#MNPSVoices: Delishia Danielle Porterfield, Exceptional Education Coach

Photo of Delishia Danielle Porterfield

All students can learn. That is the belief of Delishia Danielle Porterfield, an exceptional education coach for Metro Nashville Public Schools.

“I [want to] ensure our students with disabilities have the same opportunities as their peers,” Porterfield said. “Everyone was created for a reason and has something to offer. We were created for a specific purpose.”

A former special education teacher, Porterfield now helps teachers, administrators and parents work better with students who have disabilities and to see the enormous potential of these students.

“The favorite part of my job is advocating for our students,” Porterfield said. “I enjoy giving people the tools to work with all students regardless of their ability level.”

Before joining Metro Schools, Porterfield was an exceptional education teacher in Williamson County Schools. Her move to MNPS in 2012 was both thoughtful and strategic.

“MNPS has a strong history and legacy [of providing great education to students]. I wanted to work in an urban district to help empower our next generation of leaders.”

Although Porterfield loves working with students with disabilities, her job does not come without emotional ups and downs.

“My heart breaks when I see a parent cry with hopelessness,” Porterfield said. “I rejoice with families when I see tears of thankfulness because they have someone in their corner partnering with them to give their child the best opportunities possible. Those encounters are the moments that remind me why I do what I do.”

While Porterfield’s work has its challenges, she is thankful to have a strong team of exceptional education teachers supporting students with disabilities throughout the district.

“Our exceptional educators want to take the limits off of our students,” she said. “We are passionate about what we do because we see the difference it makes. We want to empower schools with the tools to help educate all students and for our students, and I am inspired by the wonderful things we are doing here in MNPS. The work that our teachers and paraprofessionals do each day is life changing.”