School Board Candidate Forum Emphasizes Collaboration

Nashville Rise hosted a school board candidate forum for Nashville parents and community members on Thursday, June 23. This informative session served as an opportunity for parents to ask questions and engage school board candidates prior to the August 4 election. One of the night’s central themes was collaboration between all schools.

Nashville Rise parents

Held at Tennessee State University’s Avon Williams Campus, the more than 400 forum participants heard from candidates as they called for trading of best practices and refocusing efforts on all school types working together instead of working in silos.

Memorable quotes reemphasized the candidates’ commitment to collaboration and compromise to ensure that Nashville’s children receive high-quality educational opportunities.

“We need to put people, namely our 87,000 students, before politics.”

“Why do we have to have two sides of the fence, when we have one purpose?”

“We need to look at like schools, regardless to what the title is, and simply collaborate and mirror their success.”

Nashville school board

The forum was co-moderated by The Tennessean’s Opinion Editor, David Plazas and a panel of Nashville Rise parents.

Nashville Rise Forum“Tonight was important to inform the community on where candidates stand on issues,” said DeMica Robinson, parent panelist. “There was also a consensus that change needs to happen now and that makes me hopeful.”

In alignment with its mission, Nashville Rise parents held the forum because they believe that knowledge empowers individuals. After collecting questions from forum participants, Nashville Rise parent panel asked four rounds of questions to the candidates. Mr. Plazas asked a final round of questions to each of the candidates to wrap up the night.

Parent networkingRepresenting Metro Nashville Public Schools odd districts (1, 3, 5, 7, 9), the candidates described how their diverse backgrounds and professional and personal experiences would contribute to them successfully advocating for all children. It was a great night of earnest and thoughtful dialogue as candidates recognized the urgency for collaboration and improvements throughout the district.

There were a lot of avid Twitter users live tweeting during the event. Here are some of our favorite tweets:

Parent TweetFamily engagementForum Tweet School board forum School Board Forum TweetParent Tweet

A big thanks goes to our partners and volunteers who made this event possible: Tennessee State University; The Tennessean; all public schools and organizations in Nashville that collaborated with Nashville Rise to make the forum possible; Davidson County Election Commission for voter registration table; Tennessee Immigrant & Refugee Rights Coalition for providing interpretation services; iCitizen for collecting parent feedback.

For additional reporting on the night’s event, read:

Nashville Rise school board forum focuses on choice
400 Attend Nashville Rise Forum

Next month, Nashville Rise parents will be holding an early-voting event. Check back for more updates or sign up to receive our news.