Wednesday, December 12, 2007


NASHVILLE, Tenn. (Dec. 12, 2007) - Mayor Karl Dean today announced the members of Project for Student Success, a 40-member group convened to develop action steps to reduce the dropout rate of students in Nashville public schools. The project includes parents, students, education professionals from all levels, government officials, and members of neighborhood groups, faith-based organizations, non profits and the business community. Vice Mayor Diane Neighbors and President of Belmont University Bob Fisher will serve as co-chairs. “I have had numerous conversations with both the vice mayor and President Fisher about reducing the dropout rate and they share my deep desire to give every student that comes through our public school system a chance to have a future and to be a productive citizen in our city,” Dean said. Four sub-committees of the project will each focus on one of the key factors research has shown to contribute to students dropping out of school: chronic poor academic performance, student risk factors, lack of family or parental support, and community risk factors. Recommendations will be presented to the Mayor’s Office by June 2008. “Reducing the dropout rate is not just a schools issue – it’s a public safety issue, an economic development issue, and for me, a moral issue,” Dean said. “I want to thank each of the members for the commitment they have made. This will not be an easy task. Expectations are high. But I know they are just as committed to this task as I am.” Members will also participate in a graduation summit co-sponsored by the Mayor’s Office and Alignment Nashville. The summit Operation Graduation & Beyond will take place Feb. 1 at the Curb Event Center at Belmont University. The task force members are: Carla Aaron, executive director of Child Safety for Tennessee Department of Children’s Services Yousuf Ahmad, student at Hillsboro High and chair of Mayor’s Youth Council Alene Arnold, parent Hal Balthrop, parent Jim Bearden, CEO of Gresham Smith & Partners Camilla Benbow, dean of Vanderbilt University Mary Bufwack, CEO, United Neighborhood Health Services Hal Cato, executive director of Oasis Center Robert Churchwell, assistant principal of Gra-Mar Middle Steve Cook, vice president of Dell Computers Rodger Dinwiddie, executive director of Center for Youth Issues – STARS Rev. Rueben Dockery of Bethel Family Church and BFC Missions Randy Dowell, principal of KIPP Academy Vincent Durnan, director of University School of Nashville Marsha Edwards, executive director of Martha O’Bryan Center Kim Finch, principal of Stratford High Bob Fisher, president of Belmont University Elizabeth Fox, community activist Darrell Freeman, president and CEO of Zycron Inc. Allison Halbrook, teacher at Maplewood High Pedro Garcia, director of Metro Nashville Public Schools Adrian A. Granderson, president and CEO of 100 Black Men of Middle TN Judge Betty Green, Metro Juvenile Court Journey Johnson, president and CEO, YMCA of Middle TN Melvin Johnson, president of Tennessee State University Julie Lamb, community activist in Bellevue/Hillwood area Rev. Clint Lewis of Mt. Hopewell MB Church Brenda Morrow, director of Edgehill Family Resource Center Cesar Muedas, parent Vice Mayor Diane Neighbors Michael Nettles, senior vice president of Educational Testing Services Eric Polk, recent MNPS graduate Cara Robertson, parent Ralph Schulz, CEO of Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce Chief Ronal Serpas, Metro Nashville Police Department Julie Simone, teacher at H.G. Hill Middle Ashley Stevenson, student at Overton High George H. Van Allen, president of Nashville State Community College Marsha Warden, chair of Metro Board of Education Roy Wilson, director of Metro Parks & Recreation For media inquiries contact: Janel Lacy (615) 862-6020

Vivian Wilhoite Newsletter - December 2007

Happy Holidays from my Family to Yours! It’s that time of year that is especially close to my heart. Everyone seems to be in a great mood and the chill in the air seems to invigorate our souls. I hope you and your family and friends will have a wonderful holiday this season and remember to give thanks for your blessings, remember those less fortunate than you and lend a helping hand when you can. I want to take this time to express to you how deeply honored I am to serve you in our community and that I look forward to accomplishing our goals in the coming year. Have a Blessed Holiday! Staying Safe this Season Shopping Tips · * Always lock your car and close the windows, even if you're only gone a few moments. When possible, lock all merchandise or packages in the trunk of your car. Load your packages before departing, not at the next destination. · * Shop with at least one partner. Have your car or house key in your hand as you approach the door. If attacked use those keys as weapons! · * Stay alert to your surroundings and the people around you. Look inside your car and around it as you approach. · * Be extra careful with purses and wallets. * Carry a purse under your arm. Keep wallets in an inside pocket. · * Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. · * Avoid street vendors -- many times these hucksters are selling stolen or unlicensed merchandise. · * Plan your trips. Instead of one big shopping trip, try several small ones. This will cut down on the amount of money you carry, the packages you'll be encumbered with, and it will make your shopping less stressful. · * Walk everywhere with a sense of purpose - show you are calm, confident and know where you are going. · * Park in well-lighted areas that will be well-lighted when you return. Neighborhood Safety First, share these tips with your neighbors. Establish a network with your neighbors and make a plan for mutual protection and notification. Get your Neighborhood Watch group together and go caroling. Visit the elderly and others in your area that may be isolated during the holidays Tips for Going GREEN Giving to Others During the Holidays * Try Recycling gift wrap paper * Make cookies for a neighbor Buy an Artificial Christmas tree * Volunteer at the Mission If you DO buy a real tree, recycle it! * Mentor a child Use Low energy lights on your tree * Deliver meals to the elderly Turn down the heat * Give to a favorite charity Use the Fireplace Sparingly, check the * Love animals? Volunteer at the Damper to make sure it fits snugly. Humane Society For more tips and ideas, * Teach a child to read Access the website: * Spend time with a senior Holiday Festivities around Town! Christmas Family Fun! Christmas Eve - Dec 24 Christmas Day – Dec 25 Dec 1 – Dec 23 A Victorian Christmas at Belle Meade Dec 8 – Dec 9 A Dickens of a Christmas in downtown Franklin Nov 15 – Dec 25 A Country Christmas with Pam Tillis Hanukkah Family Fun Hanukkah Dec 4 – Dec 12 Dec 9 – 4pm – Green Hills Mall Build the World’s largest Lego Menorah! Dec 11 – 6pm Lighting of Tennessee’s Tallest Menorah at the State Capitol Kwanzaa Family Fun Kwanzaa Dec 26 - Jan 1 Dec 29 – The Village Cultural Arts Center, 6pm. 1200 Foster Avenue (615) 228-9553 Annual Kwanzaa celebration featuring Drum & Dance Ensemble Looking for More Entertainment? Be sure to visit Opryland’s Christmas Lights. The nearly 2 million lights will dazzle you and your family every year! Lasts through Jan 2, 2008. See the classic Nutcracker at TPAC! See the website for dates/times: Party Tips The best way to throw a fantastic holiday party is to be prepared and allow yourself to relax! Remember, the host sets the tone for the evening. Prepare as many dishes and appetizers as possible ahead of time. Set aside some quiet time well before the guests arrive so that you can relax and enjoy the evening. If you are serving alcohol, remember to have the number to a cab service or a designated driver available for your guests. Have a SAFE holiday season. Important Phone Numbers Police – Non Emergency – (615) 862-8600 Police – Emergency – 911 Pet Emergency – (615) 383-2600 Poison Control – (615) 936-2034 Fire Department (615) 327-1300 Disabled Transportation: (615) 643-7600 Congratulations! To Ben Phosarath of Una Elementary School, the first place winner of "Beautiful Nashville say NO to Trashville!" contest. Ben has won $1500.00 for his school's art department. Ben's work was unveiled Saturday, December 8th at Titans Way. Satterfield Holiday lights Contest winner for District 29. See David's winning holiday lights 2526 Kinwood Drive, Nashville. For a complete list of all the winners go to beautification/pdf/holidaylights/2007holidaylights/2007_regional_ district winners_all_entries_pdf.
HOT SPICED CRANBERRY CIDER INGREDIENTS 2 quarts of Apple cider 6 cups cranberry juice ¼ cup brown sugar 4 cinnamon sticks 1 ½ tsp whole cloves 1 lemon thinly sliced DIRECTIONS In a large pot, combine apple cider, cloves and lemon slices. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 15-20 minutes. With a slotted spoon remove cinnamon sticks, cloves and lemon slices. Serve hot. Yields 25, 4 oz servings Prep Time: 15 minutes Cook Time: 25 minutes Ready in: 40 minutes