NASHVILLE – Building on 10 years of work in helping move Tennessee from the back of the pack to one of the fastest-improving states in the nation in K-12 student achievement, the State Collaborative on Reforming Education (SCORE) today unveiled its new strategic plan and announced plans to combine forces with Complete Tennessee, an advocacy organization focused on increasing postsecondary access and completion in the state.

“Our goal is to bring even greater focus to boosting K-12, college, and career success across Tennessee,” said Sen. Bill Frist, M.D., founder and chairman of SCORE. “We look forward to embracing the work of Complete Tennessee to ensure that education remains a top priority in Tennessee and that policy decisions always center on what is best for students.”

“In recent years, Complete Tennessee and SCORE have worked collaboratively to advance our shared state goals,” said Randy Boyd, founder and chairman of Complete Tennessee. “But beginning today and going forward, we are pleased to announce that with the full support and encouragement of our respective leadership and governing boards, we are officially moving Complete Tennessee inside SCORE to align and accelerate our shared focus on college success and completion.”

To find new approaches for greater student success, SCORE embarked on a strategic planning process that interviewed and engaged with key stakeholders in K-12, higher education, philanthropy, workforce development, many of the state’s top employers, and top partners like Complete Tennessee. There was widespread agreement that a more unified and aligned effort between K-12 and higher education was needed to ensure more students are attaining the postsecondary credentials needed for rewarding careers and lives.

Under the leadership of President and CEO David Mansouri, SCORE will expand its work to ensure K-12 and postsecondary education are aligned to prepare students for career and life success, while amplifying data on outcomes across the entire continuum. SCORE has set four new goals for the organization and for Tennessee:

  • All students will receive an excellent public K-12 education
  • All students will earn a credential or postsecondary degree after high school
  • All students are prepared for a career that enables their economic independence
  • All students, across all goals, will have equitable opportunities for success

SCORE will push for the next wave of innovation across all priorities, but with a primary emphasis on:

  • Excellent educators – preparing, recruiting, supporting, and retaining excellent teachers and leaders
  • High expectations – ensuring all schools and systems meet high expectations
  • Classroom to career alignment – aligning K-12 and college with career and life success

“Executive Director Kenyatta Lovett and the Complete Tennessee team have done a terrific job of raising awareness and engagement about the importance of postsecondary access and completion in the state, especially the many equity challenges we still face,” said Barbara Hyde, chair and CEO of the Hyde Family Foundation in Memphis, and a Complete Tennessee board member. “Now by combining forces with SCORE, we believe we can create a seamless, coordinated strategy to advance educational attainment from kindergarten through postsecondary.”

“In the coming weeks, SCORE will be embracing this work and expanding our focus to create even greater opportunities for Tennessee students,” said David Mansouri, SCORE president and CEO. “Nothing is more important to the future of our state than preparing all of our students for success in college, career, and life.”

“The lines between K-12 and higher education are becoming increasingly blurred, so the time is right for this unified focus,” said Dr. Kenyatta Lovett, executive director of Complete Tennessee. “I am grateful to all of our Complete Tennessee partners who have come together to get this work started. I know it will only accelerate under SCORE’s guidance and leadership. I look forward to continuing my support of this vital work for the future of our students and our state.”

The State Collaborative on Reforming Education (SCORE) drives for changes that transform education in Tennessee – from kindergarten through postsecondary education. We work to ensure all students receive an excellent K-12 public education, earn a credential or postsecondary degree, and are prepared for a career that enables economic independence. An independent, nonprofit, and nonpartisan institution, SCORE was founded in 2009 by Senator Bill Frist, M.D., former U.S. Senate Majority Leader.