Celebrating Carter Lawrence

Carter-Lawrence Elementary: Engineering Focus in Every Subject Area
Posted on 01/12/2022
three Carter-Lawrence students on playground

Carter-Lawrence Elementary’s 200 students learn about the engineering design process in every subject area. 

Carter-Lawrence is one of four MNPS schools that recently received a federal Magnet Schools Assistance Program grant totaling $14.6 million. The school will use its share of these funds to provide a more unique learning experience to students and families, with a strong focus on engineering.

Carter Lawrence pre-k teacher and students

Teachers will get increased professional development to learn more about engineering, while students will be challenged further by using the engineering design process, enabling them to excel in complex problem solving, academics and life.

The MSAP funding also will help to improve the school’s infrastructure, as students and teachers will have the most state-of-the-art tools for teaching and learning.

Carter-Lawrence's open enrollment status brings a diverse student population. There are five languages represented at the school, which is in the Edgehill community just south of downtown.  

Carter-Lawrence focuses on ensuring Every Student is Known by embedding a number of social-emotional learning practices that help to develop the whole child. Faculty members greet all students by their names at the front doors of the school daily. Students engage in daily morning meetings and closing meetings to allow them time to learn more about their peers and reflect on their day.

Every student also has an assigned mentor who checks in with them regularly. Each month, parents and guardians are invited to attend family nights, known as Family Relationships Empower Engineers (F.R.E.E.) nights. This is a time for families to interact with teachers and other families, learn a reading strategy to support their child at home, and engage in an engineering activity.  

student going down playground slide

When Carter-Lawrence opened in January 1940, it already benefited from a rich history. It is a combination of two earlier schools, Carter and Lawrence, which were named in memory of an African American teacher in the Nashville City Schools, Howard C. Carter, and a school board member, Judge John Lawrence.  

Although Carter-Lawrence has evolved over the past 82 years, the commitment of its faculty and staff to provide an excellent learning experience to every student, every day has remained its constant. 

Facts About Carter-Lawrence

  • For the last three years, CLEM has performed as well as or better than the district in both MAP reading and math assessments.  
  • Extended learning opportunities are provided to Carter-Lawrence students by four universities – Belmont, Lipscomb, Trevecca and Vanderbilt - that are within 10 minutes of school.
  • Students have multiple opportunities to engage in STEAM challenges.  
  • The colors are black, gold and white, and the mascot is the cougar.

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