Words of the Week from Fred Smith, Freda Williams, Kriner Cash



A summary of notable comments from Memphians at various events last week:

"Research Says Closing a School Won't Fix It." Sign carried by spectator at school board meeting Tuesday night. The Transition Planning Commission recommends closing 21 schools in Memphis next year.

"It's a big factor in determining where to send our children to school." Peter Winterburn, Memphis parent of an MCS student, speaking to the Unified School Board about the CLUE program designed to meet the needs of academically talented and gifted students in MCS.

"I read 'Beowulf' in third grade." White Station Middle School student, speaking to the school board in support of the CLUE program.

"We are being used as a guinea pig for other people's agenda." School board member Dr. Jeff Warren.

"If there are expectations, this board needs to know what they are." School board member Martavius Jones on $4 million in private funding for the merger and whether there are strings attached.

"It is within the purview of this board to decide and apply the 172 recommendations." School board member Freda Williams, suggesting substitute language for a resolution that said the merger recommendations are "within the purview of district administration."

"We are going to have to get down and dirty with this and that dirt is coming real soon."
MCS Superintendent Kriner Cash at board meeting Tuesday.

"It's the largest transfer of wealth in the history of humankind." FedEx CEO Fred Smith on the OPEC nations in a speech at Rhodes College Thursday night.

"There are 40,000 products of small business in a FedEx 777." Fred Smith on the importance of corporate "gazelles" to supply the investment capital that supports small business.

"The United States is a disaster in K-12 but in higher ed we are the India of the world." Fred Smith at Rhodes.

"There are going to be some hard choices." Smith, a liberal arts graduate of Yale, to the audience at Rhodes, a liberal arts college, on the need for government to put more grants and incentives in science and technology higher education versus liberal arts.

"Five “Straight-A” schools on Achievement: Campus School, Grahamwood Elementary, John P. Freeman Optional School, Richland Elementary, and White Station Middle. Each of these schools is a repeat recipient of straight A’s in Math, Reading/Language, Social Studies, and Science." Press release on the Tennessee Department of Education 2012 Report Card.

"Fourteen schools ( as compared to four in 2011) received A’s in Math and Reading/Language Value-Added results, signaling continued outstanding growth in student performance: Alton Elementary, Florida-Kansas Elementary, Freedom Prep Academy, Germanshire Elementary, KIPP Academy, Oakhaven Elementary, Peabody Elementary, Power Center Academy, Promise Academy, Raineshaven Elementary, Shannon Elementary, Sharpe Elementary, Sherwood Elementary, and Vollentine Elementary." Tennessee Department of Education Report Card, highlights from Memphis City Schools.

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