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Samantha West

Reporter, Chalkbeat Tennessee

Samantha West is a reporter for Chalkbeat Tennessee, where she covers K-12 education in Memphis. She’s a 2021 Education Writers Association Reporting Fellow and New to the Beat rookie. Before joining Chalkbeat, she was a K-12 education reporter for USA TODAY NETWORK-Wisconsin and the Eau Claire Leader-Telegram. While studying journalism and English at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, she interned at The Washington Post and Milwaukee Journal Sentinel as the Ann Devroy Fellow. A native Minnesotan and a seven-year Wisconsinite, she’s passionate about hotdish (not casserole) and the Green Bay Packers.

Ray will continue serving as superintendent of Tennessee’s largest school district through the review
Nearly 17% of Memphis students in grades 3-12 performed at or above grade-level expectations in math and English
Officials plan renovations and an addition to better accommodate special education and music programs
The proposed upgrades are part of an ongoing push to improve safety and security at Tennessee’s largest school district
District scales back its ambitions after coming up short in request for county funding
Scores rise across all subjects and grades, largely returning to pre-COVID levels, but disparities persist
Twelve Memphians are competing for seats on the school board representing districts 1, 6, 8, and 9. What questions do you have for them?
Over 25 Kingsbury parents, students, teachers, neighborhood residents, and community activists gathered Monday to voice their concerns about the school and discuss the path forward.
The proposed fiscal year 2023 budget would give teachers a 2% pay raise and $1,500 retention bonuses.
The $20 million center will centralize and strengthen the state’s 65 existing “grow your own” teacher preparation programs.
Memphis-Shelby County Schools wants a “fresh start” at Kingsbury High School. The community says it wants to be heard.
School districts across the nation have reported rising chronic absenteeism this school year, as in-person schooling resumed for the first time in over a year during the pandemic.
District officials say high school internships allow students to get a head start on career exploration, years before they have to choose a major or job.
The proposed 30% increase from the current custodial services contract would increase the base pay rate for employees to $15 per hour from $10.
In an exclusive interview with Chalkbeat, Joris Ray discusses how he has managed to stay positive amid turmoil
The hires include two assistant superintendents overseeing academics at the middle and high school levels, and a deputy chief of security to bolster safety.
With Billy Orgel’s late decision not to seek reelection, Amber Huett-Garcia is the only candidate running for District 8.
As leading health officials warn of an accelerating youth mental health crisis, students from across Tennessee say laws limiting how topics like institutional racism and white privilege can be taught are disheartening.
The Tennessee Public Charter School Commission voted unanimously on Friday to reject MAHS’ appeal and affirm Memphis-Shelby County Schools’ previous decision to close the school due to financial malfeasance.
Planning is still underway, but the Brenda Rogers Parent Resource Center may include a food pantry, a clothing donation closet, computers, and extra space for parent advocacy training.
Superintendent Joris Ray grabbed parents and students’ attention when he floated the idea of a year-round school calendar last month. Here’s what research says about the “balanced” calendar.
Everett’s appointment is effective immediately, with his first Memphis-Shelby County school board meeting scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Tuesday.
A new survey asks district stakeholders to tell administrators what investments should — and shouldn’t — be prioritized in the upcoming budget.
The school argues that Memphis-Shelby County school board erred in revoking its charter based on alleged criminal activity of three former school leaders.
The Shelby County Commission will vote to select the appointee at its March 21 meeting.
While Tennessee’s largest school district continues to recommend masks, parents can now opt their children out of wearing a face covering.