Group Holds Nashville Press Conference In Support Of Common Core

Thursday, September 19, 2013
 A group of educators and parents today voiced their support for Tennessee’s Common Core State Standards, saying "the higher standards are essential to preparing Tennessee’s public school students for success after high school."
 
Four educators and two parents voiced their support for the standards at a news conference preceding the Tennessee Senate Education Committee’s two-day fact-finding meeting on the topic.
 
“Today and tomorrow are important days as Tennessee’s Senate Education Committee will examine a critical piece of Tennessee’s work to prepare students for college and the workforce – Tennessee’s Common Core State Standards,” said Dr.
Vicki Kirk, Director of Greene County Schools.  “We support raising the bar in the classroom, and we support these standards.”
 
The group said Tennessee’s Common Core State Standards "are a set of higher expectations in math and English that have been adopted by 45 states and the District of Columbia. The standards emphasize college- and career-readiness with teaching and learning focused on critical thinking, strong writing skills, and problem solving – the real world skills that students need upon graduation. The standards were developed by leaders from the states, and individual states choose whether or not to adopt them."
 
Dr. Kirk said, “As educators – superintendents, principals, and teachers – as well as parents, we wanted to take this opportunity to make our voices heard on this important issue and speak on behalf of the thousands of teachers who are implementing these standards in their classrooms today, on behalf of principals across the state, the 136 school superintendents across Tennessee, and the hundreds of thousands of public school parents who support their children.”

Many at the news conference are members of the Expect More, Achieve More Coalition, described as "a statewide alliance of more than 300 business, community, and education organizations working for higher standards in Tennessee’s public schools."

“I know from my own experience as a parent that my child is being challenged more,” said parent Sandra Rowcliffe, who is also president of the Knox County PTA Council.
 
Others speaking in support of Tennessee’s Common Core State Standards included:
              • Cicely Woodard, math teacher, Rose Park Math and Science Magnet Middle School, Metro Nashville Public Schools.
              • Phillip Eller, math teacher, Cedar Grove Elementary, Rutherford County Schools.
              • Amy Zink, a Clarksville mother who is Tennessee PTA vice president of child and youth advocacy and chair of the National PTA’s Military Family Support Committee.
              • Dr. Meka Wilhoit, kindergarten teacher, Grainger County Schools.

The teachers "described how they are using Tennessee’s Common Core State Standards in their classrooms, how the change has benefited their students, and how they look forward to using assessments that are better aligned with the standards to measure student progress."

UT Professor Develops App For Patients Who Can't Speak

Patients who are unable to communicate with their health care providers are now able to better verbalize their needs, thanks to a new app developed by Rebecca Koszalinski, an assistant professor of nursing at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville. Speak for Myself allows intubated and voiceless patients to communicate pain, fear, anxiety, loneliness and toileting requests ... (click for more)

AT&T Donates $5,000 To CSCC

AT&T announced a $5,000 contribution to the Cleveland State Community College to support non-traditional, underserved students preparing for high-skill jobs requiring technology-based skills in Tennessee community colleges.  The donation will fund scholarships to help students begin a path toward completing their college degrees. The contribution was presented on Tuesday ... (click for more)

County GOP Chairman Says Mayor Berke Should Immediately Resign For Admittedly Using Encrypted Messaging With Top Staff

Hamilton County Republican Party Chairman Tony Sanders said Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke "should immediately resign after admitting that he and his senior staff employ an encrypted message application that neither records or stores messages sent and received for the purpose of official city of Chattanooga business on a government-owned server." He said he was guilty of "deliberates ... (click for more)

Corker Says Without Budget Reform, Washington Is “Laying A Huge Burden On Future Generations”

In remarks on the Senate floor  on Wednesday , Senator Bob Corker joined a number of colleagues to discuss the broken federal budget process.   “The processes that we have in place make it impossible for us to really deal with our country’s fiscal issues,” said Senator Corker. “Today is the perfect example of that: we pass a continuing resolution ... (click for more)

Outrageous To Give Vehicles To Nation Of Islam Neighborhood Patrol - And Response

Chief of Police Fred Fletcher of the Chattanooga Police Department has recently decided to give two surplus patrol vehicles to the Nation of Islam Neighborhood Patrol. This is an insult to the life and memory of PO Philip Cardillo who lost his life in April 1972 at the hand of the members of the Nation of Islam Mosque No.7 in Harlem and his fellow officers who were savagely beaten ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Knobfather & Me

I’ve seen some beautiful things in my life. I’ve eaten dinner inside the Eiffel Tower with the city of Paris all aglitter below. I’ve been sprayed by champagne in the Dallas Cowboys’ dressing room after they won the Super Bowl. I’ve stood both at the top and at the bottom of the Grand Canyon. I’ve snorkeled in the Great Exuma islands, learned to snow ski in the Austrian Alps, and ... (click for more)