Monday, February 25, 2013

The Wait is OVER! Get "Colin Merrick" Today!

Hey all,

Colin Merrick
Just to share with you, the fantastic music that I've heard grow from acoustic guitar and vocal, to added rich harmonies, to additional electronic and percussive instrumentation, over the course of the last year and become something I listen to at least five times a week, well, it's HERE, the eponymous debut CD from my boy, my son, my Colin.You can listen to it now too! Finally, he's YOUR Colin, too!

If  you give it a listen you'll love it, and all 5 songs just get better with repeated playings. Fantastic production by David Spencer Music (with Colin's help) and beautiful lyrical writing by Colin (with David's help) throughout. The ballad "This Town" features Colin's beautiful sister, Miranda, with spot-on sensitive harmony and a hauntingly lovely cello line by Cara Fox. There are musical treats in every song, certainly enhanced by the final masters by famed Brad Blackwood for Euphonic Masters. Blackwood won a Grammy in 2012 for his engineering work on a chart-blaster Alison Kraus and Union Station single.

I have no favorite song: Each one is my favorite! Give it a listen and a download. We thank you in advance and we say "you're welcome" as well! If you're local and want your own copy, it'll be at Grimey's tomorrow or the next day and I have some on me at the more than fair price of $6 or $10 for 2. If you're not and want a CD, CDBaby has them for $7 and their download is $5. Fb me and we'll work out a time to pick up...


Monday, February 18, 2013

Happy Presidents' Day and a bit of news re MNPS Virtual School

MNPS Virtual SchoolThings move apace here at MNPS Virtual School. Though it's a holiday for students and a Professional Day for teachers, our whole team (5 dynamic individuals) are each and every one of us in to work today, working working working. We are providing a valuable service to district students over this upcoming Spring "Intersession" the first week of the district's first two-week long Spring Break and Spring Break itself), providing "Bridge Math Intensive," our first real foray into the world of Blended Learning. Students, for a nominal registration fee, will complete in two weeks a course normally running a full 18 week semester. It will be online, but every morning of the 9 days the students attend our physical School, they will work mornings with two stellar online (and classroom) math teachers, then after lunch they will attend intense Math Lab and continue working in small groups with yet another wonderful teacher.

Bridge Math Intensive--and the intensive effort it will require on the part of teachers, administration, and students--will be of particular help to Seniors who may only lack that 5th math in order to graduate on time.

This is what continually amazes me about the teachers with whom we work. Sure, it's an opportunity for them to pick up a little extra money over their Break, but believe me, they are not doing it for the money. They care. They care deeply. In addition to customized registration procedures for BMI (no, not the songwriter's licensing agency--Bridge Math Intensive), we're working this week to open registration for our Summer Success Program, an 8 week fee-based (and no, funding does not happen for summer school locally or, to my knowledge, anywhere in the state) during which students will complete a half-credit course (often one semester of a year long class) for credit. This will require its own set of procedures and mechanisms for registration and delivery. Finally, we're working on new mechanisms and procedures for registration for school year 2013-14. I posted on Facebook last week a status that may have sounded a bit smug or facetious, but I meant every word of it. To quote:
Scott Merrick -- February 13 in Nashville
I'm so glad to be in a workplace where all team members are recognized for their contributions and talents and where continuous improvement is more than a buzz phrase--it's an ever-present challenge and imperative. Thanks MNPS Virtual School and Metro Nashville Public Schools.
Be sure to tune in to Newschannel5+ (Comcast channel 250 locally) Wednesday night at 7PM until 8 to watch our esteemed Principal, Dr. James Witty, and our similarly esteemed District Superintendent of Schools Dr. Jesse Register answer community questions about Virtual School and the way we're doing it here in Nashville Public Schools: We believe we're constantly improving the right way to do it.

 Back to work, y'all. No rest for the innovative. Happy Presidents' Day!

Wednesday, February 06, 2013

The Equity Gap Infographic

From Tess Pajaron in Aussieland, this fascinating look at how economic status relates to academic performance (as measured by testing) across the globe. I was particularly surprised to see the math performance in the U.S. See what you think:

An Infographic by Open Colleges