Archives for February 2013

Mayor Karl Dean visits Antioch High School for CTE month


Students and faculty at Metro Nashville Pubic Schools will join others across the nation during the month of February to celebrate national Career and Technical Education Month. CTE Month provides CTE programs across the country an opportunity to demonstrate how CTE educates students to be college- and career- ready and prepares them for high-wage, high-skill career fields. Among the special activities scheduled included a presentation by Mayor Karl Dean at Antioch High School on Feb. 14 at 1pm. Check out the video of the event below.


Additionally, Director of CTE, Dr. Chaney Mosley, and CTE Coordinators Donna Gilley and Gaye Martin, will travel to every CTE program in MNPS and show their appreciation for the work and efforts made by CTE teachers across the district.


“The activities planned over the next month will illustrate the rigor and relevance CTE courses offer our students,” said Chaney Mosley, Director of Career and Technical Education. “By partnering with the business community, CTE programs invest in students’ lives with the latest technology, knowledge, skills and character that will prepare them for success in college endeavors and careers.  These students are future leaders of our local industries.”



CTE encompasses 94 percent of high school students and 13 million postsecondary students in the United States and includes high schools, career centers, community and technical colleges, four-year universities and more. CTE is a major part of the solution to a myriad of national economic and workforce problems, such as high school dropout rates, a weakened economy, global competitiveness and massive layoffs. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly one-third of the fastest growing occupations will require an associate’s degree or a postsecondary certificate. At a time when job opportunity is so critical, CTE programs in every community are ensuring students are adequately equipped with the skills to successfully enter the workforce.


Burro basketball goes viral

Hands-on experiences are essential to being college and career ready. These experiences, such as Burro TV, gives students the opportunity to see the realities of a profession or industry and the connections between learning and the real world. Logan B, a student from Hillsboro High School’s Academy of International Business and Communication, participates in Burro TV and was a team member on their wildly successful viral video of the Burro basketball team. 


The official first full year of Burro TV has been such an amazing experience for myself and several other students. Thinking back to the beginning of my sophomore year until this point, I see nothing but growth in our academy. All of this momentum actually started last year, when we won in all but one of the categories for the MNPS academy video awards, including Best in Show…and Burro TV hasn’t looked back since! The month of January was especially big for us – many of our highlight videos went viral (and global) on YouTube, we made the Yahoo! Sports page not once, but twice, and Burro TV students were featured on channel five and channel two news here in Nashville. Check out that video here.

The cool thing is, it’s the students in our academy who run Burro TV, and this is what the we love so much about our academy. There are so many different ideas and topics to choose from, and our students are very creative and thoughtful. Almost everyday we learn through hands-on experiences, giving the students a chance to get an image of the real world in this particular field. We’re learning that there’s nothing we can’t do, and we can turn small ideas into huge productions. The sky is the limit with our media production classes.

Financial Education for L.I.F.E.

Influence by low math test scores and constant financial and debt problems in our community, the Hunters Lane DECA Chapter created a curriculum of financial literacy for elementary, middle and high school classes. The curriculum was called “L.I.F.E” which stands for “Learning and Implementing Financial Education”, teaching students about how to make positive spending and saving habits. During this project, the students visited 14 of Stratton Elementary School classes, 3 Neely’s Bend Middle School classes, and all Hunters Lane High School Freshman classes. Throughout this project, the students reached more than 2,000 students. All of the lessons are leading up to the culminating event “March 4 Literacy”, taking place at Hunters Lane High School, March 4, 2013. Every Hunters Lane student will attend the event and will be open to the community. 


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Due to the constant debt and financial problems in our community as well as low Math test scores, our Hunters Lane DECA chapter created a curriculum for students in elementary, middle, and high school classes. Our program is called “L.I.F.E”, which stands for “Learning and Implementing Financial Literacy “. During this project, we visited 14 Stratton Elementary classes, 3 Neely’s Bend Middle classes, and all Hunters Lane High School freshmen classes. All of these lessons taught students the significance of money and promoted positive financial decisions. Throughout this project we will have reached over 2,000 students.

At Stratton Elementary we visited classrooms from the first grade to the third grade. For our first graders we introduced the concept of money. At the beginning of our lesson, many students did not know what money was or what its values were. We showed and explained what the value of a penny, a nickel, a dime, a quarter, and dollar were. Then we gave the students an amount of money and together we counted out how to reach that value. For example “64 cents” you would need two quarters, a dime, and four pennies. By the end of our lesson students were able to name the value of each coin. For our second graders we reviewed the value of money and then split the class into pairs. Each pair received a candy cane with a value of money, ranging from 20 cents up to 2 dollars. Students had to count out the correct value of money and as an incentive each student got to keep their candy cane. For our third grade classes, the lessons were a little more complex.

As third grade students are already taught multiplication standards, we decided to implement this into our lesson. First we reviewed multiplication with students and we gave them visuals to help them understand and remember their multiplication a little better. We introduced the “Equals Group Model’’ and “Array Models”. Next we explained to students how multiplication can affect their spending. They were introduced to the concept of sales tax and how coupons work, which they need multiplication to determine. Finally we ended our lesson with a game called “Multiplication War”, which is played by a pair of students. The rules were as follows: a deck of cards is spilt into two halves and each half is given to a student. Each student is instructed to flip a card over and multiply the two numbers together. Whoever multiplied them first and correctly got the pair of cards. All face cards were taken out and jokers were used as a value of zero. Whoever had the most cards at the end of the game won.

For our middle and high schools classes we created a lesson plan about spending, saving, interest and banking. At Neely’s Bend we spoke with around 75 to 100 students and at Hunters Lane High School we reached all 375 freshman students. First we started our lessons with a pre-assessment; this helped us see what students already knew about these topics. Next they were given a worksheet that went along with a PowerPoint presentation. Throughout the presentation, students were advised in making smart saving, spending and banking decisions. They were exposed to true statistics about financial statistics and real financial problems that exists in today economy.  During the PowerPoint we also demonstrated and practiced with students Algebraic equations on calculating interests.  After, students were given a post- assessment to measure their growth in knowledge during the lesson.

Overall, all of our lessons were successful and we received positive feedback from teachers.  For our first and second grade students we could see the progression and teachers raved about our lessons. Teachers from our third grade classes told us that students asked to stay in from recess and play the game “Multiplication War”. In addition we also heard from a few teachers that several students were climbing the multiplication charts in the classrooms. With our middle and high school students they were very engaged and asked questions about student loans and banking. Comparing our pre- assessment to our post assessment we could tell that students had definitely obtained a growth in knowledge, with an increase from 50% to 80%.

This is my story…

My name is Je’Nae A. I am basically very shy and I generally keep to myself, but if I am in a situation where I have to speak in front of a large crowd, I won’t make a fool of myself. I am the kind of girl who acts herself only around the people she knows and trusts. But I am slowly learning everyday to express myself to people more and to not be so shy. Sometimes when I think of my life and what I really want to do, I always put myself down by saying things like, “I don’t think I can do this” and “Am I going to be good at it?” But the reality is that I’m the only one stopping me from my dreams. What do I want to do after high school? I want… let me rephrase that- I am going to get into Le Cordon Blue Culinary School in NYC. This school is the perfect school for my bakery career. This school has a world renowned network of educational and hands-on instructors which is why I love this school. After college, I am going to own my very own bakery because it has always been a dream of mine to have my own bakery and create my very own desserts. The first step towards this goals is to attend the Educational Equal Opportunity Group Student Leadership Conference.

I believe the EEOG program can really influence kids not to drop out of high school. I think this program needs to show teens the bad things that come with dropping out of high school. One bad result of dropping out of high school is that if you want to do something big in life it will be hard for you to get a job because you will not have your high school diploma. I also think that the EEOG program should really get teens to want to try harder in school and earn all of their high school credits. Because there are some kids that don’t drop out of high school, but still don’t enough credits to graduate and that one thing is holding them back from their dreams. So, I think it is really important to help teens with credits too. My name is JaNae’ A. and this is my story.


Students Contribute to the Davidson County Health Summit

The Davidson County Health Summit is an annual event hosted by St. Thomas Hospital and Baptist Hospital. The summit is part of a multi-step plan for the St. Thomas Health Services network to focus their outreach to the areas of greatest need in Davidson County. The event brings together CEO’s and leaders of different health and community organizations, and two very lucky students from Maplewood High School. Terra’Lexus R. and Khadijah A. participated in strategic planning breakout sessions and were instrumental in bringing a student perspective to the summit. 


2013-01-31 12.11.23Our experience at the Davidson County Health Summit, hosted by St. Thomas and Baptist Hospitals, was a life changing experience. It opened our eyes to the health risks we face every day in our community. The Summit brought up issues such as smoking, poverty, teen pregnancy, and obesity. Without the Summit informing us of the life threating issues that surround our neighborhoods and our state in general, we would still be blinded by ignorance.

The Health Summit taught us many things that can help us in the long run. One of the most surprising things was that 53% of restaurants in our communities are fast food restaurants, rather than healthier options or grocery stores. Also, we learned that within the Davidson County community 60% of residents are obese.

The Health Summit was a success.  We were the only high school students at the event, and they valued our input during the breakout sessions.  It was one of the best experiences offered to us over the past three years we have been at Maplewood High school. We gained more than just knowledge; we gained a healthier living style. We are very appreciative of the opportunity presented to us!

MNPS celebrates Career and Technical Education Month

It’s February 1st and that can mean only one thing. It’s time to kick off Career and Technical Education month! Thousands of school districts across the country recognize February as Career and Technical Education month, and here at MNPS we are celebrating in a big way.

Tune in this month to read blog posts from our CTE students as well as CTE facts and stats through Facebook and Twitter. Also, be sure to stay connected and be a part of our Tour de’CTE. Chaney Mosley, director of CTE, as well as Donna Gilley and Gaye Martin, CTE coordinators, will be traveling to every CTE program in MNPS to show their appreciation to our teachers and everything they do! Be sure to let us know if you have a great CTE story and you may even see it published on this blog.

Think CTE doesn’t effect your or your student? Think again. Check out the infographic below for information on career and technical education in Nashville and how it impacts every single one of our lives.


CTE Inforgraphic 2

Making A Decision

At the end of the school year, Freshmen Students in the Academies of Nashville select the academy they will be a part of for their sophomore, junior, and senior years. Demauri M., a student at Glencliff High School, writes about her experiences and decision making process during her freshmen year that led her to be a part of the the Academy of Environmental and Urban Planning.  

Demauri MurpheyBeing in STEM is a really amazing experience. The tools, the wood, and constantly doing hands-on activities. It is just great. But there is this idea that STEM and The Shop belong to the men. In people’s mind, power tools represent masculinity. Yes, most likely every man has a tool chest, but this is the twenty-first century. Women can and ARE doing what the men are doing.

There is one thing though, female teens need to be exposed to what it is like to be in a shop, to build and cut things, or they will never realize how much they could enjoy it. That’s what happened to me.

As a freshmen, there was a period in the second semester where the freshman would tour all of the academies the school had to offer. I had already had my mind set on being in cosmetology/Hospitality and Marketing.  But then the day came where we would tour the working environment for a student in STEM.

 As I entered the class room, I noticed a lot of computers. The first though that came to mind was that this was a class where everything was done on the computers. You could say I was…half way correct. As my eyes wondered the class room, I noticed a door that opened up into another room… THE SHOP! From then on, my mind was changed. I knew for a fact that I would enter the Environmental and Urban Planning Academy.

Now I am a sophomore who has experienced and is still experiencing what it is like to be a beginner in STEM. Of course, I had to learn the basics, which meant staying in the actual classroom, but once that was over and I passed my safety test, I was on my way to the shop, ready to start on my first project that I was going to build. From designing, to cutting 2x4s, and to screwing in bolts, I was doing it all.

Sharing my experiences

Here recently, five women who were professional interior designers, architects, and civil engineers , came and spoke to a group of freshman females (chosen by the school based on their grades) about what it is like to enter a technical field as a woman. Last year, I was one of the freshmen, listening in on what my future could be like if I entered those fields. I simply loved it. So I was HONORED when my teacher asked another student and myself to speak to the young ladies about what they will experience when they enter STEM.

Towards the end of the meeting, I asked the girls to raise their hands if they knew that they were sure that they would enter STEM. Not to my surprise, almost everyone raised their hand. It was great. To those who didn’t raise their hand, I simply said, “In just about every class, there will be that one part of the year where you do nothing hands on in class. But not in STEM, because, we don’t have books. So the hands on activities come a lot sooner than the other classes.”

If those girls took one thing out from that meeting, it would be not to let the idea of what is “manly” or not to hold you back on what you want to do. Gender doesn’t determine whether you can or cannot do something. Your determination, confidence, and will-power does.