Laura Faith Kebede, Chalkbeat Tennessee

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Memphis advocacy organization Campaign for School Equity closing after three years

A Memphis education advocacy organization born out of a national pro-voucher group is shutting down at the end of the month after three years. Campaign for School Equity spun off from the Black Alliance for Educational Options, a now-defunct national nonprofit, in 2016 to build...

Memphis school board approves four-year contract for Superintendent Joris Ray

Superintendent Joris Ray signed a four-year contract with Shelby County Schools on Tuesday, two months after the school board appointed him. His annual salary will be $285,000 — the same salary he made as interim superintendent and the same as his predecessor, Dorsey Hopson. That’s...

For the second year in a row, county leaders use one-time funding to grant Memphis schools part of its budget request

County commissioners unanimously voted Monday to give Shelby County Schools about a third of its original request for funding so that the Memphis district could pay for a pilot program for computer coding and a phonics curriculum. The $2.2 million in one-time expenses, recommended by...

Memphis students say they feel ‘scared’ and ‘powerless’ after Brandon Webber’s shooting death

In the aftermath of a fatal officer-involved shooting of a 20-year-old black college student, some Memphis students and teachers say they see they see parallels with their own lives and those of the students they teach. Brandon Webber, a former student leader at Central High...

A year after student walkouts, there’s some progress, but Memphis teens still don’t feel heard

A Memphis student may soon sit on the Shelby County Schools board following student demands last year for more input into district decisions, a spokeswoman said. The idea is still in its early stages and has not been presented to the school board yet, chairwoman...

SCS decides Ray is the way to go

Joris Ray is the next superintendent of Shelby County Schools, following a unanimous school board vote Tuesday evening. The decision ends an early-stage search for a new schools leader. Calling him an “exceedingly qualified candidate,” a resolution approved by the nine-member board says a national search was...

This program helps put arrested Memphis teens on track. Now its funding is in jeopardy.

With its funding expiring, a Memphis program for students coming out of juvenile detention could end soon, despite a three-year record of job placement and low recidivism. The $1.2 million federal grant for Project Stand expires this summer. The U.S. Department of Education, which funnels...

Memphis school board members disagree on how to pick next superintendent, decision on search firm delayed

The Shelby County Schools board delayed picking a national superintendent search firm Monday after three board members said they would rather stick with the interim leader who is a career Memphis educator. Stephanie Love, who initially nominated Joris Ray to lead the district in December,...

Once in juvenile detention themselves, Memphis students give school officials strategies for keeping others in school

Adults were the ones listening to students teach this week as Memphis student advocates shared their recommendations on how to reduce out-of-school suspensions and expulsions. Six students at G.W. Carver College and Career Academy, an alternative school, worked for months on suggestions for Shelby County...

Black Memphis voucher advocates notably absent on Gov. Bill Lee’s school choice proposal

As momentum builds for Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee’s proposed voucher bill, black voucher supporters in Memphis have been largely silent on the issue — or they have changed their tune. Last week, when the bill came before and subsequently cleared a key House committee, no...