Possible West Nashville charter school would have 'mixed-income' focus

Tuesday, November 8, 2011 at 2:44pm

There’s a push to launch a new charter school in West Nashville, this one with an untapped focus for similar schools in Davidson County: Instead of catering to only at-risk, economically disadvantaged students, the school would actively target middle- and upper-class children as well.

The conceived school –– a grade structure is still undecided –– would add to the wealth of publicly financed, privately operated charters that have budded in Metro over the last few years. But it would be the first to explicitly take advantage of a new state law allowing open enrollment to charter schools.

“We’ve organized an informal group to look at the possibility of creating a charter school somewhere in West Nashville that would have more of a mixed-income population than the charter schools that have typically started here in Nashville,” said Nashville investor Bill DeLoache, who is leading the effort.

“We’ve got a number of people who are informally looking at this,” he said. “The main activity so far has been to go visit a number of schools that might serve as models.”

Prior to the most recent legislative session, eligible charter school students had to qualify for federal free and reduced lunches. Accordingly, all charters in Nashville have historically sought to offer choice to students who come from impoverished families. The new West Nashville charter –– if it becomes a reality, which is no guarantee –– would try to appeal to students from all economic backgrounds, including those who live in affluent areas like Green Hills or Belle Meade, for example.

“There are a number of existing charters that will benefit from open enrollment and end up taking students that otherwise would not have been eligible,” DeLoache said. “But this would probably take advantage of it on a broader scale than the others.”

DeLoache is a trustee of the Joe C. Davis Foundation, which assisted with the recent launching of the Tennessee Charter School Incubator. He is the cousin of Anne Davis, wife of Mayor Karl Dean. Also behind the West Nashville charter push, DeLoache said, is Townes Duncan, managing partner of Solidus Company, who serves on the board for KIPP Academy, a Nashville charter. (Duncan also chairs the board for SouthComm, The City Paper’s parent company.)

If organizers decide to move forward with a proposal, DeLoache said they would likely submit an application to the Metro Nashville Board of Education in 2013 to accommodate a 2014 opening. Still, he said there’s a small chance they would apply in 2012 to open in 2013.

“This is still very much in the exploratory phase,” he said. “If we are actually able to create a school similar to the ones we’ve been visiting, I think there would be substantial demand for it.”

DeLoache listed off several potential charter schools as models, including: High Tech High in San Diego; Summit Public Schools in the Silicon Valley region of California; the Denver School of Science and Technology; and Great Hearts Academies in Phoenix.

The City Paper obtained the template for a still-not-launched website that calls the proposal “West Nashville Charter school,” but DeLoache said a name isn’t settled, nor is there a facility.

A steering committee has formed to advance discussions on the West Nashville charter school concept. Among members is Metro school board member Michael Hayes, who represents the Green Hills area. He characterized his involvement as “more passive than active,” adding, “I support it, and want to help them in any way I can.”

“Every charter school is open now to families of all incomes,” Hayes said. “It just so happens that the first handful that opened, opened under the previous laws, which required that their student body come from ... at-risk families. Now that the law has changed, every school can take applications from children of any socio-economic group.”

Hayes added, “Diversity will be a key in any charter school’s push in West Nashville.”

But school board member Ed Kindall, who represents schools in some of the county’s most impoverished neighborhoods, said he would have diversity concerns about the West Nashville charter concept if it were proposed.

“This is was one of the fears that I had when the recent law was changed to allow all students to attend charter schools,” Kindall said, adding he “anticipated this might happen.”

“What I worry about is that if there is [a charter school] that opens in an area that has a large population of middle or middle-to-upper class parents, what is that school going to really look like?” Kindall said.

“I think if we don’t find a way to ensure that these are diverse schools –– socio-economically, racially, etc. –– we’re going to deepen the isolation within our school system.”

A PowerPoint presentation labeled “West Nashville Charter School Task Force,” dated June 29, reveals some potential goals of such a school. One page is headed “What issues could a West Nashville Charter School Address?”

The presentation makes three points:

• Movement of businesses to Williamson County because of the perception public schools are better there

• Movement of upper income students in Davidson County away from public schools and into private schools

• Growing concern about affordability of private schools

Matt Throckmorton, executive director of the Tennessee Charter Schools Association, said the state’s new open enrollment law should open the doors for new charter approaches similar to the West Nashville concept.

“What we’re going to see in the years to come with the changes that have been put in the law is a lot of real different and unique combinations of schools,” Throckmorton said. “This is clearly one of them.”

18 Comments on this post:

By: RTungsten on 11/8/11 at 1:51

It's not the school in Williamson county that are better, it's the parents.

By: NewYorker1 on 11/8/11 at 3:59

No one is better than anyone else. We are all God's messed-up children.

By: RTungsten on 11/8/11 at 4:25

@NY1: Speak for yourself :)

By: smiless on 11/9/11 at 12:30

xyモンクレールのダウンジャケットの最大の特徴は、モンクレール アウトレットフランス規格協会から最高品質の証、バーバリー アウトレット「4Flocons」が与えられているグースの産毛を使用しているという点です。ですから、モンクレール 激安保温性能に非常に優れ、軽さ、モンクレール レディース肌ざわりでも他のジャケットとは比べ物になりません。コーチ アウトレットモンクレールは製造から半世紀以上たっているため、コーチ バッグ長年のモノ作りの経験で、ベルスタッフ アウトレットダウンウェアの各部位に最適な産毛の量コーチ トートバッグが1g単位で決められているそうです。モンクレール ダウンジャケットは、職人の技によって軽やかで温かく、coach アウトレット包み込まれるような着心地だからこそ、コーチ 財布半世紀以上もプレミアムベルスタッフ ジャケットダウンジャケットの代名詞として君臨し続けているバーバリー バッグのでしょうね。 国王室御用達としコーチ ハンドバッグても知られる世界有数のブランド「バーバリー コート」。バーバリーは若者から年配の方まで、トリーバーチ フラットシューズまた男女を問わずファンが多いのが特徴ですが、トリーバーチ バッグセンスの良い気品さと、実用的な機能性を兼ね揃えているところがコーチ ポピーバッグ人気の秘密のようです。バーバリーの流行にながされるベルスタッフことのない確固としたポリシーこそが、まさしくブランドとして「バーバリーがバーバリー バッグたる」由縁であり、トリーバーチ アウトレットが私たちのこころをつかんで離さない最大の魅力モンクレール メンズではないでしょうか・・・ トリーバーチ ベルトは、ニューヨークのノリータ生まれのブランドで、アメリカのハリウッドセレブをはじめ、 トリーバーチ 店舗 世界のセレブたちに大人気のブランドです。特に、トリーバーチ ショルダーバッグ、ラバーシューズやトリーバーチ トートバッグなどの人気は高くて、海外のファッション誌やゴシップ誌トリーバーチ 財布などでセレブたちが履いている靴として掲載されてコーチ ショルダーバッグいたりします。

By: Loner on 11/9/11 at 6:07

Here's the real reason behind the good reasons:

"DeLoache is a trustee of the Joe C. Davis Foundation, which assisted with the recent launching of the Tennessee Charter School Incubator. He is the cousin of Anne Davis, wife of Mayor Karl Dean."

A little inside pull can work wonders. Nepotism is a time-honored Southern tradition.

Deregulation and privatization of governmental services, such as education, are supposed to save taxpayers money, while providing superior service. The facts indicate the opposite to be the case.

Privateers have a history of bilking the system and providing an inferior product. And governmental oversight vanishes in the process. The privateers bribe the lawmakers with campaign cash and the rip-off expands in scope and depth.

Add a religious education component to the mix and you get a real mess.

When the Southern segregationists abandoned the idea of public schools, once they were forcibly integrated, the seeds of disaster were sown. Tennessee and other Southern states opted for private "Christian schools" for affluent whites and the public school system decayed into its present state of shameful deterioration.

You are reaping what you have sown....enjoy the fruits of hate!

By: DavidSchwetty on 11/9/11 at 6:54

So this is essentially Ensworth High School version 2.0 except the affluent kids get to go for free as well?

By: dargent7 on 11/9/11 at 6:56

I love the term, "mixed income".
Money can't buy you happiness, love, but maybe an education?

By: Nitzche on 11/9/11 at 8:02

what is wrong with the MNPS? why change anything? "we need more money", that is the solution!

By: thereitis on 11/9/11 at 8:52

Sorry to read such cynical views on this subject. Every year US News lists the top 100 public schools in America. Normally 15-20 of them are charter schools. Is there anything wrong with a group of people trying to create an option for students they cannot afford right now? Do you really think parents at MBA or Ensworth are going to withdraw their student from one of these schools and enroll them at a brand new charter school? I highly doubt that.

What this becomes is potentially a great option for parents who have no chance of affording those schools, and obviously aren't getting into MLK or Hume Fogg either.

This is like a bucket of crabs. I'm told you don't have to put a lid on it. No crab can climb out because all the others will pull them back in. Keep pulling, real hard.

By: frodo on 11/9/11 at 9:02

So well said thereitis, and unlike Loner you come with the facts on the success of charter schools rather than working an old template from a bygone era.

By: shinestx on 11/9/11 at 9:07

We sure have come a long way from the time when a school's focus was on education. Ridiculous!

By: BigPapa on 11/9/11 at 1:01

Anyone that wants their children to go to a school where the focus is on learning and there's less risk of attack by gang is considered a racist in Lonar's skewed world.

It's not a race thing, is a class/priority thing. I guaruntee that whit parents will have no problem with their children going to school with black kids as long as they're not ghetto thugs.

By: CarterRidge on 11/9/11 at 3:20

It's exciting that there are efforts being made across the city to raise the quality of public education. This could be a big step in the right direction.

By: pswindle on 11/9/11 at 4:30

If their will be an income- mix, we have to take behavior of all kids in to have a real environment. MNES has some of the best teachers in the nation, but that is not the problem. You can not teach with the behavior of some students, and the lack of support from the parents. Piublic schools has to take all students and the problem is not the educational system nor the teachers, it is the behavior of some kids. They do not want to learn and they do not want anyone else to learn. Where do the kids go? They do not go anywhere, they just stay in the regular classrooms and destsroy all hope for learning.

By: frodo on 11/9/11 at 5:04

Then let's have no tolerance for bad behavior in the schools. Mouth off or act up and you do time in a no-fun, no-frills school where you better get your stuff together or the next step is either Juvee or some nonprofit agency willing to deal with your issues and help you get turned around. School should be reserved for those who want to learn. it should not be a dangerous or hostile environment.

By: zebrotha on 11/10/11 at 10:04

Ah, the old diversity scam, the politically profitable deceit that the social value of one person to all others is to be found in color differences, rather than civilized behavior. But what does one then call "racist color judgements;” oh yes...”liberty, equality n’ justice for all,” when the color judgments support politically correct racial favoritism; and “racism” when the color judgments support politically incorrect racial favoritism.

But wait, isn’t this same double standard of color coded social value exactly what the segregationists used to buy votes for racial favoritism and its corollary racial discrimination. But of course...that’s the entire point of American politics, buying votes with perpetual racial favoritism. Naturally this election platform requires a periodic rotation of colors of those favored and penalized to fool the “educated” into thinking that “political justice” is a different sort of “justice” that in pursuit of "liberty, equality n' justice for all," must perpetually mandate politically imposed aggression/favoritism on the basis of color differences. It is only the regular everyday sort of justice that must relegate color differences to irrelevancy, instead requiring documented evidence of personal actions to establish rightful allocation of rewards and penalties.

By: tgs on 11/18/11 at 7:05

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By: tgs on 11/18/11 at 7:06

トリーバーチは、アメリカの人気女性デザイナーで、トリーバーチ アウトレット2004年2月にアメリカ・ニューヨークのトリーバーチ靴ノリータ地区にフラッグショップ"Tory Burch"をオープンしました。トリーバーチ バッグその後瞬く間にハリウッドスターをはじめ多くセレブから熱い支持を受け、トリーバーチ 通販今や全世界の幅広い女性から注目を浴びています。トリーバーチ 財布(Tory Burch)は、世界のトップモデルやセレブな方たちがこぞって愛用しているトリーバーチ ハイヒールことでも有名で、その中でもトリーバーチ シューズ、サンダル、トリーバーチ トートバッグなどは、すでに日本でもトリーバーチ ショルダーバッグセレクトショップなどを中心に大人気になっています。トリーバーチ ベルト女性らしい華やかさを感じさせる色使いや光沢感を絶妙に醸し出していますトリーバーチ フラットシューズ。今、アメリカ中で大人気のトリーバーチ 店舗。パリス・ヒルトンや二コール・リッチー、リンジー・ローハンなど多数のセレブにも大人気で、トリーバーチ 激安日本でもじわじわと人気が出て来ています。トリーバーチ 靴 激安フラットシューズ人気の今、トリーバーチは見逃せないブランドです。