Music moves people and Nathanael James taps into the power of lyrics to make a difference in the education of his student. His secret weapon: mentorship through rap music.
“Becoming a teacher almost felt like an accident, but it was definitely meant to be,” James said, who holds a bachelor’s degree in theology. “Although my mom and sister are teachers, I never wanted to be one. I intentionally moved to Nashville to do gospel music and rap.”
Cora Howe School hosted its first-ever Signing Day event for high school seniors. This special event was much like those at traditional high schools, however, with the exceptional needs focus of Cora Howe students, the emphasis was placed on students ‘signing’ with business and community partners offering seniors employment, college or training opportunities after graduation.
“The idea of this event is still very much a work in progress but what our students do when they leave our school is very important,” said K.C Winfrey, principal of Cora Howe, adding that 100 percent of the seniors have postsecondary plans. “We strive to ensure students will achieve lifelong success and we have been working hard to create opportunities for our kids when they leave Cora Howe.”
Debbie Seagroves is the library materials clerk at Una Elementary School and has served Metro Nashville Public Schools for 11 years. Much like many other MNPS employees, Seagroves started her career in the district as a substitute.
“I had been a substitute for about three years in a lot of different schools and while substituting at Una, I heard about this job opening and I knew that it was for me,” she said.
Many students are told that the sky is the limit and to reach for the stars, and recently, that is exactly what 8th-grade science students at Bellevue Middle did.
Through a partnership with the Vanderbilt Dyer Observatory, Dr. William Teets visited two of Mrs. Fitzgerald’s science classes had been studying the formation of the universe, focusing on our solar system. Dr. Teets has been with Vanderbilt Dyer Observatory as a staff astronomer since 2012. Prior to that, he worked at Dyer part-time during his graduate studies from 2006 to 2012.
This week the MNPS Sports Hall of Fame Induction Committee honored eight outstanding men and women who have achieved success for their past athletic contributions while attending Metro Schools as well as their achievements in business and service to others in their communities. Learn more about our eight #MNPSMVPs below!
Whites Creek High School’s Academy of Alternative Energy, Sustainability and Logistics opened its new solar farm April 11, a student-led solar panel project which started in 2015. The project was made possible through grant awards from Ford Motor Company ($20,000) and Piedmont Gas ($10,000), and a donation of 40 solar panels by The Solar Foundation.
Through the support of business partner, Southern Alliance for Clean Energy, the implementation of the solar farm will power machinery in the school’s boiler room saving the district approximately $1,900 per year, according to James Carney, president of Southern Alliance.
Vickie Everson will never forget working at an internship in Atlanta shadowing a social worker. At one of their visits, she saw a baby lying in a crib. The child was just like others in the room – the only difference – the child was unable to vocalize due to a disability.
Everson shelfed her desire to become a social worker and decided to work with children with special needs as an exceptional education teacher. In this role, she is able to help children who need extra support. The student breakthroughs are among the most rewarding parts of her job.
“I enjoy working with these kids, learning their personalities and especially seeing the light go off when they finally understand something,” Everson said. “I want them to have success when all their lives they’ve worked extra hard to learn.”
Erianna Thomas credits her brother for introducing her to the game of basketball. Thomas and her family would attend his games and she would watch him dominate his opponents on the court. After one particular game, as Thomas was waiting for her brother, she picked up a basketball and began shooting it around. This became a regular practice for Thomas after each of her brother’s basketball games until she began to get better.
MNPS Nutrition Services has been lucky enough to have Cecile Hill in their department for 24 years. Her service began in 1996 on a part-time basis performing on-site reviews. The following year she was asked to help out temporally in the department’s office, and her work was so exemplary that she was asked to stay.
Hill is the first point of contact for anyone who needs support from the department. Among the important roles she plays is helping substitute cafeteria workers get to schools to assist when cafeteria staff are out.
Barrett Boese knows that “the race is not given to the swift but to those that endure to the end.” A mantra he uses when it comes to life, and especially to track and field.Boese put this to the test when his parents registered him for his first 5K race in the fifth grade. To his parent’s surprise, Boese did well and beat both of them in the race. This was the beginning of his journey as a runner.
“I have enjoyed running ever since I participated in field day in elementary school,” Boese said. “I would beat everyone I ran against. My passion for running spilled over into middle school and now high school.”