Celebrating McKissack Middle

Moses McKissack Middle School: “Tiger Strong, Tiger Proud, Tiger Nation!”
Posted on 01/20/2022
McKissack Middle teacher and student, high five.

McKissack Middle School is committed to educational excellence by offering students the opportunity to immerse themselves in a strong cross-curriculum STEAM learning environment that challenges them to think critically and creatively and engage in peer-to-peer collaborations. student walking down stairs with math on steps

Programs offered at McKissack include:

  • The Oasis STEM Bicycle Program
  • Tennessee State University’s STEM in the Gym program
  • Robotics Team
  • Balloons Over Broadway STEM Project

McKissack teachers, staff, and community partners provide personalized learning plans for students to exceed their academic and social and emotional goals. The school focuses on leadership development and preparation for post-secondary opportunities.

Dr. Marlon Heaston, executive principal, has rallied his students and staff to live up to his mantra, “Tiger Strong, Tiger Proud, Tiger Nation!”

McKissack’s history stretches back 70 years. Construction began in 1952 on land that brothers and highly accomplished architects Moses and Calvin McKissack had sold to the Board of Education.

In 1905, Moses had been commissioned to build a house for a Vanderbilt University professor and dean of architecture and engineering. That work ultimately led to the McKissack brothers starting the first Black architectural firm in Tennessee in the 1920s and landing several of their projects on the National Register of Historic Places, including Fisk University’s Carnegie Library. McKissack Middle Mural

The school was completed in 1954; however, Moses McKissack passed away before its completion. Mrs. Ivanetta Davis served as the school’s first principal from 1954 to 1983, while her husband, Dr. Walter S. Davis, served as the second president of neighboring Tennessee State University from 1943 to 1968.

Today, McKissack Middle School is on the cusp of realizing its vision of becoming a top-performing school with a continued focus on high academic expectations for every student through high-quality instruction and social emotional learning.

“The school endeavors to ensure that Every Student is Known in meaningful ways that equip them with the tools needed for success,” Dr. Heaston said. “It is an honor and privilege to serve alongside our staff, parents and community members as we work as a team to make sure our students become productive global citizens in society.”

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