Class Notes: Chattanooga State launches new mentoring program to support minority students, and more education news

In an effort to increase support for underrepresented, minority students, Chattanooga State Community College has recently launched a new pilot program, the B.O.S.S. Mentoring Program, to pair eligible students with faculty or staff mentors. Staff photo by Tim Barber.
photo Hamilton County Schools Campus Support Specialist and Athletic Director Bradley Jackson received the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association's Distinguished Service award for August 2019. Jackson is a long-time educator, administrator and coach. Photo courtesy of Hamilton County Schools. Contributed Photo/Times Free Press

Chatt State mentoring program supports minority students

Chattanooga State Community College has launched a new effort to connect underrepresented minority students to faculty and staff and provide students with more support.

The pilot program, the Chattanooga State B.O.S.S. Mentorship Program, will pair 20 students with faculty or staff mentors for the 2019-20 school year.

After meeting program requirements, some of which include weekly meetings with mentors, active participation with the B.O.S.S. program, and maintaining at least a 2.0 grade point average, the students will receive a $1,200 grant that can be used to defray their educational and personal expenses, according to a news release.

"It is our hope that this mentorship will aid these students in feeling a sense of belonging on our campus; Like they are truly valued, cared for, and capable of not only completing our program, but also of completing their education at Chattanooga State," said Amanda Jordan, B.O.S.S. program coordinator, in the release.

Jordan and her colleague Andy Cross, a scholarship coordinator at Chattanooga State, collaborated to launch the program.

"We are very optimistic about this endeavor and hopeful the results will be promising, possibly allowing us to expand the mentorship program to more students in the future," Jordan added in a statement.

For more information, contact Amanda Jordan at 423-697-2471 or via email at

Hamilton County Schools' Brad Jackson named TSSAA Distinguished Service recipient

Brad Jackson, campus support specialist for Hamilton County Schools, recently was awarded the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association's August 2019 TSSAA Distinguished Service award.

"TSSAA is proud to recognize Brad Jackson for the commitment he has shown to the values and principles of educational athletics in Tennessee," according to a news release.

Jackson is an alumnus of Hamilton County Schools. He was a wrestler at Tyner High School and attended the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga.

After a year in college, Jackson joined the U.S. Marines, where became an All-Marine wrestler and earned a tryout for the 1988 U.S. Olympic team.

He is now working with students across the district in his campus support role and as the district's athletic director.

"I was exposed to so many different kinds of men and women in the Marines, and I learned how to deal with different cultures and mentalities," Jackson said in a statement. "It played a part in how I deal with things athletically and the discipline side in how I treat kids. I try to look at it [discipline issues] through their lens."

City kicks off newest Mayor's Youth Council cohort

Chattanooga Mayor Andy Berke met recently with the newest local high school students to be named members of the Mayor's Youth Council.

This year, 52 local high school juniors and seniors are participating in the initiative, according to an email.

The Mayor's Youth Council consists of both public and private school students and gathers students for weekly meetings to plan and implement civic projects.

In the past, Mayor's Youth Council members have created projects to boost voter turnout and helped election parties and community forums, among other projects, according to a statement from Berke.

"It was a privilege to meet all of our new Youth Council members this week when they visited City Hall for their kickoff. I can't wait to see how they work to make Chattanooga better in the year ahead," Berke said.

PEF's Teacherpreneur deadline extended to Aug. 26

The Public Education Foundation of Chattanooga is accepting applications for the sixth cohort of its Teacherpreneur Incubator program. The program looks for passionate teachers with big ideas that could impact their classroom or school.

The programs are open to all Hamilton County classroom educators, counselors, media specialists and coaches. Applications close at midnight Monday.

For more information, contact Cliff Brittingham, instructional development coordinator at PEF, at 423-648-4448 or

If you have news about local schools you'd like included in Class Notes, email Meghan Mangrum at