To Assure Academic and Personal Success For Each Child


Photo from the Student Led Conference

Why a Student-Led Conference

Thursday, October 27 is set aside for student-led parent-teacher conferences.

Here’s what researchers and MCS teachers say about a student-led conference:
· Actively engages students in their learning process
· Opens up communication between school and home
· Teaches self-reflection, self-evaluation skills
· Practices real life skills—communication, organization, leadership, etc.
· Increases parent attendance
· Is an opportunity for students to produce positives that may not show up on a report card grade (an art project, an essay)
· Is authentic assessment
· Is an opportunity to see work in progress
· Can increase student accountability. The student is talking about the “why” of their progress based on student action—not just teacher action.
· Puts students at the center

“When students are well-prepared over an extended period to tell the story of their success (or lack thereof), they seem to experience a fundamental shift in their internal sense of responsibility for that success.” Rich Stiggins


Photo of Principal Robin Newell

Newell is Principal of the Year State Finalist

Education Commissioner Candice McQueen announced the finalists for the 2016-17 Tennessee Principal of the Year award this week. The nine finalists represent each Center of Regional Excellence (CORE) region in the state, with three finalists in each Grand Division, West, Middle and East. Grand Division winners and the Principal of the Year will be selected from this group and announced on Oct. 25, 2016, during the department’s LEAD Conference.

Robin Newell, Principal, Mitchell-Neilson School, is one of three principals representing the Middle Tennessee Region.

“I was deeply humbled to even be nominated. However, this award is about our whole school, not just me,” says Robin Newell, Principal. “Mitchell-Neilson had a huge paradigm shift three years ago when we adopted The Leader in Me. This mindset—for both children and adults–is key to the culture of our school and what makes it such a great place to be!    Both educators and children serve on committees, plan grade-level and school-wide events, and present information to community organizations. I’m just one piece of that great puzzle.”

“Leadership matters. As I’ve traveled around the state, I have seen the significant impact a strong school leader has on teachers’ successes and students’ progress,” Commissioner McQueen said. “Principals set the tone and expectations that drive student learning in their buildings, and I commend these finalists for the ways in which they have set a high bar for the profession.”

The nine finalists for 2016-17 Principal of the Year are:

West Tennessee

CORE Region Principal School District
Shelby/Municipals Docia Generette-Walker Middle College High School Shelby County Schools
Southwest Lillie Treadway Ripley Primary School Lauderdale County School System
Northwest Charlotte Shivley East Elementary School Humboldt City Schools

Middle Tennessee

CORE Region Principal School District
Mid Cumberland Robin Newell Mitchell-Neilson Schools Murfreesboro City Schools
South Central Tina Weatherford Joseph Brown Elementary School Maury County Public Schools
Upper Cumberland Grant Swallows White County High School White County Schools

East Tennessee

CORE Region Principal School District
Southeast Glen Puryear Rogers Creek Elementary School McMinn County School System
East Tennessee Beth Roeder Andersonville Elementary School Anderson County Schools
First Tennessee Susan Trent Surgoinsville Elementary Schools Hawkins County School District

“Robin is a shining example of a principal who believes in the whole child approach. She understands the vision of this school district and its focus on children. She has the respect of her students, faculty and parents,” says Linda Gilbert, Director of Schools. “Robin’s knowledge and passion for children shows in her daily work. We are extremely proud of Robin and this nomination.”

The Tennessee Principal of the Year award is given annually to a school leader for outstanding service in education and exceptional leadership that drives overall improvements in his or her school. To qualify, candidates must have a minimum of three years’ experience as a principal and a minimum of five years’ experience in Tennessee public schools. In addition, all nominees must have a proven track record of exceptional gains in student learning.

Attendance Awareness Logo

Build the Habit of Good Attendance

Attendance Awareness Month is a nationwide event recognizing the connection between school attendance and academic achievement. Throughout September, Murfreesboro City Schools will work with teachers, students and families to ensure everyone knows they have a role to play in ensuring children attend school regularly.

“We are using this month to build awareness as we kick off our Every Day Matters Campaign,” says Joe Marlin, MCS Assistant Superintendent of Instruction. “Attendance in kindergarten through 6th grade directly relates to high school and college graduation.”

Help Your Child Succeed In School – (Download the PDF) (Descargar en español)

Back to School: Help Kids Keep Their Attendance Up – Video Feature

Just as parents have a duty to focus on how their children are performing academically, they have a responsibility to set expectations for good attendance. Research shows students who miss 10 percent of school, or two days per month, show negative academic progress.

Parents and families are essential partners in promoting good attendance. This video is a must see video for everyone who has a child in school.

A great website to visit is

MCS News Update

MCS Public Warehouse Sale

Public Sale: Thurs., Oct. 27, 8 am-4 pm

Most items are priced between $2 – $5. Checks or cash will be accepted. Please prepare to load your items and remove them the day of the sale. This is a first come basis sale. No items can be placed on hold. Perfect for at home study areas, preschools, daycares, etc. Tables, chairs, computer carts, book shelves, filing cabinets, 36” TVs, piano keyboards, overhead projectors, cafe tables.
MCS Warehouse Sale Advertisement


ESP Participates in Global Cardboard Challenge

Students enrolled in the MCS Extended School Program (ESP) came together at Overall Creek Elementary on October 7 from 10 am – 1 pm to complete work on a 9 week Global Cardboard Challenge project.

“For our challenge, we decided to build a cardboard city,” said Kathleen Hunsicker, Overall Creek ESP Site Director. “Each site was given a unique building and guidelines so the students could play inside the city and crawl through buildings once completed.” Participants assembled at Overall Creek and worked for two hours to combine their separate projects before enjoying the scenic route of their cityscape. Buildings included a post office, grocery store and school. Some buildings were functional and included cash registers, drawers, window and doors.

“During the project we emphasized recycling, creativity and STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art, math) when building the city’s components,” finished Kathleen Hunsicker. “We tried to make it a fun learning experience.”

The Global Cardboard Challenge started in 2012 following the success of the short film “Caine’s Arcade,” which followed a young boy from California who built an arcade from cardboard. The challenge focuses on engaging children in creative play, fostering ingenuity and promoting teamwork. The project has spread to 32 countries with over 180,000 participants.

Children participating in the Global Cardboard Challenge at Overall Creek Elementary.

Children participating in the Global Cardboard Challenge at Overall Creek Elementary.

Children participating in the Global Cardboard Challenge at Overall Creek Elementary.

Children participating in the Global Cardboard Challenge at Overall Creek Elementary.

Taste of Latin America Event Advertisement

A Taste of Latin America

The Murfreesboro Symphony Orchestra will perform at Bradley Academy during the Taste of Latin America festival on Saturday, October 22.

The orchestra will be conducted by Dr. Robert Gregg, Director of Orchestras for the School of Music at Belmont University. The orchestra will be performing a variety of famous classical and popular music from Latin America and Spain. From the sounds of the bullfight in “Carmen” to the popular music of The Miami Sound Machine’s, “Conga”, this selection of repertoire is sure to appeal to audiences of all ages.

The orchestra will also be playing a traditional Colombian song arranged by John Pittard parent, Ruben Gomez. His son, 5th grade student Emilio Gomez, will introduce the piece and play the trombone with the orchestra. His wife, Maria del Pilar Garcia, will perform a traditional Colombian dance to accompany the song. The Gomez family moved to Murfreesboro from Colombia, South America last year so that Mr. Gomez could obtain his Master’s Degree in Wind Conducting from MTSU.

Taste of Latin America is open to all MCS students, their families and the community. In addition to the orchestra, the day will feature food and games introducing families to the Latin American culture. Events will be held from 10 a.m. until 1:30 p.m.

A Taste of Latin America Flyer in English

A Taste of Latin America Flyer in Spanish

Farm to School Month Advertisement

National Farm to School Month

Murfreesboro City Schools is joining schools, preschools, colleges and individuals across Tennessee in celebrating National Farm to School Month by crunching into a locally grown apple at NOON on Friday, October 21. Tennessee along with the states of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Kentucky, and Florida will celebrate National Farm to School Month by crunching on fresh fruits and vegetables.

Each state in the Southeast region will be crunching a fruit or veggie that is available from local farms in October. This event is about celebrating the region’s diversity and wide variety of products grown by local farmers!

‪North Carolina – Apples

‪South Carolina – Cucumbers

‪Georgia – Spinach

‪Florida – Cucumbers

‪Tennessee – Apples

‪Kentucky – Apples

‪The Southeast Crunch encourages healthy eating and supports farm to school and other local food purchasing initiatives throughout the region. It’s also a fun way to connect food and agriculture to all kinds of classroom curricula – from science to art! For additional information on the Southeast Crunch, visit

Chef Academy Logo

MCS Chef Academy

The Department of Coordinated School Health is beginning the second session of the MCS Chef Academy.

Overall Creek, Scales and Erma Siegel Elementary students are invited to complete the Chef Academy application found on Peachjar or electronically here. Printed applications should be returned to your child’s teacher.

Each school will accept 12 students into the Chef Academy based on the completed application. Students will be informed of their acceptance by October 19.

Baseball Clinic Logo

MTSU Baseball Clinic for MCS Students – Oct. 22

MTSU Blue Raider Baseball will host a free beginners baseball clinic for MCS students on Saturday, October 22, 2016. Students must register in advance for the clinic. Registration deadline is October 19. Registration forms are available online or on Peachjar. Printed forms should be returned to the student’s teacher. Equipment will be provided but students are encouraged to bring their own glove and/or bat.

For additional information, please call the MCS Coordinated School Health department at 893-2313.

Foundation Fashion Show advertisement

9th Annual Foundation & Fashions

The 9th Annual Foundation & Fashions will return on Thursday, October 13 to Stones River Country Club. The fashion show, a fundraiser for The City Schools Foundation, will begin with a social hour at 5:30 p.m. Runway action will commence at 6:15 p.m.

The signature fall event will feature upcoming collections from local favorites Bella’s Boutique, e.Allen, Sugaree’s, Trendy Pieces, Penny’s Closet, and The Perfect Piece. Murfreesboro’s newest boutique, Lizard Thicket joins this year’s lineup, which also boasts the return of Dillard’s Department Store.

Foundation & Fashions is sponsored by Children’s Dentistry, e. Allen Boutique, LaRoche Family Foundation, St. Thomas Rutherford, Dr. Edward and Vicki Eastham, Franklin Synergy Bank, Goco Center for Aesthetics, Stones River Dermatology, and U MediSpa.

Tickets are available for $35 in advance and will increase to $40 the day of the show. Tickets can be purchased through the Central Office of Murfreesboro City Schools, Foundation Trustees, and online at For more information on ticket purchases or for a list of retailers visit or call 615-893-2313.

Money raised by The City Schools Foundation benefits Murfreesboro City Schools’ pre-Kindergarten through 6th grade students. To date, the Foundation has awarded approximately $693,000 in parity funds and grants to teachers to enhance science, math and other programs. The Foundation’s goals are to boost the school system’s financial support and to address financial parity in all schools.

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