Metro Schools’ student-parent handbook video, “PASSAGE: Rights and Responsibilities,” has been selected as a Bronze award winner in the 38th Annual Telly Awards for its production and collaboration with The Oasis Center, a community-based organization. Creative Communications LLC, a communications and media production company, is credited with creating and producing the video.

“Educating all of our children must be equitable and focused on healthy human development,” said Tom Ward, Oasis Center director. “PASSAGE is a movement designed to create systemic change that removes racial disparities by engaging all stake holders. In this effort, all are held accountable for ensuring that there truly are no expendable children.”

“As educators, we understand that it takes partnership in order to address many of the issues impacting our students and their families,” said Dr. Tony Majors, Metro Nashville Public Schools executive officer for support services. “Collaborating with the community empowers other organizations to play a constructive role in helping the school system develop the types of learning environments that provide all students with an opportunity to achieve academic and socio-emotional success. It is equally important for our parents and students to understand that along with our teachers, they also have a responsibility to help promote personally responsibility/respect and the right to be treated fairly and feel supported by fellow students, staff and the community.”

The Telly Awards, founded in 1979, is the premier award honoring outstanding content for TV and Cable, Digital and Streaming and Non-Broadcast distribution. Winners represent the best work of the most respected advertising agencies, production companies, television stations, cable operators and corporate video departments in the world, and are judged by a prestigious panel of 600+ accomplished industry professionals.

PASSAGE, which stands for Positive and Safe Schools Advancing Greater Equity, is a community-district collaboration in Nashville focused on addressing the inequities in school discipline and creating positive school climate, funded by the Schott Foundation for Public Education. PASSAGE – a partnership, between the Oasis Center, Metro Nashville Public Schools, the Annenberg Institute for School Reform at Brown University, and a diverse local Steering Committee of over 30 cross-sector leaders – spearheaded major revisions to the district’s discipline policy and the Student-Parent Handbook.

The video was developed as part of the dissemination and outreach efforts to notify the community at large about new approaches to student discipline that are focused on everyone’s role – not just students and teachers – in achieving a positive school climate and culture. In its second phase of implementation, PASSAGE leaders acknowledge that there is no silver bullet to eradicate disparities in discipline, and their logic model illustrates the road ahead for their work. In phase two, PASSAGE will focus on constituency building for systems change, data access and use, building teacher capacity to use alternatives to suspension, and supporting collaborative work between schools and communities.

As core community partner, the Oasis Center has been a national leader in serving youth for over 40 years and has offered safety and support to Nashville’s most vulnerable and disconnected youth, while seeking to also teach young people how to transform the conditions that create problems for them in the first place. Believing that Nashville should be and can be a model community where all young people enter adulthood connected with positive social support systems and prepared for productive and fulfilling lives, they embrace their responsibility to change the odds through a continuum of 19 individual, unique programs delivered in three areas of: Crisis and Residential Services; Youth Engagement and Action; and College Connection, and serve nearly 3000 youth and their families each year and also reaches more than 9,000 additional youth and adults through educational projects and presentations.