Nashville Mayor Megan Barry congratulates Ezell-Harding Christian School on its commitment to offering a faith-based education and for its investment in Antioch.
A $4 million investment in the Antioch community was announced Thursday as officials descended on Ezell-Harding Christian School for its announcement of Eagle Rising Initiative, a multi-phase initiative to upgrade the school’s campus, academic offerings, and investment in staff.
According to Vonda McGill, chairperson of Eagle Rising, Phase I, which begins immediately, will focus on campus improvements, including a redesigned and upgraded playground, which includes a bike trail and shading, improvements to the high school library’s outdoor space, the entry way, and more.
Eric Jordan, a student at Ezell-Harding Christian said in his 13 years as a student at Ezell-Harding, Eagle Rising is the best initiative thus far.
“The student body is extremely excited about remodeling the commons area,” Jordan said. “That is essentially the hub of the high school where we have praise chapel and hang out in our free time.”
A number of board members spoke to the crowd of about 75 assembled for the announcement and then District 32 Council Member Jacobia Dowell and Mayor Megan Barry spoke, effectively tying the announcement in to Antioch-wide investments that have been taking place.
“It is always wonderful to come out and celebrate the beginning of something new,” Dowell said. “It took vision for leaders in the 1970s to meet, plan, and envision that a school will sit on the 23 acres of vacant land over here on Bell Road.”
Long-time student Eric Jordan gives a ringing endorsement of the initiative from the student body's perspective.
Dowell mentioned that Antioch is the fastest growing community in Nashville and Davidson County. She pointed to successes such as a new library, community center, Ford Ice Center, and a large number of businesses relocating in the area.
“When I think about the building block of what makes a great community, education is the foundation, Dowell said. “If it is the one thing we get right, our opportunities in Antioch, and as a city, are limitless.”
“The announcement today just further solidifies that Antioch is back on the rise,” Dowell said. “It will serve as a legacy that will continue to serve the residents of this city for many, many years.”
Mayor Barr spoke briefly about her experiencing attending a Catholic school in her youth and how special it was to be in a faith-based environment at school. She ended her brief comments with congratulations.
“My role today is to say congratulations to all of you,” she said, while also thanking those who donated to fund the Eagle Rising Initiative. “Also congratulations for putting your children in such a special place.”
She also thanks the audience for Antioch’s role in being a warm and welcoming place for “the people who are already here and the people who are coming.”
Following comments, a reception, hosted by Antioch’s Shineworthy Tea, was held for attendees.
Disclosure: Publisher and owner of AntiochTenn.com, Clay Morgan, has three children who attend Ezell-Harding Christian School.