Child Well-Being Check Initiative Withdrawn After Uproar in Tennessee

 The Tennessee Department of Education has withdrawn a $1 million initiative to conduct well-being checks for all children in Tennessee from birth to age 18 after the program sparked uproar this week, with critics calling it a big-brother government overreach.

Gov. Bill Lee and Education Commissioner Dr. Penny Schwinn released the Child Wellbeing Check Toolkit during a news conference Tuesday. As originally published, the initiative recommended well-being checks for all children in the state to verify well-being as school closures have left gaps for nutrition, health, and abuse reporting services amid the coronavirus pandemic.

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Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles Blasts Department of Education’s ‘Child Wellbeing’ Checkup Program, Says It’s Time for Penny Schwinn to Go

Friday morning on The Tennessee Star Report, host Michael Patrick Leahy welcomed Maury County Mayor Andy Ogles to the show to discuss the Tennessee Department of Education’s new “wellness liaisons” that can check up on children at schools and at their homes.

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State Department of Education Will Provide $15 Million in Grants for Student Internet Access

Tennessee’s Department of Education has announced $15 million in matching grants to help school districts provide MiFi devices and data coverage for 100,000 student households without internet access. MiFi devices access the internet over the cellular network using a procedure commonly referred to as “tethering.”

Funds will go to school districts as a matching grant to provide an estimated 100,000 households with internet access for distance learning amid the coronavirus pandemic. Priority will be given to households most in need.

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