Knoxville DA Randy Nichols To Talk Truancy Here

Monday, February 18, 2002

Knoxville District Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Randall Nichols will meet with Hamilton County District Attorney Bill Cox, county school officials and juvenile court representatives to discuss Knox County's truancy intervention program.

The meeting will take place at 3 p.m. on Wednesday, Feb. 20, in the
Superintendent's Conference Room located at the Bonny Oaks central
office.

Rhonda Garren, community prosecution coordinator for Knox County, and
Teresa Parker, Knox County's Juvenile Court liaison, will also attend the meeting along with members of the Hamilton County School Board's truancy committee.

"This will truly be a meeting of the minds," said School Board Vice
Chairwoman Debbie Colburn, who also serves on the truancy committee.
"We wanted to bring all of the key players together to discuss ways our
school system can benefit from what our peers in Knox County are doing
to keep children in school."

The Knox County DA's office, school system, juvenile court and police
department use a team approach to combat truancy. Any child found to be truant by law enforcement officials is transported to a "truancy center." Patrol officers actively seek to identify truant children during regular school days. Parents are encouraged to make sure their child attends school regularly, or a warrant may be filed against them with a maximum penalty of up to one year in jail, a $2,500 fine, community service and/or elimination of the parent's Families First benefits.

"Knox County officials recognize that truancy is often reflective of
other problems in the student's personal or family life," Mr. Nichols said.

"For this reason, the truancy program is primarily an intervention,
education and prevention program. Our truancy program brings a
collaborative, graduated approach to truancy problems. Early
assessments and treatment services focus on the truant and the family."


Research shows that truant students are more likely to be involved in
delinquent activity as juveniles, leading to criminal offenses as
adults. Also, students with chronic absences run the risk of dropping
out of school, officials said.

"I know that Hamilton County Schools and our local law enforcement
agencies want to tackle truancy," Ms. Colbrun said, "but financial
restraints and staff issues are real hindrances. Yet we hope to come
away from Wednesday's meeting with a strong partnership and a commitment
to find creative ways to address this issue for our children's sakes."


Women Entrepreneur Symposium To Be Held Tuesday

The WE women entrepreneur symposium (formerly named Women At The Top Symposium or W.A.T.T.S) will be held on Tuesday, August 5, from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Stratton Hall. Congressman Chuck Fleischmann, Honorary WE Chairperson, invites all women entrepreneurs to a symposium featuring Sloane Scott, a.k.a. the “Digital Diva” of FLO Thinkery, as the keynote speaker, ... (click for more)

Teacherpreneur 48Hour Launch Is This Weekend

PEF, Benwood and HCDE in collaboration with CO.LAB will host the first Teacherpreneur 48Hour Launch August 1-3.  More than 20 teams of Hamilton County teachers will gather during the weekend at Society of Work to develop pitches for their innovative education ideas.  The culminating Teacherpreneur 48Hour Launch Pitch Event showcasing these innovative pitches will ... (click for more)

Harr Outlines $40 Million Plan For Chattanooga Light Rail System

Outgoing Chamber of Commerce President Ron Harr on Monday outlined a $40 million plan for a Chattanooga light rail system that would serve not only downtown, but also the Airport and the Enterprise South Industrial Park. In a speech to the Chattanooga Engineers Club, Mr. Harr said most cities looking at such an ambitious plan "would be facing costs of over a billion dollars." ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Choo Choo Adding Clubs, Restaurants In $8 Million Renovation

The historic Chattanooga Choo Choo is adding clubs and restaurants in a $7 million renovation, it was announced in front of the South Market Street landmark on Monday morning. The Comedy Catch will be moving from its longtime home in Brainerd and there will be a new 500-person music venue that will be in addition to Track 29. The new venue, managed by Track 29, will feature a ... (click for more)

Senator Bob Corker: An Open Letter To Tennesseans

We are incredibly fortunate to live in a state in which companies worldwide are clamoring to establish a presence. Many attribute it to our pro-business culture, well-prepared workforce, low tax environment, right-to-work policies, and engaged citizenry.  That is why the announcement by Volkswagen to build its midsize sports utility vehicle and establish the South’s ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Wamp Refuses To Stoop

With less than two weeks before the Aug. 7 th election and the last week of early voting now underway in Hamilton County, Congressional challenger Weston Wamp sounded upbeat and relaxed early yesterday afternoon. “I’m pleased to say that I believe we are right where we need to be … maybe even more than we had hoped.” Wamp, who is challenging two-term incumbent Chuck Fleishmann ... (click for more)