off.

MNPS home games are at Overton; at Cane Ridge; at Hillsboro; at Hunters Lane; at Pearl-Cohn; at East Nashville (on the TPS campus); and at Stratford. Go to a game!

MNPS: The First Choice for Lifelong Learners and Lifelong Fans

Maplewood High School opens entrepreneur center on campus

“Shark Tank” young entrepreneur helps celebrate grand opening

Maplewood High School today celebrated the grand opening of its new Entrepreneurship and Innovation Center called “The I-Spot.” The I-Spot, a 1,600 square foot space, is part of the Academy of Business & Consumer Services and the first of its kind in a Tennessee high school.

“Through a focus on creativity, marketing, and business success we can help students develop their next big idea and make it a reality,” said Dr. Ron Woodard, executive principal of Maplewood. “This center features state of the art computers with the latest graphic design and video editing capabilities. It will be a student creative laboratory for real-world marketing opportunities.”

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The center is modeled after the Nashville Entrepreneurship Center located downtown and will be focused on students who already have the foundation of a business idea, but have not yet created a business plan.

“There will be an application process for any student looking to use the space to make his or her small business dreams a reality,” said Dr. Woodard. “We already have our first student business called ‘Pin It’ which designs and sell pens with quotes and artwork on them.” Maplewood has also partnered with three area restaurants that are looking for new marketing materials and advertisements.

This center is more than just helping students develop the perfect business plan, but making the opportunity available to everyone. Dr. Woodard continued, “Diversity is a key focus to us. We believe that just making this type of facility available will help close many opportunity gaps, especially for students whose families often struggle with poverty.”

Dallas Robinson, CEO of Kisstix Lipbalm, help cut the ribbon at the grand opening of the “I-Spot.” He was featured on ABC’s hit TV show “Shark Tank” and was labeled an “All-star” young entrepreneur by Forbes Magazine. Robinson inspired students by sharing his journey to entrepreneurship as well as the challenges of being a young CEO.

View more photos of the I-Spot and grand opening celebration.

TOUR: Rose Park Middle Prep’s amazing transformation fifty years in the making

Rose Park Middle Prep was built in 1965, but other than minor security and handicap accessibility upgrades, the building has remained much the same since the day it first opened. Fifty years later, this building has been completely remodeled and is BEYOND today’s current standards for safety, accessibility and green certification. Now the hallways are as bright as the students and staff after winning SO MANY AWARDS.


One of the first things you notice when you walk into Rose Park is the massive 45 foot mural over the entranceway. This has been here since 2003 when it was commissioned from a local artist. They are of actual Rose Park students interacting with Ben Franklin, George Washington Carver, Jane Goodall, Albert Einstein and other notable scientists. During the renovation, Principal Robert Blankenship said one section started to fall down and they feared it would be lost. So they called in the original artist who showed how to reattach the work. Luckily, the work was painted on canvas and not the wall, so it could easily be reattached and saved from destruction.


Thanks to a generous donation from local community supporters, the auditorium has new seating and a new sound system. New stage lighting will also be installed, just in time for the school’s first stage production in the refreshed auditorium this holiday season.


The gym received new bleachers, paint and a refinished floor. I think the Rose Park Titans will be PROUD to call this home! WOW!

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The library is now beautiful and functional with a new digital learning center and cafe where students can eat in the library.


The library is open to students any time during the day, and we’re told many of them “live” there. It’s easy to see why: it’s an attractive place to hang out with a few comforts that students may not even have at home – like these very popular bungee cord chairs.


One thing you might not notice with the lights on, is that you can’t turn some of them off! That’s because they are solar powered. Even at night they glow from getting charged in the daytime. It’s no wonder this building is BEYONDGREEN” and has received LEED “SILVER” certification!


And if you’re in the Rose Park library, don’t forget to stop by and say hi to their mascot “Pippin” the bearded dragon.


The only building addition to Rose Park Middle is the new freezer, allowing for better service at breakfast and lunch.


This school did not only NEED these upgrades, the students & faculty here have earned it, having won so many state & national awards for excellence. It truly is well deserved!



Maplewood High School to open entrepreneur center on campus

Dallas Robinson

Dallas Robinson

Maplewood High School is ready to offer its students something they can’t get anywhere else in Nashville: an entrepreneur center right on campus. Modeled after the Nashville Entrepreneur Center, Maplewood’s “I-spot” is a state of the art, 1,600 square foot space to facilitate the development of creativity and innovation for students who want to enhance their skills in marketing and entrepreneurship.

The grand opening celebration this Wednesday, October 22, will include a keynote address from Dallas Robinson, CEO of Kisstixx Lipbalm. Robinson was featured on the ABC television show Shark Tank and has been called an “all-star student entrepreneur” by Forbes. He will inspire Maplewood students to take control of their future by sharing his journey to entrepreneurship and the challenges of being a young CEO. Following Robinson’s address, Maplewood student ambassadors will give a guided tour of the I-Spot.

You are invited! Come help celebrate one of the coolest things to ever happen at Maplewood.

Entrepreneur Center Grand Opening Celebration
Wednesday, October 22 at 8:30 a.m.
Maplewood High School




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