Chamber Co-hosts Community Conversation about Student Mobility

The Chamber is partnering with The Tennessean, the Nashville Public Library and the ASNE News Literacy Program to host a public conversation about what we as a city can do to help with the issue of student mobility within Metro Nashville Public Schools. 

Last year’s Chamber Education Report Card identified student mobility as a top concern facing MNPS and our community. Tennessee’s accountability system is based on the assumption that schools have their students for a full academic year and that these students should show a certain amount of academic growth. That’s a reasonable expectation for students who do not move around, but in Nashville, that is often not the reality. Approximately 35 percent of MNPS students move to a different school within the academic year. These moves are highly correlated with poverty, the cost of housing and parents’ access to employment. Students who move frequently between schools may experience a range of problems, including a greater risk for dropping out, attendance problems, difficulty developing peer relationships, and more barriers to academic achievement.

On Wednesday, June 22, from 6 to 8 p.m. at the North Branch of the Nashville Public Library, three panelists will discuss their unique perspectives on the issue of student mobility:

  • Jason Gonzales is The Tennessean's education reporter.
  • Michelle McVicker is the principal of Buena Vista Elementary School, an MNPS school with one of the city’s highest mobility rates, as well as one of the city’s most innovative approaches to instructional delivery.
  • Tom Ward is president and CEO of the Oasis Center, a nonprofit that helps at-risk youths, as well as a former MNPS principal.

These three panelists will be joined by moderator David Plazas, opinion engagement editor at The Tennessean.

This event is free and open to the public. Registration is available at The North Branch of the Nashville Public Library is located at 1001 Monroe Street. For more information, contact me at

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