The Latest

Weekly Update – September 25, 2017
Governor Haslam announced the 2016-2017 graduation rate was a record-high 89.1 percent. What’s more, 56% of districts saw their graduation rates increase, 13 districts improved graduation rates by 5 points of more, and 83%  – a three-year high – of students who identify as Black, Hispanic, or Native American students graduated.

We know the rate of graduating students isn’t the only marker of student success, and while these numbers are worth celebrating, there is still work to be done. But, we know there’s value in celebrating success! We’re especially proud of Lake County Schools with the largest jump in graduation rates – increasing 23.1% in one year.

With high academic standards, an assessment aligned to those standards, accountability for everyone involved in the classroom, and more publicly-funded options for students we are confident we’re on the right track for success.

We couldn’t do this work without you. We certainly wouldn’t see gains like these without the great work of Tennessee’s teachers. Last week we spent the day in Knoxville at our inaugural Tennessee Teacher Voices Summit. It was a powerful day of helping teachers find and use their teacher voice to advocate for students. Here’s a great recap from our #VolsVoices hashtag.

Our Middle Tennessee Teacher Voices Summit is in the planning stages. Time outside of the classroom is valuable and we want to be certain every educator can attend. If you know a Middle Tennessee teacher, forward them this email and ask them to fill out this quick survey and let us know the best times to hold these interactive and integral sessions. 
-Tennesseans for Student Success 
Weekly Update – September 11, 2017

Two weeks ago, Tennessee’s Department of Education released more information on what our high school students are learning and where they are finding success. In case you missed the coverage on the news, we wanted to share our statement here:

“Today’s TNReady results continue to point the way toward success for Tennessee’s high school students. We are pleased to see an increase in the percent of students scoring on track or mastered and a decrease in the percent of students scoring in the lowest performance level. Parents, teachers, students, and all those involved in our classrooms can be certain the combination of high academic standards and a rigorous assessment aligned to those standards is another strong formula for student success.”

As schools across the state get into the swing of things this fall, and as parents, students, and teachers anticipate the release of more TNReady score and school achievement results, we wanted to thank you for supporting rigorous academic standards and adding your voice with all those who support student success. Our teachers and students are making great gains in this state. We will continue to cheer them on, while pushing lawmakers to ensure the policies driving those gains are protected.

We couldn’t do this work without you. Thank you!

By the way, there are a few spots open for our East Tennessee Teacher Voices Summit. We’d love to host an outstanding educator you know. Forward this email (with this link) to them and let them know this free, half-day summit is a good fit for them.

Summer Update – August 14, 2017

It’s one of our favorite times of the year. Our Facebook and Twitter feeds are full of back-to-school pictures and we’re certain your shopping list is full of back-to-school supplies. Whether you are sending a student to school, leading a classroom, or engaging in education from outside our schools, we are thankful for you. Here’s to a great and successful year!

We wanted to share a few things this week you might have missed. We’d love for you to share them with your networks. While we’re mentioning sharing, you’re following us on Facebook and Twitter, right?

1) Tristar Reads – There’s still time to sign your K-12 (incoming or outgoing) student up for Tristar Reads. Head to the Tristar Reads website and log their reading hours for the summer. Yes! You can log their hours for the whole summer at once! We’re giving away three $1,000 college scholarships and there’s still time to win.

Teachers – any reading time that occurs in your classroom before September 1st can be logged! Encourage your students to sign up at TristarReads.Com today.

2) Back to School – Starting a new school, a new job, or a new year can be stressful and scary. We asked one of our Tennesseans for Student Success teachers to give some tips on how to make sure this school year is the best one yet. You can find those on our Facebook page. Feel free to share!

3) Eclipse – Next week, Tennessee will have prime viewing for our nation-wide solar eclipse. We wanted to share this great NASA website full of science lessons, activities, tips for viewing, and fun eclipse facts. You can even become a citizen scientist and help NASA collect data! We’ll be posting facts and safety tips on our social media networks as we all get ready for the big event.

We hope this new school year has started with a bang. We’re cheering you on and can’t wait to see all the success that comes from this year.