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In the Nation's Interest

Creating a High Performing Human Capital System in Public Education

On Thursday, March 24th, 2011, CED and the Nashville Chamber of Commerce co-hosted Creating a High Performing Human Capital System in Public Education: What Educators Can Learn from the Private Sector, in Nashville, Tennessee. The luncheon was a part of CED's Human Resources in Education Initiative; an effort that seeks to engage business and education leaders aroudn the need for reform in the human capital strategies of school districts in Texas, Tennessee, and across the United States.  Over 200 business and education policy advocates from the Nashville area were in attendance.

The forum was presented by Mayor Karl Dean, Metropolitan Nashville & Davidson County, and Dr. Jesse Register, Director of Schools, Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools and featured remarks from CED Trustee Dr. Jerry Weast, Superintendent of Schools, Montgomery County Public Schools, Ranjit Nair, St Edwards University Faculty of Business and Management, Former Global Head of Human Resources - GLOBALFOUNDARIES, Human Capital Consultant and Organizational Storyteller, and Volunteer with the Austin Chamber of Commerce, Julie Hopkins, Principal, Buena Vista Enhanced Option Elementary, and Mark Marshall, Vice President, Lee Hecht Harrison.

After welcoming remarks by Michael Petro, Vice President, CED, and Ralph Schulz, President & CEO, Nashville Area Chamber of Commerce, Mayor Karl Dean opened up the meeting with remarks that outlined Nashville's need to implement a new human capital model that "reflects a seachange in how we recruit, support, evaluate, retain, and compensate" teachers in its school system. Dr. Jesse Register, in remarks before he began moderating the panel, talked about new subcommittees that he has convened around topics like preparing and supporting new teachers, providing opportunities for professional development for teachers in Metro Nashville Public Schools, and better teacher evaluation systems. During the panel discussion, CED Trustee Dr. Jerry Weast provided important "lessons learned" about the human capital in education system reform process from his tenure as superintedent of Mongtomery County Public Schools, and Ranjit Nair discussed creating a "performance based culture," calling on senior executives in the business community to "roll up their sleeves" and become involved in reform, stating that it is in business' best interest to enable quality education for the future U.S. workforce.  Principal Julie Hopkins spoke about how pleased she was by the the progress that the Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools has made in the last few years, and Mark Marshall added that he was encouraged by the collaboration between the business and education communities in Nashville and by the "major changes" that both communities were starting to consider for the public school system.

The event was closed with a question and answer period that allowed audience members to interact directly with the participating speakers.

Watch the forum:

The event was made possible by the generous support of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.