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Tennesseans for Student Success Highlights Voter Outreach Efforts

Tennesseans for Student Success today announced the results of their issue advocacy and voter identification work throughout the state. A non-profit dedicated to making sure every student has an equal opportunity to succeed, a strong focus of their 2016 work has been to inform voters of the policies, people, and priorities that led to Tennessee’s unprecedented gains in education.

“In April, we committed to spending $500,000 on an aggressive air, data, and ground strategy,” said TSS president and CEO Adam Lister. “Including our work through November, we spent $975,000 in our efforts to make sure Tennesseans knew about the great things happening in their classrooms. In every area we engaged, voters chose to re-elect pro-education candidates and made clear their mandate to protect and continue the policies that have led Tennessee to become the fastest improving state in the nation in math, English language arts, and science.”

A compilation of TSS work since August shows the statewide group made over 2 million phone calls, ran both dozens of Facebook ads with more than 10 million impressions and 50,000 clicks and an online video with more than 125,000 views, and commissioned 40 polls throughout the state. They sent mail highlighting the great work of teachers and students to more than 250,000 households and hosted eight Days of Action in Nashville and Knoxville, knocking on nearly 13,000 doors to share the good news of Tennessee’s academic gains with voters.

Lister continued: “We are thrilled for Tennessee’s students that pro-reform champions will be returning to the General Assembly. We were confident that our message of strong classrooms, accountability, high standards, parent-driven and publicly-funded choice, and the necessity of a yearly assessment would win at the ballot box. The real winners here, though, continue to be Tennessee’s kids who today are better prepared for success than ever before. While electoral successes in August and November are worth celebrating, we look forward to talking to Tennesseans, learning more about their priority issues, and advocating for student success in 2017 and beyond.”

Tennesseans for Student Success Celebrates, Defends Historic Gains

Tennesseans for Student Success today joins parents, teachers, students, community leaders, and elected officials in celebrating another indicator of success in Tennessee’s classrooms. Called “the Nation’s report card,” the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) measures student achievement in key subject areas and has named Tennessee the fastest improving state in the nation. Today’s announcement marks the second time in five years Tennessee has achieved this historic benchmark of student success.

Today’s announcement that Tennessee’s 4th graders leapt to 19th and 8th graders to 21st in the nation – both in science – is great, but not surprising news,” said president and CEO Adam Lister.  “We’ve said all along that with rigorous standards and increased accountability, combined to support excellent teaching, we could raise the bar for Tennessee’s students. Across the country science scores are on the rise, but Tennessee’s kids continue to lead the pack in growth. In fact, the rate of growth in Tennessee doubled the national average.”

Lister: “Continuing to be the fastest improving nation in education is more than a designation. It’s the result of mindful student-focused reforms centered around high expectations, increased accountability, rigorous standards, and an aligned assessment to measure success. Today is a great day to rightfully focus on the success in Tennessee’s classrooms, the fastest improving in the nation. Tomorrow we will continue to focus our efforts and attention on making sure the policies, people, and priorities that lead to this success are protected.”

For more information on Tennessee’s historic NAEP scores, visit the NAEP homepage linked here.