From Dr. Adrienne Battle

 In Current Events

Dear MNPS families:

MNPS is open for business, but in a much different way than we were just a month ago. With school facilities closed for at least another four weeks, we continue to launch instructional opportunities to engage and support students.

Just like most other public school districts, MNPS is not set up to move to virtual classrooms for all students with grades, required assignments and attendance. Our district and many of our families lack the digital tools necessary for us to provide equal access to all.

Equity gaps in education didn’t happen overnight, and they won’t be solved overnight, either. But they are something I’ve been working to address – and will continue to address – to ensure all students have access to a high-quality education.

Education isn’t about grades and tests, however. As teachers, we didn’t sign up for the job to assign homework and record grades. We signed up because we love teaching and inspiring students to learn new things and prepare them for their future.

Our staff have been working hard to provide access to those learning opportunities that will help students maintain and build on the progress they’ve made so far this year. Starting next week, we’ll be distributing printed paper materials, with translated instruction support, at meal sites and possibly other locations so students in grades Pre-K-12 will have enriching learning materials to keep them engaged while classrooms are closed.

That printed material will match what is going to be offered online in the form of two learning supports teachers and students can use that offer high-quality instructional materials in a digital format:

  • For students in grades K-5, Imagine Learning offers creative and engaging content and programs for our youngest MNPS students.
  • For students in grades 6-12, the Florida Virtual School programming provides great content in many different subject areas that will allow students to maintain progress or explore new learning areas.

This is in addition to the partnership we’ve put in place with Nashville Public Television to broadcast high-quality, informative content each weekday from 6 a.m to 5 p.m., with a new four-hour block between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. specifically for middle and high school students.

We’re asking that teachers be in regular contact with their students and families each week as we move forward. Many of our teachers and staff have been finding new and unique ways to engage students in a virtual setting, and we’ll encourage even more creative thinking to keep students learning and engaged.

Our facilities are closed through April 24, but we’re developing plans in case we don’t return at all this school year, including making sure our seniors are able to graduate and be ready for college.

We’re also going to have computers available for some high school seniors starting Monday. These will be for students who don’t currently have access to a computer and will need technology to access credit recovery programs and remain on track to graduate this school year.

More details are forthcoming for seniors and all other grades as soon as possible. I ask you to please keep following phone, email, and social media communications from the district to get the latest information.

I hope all of you also join our virtual town hall Monday from 3-4 p.m. We’ll be answering some of the many questions we’ve received in a broadcast that will be livestreamed on the Metro Nashville Network.

Below is an important message regarding MNPS’ plans to provide educational experiences to students during school closures.

 

I know this is a trying time for everyone. I’m with you. But I know we’ll get through this together and come out stronger on the other side.

And students – on behalf of your principals, teachers, staff and Board Members – we miss you! We can’t wait to see you again!

Thank you, and hang in there,

Adrienne Battle

Director of Schools

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