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Weekly Update – November 13, 2017

Last week we looked at why we champion accountability for everyone involved in the classroom.

It’s good that whether you are a teacher, student, parent, administrator, or elected official, you are accountable for student success. This week, we’re taking a look at why we fight for rigorous, Tennessee-specific standards and why those standards are a key to student success inside and outside our classrooms.

When students master the academic standards Tennessee’s educators, community leaders, and elected officials created for them, we know they are ready for success. For instance, when students are offered challenging Early Post Secondary Opportunities (EPSOs) and master them, we know they are more likely to excel in their college careers. When we raise the bar for success, we challenge our students to dig more deeply into what they are learning in our classrooms.

Tennessee has twice been named the fastest improving state in the nation in education – we celebrate these historic accomplishments! There is still work to be done so that every student, in every classroom is prepared for success. Rigorous academic standards are a key part of the work to continue moving Tennessee’s students forward.

Because we know our students can compete for college, jobs, and military service with students across the country; Because we know that Tennessee-specific standards help make certain Tennessee’s students are ready; Because we know high expectations make every difference in the lives of every student in Tennessee;

We advocate for rigorous, Tennessee-specific academic standards for every Tennessee student. Thank you for joining us in that work and helping make sure every student in Tennessee has an opportunity to succeed. 

Weekly Update – November 6, 2017

Did you see it?

We released our inaugural legislative scorecard. It features an analysis of bills filed, votes taken, and our position on them. You will be able to easily see how your elected official voted in work to make sure every student in Tennessee has an opportunity to succeed.

Our scorecard, affectionally referred to as the SuccessCard, helps to hold our elected officials accountable to those involved in the work to improve public education across the state. We know accountability for everyone involved in the classroom is one of the keys to student success. Austin McMullen, TSS Board Chairman, highlighted the need for accountability in our Scorecard release. Here’s our announcement video.

We hope you take a few minutes to look around the TNSuccessCard site. Find your elected officials and drop them a note to share your thoughts on student success. Share our page with your networks. The scorecard is your tool, and we hope you enjoy using it.

If you’re following us on Facebook and Twitter, you’ve seen our recent op-ed, penned by Board Member Christi Gibbs. As we all get back in gear for the 2018 Legislative Session, we are reminded of Christi’s words:

“Tennessee’s historic improvement in math, reading, and science is worth celebrating – and defending. Each session of the Tennessee General Assembly brings opportunity to either further enshrine the policies and support the people who have helped bring about student success, or deliberately undermine the work being done in Tennessee’s classrooms for short-term political gain.”

We’ll spend the next few weeks showcasing more tools to use in the new year and that means a few more emails in your inbox as we get ready. We can’t thank you enough for the work you do for all of Tennessee’s students.

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