Education | Nashville Public Radio


David Smith / WPLN (File photo)

It’s back to the drawing board for Metro Schools and a sigh of relief for many in Williamson County. Superintendent Mike Looney announced his decision to remain at his current job Friday morning.

Henry Horton State Park via Tennessee Achieves

More than 40 percent of students who are still eligible for Tennessee Promise have completed the final requirement before school starts: eight hours of community service. But the organization in charge of tallying the hours expects more students to finish by Aug. 1.

In exchange for receiving tuition-free community college, high school graduates are expected to volunteer or job shadow for eight hours. The state says it's a way to make students feel invested in the scholarship and start thinking about possible careers.

Two mid-state school districts are waiting to hear from one man. Mike Looney says he’ll let everyone know Friday where he plans to be superintendent. The Metro school board voted unanimously Thursday night to offer its top job to the man who currently heads Williamson County schools.


The Metro Nashville board of education wants to hire Mike Looney as superintendent more than ever. In preparing to make a formal offer Thursday, the only change suggested by board members was to strike a clause in the contract that would allow the panel to fire Looney without cause.

Vanderbilt University

The man who oversees the state takeover of struggling Tennessee schools is stepping down.

As head of the Achievement School District, Chris Barbic was given the leeway to make wholesale change at schools that rank in the state’s bottom 5 percent. Now he says it’s time for someone else to handle schools that aren’t improving as promised.

Nina Cardona / WPLN

The way a kindergartner gets along with his classmates could indicate how likely that child is to either earn a college degree — or end up on public assistance. Those are the findings of a new study from Penn State and Duke University that tracked kids in Nashville and three other locations for nearly two decades. 

David Smith/WPLN

The three remaining finalists being considered for Metro Nashville’s director of schools have a chance to speak directly to parents and teachers this week.  It began last night at McGavock High School with Angela Huff, who’s currently Chief of Staff in the Cobb County, Georgia school district.   Huff is a Nashville native who said as superintendent she would try to build consensus. 

"It’s a school board of nine, and I’m one. So it’s going to be a team of ten, and we work together," Huff said. 

Metro School Superintendent Interviews Begin, But Some Say Slow Down

Jul 10, 2015
David Smith / WPLN (File photo)

Update - July 10, 2015 at 3:00 p.m.:

The candidate list for Nashville’s next school director is down to three. 

The Metro School Board trimmed John Covington’s name from the list, not long after Covington finished his interview with the board.  His candidacy had been under fire from the local teachers union and others.

Alberto G. via Flickr

A school official in Robertson County says no cheating occurred during last year’s state testing.

The Tennessee Department of Education is investigating the school district for having a higher than average level of erasure marks. A high frequency of erasure marks — when a student erases a wrong answer and then fills in the right one — could indicate that students talked to each other during the test or that teachers corrected the answer sheets.

At the 2,200 businesses that belong to the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, employees are now eligible for a scholarship to college — specifically, to the online nonprofit university WGU Tennessee. 

The Nashville Chamber already has a number of workforce development programs with community and technical colleges, intended to help local workers become qualified for more specialized jobs.

“We’re looking very, very carefully at how we help align higher education with the needs of our businesses," says Nancy Eisenbrandt, chief operations officer at the Chamber.