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Today, First Lady Melania Trump and Tennessee Governor Bill Lee held a call to discuss children’s well-being and Tennessee’s efforts to address mental and physical health for children and families. Penny Schwinn, Commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Education, also participated in the call.

Governor Lee discussed the creation of the state’s COVID-19 Child Wellbeing Task Force and its focus on whole child care, going beyond academic support to include mental and physical health and well-being. Governor Lee and Commission Schwinn outlined the group’s successes in building strong partnerships between public, private, and non-profit groups to ensure that communities and local leaders have the necessary resources to care for children and families.

The First Lady spoke about the importance of ensuring the well-being of all children, including minority children who may face additional barriers to care, and Governor Lee and Commissioner Schwinn described how Tennessee is working to reduce barriers and using COVID-19 testing sites as an additional way to connect communities in need with other critical social services. Commissioner Schwinn also emphasized Tennessee’s commitment to finding innovative ways to care for children with disabilities during the pandemic.

Mrs. Trump thanked Governor Lee for his leadership in addressing children’s well-being in Tennessee, and they agreed to keep in touch in the coming months.