Tennessee’s Lightning Rod Education Commissioner Steps Down, Citing Toll Of The Job

Tennessee’s Lightning Rod Education Commissioner Steps Down, Citing Toll Of The Job
Education Commissioner Kevin Huffman said he was brought to Tennessee to be a "change agent." He has defended Common Core standards, stayed the course on stepped-up teacher evaluations and unsuccessfully defended the state's participation in Common Core testing. Credit: TN Photo Services

Governor Bill Haslam is going to have to find a new education commissioner for his second term. Kevin Huffman, who has often found himself at the center of controversy, is calling it quits after four years.

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How Much Input Will An East Nashville School Overhaul Advisory Panel Get?

How Much Input Will An East Nashville School Overhaul Advisory Panel Get?
The East Nashville Advisory Committee met in the same room where there was an uproar Sunday night, in a meeting organized by parent activists with East Nashville United. Credit: David Wright Smith

In its first meeting, a special advisory committee for an East Nashville school overhaul heard an update for plans from central office administrators. But community organizer John Haubenreich says he heard too much from the district.

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Bridgestone To Bring 600 More Jobs And A New Skyscraper To Nashville

Bridgestone To Bring 600 More Jobs And A New Skyscraper To Nashville
Bridgestone Americas' planned relocation from the airport area to downtown reflects a larger trend of moving office workers to downtown Nashville. Credit: Highwoods Properties

Bridgestone Americas is not only moving from the airport area to become part of the Nashville skyline. It’s also consolidating office functions from Chicago and Indianapolis in the process, bringing 600 more jobs to the city.

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Recent War Vets In Tennessee Mark Veterans Day In Their Own Way

Recent War Vets In Tennessee Mark Veterans Day In Their Own Way
Micah Miller is a retired Army medic from Murfreesboro. He's now studying to be a chemistry teacher at Lipscomb University, which has expanded scholarships for veterans and now have 200 on campus. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

Tennessee has roughly 500,000 veterans by federal counts, and more than 10 percent of them served since 9/11. This new class of veterans is figuring out how to mark Veterans Day.

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Tennessee Report Card’s Comparison Tool Dovetails With School Choice Trend

Tennessee Report Card’s Comparison Tool Dovetails With School Choice Trend
NAEP--the National Assessment of Educational Progress--is nicknamed the Nation's Report Card. The same test is given to a sample group of 4th and 8th graders in every state. It's not the same thing as the annual standardized exams taken by all students; those are designed by the state. Past disparities between results on the state tests and NAEP were one of the factors that lead Tennessee to create a more stringent set of standards and tougher state assessments several years ago. Credit: Jason Selicksar via Flickr

The Tennessee Report Card released this month shows detailed stats on each of the state’s 1800 public schools, from racial breakdowns to reading scores. But state education officials are highlighting another key function – side-by-side comparison.

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Tennessee’s Republican Supermajority Gets Even Bigger

Tennessee’s Republican Supermajority Gets Even Bigger
Rep. Gloria Johnson of Knoxville is a teacher by trade and led some of the resistance to Gov. Bill Haslam's reforms and became a lead spokesperson for the Tennessee Education Association. Credit: Gloria Johnson via Facebook

Republicans picked up a few more seats in the state legislature. Knoxville teacher and Democratic state Rep. Gloria Johnson fell to challenger Eddie Smith, who got big help from the state’s Republican Party.

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Late Surge In Tennessee’s Early Voting, But Totals Are Still Down

Late Surge In Tennessee’s Early Voting, But Totals Are Still Down
Voters wait in line to cast a ballot early in La Vergne. While there was a surge on the final day of early voting, totals are still well behind 2010 and even further behind 2006. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

More than 13,000 people voted in Davidson County on the final day of early voting — even though only a few hundred a day were showing up during the first few days.

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Speakers Who Say They Used To Be Gay Address Southern Baptist Leaders

Speakers Who Say They Used To Be Gay Address Southern Baptist Leaders
Christopher Yuan is now an instructor at Moody Bible Institute. He came out as gay when he was young, sold drugs through college and grad school and ended up in a federal prison on drug charges. He then converted and applied to go to seminary while he was still in prison. Credit: ERLC via Facebook

At the Southern Baptist conference on homosexuality, pastors and church leaders heard the testimonies of four people who claim to be formerly gay.

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