Rise & Shine: Controversial education voucher bill finally (and quietly) signed into law

Good morning!

We hope you had a great holiday weekend or an even better start to summer if you're a lucky teacher or student out there.

Did you miss the Friday news dump before the long weekend? Our reporter Marta W. Aldrich didn't. Gov. Bill Lee quietly signed his education savings account plan into law, setting the course to let some public school students in Memphis and Nashville use taxpayer money to pay toward private school tuition or other education services.

Find out more, including why Democrats asked Lee to hold off because of “unprecedented controversy,” in our lead story.

-Caroline Bauman, community editor

IT’S OFFICIAL Although the bill was Lee’s signature education initiative during his first year in office, the governor signed it with little fanfare at the state Capitol before participating in a Memorial Day ceremony in downtown Nashville. Chalkbeat

GATES After surprising Hamilton County Schools students on the last day of the school year, billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates shares his thoughts on The Howard School, Chattanooga 2.0 and the direction of education in the state. Times Free Press

WEIGHING IN The school year is ending but that’s not keeping a group of Germantown parents from speaking up on issues with their kids’ middle school family life curriculum. WTVR

MORE OPPORTUNITIES Students at three Hamilton County high schools can take dual enrollment technology courses this fall through a new partnership. Times Free Press

SEGREGATION TODAY A look back on history with Eula Fields, whose family was among 30 African-American families in Johnson City who joined in the federal lawsuit that caused the city to abandon its 12-year plan for desegregation and immediately integrate the city’s schools. Johnson City Press

DONATIONS WANTED Bradley County Schools is encouraging local residents to dust off their unused music instruments so they can be placed into the hands of children and teens learning to play. Cleveland Daily Banner

MEET N GREET Interim superintendent Jason Golden is on a tour to meet Williamson residents. The Tennessean

SUMMER MEALS Free summer breakfasts and lunches are coming to the Model City again this year. Kingsport Times-News

OPINION From a teacher: Memphis schools need to face the high cost of trauma among students. The Daily Memphian