McGavock Award

Donelson School News – November 2019

According to Second Harvest, one in 5 youth in Nashville are food insecure.  Within the McGavock cluster there are approximately 350 students experiencing homelessness and a total of 2,449 youth in MNPS are homeless.  86% of our these students are “doubled-up” in the homes of friends and relatives as opposed to literal homelessness, but it’s still not a stable situation.  As the season of thanks and giving approaches there are multiple opportunities to give back to help Nashville’s most vulnerable and precious gifts.  One way to give back locally is to support the Community Pantry that is housed at Two Rivers Middle.  This pantry is open to families that have a child at schools in Donelson or Hermitage.  Monthly, families may shop for can goods, snacks for youth, meat (when available), toiletries, and other personal items so that students can focus on learning and not the barriers that they often are faced with.  In preparation for Thanksgiving, the Community Pantry is accepting donations of non-perishable thanksgiving themed food items, easy prep meals with pop-top lids, various snacks for kids, and $20 gift cards to Kroger.

Congratulations to the McGavock HS Marching Band!  The band was named Grand Champion at the Vanderbilt Marching Invitational Saturday, October 5th.  The band received a superior rating and was named Champion of Class AAA and received first place Overall Drum Majors.  Personal Note:  I was a drum major in high school for two years and this award is very impressive!  The McGavock Band hosted the 41st Annual Music City Invitational at McGavock on Saturday, October 19th.  GO BIG MAC!

Big congratulations go to McGavock High School’s Academy of Aviation and Transportation’s Derek Rowe, who applied for a Harbor Freight Tools for Teachers award and among the hundreds of applications, he was one of 18 schools across the United States to receive a $55,000 award.  McGavock Executive Principal Robbin Wall made it very special by inviting special guests, including our School Board Member Anna Shepherd, State Rep Darren Jernigan, Council Member Steve Glover and me.  Harbor Freight’s Regional Manager, Kevin Hungate, personally presented the award to Mr. Rowe.  This award will go a long way to enhance the extraordinary educational opportunities in this academy!

McGavock Award

Thanks to the invite from US Representative Jim Cooper’s Office, I had the opportunity to speak to the senior class at McGavock High School about the importance of registering to vote and participating.  I really do appreciate the opportunity and this hits home for me as Joey just turned 18 and this past Council and Mayoral election was his first opportunity to vote.

McGavock High School Voter Registration

I had the pleasure of hosting a booth to support Pennington Elementary’s Fall Festival.  It was great to visit with students, parents, teachers and staff.  Pennington’s PTO is a great group of parents that go above and beyond to make their school a success.  Thanks to Janet Killingsworth, PTO President, and everyone who works hard on behalf of Pennington.

Pennington Fall Festival

I also had the pleasure of being part of PENCIL’s annual Principal for a Day event.  I joined Ken DuBray with Enbright Credit Union as Principals shadowing Jackie Kinzer, Principal at Pennington Elementary.  She does an amazing job and every classroom we walked into shows clearly that she’s created an atmosphere that parents, teachers and staff love.  She’s a model leader for MNPS and I’m very thankful for Ms. Kinzer’s leadership.

Principal for a Day

Big thanks to McGavock Elementary, Stanford Montessori and Pennington Elementary for taking part in Walk Bike Nashville’s Walk to School Day.  Pennington’s physical education teacher, Derryle Farmer, goes all out and it’s quite an event!  Thanks to each school for being part of this opportunity.

Pennington Walk to School Day 

Author

  • Jeff has called Nashville home since 1998, moving here to complete his music degree at Middle Tennessee State University. He went on to complete his MBA in Technology Management from the Nashville campus of University of Phoenix, located in Donelson. Jeff was a first-time homebuyer in Donelson Hills in 2002 and soon became involved in his neighborhood and community.Jeff was born in Buffalo, New York. Jeff’s Dad retired from the Army as a Lieutenant Colonel while stationed at Fort McPherson, Georgia after serving 20 years of Active and more than 11 years of Reserve service in Buffalo, NY, St Louis, MO and Atlanta, GA. Jeff’s parents are happily retired in Marietta, GA and enjoy the  warmer weather. His dad was President of the Georgia Department of the Reserve Officer’s Association and both he and his Mom stay involved in their neighborhood, civic organizations, and church. Jeff has one son, Joey, who attends Meigs Middle Magnet School.Jeff has been very active in the Donelson community for over a decade and has a deep appreciation and understanding of its rich history and a strong vision for a bright future.

Donelson School News, McGavock HS Marching Band


Jeff Syracuse

Jeff has called Nashville home since 1998, moving here to complete his music degree at Middle Tennessee State University. He went on to complete his MBA in Technology Management from the Nashville campus of University of Phoenix, located in Donelson. Jeff was a first-time homebuyer in Donelson Hills in 2002 and soon became involved in his neighborhood and community.Jeff was born in Buffalo, New York. Jeff’s Dad retired from the Army as a Lieutenant Colonel while stationed at Fort McPherson, Georgia after serving 20 years of Active and more than 11 years of Reserve service in Buffalo, NY, St Louis, MO and Atlanta, GA. Jeff’s parents are happily retired in Marietta, GA and enjoy the  warmer weather. His dad was President of the Georgia Department of the Reserve Officer’s Association and both he and his Mom stay involved in their neighborhood, civic organizations, and church. Jeff has one son, Joey, who attends Meigs Middle Magnet School.Jeff has been very active in the Donelson community for over a decade and has a deep appreciation and understanding of its rich history and a strong vision for a bright future.