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School News

Donelson School News October 2016

I had a great morning joining volunteers joining Hands On Nashville in their 25th “Hands On Nashville Day” supporting schools throughout Davidson County.  Pennington Elementary received strong support in a day of doing work inside and outside the school, which is going through construction as part of their needed additions and renovations.

Penning Bend Elementary

Pennington Bend Elementary

I’ve thoroughly enjoyed being part of the Music Makes Us Advisory Council and I thank Mayor Barry again for the appointment and opportunity to serve.  Check out this great new public service announcement here about Music Makes Us and how the initiative is supporting a wide variety of music education opportunities through all of Metro Nashville’s schools.  There is a great Online Hub listing resources and programs to help teachers enhance teaching and learning opportunities.

McGavock High School received revamped and relocated main signage as well as new directional signage on the Two Rivers Park side of the building to match the work that was done as part of the facelift and landscaping installed earlier this year.  Thanks to Metro Nashville Public Schools for continuing these improvements!

McGavock High School

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Donelson School News - September 2016

I was honored to be part of the ribbon cutting for the new barn at Raider Ranch, a great addition that will expand teaching opportunities in the agriculture department at McGavock High School.  Students, teachers and animals were very happy at the enhanced facilities.

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Donelson School News - August 2016

Dr. Joseph certainly hit the ground running even before he officially took his new role as Director of Schools.  Read about his vision and the “First 100 Days” here.  I had the opportunity to meet with him and other community and elected leaders this summer and I look forward to his leadership making a positive impact in all our schools.  After that meeting, we then had the opportunity to tour McGavock High School and see the great experiences that the Nashville After Zone Alliance (NAZA) and the Nashville Scholars summer program offers.  MNPS has also created a new logo and launched a brand new website, which looks great and is easier to navigate.  Check it out at www.mnps.org.

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Donelson School News - June 2016

Congratulations and welcome to Dr. Shawn Joseph, our new Metro Schools Director!  Here is a letter from Dr. Joseph and School Board Chair Sharon Gentry:

We are excited to turn the page to a new chapter for Metro Nashville Public Schools. In hiring Dr. Shawn Joseph as our new Director of Schools last Friday, we committed ourselves to cast the shadow of our burden behind us, and re-commit ourselves to ensuring that every child, in every school, in every classroom is at the center of all of our decision-making.

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Donelson School News - April 2016

McGavock Elementary will celebrate their 60th Anniversary on Sunday, April 24th from 2-4pm.  I’m honored to read a proclamation in honor of the event.  All of the community is invited to help them celebrate this milestone birthday.

Vince Gill and Keith Urban’s annual All for the Hall benefit for the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum on Tuesday, April 12th featured McGavock High School students, who wrote with hit songwriters Georgia Middleman and Gary Burr.  They performed their song “Limited Time Offer”.  Read more about it and watch a video of them writing the song in an article here from The Tennessean.

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Donelson School News - February 2016

The beautification and facelift of McGavock High School continues with new lettering on the building.  The original McGavock High School lettering was taken down, sandblasted and repainted white.  It was rehung above the North Entrance to help guide visitors towards that entrance along with new entranceway signage as well.

McGavock High School New Lettering

 

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Donelson School News January 2016

The Metro School Board has restarted the search for a new Director of Schools.  The Nashville Public Education Foundation has put together a survey for residents to provide feedback on the process.  Click here to complete the survey.

In mid-December, EnviroScapes installed the landscaping at McGavock High School and it turned out great.  It will look even better in the Spring when it blooms.  Check out this video below that Channel 5 News did from their helicopter. 

I’m hoping Metro Schools will have the funds in next fiscal year’s budget to continue the work of rehabbing the white horizontal stripes across the school.  The “McGavock High School” lettering was recently taken down to be sandblasted and painted white and will be rehung above the North Entrance with new accent bars and new signage designating the two entrances.  Finally, the concrete work will be redone this year to improve the walkways around the school that are crumbling.

McGavock High School Landscaping

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Donelson School News - November 2015

The 37th Annual Music City Invitational Marching Contest was Saturday, October 24th and hosted by McGavock High School.  I was honored to be asked to present the Mayors Cups awards.  It certainly brought back strong memories of my days marching trumpet and being a drum major.  McGavock did a great job at their exhibition and all the bands gave memorable performances.  Congratulations to all the participants and winners.

MCI 2015 Mayors Cup Awards - Jeff Syracuse Metro Council District 15

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Donelson School News - October 2015

Hands On Nashville Day 2015 was a success and I enjoyed helping out at Donelson Middle Prep.  We painted, cleaned outdoor benches and trimmed up the trees at the front of the school.

Donelson Middle - Hand On Nashville Day - Cleaning Up Donelson Middle

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Donelson School News - August/September 2015

Stanford Montessori is having their annual Fall Fest on September 19.  They are also seeking vendors.  See the two flyers below and come on out to support them.  You’ll find your new Councilman supporting the festival by being in the dunk tank at some point during the event!

Stanford Montessori Fall Festival in Donelson

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July School News

First day of school is just a few weeks away on Wednesday, August 5.  Head to Back to School Central for great information on the upcoming school year.

Great news for Pennington Elementary!  There are a number of school improvement projects in this new fiscal year’s budget for Metro and Pennington Elementary is to receive $4 million for a much needed expansion.  There is a new website for MNPS called MNPSConstruction.com where you can follow the progress of school construction projects.

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June School News

Everyone knows about the incredible turnaround that has occurred at McGavock High School, yet the outside hasn’t changed much at all since the school opened in 1971.  As I worked to expand the mission of The Donelson Gateway Project to include beautifying figurative “gateways” into the community, we did three school projects at Two Rivers Middle School, Hickman Elementary and McGavock Elementary respectively.  I’ve always wanted to do a large-scale project at McGavock High School, but knew it would take a dedicated planning and funding effort.  Thanks to Gresham, Smith & Partners for creating the architectural rendering and  for putting together the landscape design.  We are well on way to raising the $10,000 needed for the landscape installation and are working with MNPS to address some of the maintenance / enhancement items that were suggested in the GS&P rendering.  This is a milestone project for The Donelson Gateway Project and one that I have spent the past couple of years putting together.  It will be a very special project to begin my first term as your next member of Metro Council for the 15th District.  McGavock High School needs and deserves this investment and I’m very thankful for all of the donors who have supported this project.  Special thanks to the early supporters – CMT, Dale & Associates, Hip Donelson, HJL Management, Metro Nashville Airport Authority and Piedmont Natural Gas.  If you’d like to make a tax-deductible donation, please visit DGP’s website here.

McGavock High School Entrance

McGavock High School Front Landscape Plan

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May School News

The Nashville After Zone Alliance (NAZA) officially rolled out into all our MNPS Districts with our McGavock cluster included this past year and the initiative celebrated 5-years of service to our middle schools kids.  Big thanks goes to our McGavock Zone Director Marielle Lovecchio who has put a lot of energy and passion into ensuring our kids have great after-school opportunities for continued enrichment.  Here is a collage of kids in action over the past year.

 

Nashville After Zone Alliance - Donelson Schools News

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April School News

Metro Nashville Public Schools was granted a waiver from the Tennessee Department of Education for snow days that we took during the rough snow and ice storms last month.  View this article for details.

You may recall the McGavock High School Baseball concession stand burned down last year in an arson attack and then the clubhouse was ransacked last month.  A strong community came through in helping the baseball boosters replace the concession stand.  They can use our continued support.  If you’d like to help the team and booster club, checks can be made to McGavock Baseball Bullpen and sent to the school at 3150 McGavock Pike, Nashville, TN 37214.  You can also follow the efforts of the booster club via Facebook here.

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February School News

Great big thanks to McGavock Elementary Principal Lance Forman for his dedication to all the students, teachers, and staff.  He has been a wonderful Principal at the school and has now accepted a new opportunity as Principal of the brand new Smith Springs Elementary School  Congratulations to Lance and we wish him well!  I’m excited that Jason Taylor has been named the new Principal at McGavock Elementary I had the pleasure of getting to know Jason when Joey attended Dodson.  He will be a great leader for the school.  Congratulations and welcome, Jason!

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Donelson School News

I hope all the kids enjoyed their break and are back to working hard.  Congrats to all the many students at McGavock Elementary for meeting their academic goals.  Here’s a great picture from Twitter of the goal wall overflowing.

Check out these two great blog entries from McGavock High School students that highlight what great opportunities our kids have there.  Click here and here to read them.

Metro Nashville Public Schools is starting an annual parent survey.  I took it in less than 10 minutes.  It’d be great to give a lot of input from Donelson parents and grandparents who have kids in our schools.

Save those box tops!  Even if you don’t have kids in our schools, it’s an easy way for the whole community to support them.  To search which schools collect them, visit this link and you’ll also note the goal set for each school and what they have earned so far.  Let’s help them all meet their goals!

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Donelson School News

Beginning Monday, November 3rd, Metro Nashville Public Schools expands the school choice options for the 2015-16 school year.  The Optional Schools Application is now online.  For the first time, families with rising ninth and tenth graders have expanded options to choose their school and course of study as well.  In addition, the Nashville Metro Transit Authority StrIDe program allows 9th-12th grade students to ride MTA busses for free.  Visit each link for much more information.

At the beginning of this school year, the Nashville After Zone Alliance expanded to the McGavock cluster of middle schools.  Metro 3 created a great video, which talks about NAZA’s after school program activities.

Congratulations to the McGavock High School Band for making it to the finals in the 2014 Contest of Champions!  McGavock also did a great job of hosting the 36th Annual Music City Invitational Contest on Saturday, October 18th.  Ironically, that day was also my 20th High School Reunion in Marietta, GA.  Our class attended the homecoming game and as a former drum major, my band director (still there!) offered me the opportunity to conduct the fight song again.  I still remembered after 20 years!  It was a great time.  Music programs in our schools offer incredibly rewarding experiences for our kids and create memories for families that last a lifetime.

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