Dr. Battle announces framework for students while school facilities remain closed for 2019-20 school year

Dr. Adrienne Battle

Metro Nashville Public Schools will be implementing a strategic framework for better serving students while facilities remain closed for the remainder of the 2019-20 school year as a result of Gov. Bill Lee’s announcement.

“Our district will not be defined by the challenges we face, but by how we face our challenges,” said Dr. Adrienne Battle. “We’ve learned a lot as a district in the last few weeks as staff have stepped up to the challenge of serving our students’ educational, emotional, and nutritional needs in new and creative ways. Now is the time to build upon the lessons we’ve learned and establish a framework for excellence and accountability that will enhance how we operate, whether students are inside or outside of the classroom.”

MNPS district leadership are working with principals and staff to strengthen expectations and accountability measures for teachers and students so that every child has access to a high-quality education that will prepare them for the next school year. This will include professional development and support for teachers and staff on best practices in working remotely with their students to serve, support, and strengthen their lives.

Beginning April 27, families can expect to see stronger engagement and a more structured learning environment across all district-run schools. This enhanced learning environment will not include required graded materials or attendance that counts towards a student’s record, but it will involve more accountability and tracking of student outcomes in the interest of developing personalized plans for the success for each student.

The remote learning plan will include a phased-in approach to allow students, teachers, and families to adapt and adjust to a new paradigm in education.

“Education should always go beyond the walls of a classroom and be instilled in the hearts of our students,” said Dr. Battle. “Our plan will offer students stability, familiarity, comfort, community, and an opportunity to connect with their peers beyond their homes at a time when social distancing has left many feeling isolated.”

Metro Schools has been providing laptops to high school students who need them over the last two weeks and will be expanding availability to grades 5-8 starting the week of April 20, followed by grades 3-4 starting the week of April 27. Paper material packets will continue to be made available for students without computer access, and grades pre-K-2 will remain on a blended approach of both paper and online activities. MNPS will be distributing district-funded laptops in stock throughout schools and will be working with community partners to identify additional resources that may be available to students.

“None of these plans would be possible without the extraordinary work and effort of our teachers and staff, who have been so committed to serving their students during these unique times,” said Dr. Battle. “It is their dedication to their profession, combined with the efforts of students and their families, that will make this plan a success.”

Further details of plans will be shared with staff, students, and families over the coming week. Additional information specific to high school seniors regarding graduation requirements is available at <www.mnps.org/seniors>. Decisions about graduation ceremonies and how best to celebrate and recognize the accomplishments of students will be made on or before May 1, 2020.

Breakfast and lunch meal service will continue through the remainder of the school year. Times and locations can be found at <www.mnps.org/covid19>.