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Tennesseans for Student Success Releases Statewide Polling

NASHVILLE – Tennesseans for Student Success released today the most recent results from their ongoing voter outreach program.
“Through a yearlong targeted and sustained outreach project, unique from other advocacy organizations in this state, we’ve talked to and surveyed over 135,000 Tennesseans. We asked them to share their thoughts on education, the state’s direction, and if candidates for public office are aligned with their views,” said Adam Lister, President and CEO of Tennesseans for Student Success.

Lister continued: “Over and over again, Tennesseans – across all demographic categories including political ideology, geography, age, or gender – said the same thing: education is a top priority for Tennessee’s elected officials and must be a top priority for any candidate they would support for public office. When asked, voters continue to overwhelmingly support the four policy priorities credited with Tennessee becoming the fastest improving state in the nation in education: high academic standards, an assessment aligned to those standards, accountability in the classroom, and public school choice.”

Tennesseans for Student Success has engaged in this sustained effort to ensure trends in voter interest for various policy issues is accurately measured and not significantly impacted by current political activity or the news of the day. Similar to traditional polls that look to test voter preference or passions, this month-long survey reflects a snapshot in time and reflects voter preference at the time it was conducted. External factors, events, or candidate activity can impact results. Surveying registered voters, 3400 respondents (MoE of 1.7%) from February 1 – March 3, 2018, Tennesseans for Student Success found when surveying Democrats, Republicans, and Independents:

Support high standards: 65%
Support yearly assessment: 70%
Support accountability in the classroom: 79%
Support public school choice: 68%

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of the job President Trump is doing?

Approve 51%
Disapprove 42%
No opinion or never heard of 7%
Total 100%

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of the job Vice President Mike Pence is doing?

Approve 52%
Disapprove 34%
No opinion or never heard of 14%
Total 100%

Q. Do you approve or disapprove of the job Governor Bill Haslam is doing?

Approve 57%
Disapprove 24%
No opinion or never heard of 18%
Total 100%

When surveying voters of the Republican and Democrat parties:
Q. If the Republican Primary for Governor were held today, for whom would you vote?

Randy Boyd 20%
Diane Black 14%
Bill Lee 10%
Beth Harwell 8%
Undecided 48%
Total 100%

Q. If the Democrat Primary for Governor were held today, for whom would you vote?

Dean 32%
Fitzhugh 6%
Undecided 62%
Total 100%

Lister: “Education – and the continuation of the right policies and principles that help keep Tennessee’s students on track for success – is a top priority for voters in this state and as they look to elect a new Governor and General Assembly, we will continue our advocacy by encouraging voters to demand their leaders stand up for student success.”

For more information: FebMar_Statewide Large Sample_PublicFebMar_Dem Topline Report_PublicFebMar_GOP Topline Report_PublicEndofMonth_Statewide Report_Public.


Tennesseans for Student Success Announces Legislative Scorecard

NASHVILLE – Tennesseans for Student Success today launched their inaugural TNSuccessCard Scorecard and introduced this pivotal engagement and education tool to the citizens of Tennessee.

“Evaluating legislators in an open and honest manner is important. The SuccessCard clearly and concisely informs voters which members of the General Assembly support the policies that have helped Tennessee become the fastest improving state in the nation in education,” said Tennesseans for Student Success Board Chairman Austin McMullen. “By supporting rigorous academic standards, an assessment aligned to those standards, accountability for everyone involved in the classroom, and public choices in education, Tennessee’s legislators are sending a clear signal that education is the priority for Tennessee.”

McMullen continued: “We’ve spent the last several years at the intersection of education and engagement, and have heard from voters that they want a clear way to understand how their elected officials vote to support Tennessee’s historic improvements in education. As we unveil the SuccessCard and continue to update it each legislative session, we know it will be a helpful tool to help hold Tennessee’s elected officials accountable for student success.”

“We know parents, teachers, community leaders, and all those who have a stake in the work done in our classrooms will find this easy-to-navigate SuccessCard a key part of informing their decisions at the ballot box. And while we are excited to use our SuccessCard, it will not be the only engagement tool in our student success toolbox. As we did in the 2016 elections, we will be deploying a massive air, data, and ground strategy over the next 13 months to make certain Tennessee’s voters are informed about the people and policies that drive student success.”

For more information about the Tennesseans for Student Success SuccessCard, please visit