Thursday, February 20, 2020 - by Rep. Yusuf Hakeem
Education in Hamilton County
This week I was honored to have Jenny Hill from the Hamilton County Department of Education come up to Nashville and meet with me. We discussed the incredible growth of the Hamilton County School System and strategies to further better our schools. This historical growth in schools all across Hamilton County is the direct result of several intentional changes. One such change is an overhaul in training practices for teachers, which better allows them to understand that state standards and craft lessons with a heightened focus on student mastery. In addition, the Hamilton County Department of Education launched a district-wide K-12 benchmark process that gives teachers feedback on an individual student's proficiency. Other notable improvements include an increased rigor of teaching and assessments and a learning management system for professional development.
The increased quality of education in Chattanooga and Hamilton County is nothing short of amazing, and I would like to challenge my fellow legislators to support programs like the ones implemented in Chattanooga and Hamilton County. Students are our future, and we need to do our best to ensure they are getting the best possible education.
Legislation to Watch
This week I am pleased to announce that I have signed on as a Co-Prime Sponsor to House Bill 2457 (Ramsey) and House Bill 2518 (Lynn). These bills are aimed at helping our brave firefighters, who serve to protect us every day. House Bill 2457 would expand presumptive disability in acquiring certain infectious diseases in the line of duty by emergency rescue workers to include the hepatitis B virus. House Bill 2518 would expand Post Traumatic Stress Disorder to cover firefighters and allow them to be eligible for worker's compensation. These two pieces of legislation will help serve those who are always serving us in the most crucial moments. Thank you to our courageous firefighters.
Earlier last week, Senator Gardenhire and I were excited to attend the Twelfth Annual Governor's Volunteer Stars Awards Ceremony with several recipients of the Governor's Volunteer Award: Kennie Almonor, a student at Ooltewah High School, and Jerry and Debbie Hightower, of Chattanooga. I am pleased to represent such selfless people dedicated to serving others. They are the backbone of our communities and embody the spirit of giving. I hope that recognizing these extraordinary citizens will let them know how they are appreciated and encourage others to make a difference.
Wednesday, a delegation from the UTC Student Government Association came to visit the legislature. I hope their visit to the State Capitol was equally memorable and educational, and that this experience helped open their eyes to what state government is all about, serving the needs of all Tennesseans. These young leaders are the future of our city, state, and country.