Articles by: Blake Farmer

These women are counting ballots in a previous election. In Tennessee, there are now two kinds of provisional ballots - one is when someone doesn't have their photo ID, another is when a voter can't be found in the registry. Both are counted only if needed. Credit: Lance Fisher via Flickr

We Won’t Know The Final Tally On DesJarlais/Tracy For Weeks

August 8, 2014 at 1:04 pm

It could be weeks before a final outcome is determined in the race between Congressman Scott DesJarlais and state Sen. Jim Tracy. The incumbent was almost considered the underdog following revelations that he once pressured a mistress to have an abortion. And Thursday night, both men claimed victory.

Cheryl Mayes was elected as chair of the MNPS board following the defeat of former chair Gracie Porter in 2012. Credit: MNPS

Nashville School Board Chair Ousted, Two New Faces Added

August 8, 2014 at 6:43 am

For the second election cycle in a row, the chair of Nashville’s school board has been voted out of office.

For the first seven months of 2014, GNAR reports home closings are up 3.2 percent compared to 2013. Credit: American Advisors Group via Flickr

Hot Home Sales In Nashville Mean Sellers ‘Ain’t Fixing Nothing’

August 7, 2014 at 4:28 pm

It continues to be a sellers real estate market in Nashville. New figures from July show high demand and low supply of homes.

The Tennessean newsroom will be cut by 15 percent according to plans unveiled Tuesday. Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Tennessean Cuts Managers, Adds Reporters In Major Newsroom Shakeup

August 5, 2014 at 1:57 pm

Just as parent company Gannett spins off its newspaper business, The Tennessean has announced cuts and a complete reshuffling of its newsroom.

Under a new program that's just now being rolled out in all 50 states, districts who agree to a few conditions can get reimbursed for everyone's meal ticket. Credit: USDA via Flickr

Free Lunch Will Be A Novel Concept In Nashville’s More Affluent Schools

August 5, 2014 at 4:51 am

Pizza and hot ham and cheese sandwiches are on the menu for the first day of school in Nashville. And this year, all 85,000 students eat for free thanks to federal taxpayers – even kids in wealthy parts of town who tend to bring a sack lunch from home.

MWS officials say ground water eroded the concrete pipe, eventually weakening the wires that give the concrete its strength. Credit: MWS

Why Did A Nashville Water Main Break Mid-Summer? Maybe Poor Installation

August 4, 2014 at 2:09 pm

It took less than a week to replace a 50-foot section of water main in south Nashville that burst, leaving 15,000 customers with reduced service. Now Metro Water Services officials are starting to explain what may have happened.

U.S. Army Captain Sharika Labrie from Blanchfield Army Community Hospital administers a flu vaccine to retired U.S. Army Chief Warrant Officer 3 Troy Johnson during Retiree Appreciation Day in 2010. In 2004, BACH had to quit seeing retirees on a regular basis because so many doctors and nurses were deployed. Credit: Army Medicine via Flickr

Fort Campbell Hospital Makes Room To Treat Retirees

August 4, 2014 at 4:03 am

Blanchfield Army Community Hospital has reopened its facilities to a limited number of retirees for the first time in a decade. Enrollment was cut off to veterans in 2004 because so many doctors and nurses were deployed to the Middle East.

Sen. Bob Corker speaks to reporters at the U.S. Embassy in Moldova. Since the most recent problems with VA wait times emerged, Corker has criticized plans to solve the problem because they add to the country's deficit. Credit: U.S. Embassy Moldova via Flickr

Bill To Reduce VA Backlog Passes Easily With No Help From Tennessee’s Senators

August 1, 2014 at 8:38 am

Republican Lamar Alexander, who is in a primary battle to keep his seat, did not vote. And Republican Bob Corker was one of the three to vote no.

Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tennessee) is running for a third term, pictured here at a recent announcement regarding expansion of Volkswagen's Tennessee plant. While he has campaigned in the state, he's almost entirely ignored his competition. Credit: TN Photo Services

After Months Of Avoidance, Lamar Alexander Acknowledges Challenger Joe Carr By Name

July 31, 2014 at 4:15 pm

Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander has gone out of his way to avoid saying the name of his most viable opponent in the Republican Primary, until now.

Poison frontman and reality show star Bret Michaels is now Nissan's pitchman for a relatively new line of commercial vans. Credit: Nissan USA

Nissan Turns To 80s Glam Metal Frontman To Sell Commercial Vans

July 31, 2014 at 12:09 pm

Ford Trucks has Toby Keith. Chevy has Tim Allen. And for its tough-guy spokesman, Franklin-based Nissan North America has hired Bret Michaels – front-man for the metal band Poison.

Test Results Show Turnaround Goal For Tennessee’s Lowest-Performing Schools Wasn’t Totally Crazy

Test Results Show Turnaround Goal For Tennessee’s Lowest-Performing Schools Wasn’t Totally Crazy

July 30, 2014 at 9:07 pm

Standardized test results for each Tennessee district are being released Wednesday, and education officials are trying to highlight the good and explain the bad. Some of the most closely watched schools in the state are part of the Achievement School District.

On Wednesday, MNPS superintendent Jesse Register went over district-wide TCAP results while also calling to move on from the outdated test. Credit: Blake Farmer / WPLN

Nashville Schools Report Modest Test Gains, Make Pitch To ‘Abandon’ TCAP

July 30, 2014 at 9:03 pm

Poor and minority students are improving faster in Nashville than they are statewide. Also, standardized test results released Wednesday show improvement in most subjects. The two problem spots are in Algebra I and English III, though district leaders say that’s partially explained by an increase in students opting for advanced courses.

For A Nashville Private School, Recruiting Now Includes Bashing Common Core

For A Nashville Private School, Recruiting Now Includes Bashing Common Core

July 28, 2014 at 5:13 am

As part of a new social media blitz, Ezell-Harding Christian School in Antioch has adopted the slogan “Uncommon to the Core,” a jab at Common Core Education Standards adopted in Tennessee’s public schools.

Watch: Charter School Founder Jeremy Kane Announces Mayoral Run

Watch: Charter School Founder Jeremy Kane Announces Mayoral Run

July 24, 2014 at 3:56 pm

The former charter school CEO joins Metro councilwoman Megan Barry, attorney Charles Bone and former school board chairman David Fox, though others are also expected to enter the race for Nashville mayor.

Patients Sue TennCare For Giving Them The Runaround

Patients Sue TennCare For Giving Them The Runaround

July 23, 2014 at 12:27 pm

Infants waiting on vaccinations, pregnant women forgoing prenatal care and people with deadly infections refusing to go to the hospital — these are the kinds of anecdotes contained in a new lawsuit against Tennessee’s Medicaid program.

SBC president Ronnie Floyd held a press conference along with other Baptist leaders after touring government facilities along the border housing unaccompanied minors from Central America. Credit: ERLC via Facebook

Back From The Border, Southern Baptists Call For Compassion Toward Immigrants

July 23, 2014 at 10:38 am

Leaders of the largest protestant denomination in the U.S. are returning from the Texas border. They’re calling on evangelicals to have compassion for the tens of thousands of unaccompanied minors flooding from Central America.

A hobbiest uses a drone to survey a cow pasture. Currently, drones are not allowed by the FAA for commercial purposes without a special permit. Credit: Lima Pix via Flickr

Tennessee Farmers Shown The Potential In Drones, But Told To Hold Off Using Them

July 22, 2014 at 4:11 am

When thousands of farmers gather this week in West Tennessee, they’ll be learning what drones could do for the agricultural industry, but only in the near future.

It's been primarily conservative groups protesting Common Core. This is a photo from a Sacramento protest. Many see the standards as a federal take over of the education system. Credit: Steve Rhodes via Flickr

Nashville School Board Candidates Wander All Over The Map On Common Core

July 21, 2014 at 4:52 am

Common Core has become a clear differentiator in Nashville’s school board races. Incumbents are confident in the new education standards adopted by most states. Challengers range from confused to fed up.

Four seats on the Metro Schools board of education are on the ballot, and charter schools in the district have become one of the few differentiators between the candidates. Credit: Metro Photo Services

Nashville School Board Candidates Heed Register’s Truce On Charters

July 18, 2014 at 4:44 am

Metro Schools superintendent Jesse Register has called for more civility in the sometimes-toxic debate over charter schools. Candidates for school board are having no trouble complying.

In April, the Shelby Avenue pedestrian bridge was renamed after John Seigenthaler at an event attended by top state and city officials. Credit: Metro Photo Services

Giant Of Journalism John Seigenthaler Dies At 86

July 11, 2014 at 1:23 pm

The journalist, political advisor and civil rights advocate – has died at age 86. He passed away at home, surrounded by family, according to his son.