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1 day ago
Four reasons Tennessee likely won’t go back to paper testing
In short, reverting to pencil-and-paper tests would be akin to ordering iPhone users to go back to flip phones. It almost certainly won’t happen.
2 days ago
Tennessee lawmakers take matters into their own hands on TNReady testing problems
After more testing problems, the legislature votes to pull TNReady scores from this year’s accountability systems for students, teachers, schools, districts.
April 18, 2018
‘I do not plan to resign,’ McQueen tells lawmakers over latest testing missteps in Tennessee
Facing mounting pressure, the state's education commissioner vows to power through testing season and make adjustments as needed.
April 18, 2018
On the hot seat: McQueen to explain latest testing blunders to angry Tennessee lawmakers
Facing mounting pressure over more TNReady testing problems, Education Commissioner Candice McQueen will face lawmakers to explain what went wrong this time.
April 17, 2018
Tennessee lawmakers call for McQueen’s resignation, scrapping TNReady over more testing failures
Problems with Tennessee's online student testing system for a second straight day spurs talk on Capitol Hill.
April 16, 2018
TNReady is back online, and technical problems are back too
Tennessee's return to statewide online testing starts off bumpy, but state officials promise it will go better on Tuesday.
April 12, 2018
Two years after massive testing snafus, Tennessee will test more students online than ever
TNReady begins April 16 and ends May 4, with high schoolers easing Tennessee back into statewide online testing.
Nation's Report Card
April 10, 2018
Tennessee’s performance slips in math on national test of student achievement
Fourth-graders lost ground on exams known as the Nation's Report Card, while the state's other 2017 scores in reading and math were mostly flat.
April 9, 2018
Concerned about over-testing, Tennessee will eliminate two high school exams
Dropping the two end-of-course tests represents Tennessee's most significant reduction of state-mandated testing in recent years.
April 6, 2018
The Nation’s Report Card is out soon. Will Tennessee’s hot streak continue?
Tennessee has been among the nation's fastest-improving states on student achievement based on the national test.
March 23, 2018
Hopson asks state to let struggling Memphis school remain with local district
The superintendent submits a list of reasons why the state should hold off on its intervention plan at American Way Middle School.
March 22, 2018
Memphis candidate no longer in running to lead Achievement School District
Keith Sanders said the state's education chief called him with the news that he would not advance in the superintendent search.
meet and greet
March 21, 2018
Tennessee seeks reset in Memphis with next leader of its school turnaround district
Community trust in the Achievement School District is low — an issue that the state wants to address in vetting superintendent candidates.
March 8, 2018
Here are the four candidates to be the next superintendent of the Achievement School District
All four candidates to lead the Achievement School District are men with backgrounds in charters, turnaround work, or state departments — and one is based in Memphis.
March 1, 2018
McQueen: If Memphis school leaders won’t convert American Way to a charter, the state will
The commissioner's comments come two days after Memphis leaders voted to move American Way Middle School into its highly regarded Innovation Zone.
March 1, 2018
Haslam to name task force on school safety in Tennessee
The governor's task force will include law enforcement, education leaders, mental health professionals, and legislators.
taking a stance
February 27, 2018
Memphis leaders urge state to stay out of their school improvement work
Shelby County Schools plans to move one school to its Innovation Zone and declines the state’s recommendation to close another.
February 26, 2018
McQueen’s plan would interrupt Hopson’s for improving one Memphis school
The state's recommendation to close Hawkins Mill Elementary comes in the school's first year of a three-year improvement plan under Shelby County Schools.
February 22, 2018
Gov. Bill Haslam convened a ‘power meeting’ between Tennessee’s charter school and district leaders. Here’s why.
At issue is a new charter school law, which directs local districts to share student directory information requested by charter operators.
February 20, 2018
State’s most drastic school intervention plans won’t work, say Memphis board members
School board members suggest Hawkins Mill Elementary and American Way Middle instead move into the district's turnaround model, the Innovation Zone.
February 16, 2018
McQueen outlines state intervention plans for 21 Memphis schools
McQueen's letter offers the first look at how the state is pursuing school turnaround plans under its new tiered model of school improvement.
February 5, 2018
Tennessee’s special education population is changing under its new academic intervention program
State education leaders hail a personalized learning program launched in 2014 for improved equity statewide and a decrease in special education referrals.
February 1, 2018
Rocketship becomes latest charter network to pull the plug on Tennessee’s Achievement School District
The California-based organization announces plans to close Partners Community Prep in Nashville, just months after the school opened.
January 29, 2018
Haslam proposes teacher pay hike for third straight year in Tennessee
Public schools would get an extra $212 million, including funding for increasing teacher pay for the third straight year, under Gov. Bill Haslam’s final proposed budget.
January 17, 2018
ACT do-overs pay off for 40 percent of Tennessee high school seniors who tried
The state's $2 million investment in its ACT Retake Day appears to be paying off for a second year in a row.
January 12, 2018
Judge orders Nashville schools to turn over student information to state charters
The ruling is a blow to local district leaders in both Nashville and Memphis, who have argued that a federal privacy law gives them discretion.
State Report Card
January 10, 2018
New in Tennessee: one-stop shopping for the latest school data
Tennessee releases its new State Report Card online, complete with TNReady scores from the first year of completed testing for all grades.
Gold standard teachers
January 9, 2018
Tennessee adds nationally certified teachers but continues to trail in the South
Twenty Tennessee educators earn a national certification that’s considered the profession’s highest mark of achievement.
December 20, 2017
Here’s why people are talking about Tennessee, a ‘bright green rectangle’ on a new U.S. map of student growth
The Volunteer State has never turned heads when it comes to student proficiency, but it’s now raising eyebrows on student growth.
December 19, 2017
Memphis to receive more state-funded summer reading camps than previous year
In all, Tennessee will distribute about $8.9 million to pay for month-long camps at 203 schools across the state aimed at combating summer slide.
November 20, 2017
McQueen to convene third task force as Tennessee seeks to get testing right
The group will examine the state's testing program in the wake of persistent hiccups with TNReady and perennial concerns about over-testing.
November 16, 2017
Teachers in Millington and Knoxville just won the Oscar awards of education
Teachers in Millington and Knoxville receive a prestigious national teaching award, $25,000 checks, and a visit from the state’s education chief.
five years in
November 15, 2017
Tennessee’s two big school turnaround experiments are yielding big lessons, researchers say
Five years in, Tennessee receives a report card of sorts from researchers who have closely followed its two primary models for improving struggling schools.
November 14, 2017
Fired testing company seeks $25.3 million for work on TNReady’s bumpy rollout
The president of Measurement Inc. says his company continues to seek payment for services rendered developing the state's new standardized test.
November 7, 2017
McQueen wants teacher pay to go up and local costs to go down for Tennessee’s student intervention program
As Gov. Bill Haslam prepares the final budget of his administration, Education Commissioner Candice McQueen is asking to increase teacher pay for a third straight year.
October 31, 2017
Memphis leaders vote not to release student information to charter schools
The board’s action means Tennessee’s largest district more than likely will be sued by the state of Tennessee.
October 25, 2017
As lawmakers grill McQueen about Tennessee’s testing problems, here are five things we learned
Details about scoring errors and testing plans emerge as state legislators seek explanations for a second straight year of problems with TNReady.
October 20, 2017
Four Memphis schools improve enough to exit ‘priority’ list, including one in Achievement School District
The moves are significant, as only 16 percent of “priority” schools have moved off of the state’s 2012 and 2014 lists.
October 20, 2017
As Nashville heads to court over sharing student information with the state, here’s why Memphis probably won’t
Instead of outright rejecting McQueen's deadline last month like Nashville did, Shelby County Schools Superintendent Dorsey Hopson sought a compromise.
October 19, 2017
School-by-school TNReady scores for 2017 are out now. See how your school performed
Nearly six months after Tennessee students sat down for their end-of-year tests, all of the scores are now out. State officials released the final installment…
October 13, 2017
Scoring glitch means thousands of Tennessee students got wrong TNReady score
About 9,400 students across the state received incorrect scores after the testing vendor, Questar, used a scanning program that included an error.
October 13, 2017
In their second year, Tennessee’s summer reading camps show improved skills for some
While testing data is available for only half of participating students, those who were assessed grew in their reading accuracy by an average of 4 percentage points.
October 4, 2017
The report card is in for Tennessee grade-schoolers. It’s not good, but it’s expected.
Most elementary and middle school students are lagging in English and math, based on the first year of scores under the state's harder new TNReady test.
October 3, 2017
After a two-year gap, Tennessee is about to release test scores for grade-schoolers. Here’s what to expect.
A significant void in test score data will start to be filled with this week's release of statewide TNReady scores for grades 3-8.
September 28, 2017
Tennessee, meet your new Teacher of the Year
Cicely Woodard was awarded the honor during her 13th year teaching in Tennessee. She is an eighth-grade mathematics teacher in Nashville.
Movers & shakers
September 27, 2017
The state-run Achievement Schools has a new academic leader. Here’s her vision for amplifying the district’s top teachers
Verna Ruffin’s role with the five-year-old Achievement School District a new one. She's tasked with raising the academic bar across all 32 ASD schools.
September 22, 2017
McQueen’s deadline looms for Memphis and Nashville to share student info with charter schools — and no one is budging
Tennessee Education Commissioner Candice McQueen said potential consequences will be determined Monday. Past state action suggests funding cuts could be on the table.
good news bad news
September 19, 2017
Most Tennessee districts are showing academic growth, but districts with the farthest to go improved the least
It’s not just Memphis: Across Tennessee, districts with many struggling schools posted lower-than-expected growth scores on this year’s state exams, the data shows.
September 14, 2017
Tennessee’s attorney general sides with charter schools in battle over student information
Citing the new legal opinion, Education Commissioner Candice McQueen orders district leaders in Memphis and Nashville to comply.
Movers and shakers
September 11, 2017
Meet the interim leader of Tennessee’s school turnaround district
Kathleen Airhart has played a pivotal role in overhauling the Achievement School District. Now she'll step in as interim superintendent.
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