Stratford High School

The United Project: A Clinton Global Initiative Commitment to Action

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The Academies of Nashville, in cooperation with the Tennessee Department of Children’s Services and the PENCIL Foundation, is announcing plans for a new initiative focused on creating pathways to success for youth in foster care called the United Project. This program is a Commitment to Action for the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI) America annual meeting, which these organizations attended this summer.

 

The United Project will expand education, training and employment pathways for Davidson County foster youth. MNPS, DCS, and PENCIL will work collaboratively to identify, recruit, and serve foster youth in order to develop meaningful relationships between these students and local business. Business partners will have the opportunity to:

  • provide students with work-based and service-learning opportunities,
  • model and coach youth on appropriate work-place behaviors, and
  • offer mentorship experiences that support student’s personal and professional growth.

 

“The Nashville community has consistently demonstrated its willingness to make a difference in the lives of our students,” says Dr. Chaney Mosley, the Academies of Nashville and Career and Technical Education Director for MNPS. “This initiative will be the first of its kind in Davidson County that specifically targets youth in foster care. For these students, successfully transitioning to adulthood is challenging without the support network of family. We recognized the potential for combating this through a partnership with DCS.”

 

“We are thrilled that our youth are going to get these opportunities,” says Michael Leach, director of Independent Living at DCS. “As our young people prepare to leave foster care, they need to make connections with adults that will help them succeed in the working world.”

 

While the Tennessee Department of Children Services will work to identify and recruit students into the program, the PENCIL Foundation will act as a liaison between Nashville businesses and organizations that wish to participate in the program.

 

“The United Project is an innovative and forward thinking program that allows PENCIL, MNPS, and the Department of Children’s Services to help students succeed academically and prepare for life,” says Matt Seaton, Vice President of Partnerships and Programs for the PENCIL Foundation. “For nearly five years, the PENCIL Foundation’s College and Career Mentors program has helped hundreds of students reach their college aspirations and begin planning for a productive career. The United Project will allow us to expand that reach and serve a population of students in need of additional support.”

 

There are currently more than 8,000 youth across the state of Tennessee that are served by DCS. Those youth who are also students of Metro Nashville Public Schools will have the unique opportunity to develop life and social skills as well as become college and career ready.

 

CGI commitments are new, specific, and measureable plans to address a significant challenge- in the case of CGI America, economic recovery and growth in the United States. Commitments range broadly in scale, value, approach, and in the types of partnerships they employ. The CGI commitment signaled the intent of the United Project to mobilize with its partners a multi-year change effort, providing a way to leverage the enormous scale and reach of the Nashville community to help solve social problems.

 

About the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI)

Established in 2005 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative (CGI)- an initiative of the Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation- convenes global leaders to create and implement innovative solutions to the world’s most pressing challenges. CGI Annual Meetings have brought together more than 180 heads of state, 20 Nobel Prizes laureates, and hundreds of learning CEOs, heads of foundations and NGSs, major philanthropists, and members of the media. To date, members of the CGI community have made more than 2,800 commitments, which are already improving the lives of more than 430 million people in over 180 countries. When fully funded and implemented, these commitments will be valued at $103 billion. CGI also convenes CGI America, a meeting focused on collaborative solutions to economic recovery in the United States, and CGI University (CGI U), which brings together undergraduate and graduate students to address pressing challenges in their community of around the world. For more information, visit clintonglobalinitiative.org and follow us on Twitter @ClintonGlobal and Facebook at facebook.com/clintonglobalinitiative.

 

About CGI America

Established in June 2011 by President Bill Clinton, the Clinton Global Initiative American (CGI America)- an initiative of Bill, Hillary & Chelsea Clinton Foundation- addresses economic recovery in the United States. CGI America brings together leaders in business, government, and civil society to generate and implement commitments to create jobs, stimulate economic growth, foster innovation, and support workforce development in the United States. Since the first meeting in 2011, CGI America participants have made more than 300 commitments valued at more than $15.3 billion when fully funded and implemented. To learn more, visit cgiamerica.org.

 

 

The Haslam’s Host Stratford Students in their Home

Haslam 1On Tuesday, October 28, 2014 the Biotechnology II students from Statford STEM Magnet High School visited the Governor’s Mansion where Governor Haslam and his wife, First Lady Chrissy Haslam reside. We were invited to tour the vegetable gardens with U.T. Agricultural Extension’s David Cook and a few Master Gardeners. Mr. Cook prepared an excellent workshop for us to learn about heirloom crops, hybrid crops, and genetically-modified crops. Our food crops have changed considerably since the days of wild food crops and in more recent years, scientists have learned to insert specific genes from one DNA source into another DNA source allowing for specific traits in the modified plants, such as Bt-corn, which kills the corn borer that destroys the crop.  As he explained these variations in our food sources, he provided a Mendel’s skit of participation for students. It was very informative and several ate peppers and beans from the garden.

Next, First Lady Haslam gave us a tour of the Governor’s Mansion and enlightened us with several historical stories about paintings, punch bowls, shuffle boards (Elvis played on this shuffle board) and other pertinent facts relative to the mansion. Last, but not least, we visited the kitchen where the Chef Stephen Ward prepared a plate of sea bass and fresh vegetables in about 10 minutes, while explaining different herbs and sauces that bring a meal to life. Each student was able to sample the dish and take plenty of pictures.

The First Lady posed for pictures with the group and with individual students. It was an inspirational and educational trip, which was prepared especially for our curriculum in cooperation with U.T. Agricultural Extension. Field trips are among the First Lady’s priorities as stated on her website, https://news.tn.gov/node/12874.

Haslam 2Therein she states, “We hope to provide a variety of learning opportunities at the Tennessee Residence,” Mrs. Haslam said. “Students and teachers have visited our Kitchen and Cutting Garden to become more familiar with where their food comes from and how to incorporate fresh fruits and vegetables into your diet.”  We am very grateful to her and her excellent staff for making this possible.

 

Darlene Gunther
Biotechnology Teacher
Stratford STEM Magnet High School

Nashville 9th Graders Chart Path to College and Careers

6th Annual My Future. My Way. Career Exploration Fair Helps High School Freshmen Learn Firsthand from Future Employers

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The exhibit floor of the Music City Center buzzed with excitement and nervous energy last week as more than 7,000 Davidson County 9th graders jammed the convention hall to ask questions of business and technology companies, public utilities, police and fire agencies, and dozens of potential employers about the skills necessary to make it to college or a good career. The 6th annual My Future. My Way. Career Exploration Fair was hosted by Metro Nashville Public Schools and the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce and was sponsored for the 4th consecutive year by Shoney’s and included participation by Shoney’s Chairman and CEO David Davoudpour.

“Shoney’s has made giving back to the community a hallmark of our company’s culture,” said Mr. Davoudpour. “We truly believe investing our time and energy in these young people will help them see a path forward in their education and allow them to make the connection between achieving in school and success in the work.”

Nearly one hundred Middle Tennessee employers participated in the Career Exploration Fair. Mr. Davoudpour was joined by Nashville Mayor Karl Dean and Metro Nashville Public Schools Director Dr. Jesse Register in awarding the Best in Show award to those companies making up the Business, Marketing, and Information Technology sector of the exhibit hall displays.

“It takes lots of planning and coordination to make the Career Exploration Fair a true learning experience for these students,” said Mayor Dean. “We’re grateful for the commitment being made by Shoney’s, Metro Nashville Public Schools, the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, and dozens of companies exhibiting at the fair.”

“Throughout the day, all across the exhibit hall, we see thousands of conversations between professionals and young students which may spark an interest or cause a young person to see themselves in a new career role,” said Dr. Register. “Our hope is that these interactions will help the students understand that achieving in the classroom pays off in the long run.”

“Our research shows that Middle Tennessee could be seeing shortages of works in some business sectors as early as 2016,” said Ralph Schulz, president and CEO, Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce. “If our region is to continue along its path of strong growth, we need to reach out to young people and let them know that viable college and career paths are waiting for them.”

The Power of the Resume

The Academies of Nashville business partners are an essential element to high school redesign. While many partnerships occur in the classroom through guest speakers and mentoring, there are some partnerships that occur with students outside of the classroom. Ryan Pryor, a Nashville community volunteer, shared his experiences after working with Academy Ambassadors on a resume writing workshop.

resume ambassadorLet’s be honest, resume writing is kind of scary.  It’s you represented on a piece of paper, and it might be the only shot you have at getting that crucial interview.  “What do I say?  Should I include my GPA?  Is this the best wording?  Does this resume look bad?”  These are the types of questions I addressed with the Stratford STEM Magnet High School students last month.

It was a welcome opportunity to see the Stratford student body in motion.  A few junior and senior students already had internships or job interviews in mind, causing them to dial into the specifics.  Some of the younger students were getting their first exposure to the process.

Resumes are powerful tools for helping students see the way their school work and extracurricular activities and hobbies or interests prepare them for the job world.  Resumes can also show students the gaps they may have in their preparation for future jobs and life outside of their high school experience.  This enables them to set goals to fill those gaps, or possibly realize they already have experiences that do fill those gaps.  I worked with one such student who wanted to work at an elderly care facility.  When we spoke about it she came to understand that her years of babysitting experience was a huge item to make sure she included in her “relevant experience” category.

I’m encouraged to see the students being exposed to such a fundamental element of life outside of school.  Keep up the good work, Stratford.

My Academy Experience

By Jorge C, a student in the Academy of Science and Engineering at Stratford STEM Magnet High School

Choosing to take part in the Academy of Science and Engineering is probably the best decision I made at Stratford. I am currently in the engineering pathway in ASE. ASE stands for Academy of Science and Engineering and the academy’s mission statement is: The Academy of Science and Engineering will equip students with the skills necessary to be prepared for college and ready for a career in the fields of engineering or any branch of science. This is clear what the academy wants for its students: success.

I personally enjoy all of my classes that are provided by my pathway, specifically Advanced Design Apps which is the third engineering class in the pathway. Right now we’re designing a bottle rocket on a website named WhiteBox Learning. After the design process comes the construction part. This is one of the websites that the pathway will use to simulate the design and construction process engineers use on a daily basis. I appreciate the staff for the growth and support of the academy, because of them students can have various opportunities rather than just one or none.

“Preparing Students for College, Career, and Life”

By Susan Cowley
University of Tennessee- Knoxville

 

Metro Nashville Public Schools prepares students for “college, career, and life.” It’s a part of the vision statement for Nashville’s school district, but how exactly does this happen? One method involves students receiving industry related professional certifications before high school graduation.

Students in the Academies of Nashville are meeting industry standards to receive professional certifications before walking across stage in their caps and gowns. In fact, during the 2013-2014 pilot year, more than 180 students received certifications in more than a dozen areas.

After completing a yearlong preparatory course, students have the opportunity to take the certification test. If a student passes the exam and meets other certification specific criteria, he or she will walk out of high school with a competitive edge in the workforce. The certifications range across multiple fields from healthcare to broadcasting.

Teachers in the school system have been instrumental to the success of this program. Criminal Justice instructor Jeremiah Davis has seen more students to receive certification than any other teacher in the district.

“Obtaining a certification helps demonstrate maturity at a young age and determination to accomplish goals” says Davis, from Whites Creek High School. It is evident he feels that these certifications leave longstanding positive effects as he states, “When I see my former students and even students from other schools I offered the certifications to, they let me know they are working because of their certification.” Davis knows that it is well worth the effort to see students reap the benefits of industry certification. “My students know that the way to get ahead in life is to stand out in a positive way. Certifications allow a student to graduate with a great distinction and work as they are in college or start their career immediately.”

Stratford STEM Magnet High School graduate, Reggie Mayes sees the benefits of industry certifications in his own life. Mayes says his certification aided him in becoming a more mature individual. He is now working as an unarmed security guard at a local grocery store.

Mayes believes that his certification has “helped me get my life on track to start a good life after school.” He also considers the certification process to have fostered strong, positive relationships between him and his teachers.

Not only does the industry certification program profit the students, it strengthens the teachers as well. “I’ve seen significant improvements to my own work as a result of the training and certification” says Becky Banazsak-Pendergrass, Broadcasting/Media Production Teacher and CTE Cluster Lead Teacher at Hillsboro High School. Banazsak-Pendergrass recently became certified to host a testing cite at Hillsboro; bringing the school the distinction of being one of the only testing facilities for Final Cut Pro in the state of Tennessee. She feels this has given her greater insight into the process as a whole. She strongly supports student certification, and says, “not only does it hold students to a much higher standard, but it also gives them a real-world benefit…obtaining a professional certification that is recognized by their industry of study is a very practical step they can take towards a successful career.” Banazsak-Pendergrass believes the greatest benefit that students receive is an overall boost in motivation; she sums up her experience with certifications by stating, “Students who in the past may have done just barely enough work to pass the course are now taking ownership of their learning experience, actively taking notes and asking questions throughout instructional time, and seeking out additional opportunities for learning and practice.”

This opportunity would not be possible without the support of the Nashville Career Advancement Center, the Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, as well as federal CTE grants. Through the generous donations of these organizations, students were able to earn certifications worth hundreds of dollars for an individual fee of $10.

Industry certifications are an exciting new benefit for graduates of all MNPS high school programs. “Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools will provide every student with the foundation of knowledge, skills and character necessary to excel in higher education, work and life.” Certifications play a key role in instilling confidence, motivation, and success in each individual student. It is evident that the opportunities allowed to students through professional certifications strengthen the goals and values of the MNPS school system.Pe

Why Academies? Its about the Relationships

One of the key objectives of the Academies of Nashville is to develop relationships between students, teachers, business partners, and the Nashville community. In the post below, Austin S. writes about his academy experience and the relationships he has developed through his time in Metro Nashville Public Schools. 

 

The Academy of National Safety and Security Technologies is a wonderful academy in which to belong. I enjoy the academy because of the teachers, the learning environment, and the activities we get to experience.  Within the academy, I am in the Computer Gaming/Programming pathway. I especially enjoy the computer gaming and programming class because of the different experiences and standards I get to learn. This pathway is really fun to be in, and I love all the variety of technology speakers who visit with us. A specific teacher I would like to thank for the experience is Mr. Osborne. He’s taught me a lot throughout the three years he has been here. He has taught me how to program sprites and objects, programming languages, and made different apps on the software, Eclipse. Mr. Osborne is a wonderful teacher to be around, and he has made a huge impact on me. Without him I wouldn’t know how to program apps, sprite, or create code for games.

Another great experience I had was going to Emma. Emma was one of the greatest places to job shadow.  During my experience, I learned lots of new terms, different roles each person plays, and the diversity of the tech world. In addition, I gave the staff a presentation on what I learned and how I could apply the information. The job shadow experience boosted my confidence because I am not much of a public speaker. When I spoke in front of the Emma staff, it really opened my eyes that I have the ability to speak to anyone without being nervous. If it wasn’t for Dr. Berry, my academy coach, I would not know about Emma.

Thanks to all of my academy teachers and peers for this wonderful experience throughout my years at Stratford STEM Magnet High School. The experiences and classes have provided me with so much knowledge that it allows me to teach to my siblings and other students.  It is for these experiences, events, and understandings that have made my academy experience so wonderful.

Fidelity. Bravery. Integrity

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FIDELITY. BRAVERY. INTEGRITY

DUTY & MISSION FIRST

NEVER LEAVE MY TEAM

NEVER GIVE UP- ORAH!

Stratford STEM Magnet High School Executive Principal Michael Steele implemented the Criminal Justice Cadet Corps (CJCC) in 2013. The mission of the CJCC is to provide students with a comprehensive program of training, competition, service, and practical experiences. Character development, leadership, command presence, physical fitness, good citizenship and patriotism are integral components of the Cadet Corps. Cadets are a primary supporter of school activities and serve as a positive role model for all students by participating in community service, practical exercises and competition. Cadets develop an awareness of the critical real world skill set necessary to learn and grow in preparation for college and career.

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Executive Principal, Mr. Steele and Academy Coach, Dr. Jennifer Berry motivating students and cadets.

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Academy Principal Gail Merkerson presents the Cadet Corps at a school assembly.

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Lt. Stine and an ROTC Officer from Vanderbilt University

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Capt. Simmons and an alumnus from West Point

Captain Blake Simmons and 1st Lt. Jordan Stine attended the U.S. Military Academy conference hosted by Congressman Jim Cooper. Captain Simmons and Lt. Stine met with Congressman Cooper and staff, West Point cadets, Naval Academy cadets, and Vanderbilt Army and Air Force ROTC cadets.

Stratford STEM Magnet High School’s Academy of National Safety and Security Technologies teachers, administration, and students are proud to have a strong mentoring and business partnership with the following:

  • Federal Bureau of Investigation
  • Society of Former FBI Special Agents
  • Tennessee Law Enforcement Training Academy
  • Tennesse Bureau of Investigation
  • Metropolitan Nashville Police Department
  • Medal of Honor Foundation
  • Wounded Warrior Project
  • United States Marine Corps
  • United States Army National Guard
  • Stratford Alumni Association (Retired FBI Special Agent Steed, Class of 1970)
  • Parents of Cadet Corps Students

Stratford Student Shadows in Cancer Research Lab

Job shadowing gives students the opportunity to see the realities of a profession or industry and the connections between learning and the real world. Taronda W., a student from Stratford STEM Magnet High School,  participated in a job shadow at Diatech Oncology Lab.  In this post, Taronda writes about her experiences.

Diatech Oncology

I attended the Diatech Oncology lab and visited Ms. Patti. She talked about cells and she made cells. She let us make our own microscope slides. First we dipped the cell in four types of stain and then alcohol. Next, we looked at the cell on a digital microscope. We were able to see all the colors combined with the cells. Then, she let us take them home. Afterwards, she showed us her robot. Her robot pipets everything. She also let us see how you could keep up with the pipetting on the computer, which monitored each row. Our pipets at school have you do one at a time by hand (96 holes). Ms. Patti’s pipets have four tips at a time and her robot does it in less than 15 minutes.

My favorite part was when we got to wear real lab coats that Ms. Patti and her crew wear in their lab. I also enjoyed it because she talked a lot about breast cancer. She also talked about how she and her crew treat the different types of breast cancer. I was interested because I had a family member die of breast cancer when I was little. I didn’t know as much as I know now since I visited Ms. Patti’s lab. I enjoyed her job position and sharing it with me – it couldn’t have been better.

Teacher Team-Building Beyond the Classroom

Saturday, Sept. 6, Stratford STEM Magnet High School took to the Cumberland River for the Cumberland River Compact’s 8th annual Dragon Boat Festival.  A team of twenty-one was comprised students, teachers, parents, and business partners who all came together for top honors in this team sport.

Stratford’s best time of the day, was one minute eleven seconds; a much better time than in 2013 with one minute twenty-five seconds.  Despite the rain, the team had a great time and was cheered on by students, parents, partners, and staff.  In between heats, Stratford teachers could be seen working on their laptops planning lessons together and writing project-based learning curriculum.

Stay tuned as they prepare to battle it out again in 2015.

 

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Stratford shows that collaboration and teamwork are necessary outside the classroom and work place.

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The team waits at the starting line to begin the race.

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Between heats, teachers could be found working on lesson plans and project-based learning curriculum.

Which School is Right for Me?

Selecting the right high school, with the right academy, is an important step for students and families in Nashville. More options are available than ever before and the option school application provides families with the chance to sign up for the program that best fits their needs. Visiting our schools is an important step in the decision-making process.

Showcases provide an opportunity to experience the school environment, learn more about academy offerings, talk with teachers and current students, and meet school leadership. Even if you miss a showcase that interests you, call the school and ask to schedule a visit.  All of the Academies of Nashville offer a unique selection of academies that are tailored to students’ interests and provide college-preparatory education.

 

High School Date Time Phone Number
Antioch High School Tuesday, October 21 5:30 – 7:00 615-641-5400
Cane Ridge High School Friday, October 17 4:00 – 6:00 615-687-4000
Glencliff High School Tuesday, September 30 6:00 – 7:30 615-333-5070
Hillsboro High School Friday, September 12 5:00 – 6:45 615-298-8400
Hillwood High School Thursday, October 30 5:45 – 7:00 615-353-2025
Hunters Lane High School Thursday, October 16 6:00 – 7:30 615-860-1401
Maplewood High School Wednesday, October 15 6:00 – 8:00 615-262-6770
McGavock High School Tuesday, September 23 6:30 – 8:00 615-885-8850
Overton High School Friday, October 17 5:00 – 7:00 615-333-5135
Pearl-Cohn Entertainment Magnet High School Thursday, October 16 6:00 – 7:30 615-329-8150
Stratford STEM Magnet

High School

Tuesday, October 21 5:30 – 7:30 615-242-6730
The MNPS Virtual School Wednesday, October 22 4:30 – 6:00 615-463-0188 ext. 3900
Whites Creek High School Tuesday, October 28 6:00 – 7:30 615-876-5132

How do you spell leadership?

A-M-B-A-S-S-A-D-O-R

The Academies of Nashville hosted its third annual Ambassador Leadership Conference last month where more than 200 high school ambassadors learned about the student leadership challenge.  Ambassadors learned to model the way, challenge the process, encourage the heart, enable others to act, and inspire a shared vision; skills that will be called upon during their year as an Academy Ambassador. But, what else do you get when you bring 200 future leaders together into one room? A ton of fun, camaraderie, and memories!

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Job Shadowing Provides Different Perspectives for Stratford Students

Job shadowing give students the opportunity to see the realities of a profession or industry and the connections between learning and the real world. Austin S., a student from Stratford STEM Magnet High School,  participated in a job shadow at Emma. Additionally, Jorge C. participated in a job shadow to Universal Robotics.  In this post, Austin and Jorge write about their experiences.

 

Stratford at Emma

Austin:

It was a wonderful opportunity to be at Emma for a job shadow. I learned a lot of skills within the amount of time we had during each study. I really enjoyed Kat’s role as Scrum Master, and the role she plays in development. What stood out to me the most was when she mentioned the two concepts, Waterfall and Agile, and how each of it differs from one another; Agile, being set rules and Waterfall, having an open space to think freely.

Kevin’s role was awesome to learn about because he knows that if he makes a mistake he can go back and fix that mistake. The app he is designing looks great! I want that app for myself to try it out.

I also enjoyed learning what Scot does and it looks like he has the most complex job there at Emma. It was an honor to see what he does. The visual representation was the best part of the session, and I was flabbergasted by the things he does with all the codes. For example, reading the codes, and how he can pick out which person is doing the right or wrong thing and not messing up.

Last but certainly not least is Mary with the marketing role. What stood out to me most was when she said that there are repeating ads for when you go to different websites, CPC (cost per click), and how she uses Google Analytics and different websites to analyze all the data she receives.

I also enjoyed making our app and it was fun! I hope one day the app we thought of will be used and we can create it in the future. The Q&A was a great experience as well. I enjoyed speaking to all of them. Overall this was a great experience and it has shown me the diversity of the tech field.  I will definitely learn more about the fusion of technology and the restaurant field.

 

Straford at Universal Robotics

Jorge:

I was in awe from the moment we pulled in the driveway, when I noticed that that Universal Robotics wasn’t just any old office building but a house in a regular neighborhood. Hearing Mr. Peters explain his and the company’s background was very intriguing. He also introduced the group to new software being created by his company that will make an impact on the Internet by evolving search engines.

Later in the day, we visited the lab in the backyard. There was a robotic arm in the facility, and one of the employees gave us a demonstration by lifting boxes. The arm functions with suction cups underneath it and uses a vacuum force to lift the boxes and places them on a platform. Another tool that was demonstrated was a laser that made a 3-D design on the computer. The laser reads any object on a flat surface and creates a 3D model using a special software on the computer.

Each employee had his or her own unique background, most didn’t even know they were going to be there at one point in time. Then it hit me that you can succeed in life if you put time and effort into it. I thank Universal Robotics for the time they had to spare for us, to come and visit their facility.

Student receives Former Agents of the FBI Foundation Character Development Award

 

 

 

 

 

Updated on September 15 with Blake’s point of view. 

On Sept. 9, Mr. Stephens, Blake S., and Blake’s family deployed to Knoxville, Tennessee. The FBI Retired Agents Association implemented the Character Development Program. This program is attempting to instill character into youth. They have offered a $2500 scholarship to two people, a male and a female, that have exemplified extraordinary character. At approximately 1730 hours from the Holiday Inn hotel, a convoy unit consisting of a police escort and a charter bus departed to Neyland Stadium. This bus was filled with Medal of Honor recipients, and retired FBI agents. At Neyland Stadium a dinner was served, followed by the actual ceremony. Ellen Glasser was leading this event, and introduced Tommy Norris. He received a Medal of Honor during the Vietnam War. While in Vietnam one of his eyes was injured beyond use. He persevered and by beating policy and expectations, he became a FBI agent. Norris was warm hearted, an always quick to laugh at himself. “I don’t know which camera to look at, good thing my eyes look in different directions.”

 

Blake received his award for character that evening, and was invited to participate in a teacher-training course the following day. At this training Blake was able to see vignettes of Medal of Honor recipients, and have a Q&A with two recipients. Blake Simmons received a standing ovation after he was introduced to the crowd, which exceeded 50 people. Blake says that this amazing opportunity would not of been possible without the constant support of Mr. Stephens and Mr. Steele.

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Stratford STEM Magnet’s Academy of National Safety and Security Technologies ambassador B. Simmons, won the FBI Foundation Character Development award.  Simmons will receive a $2,500 bond and all-expense paid trip to Knoxville Tuesday, Sept. 9,  where he will be presented the award by former FBI Agent, Navy SEAL, and Medal of Honor recipient Lieutenant Tommy Norris. Congratulations B. Simmons!

Stratford STEM Magnet High Virtual Tour

Take a tour of Stratford STEM Magnet High School. Learn more about the Academies at Stratford and what learning looks like in Metro Nashville Public Schools.