Chattanooga 2.0 Releases Birth-To-Career Progress Report And Updated Goals

Friday, January 22, 2021

Community leaders, volunteers, and elected officials joined the Chattanooga 2.0 collaborative on Thursday for a virtual event to release their 2021 Report to the Community and celebrate the last five years of Chattanooga-Hamilton County’s progress towards improving birth-to-career education and workforce development outcomes. Chattanooga 2.0 is the organized collaboration of over 150 partner organizations in Hamilton County working together to ensure all children and students can thrive, said officials.

Chattanooga 2.0 partners have been at the forefront of many cradle-to-career efforts during the past five years, most recently serving as the foundation for the county’s response to the impacts of COVID-19 on children and students. The 2021 report details these wins along with the current challenges and opportunities that lie ahead early childhood through postsecondary education.

During Thursday’s event, Executive Director Molly Blankenship renewed Chattanooga 2.0’s commitment to advancing equity and opportunity in Chattanooga-Hamilton County, outlining updated goals and strategies for the next decade of collaborative work. These new goals include achieving the following by 2030: 

80 percent of children arrive at kindergarten with the skills needed to be successful in school
80 percent of Hamilton County Schools students are proficient in reading by third grade
80 percent of students graduate on time from Hamilton County Schools prepared for college and career
80 percent of graduates from Hamilton County Schools obtain a postsecondary degree or credential of value within six years
Double the number of young adults aged 18-25 who obtain meaningful, self-sustaining careers and successfully transition to the workforce

During the event, Ms. Blankenship said, “Are these goals bold? Yes. Are they attainable? Yes. For this community who knows how to work together and come together to solve tough problems, we can do this.” Later in the event, Ms. Blankenship said, “We will build systems that meet every child where they are, both in and out of school - we’re relentlessly committed to that.”

Multiple student performances were woven throughout the event. Chattanooga State Community College student Sydney Nielsen kicked off the event by reading a poem entitled “The Proof of Worth”, Center for Creative Arts student Kaylyn Yancey sang the national anthem, and a unique pre-recorded performance by Sale Creek Middle High Band was played. Later in the event, Assistant Principal Arielle Hayes of East Hamilton Middle moderated a student panel discussion and Hamilton County Mayor Jim Coppinger and Superintendent Dr. Bryan Johnson, both chairs of the Hamilton County Children’s Cabinet, were on hand to recognize the work of Chattanooga 2.0 and its partners.

Dr. JaNay Queen Nazaire, chief strategy officer for Living Cities, delivered a keynote address, providing coalition members with tools and wisdom from her nationwide collaborative work to close racial gaps and grow economic security. She called on community members to think collaboratively and creatively to solve big problems, with the courage to take risks and the discipline to remain committed.

“It’s okay if we fail, as long as we are failing forward - because then we know what doesn’t work and can move on to try something else,” Dr. Nazaire said in her address to Thursday’s attendees. “It’s finding the discipline and courage to keep taking those risks.”

Find more information on the strategic planning process, 2030 goals, and supporting strategies, along with Chattanooga 2.0’s vision, mission, and racial equity statements, see the Forward Together 2021 Report to the Community, now available at chatt2.org/report.


Clapsaddle Concludes 2020-21 Writer’s Series

Local Teacher Launches New Action Adventure Series

2 Hamilton County Schools Receive National Recognition


Lee University welcomed authors Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle, Katie Carlson, and Chris Hansen for three separate events to continue this year’s Writer’s Series. All events, hosted by Lee’s Department ... (click for more)

Local author and science teacher John V. Suter of Sale Creek will debut his action adventure series “Brett Wilson and Coronado’s Door” June 1 through CrossLink Publishing. Mr. Suter, a science ... (click for more)

Two magnet schools in Hamilton County Schools were awarded Magnet School Merit Awards from Magnet Schools of America. Chattanooga High School Center for Creative Arts (CCA ) received the top ... (click for more)



Student Scene

Clapsaddle Concludes 2020-21 Writer’s Series

Lee University welcomed authors Annette Saunooke Clapsaddle, Katie Carlson, and Chris Hansen for three separate events to continue this year’s Writer’s Series. All events, hosted by Lee’s Department of Language and Literature, took place virtually over Zoom. Ms. Clapsaddle read multiple chapters from her first novel, “Even as We Breathe.” “Annette Clapsaddle’s work invites ... (click for more)

Local Teacher Launches New Action Adventure Series

Local author and science teacher John V. Suter of Sale Creek will debut his action adventure series “Brett Wilson and Coronado’s Door” June 1 through CrossLink Publishing. Mr. Suter, a science teacher at Berean Academy, has been working toward publication for 22 years. In addition, he operates a small hobby farm with his wife and two children. Review for Brett Wilson and Coronado's ... (click for more)

Breaking News

Early Morning Fire Does Extensive Damage To House On Hixson Pike

A neighbor helped a man escape his burning house on Hixson Pike early Monday morning. At 5:02 a.m., the Chattanooga Fire Department responded to a home in the 900 block after receiving reports that the front porch was fully engulfed in flames that were quickly spreading. A second alarm was called to bring extra manpower to the scene. Engine 12 found smoke and flames showing. ... (click for more)

Ooltewah Home Destroyed By Fire Sunday Afternoon

A home at 2410 Daugherty Lane in Ooltewah was destroyed by fire Sunday afternoon. A family noticed fire on the back porch at 1:55 p.m., exited the house, and called 911. The Tri-Community Volunteer Fire Department responded and arrived on the scene reporting a fully-involved house fire. Firefighters worked quickly to get the fire under control. Unfortunately, with windy conditions, ... (click for more)

Opinion

So Long To 3 Local TV Icons - And Response

COVID or no COVID, I cannot comprehend the decision by the owners of News Channel 9 to let go Erin Thomas. I watch that show every morning and (when I can) at 6 p.m. She is outstanding at her job and very versatile doing weather, traffic, news or whatever. Totally at ease, smiling, smart, friendly and professional. What do they want? I think the entire crew is great, including ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Winner Gets A Mess

No matter whether Tim Kelly or Kim White wins the April 13 th runoff to become the next Mayor of Chattanooga, the victory comes with a guarantee: neither one has ever seen such a mess. Of the top 150 largest cities in the United States, Chattanooga ranks 147 on the list of the Best- and Worse-Run Cities in America. Further, the Scenic City is currently No. 25 on the Most Dangerous ... (click for more)