Education is topic for gubernatorial forum

Education will be the topic of a forum and open dialogue with candidates who are running for the state’s top office on Monday, Oct. 26.

Blount Education Initiative is hosting the community forum for the gubernatorial candidates to explore and discuss the topic “Making Education Tennessee’s Top Priority: The Roles of State Government, Local Governments and all Tennessee Citizens.”

The forum will take place at 6:50 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 26, in the auditorium of William Blount High School. The public is invited to attend and will be encouraged to participate in an open dialogue with the candidates, according to a BEI press release.

As of Sept. 28, gubernatorial candidates Knoxville Mayor Bill Haslam (Republican), Former Tennessee House of Representatives Majority Leader Kim McMillan (Democrat), Tennessee Lt. Gov. Ron Ramsey (Republican) and U.S. Rep. Zach Wamp (Republican) have agreed to participate.

“The purpose of this community forum is to engage Tennessee gubernatorial candidates in a discussion about how and why to improve Tennessee’s nationwide standing in educational performance and achievement,” said Matt Murray, BEI president. “The discussion is not intended to dissect the state’s policy and funding issues, but rather to address education’s more strategic role in charting a path of future economic success for both the state and its individual citizens.”

“We especially want the public to know that this forum will not be speech-driven,” said Bonny Millard, executive director of BEI. “It will be dialogue-driven in a true community meeting format with the moderator guiding the discussion among the candidates based on educational topic points while engaging audience feedback and questions to further advance the conversations.”

For more information about the gubernatorial community forum or to submit suggested education-related issues for candidate discussion, the public can visit

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