Phone: (901) 416-3156


Degrees and Certifications:

Dr. Key Coleman

Welcome Back Panther Nation!!!!!

As we embark upon a new school year, the leadership team and I have thought deeply about this year’s theme and our foci for instructional priorities and improvements. Like many schools across the nation, we, too, will be making a concerted effort to unlock student potential in this post pandemic era. Optimistically, the pathway forward for us will be through increased rigor along with providing more authentic learning experiences that drive deeper learning for all K-8 students in our building. The goal is to amplify student choice and voice along with shared power in the classroom while focusing on building knowledge and skills through literacy to ensure equity for all. This will be a somewhat different—yet very familiar approach to teaching and learning for all JP Freeman educators this academic year. We will provide more training on this conceptual teaching framework beginning day 1 of teacher in-service week.

While visiting the Legendary Motown Recording Studio this past May on a school related fieldtrip, I was moved and inspired by the creative genius and leadership style of the iconic Barry Gordy. He is most remembered for discovering relatively unknown talent around the Detroit area during the early years of the record label and transforming individuals and groups into international superstars. This was Mr. Gordy’s claim to Fame. In a similar manner, we seek to emulate his skill of transforming raw skill, desire, and creativity into successful outcomes that inspire the world or at least our students in order to make our planet better. Hence, our theme for this year: Working Collaboratively to Make our Greatest Hits Album for Teachers and Students! Like music, I believe that great teaching and learning can have a profound impact on people’s hearts and minds which leads to transformation in their personal lives. The ripple effect is undeniable. Teachers are the greatest influencers the world has ever known, and this year’s theme will support our individual and collective aims to embody the school’s mission.

In closing, I challenge everyone to think deeply over the course of the next few days about the type of learning/learner you hope to produce this academic year. The way we see our students will manifest into our present-day reality. If we teach compassion, they will learn to be more compassionate. If we teach them to be critical thinkers, deep thinking will be reciprocated in all matters they undertake---and our community will be all the better for it. I am looking forward to creating another winning album that showcases the best of who we are as it relates to teaching and learning!


Key Coleman, Ed.D.

Principal, John P. Freeman Optional School