Laura Faith Kebede, Chalkbeat Tennessee

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Teach for America Memphis hires SCS school board member as chief of staff

A Memphis school board member who has worked for several local education organizations is now coordinating operations at Teach For America. Miska Clay Bibbs, who was elected to the Shelby County Schools board in 2014, became the chief of staff at Teach For America in...

Memphis third grade reading scores dip as district builds case for retaining students

Fewer Memphis third grade students than last year are accomplished readers, according to Shelby County Schools’ annual state test data released in a meeting with parents. About 24% of third graders in Shelby County Schools scored proficient in reading on the state’s standardized assessment TNReady....

Memphis principal gets new assignment after probe into harassment and grade-changing at Kingsbury High ends

The Memphis principal at the center of a yearlong investigation into harassment and improper grade changing has been reassigned to a district-level position, Shelby County Schools officials said Friday. Terry Ross, who had served as principal at Kingsbury High School since 2014, was suspended with...

Memphis black boys, ‘the foremost vulnerable … population in our system,’ are the focus of Ray’s new initiative

Superintendent Joris Ray launched a new initiative Monday that he hopes will help black boys improve their test scores, take more advanced courses, and be on the receiving end of school discipline less often. Black boys make up about 38% of Shelby County Schools students,...

Memphis schools chief looking for new ideas because ‘what we’ve been doing hasn’t been working’

As someone who has been a go-to problem solver in his previous roles in Shelby County Schools, Superintendent Joris Ray says he has had a hard time adjusting to the bureaucracy inherit in his new role. “My pace is this,” he says as he quickly...

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...