Blog Archives

Weekly Update – April 16, 2018

Across the state this week, our 3rd – 8th graders are taking this year’s TNReady assessment. They’ve worked hard, learned the standards, and are ready to show their teachers, parents, and themselves what they’ve learned this year.

The state’s once-a-year-assessment window opens today, and 650,000 students will take TNReady over the next few weeks. We wanted to share with you a short note from the Tennessee Department of Education giving three points on how this year’s test will be administered.

From the Department of Education:

  1. Technological readiness: Since last summer, our districts have been going through a number of technological checks to look for device readiness, infrastructure readiness, and operational readiness. We’ve been working with our vendor to proactively solve for potential risks and test the Nextera platform.
  2. Platform preparation: Additionally, we have enhanced and streamlined our data processes, which will improve administration, and we have been working with districts for months to ensure there are ample opportunities for students to practice on Nextera so they will be comfortable with the platform and the types of questions they will see. More than 160,000 practice sessions were completed in the fall and 620,000 have been taken this spring.
  3. Communication and support throughout the testing window: We’ve also been planning with districts and schools about how we will handle issues that may occur during the testing window – again recognizing that the nature of the online environment means we need to prepare for any possibility. We have established a variety of support avenues and processes that are available throughout the operational testing window to provide immediate support, including devices that are ready to be deployed if a district has issues with theirs and staff stationed throughout the state so we can get to any school and provide on-the-ground support in 90 minutes or less. We shared all of these avenues with testing coordinators, technology directors, and directors of schools earlier this week, and that letter is here.

If you’re looking for some great inspiration to rock TNReady, take a few minutes and watch this great hype video from Station Camp Elementary. They’re ready to rock TNReady, and we know students and teachers across the state are, too.

Weekly Update – April 10, 2018

The good news?

Tennessee’s historic rise in student achievement is sustainable. Today’s National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) results give more evidence for continuing to champion our four policy priorities: higher academic standards, an assessment aligned to those standards, accountability for everyone in the classroom, and more choices in public education.

The less-than-good news?
Along with Tennessee, many states across the country fell flat or showed no statistical improvement in their NAEP scores. Tennessee rose in national rankings in 4th Grade Reading and 8th Grade Math. We fell slightly in 4th Grade Math and 8th Grade Reading. While today’s report does not show another dramatic rise in achievement, it does demonstrate sustainable, ongoing, and repeatable growth remains possible for every Tennessee classroom.

What’s next?
Not letting up. The policies that drove Tennessee to be named the fastest improving state in the nation in education on the last two NAEP reports remain a necessary and integral part of the ongoing work for student success. Students across the state continue to demonstrate an ability to rise to a challenge and have, year-over-year, realized greater levels of achievement in the classroom when compared to the students that came before them. This announcement then gives further evidence for not only continuing these reforms but for demanding that the next Governor and General Assembly push to accelerate the work driving student gains.

We wanted to share today’s NAEP results with you. As well, make sure you had the opportunity to read our full statement on the announcement.

There is still work to be done and we know our students can do better. With a continued focus on championing and aggressively supporting student achievement, we know we can do better for them. Thank you for the work you do and for your continued focus on the importance of student success.