FSSD Welcomes Leslie Duke as Human Resources Supervisor

Director of Schools Dr. David Snowden announced that the Franklin Special School District has hired Leslie Duke as Human Resources Supervisor to replace Dr. Roberta Hill, who is retiring January 3. Duke comes to FSSD from Rutherford County Schools, where she has been working as a Certified Human Resource Analyst for the past four years. She will begin on December 13, 2018, spending about a week shadowing Hill. “We are excited to have the experience that Leslie will bring right from the start,” Snowden said. “In her most recent position she has played an integral role in recruiting, policy compliance, licensing requirements, and orientation of new employees. These are needs that school districts must have met on a routine basis and the ability that she will have to jump right in is crucial.” In addition to her valuable human resources experience, Duke also has a teaching background, which will be pivotal as she will be called up on to remediate issues for both certified and non-certified personnel. She was a Reading Intervention Teacher for four years in RCS before being called to serve at the Central Office in Human Resources. Duke received her undergraduate degree in communications from University of Tennessee Chattanooga, her master’s degree in teaching and administration from Trevecca Nazarene University and hours toward an educational administration degree from Bethel University. Dr. Hill will be retiring January 3, 2019, after 21 years with the FSSD. She came to FSSD to help lead Freedom Middle School as an assistant principal in 1997 from Metro Nashville Public Schools. Almost four years later, in 2001, she was hired as Human...

Freedom Middle Wins National STEM Competition

Freedom Middle School students traveled to Purdue University on December 9 to compete against six other teams across the nation, including sister school Poplar Grove Middle, in a STEM-based competition called TECHFIT (Teaching Engineering Concepts to Harness Future Innovators and Technologists). On December 10, after presenting a powerpoint presentation and its original technology based fitness game, judges announced that the Freedom Middle team won the competition, now in its fifth year of funding through the Purdue University College of Engineering and the National Science Foundation.   Only seven invitations were issued and, based on a video submission and an on-site judges’ review, Poplar Grove Middle and Freedom Middle were selected to move on to the national competition in West Lafayette, Indiana. Students have spent many months designing, coding and constructing the “exergame.” Competing teams presented their TECHFIT experience and demonstrated their exergame innovation at the Purdue Recreational Sports Facility. “After seeing all of the schools present their exergame, we knew we had a challenge,” said sponsoring teacher Patty Littlejohn. “We were on pins and needles! There were so many good aspects in every school’s game and presentation.” Littlejohn said that the judges were very complimentary of the work the students had put in. One judge said, “It is very obvious your team spent time and effort actually going through what you were doing in presentation and administration – it wasn’t off the cuff.” Another judge said, “You engaged the judges, you actually approached us and gave us handouts and group documentation of your process. That shows process and product documentation.” Other notables included compliments on the music and the actual physical construction...

Strategic Planning Input Session Nov. 27 and 29

Throughout the past six months, the Franklin Special School District School Board and Leadership Team have begun the process of designing a new long-range strategic plan. We have guided our discussion around goals using the extensive feedback we gathered during the AdvancED accreditation process this spring, academic data from state and local assessments, and planning documents that the district uses each year to design instruction, improve culture, develop technology goals and improve academic performance. We are excited to have enough information and feedback at this point to have put together a draft Five-Year Strategic Plan. Called Reach 2024, this one-page talking points flier is attached to this email and the more complete plan is now ready for public review and input. This is where you come in! We invite you to one of two public review and input sessions. The public review  sessions are Tuesday, November 27 and Thursday, November 29. Both sessions will be 5:30 – 6:30 p.m. in the multipurpose room at Moore Elementary School, 1061 Lewisburg Pike. During public review, we will explain how we arrived at our broad goals and what strategic objectives we have developed to achieve the goals. Best practice in strategic planning is to keep goals broad and limited to 3-5 achievable targets. While we have discussed and refined the current goals in the Reach 2024 document many times, we are ready to hear your thoughts regarding possible revisions to these goals. Please consider attending one of the two sessions mentioned above. Thank you for helping us to “Reach 2024” with clear, thoughtful and well-defined goals that will strategically guide our school district over the next five...

FSSD 1 of 14 Exemplary Districts Celebrated by State

Late Friday afternoon, districts across the state waited anxiously for the Tennessee Board of Education to ratify the Department of Education’s accountability results, which places schools and school districts in several distinct categories. Education Commissioner Candice McQueen announced the 2018 District Designations as well as the Reward and Priority schools, which are two key designations under Tennessee’s school accountability system. There are 147 school districts across the state. The FSSD is one of only 14 districts to be named Exemplary. The good news didn’t stop there, though. Five of the eight FSSD schools were named Reward Schools, another top designation. “We were very excited and extremely proud of the Accountability Results released Friday. Being an Exemplary district and having 62% of our schools designated as Reward Schools are noted accomplishments,” said Director of Schools Dr. David Snowden. This was the first year Tennessee implemented its new school accountability model, which looks at multiple measures of success based mainly on the results of the TNReady tests given to students in grade 3-12 each spring. According to the Department of Education’s website, districts designated as exemplary are generally exceeding expectations on average for both all students and each historically underserved student group. “All of these positive results are due to the work of our passionate, dedicated and talented teachers, the hard work by our students and the support of parents, school and district leaders and the School Board,” Snowden...

Career Quest for 8th Graders to be Held Nov. 8

The 17th Annual World of Possibilities Career Exploration Day will be held Thursday, November 8, 2018 at the Williamson County Agricultural Exposition Park. This comprehensive career day is being held to better inform eighth grade students about some of the career opportunities available in Middle Tennessee. Williamson County and Franklin Special School Districts recognize there are specific workforce needs for Williamson County and Middle Tennessee. We are taking an active role to introduce students to career opportunities and other emerging careers by offering more career education within the curriculum. As our 8th grade students prepare for the transition to high school and begin to think about post-high school career options, the World of Possibilities Career Quest is an excellent strategy for getting students authentically engaged in learning about careers. The 8th grade students will travel by school bus to the Williamson County Ag Expo Park and will be chaperoned by their teachers. Students will visit career exhibits based on their interests and ask questions to learn more about that particular career. We are proud to offer this opportunity to our eighth graders and appreciate the excellent participation of our exhibitors and...