Monday, July 13, 2020

Laura Faith Kebede, Chalkbeat Tennessee

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If coronavirus cases continue spiking, SCS Supt. Ray says he cannot ‘in good faith’ open school buildings

If coronavirus hospitalizations and cases continue to surge, Memphis students will start the school year online, Supt. Joris Ray said Friday. “If we are where we are today, in good faith I could not open schools,” the Shelby County Schools leader told Chalkbeat. “And when...

SCS parents can choose in-person or online instruction for the fall

Starting in August, Shelby County Schools plans to offer both online and in-person instruction for students — and parents can choose which option they want. The Memphis district plans for teachers to simultaneously teach students in the building and stream the lesson online through a...

Saturday school is out as SCS lays out options for school year calendar

After pushback from teachers and school board members, Saturday school is out as an option to help Memphis students catch up after missing 44 days of school because of coronavirus concerns. Instead, Shelby County Schools leaders are considering other options for the 2020-21 school year...

SCS plans for in-person graduation ceremonies in July

Shelby County Schools is planning in-person graduation ceremonies for July along with a “drive-thru senior salute” where students can pick up their diplomas and get their photo taken. Superintendent Joris Ray announced the plan for the district’s 6,000 seniors Tuesday during the school board’s April...

SCS will close schools Friday through March 30 as coronavirus spreads nationwide

Shelby County Schools will be closed starting Friday and reopen March 30, a week after spring break, because of “rapidly changing conditions” of COVID-19, the district said. The Memphis district’s planned spring break starts Monday, and staff were already scheduled to do deep cleanings of...

As more black and Hispanic students enter Memphis’ gifted program, here’s how it might change

Memphis school leaders say it’s not enough to invite more black and Hispanic students into its gifted program through a new screening process. Shelby County Schools officials will continue to look for implicit bias, which district leaders say played a role in excluding many students....

Memphis superintendent says he will ‘stay the course’ in inaugural state of the district address

In the first address of its kind in Memphis, Superintendent Joris Ray said he will stay the course on his current initiatives, including improving literacy, reworking a massive facilities plan, and boosting academic performance for black boys. “The state of our district is strong,” Ray...

Memphis board spares three charter schools from closure, breaking with district staff

All seven charter schools up for renewal this year won agreements to operate another 10 years despite a recommendation from Shelby County Schools staff to close three of them. A unanimous vote from the Memphis school board spared Memphis Business Academy Middle, Memphis College Preparatory...

Memphis superintendent creates teacher advisory council amid stalled salary negotiations

A teacher representative from every school in the Memphis district can provide input into district decisions under a new teacher advisory council that Superintendent Joris Ray announced Thursday. Ray said in September as he announced a 3% raise for most teachers that he “does not...

No more ‘secret handshake’: Universal screening qualifies 600 more Memphis students for gifted education. More to come.

Before this month, just one student between kindergarten and second grade, a white boy, was identified as gifted at Treadwell Elementary School in Memphis, where half of the students are black, more than a third are Hispanic, and just 4% are white. Now, eight other...