In February, SCORE released the 2012-13 State of Education in Tennessee report, which includes an overview of the academic gains the state has made over the past year, an update on the work that has contributed to the improvements students have experienced, extensive state and district data, and education priorities for Tennessee in 2013 that will help sustain and accelerate improvements. While we have made significant strides in improving achievement outcomes for students, far too many of our students remain ill-prepared for life after high school. Only 16 percent of students graduate from our schools college-ready in a time when seven of the 10 fastest growing jobs require some form of education after high school. It is clear that there is much more to be done, and we must sustain the important work taking place now.

The five priority areas we recommend are the areas where there is real opportunity, and in many cases, a need to accelerate our work. These priorities are the reflection of significant research and progress monitoring that is based on extensive feedback from teachers, principals, administrators, superintendents, higher education faculty, the Tennessee Department of Education, and other important partners. If we really move the ball in 2013 on each of the five priorities, we will move closer to ensuring that all students are prepared for the future.

2013 Education Priorities

      • Sustained Policy Leadership
      • Foster Great Teaching
      • Support School and District Leadership
      • Use Technology to Enhance Learning
      • Empower Parents

Rise to the Challenge Competition
SCORE wants to hear what YOU personally are doing in your community to impact one of the five education priorities. Throughout March and April, SCORE hosted eight community conversations across the state to discuss the state of education in Tennessee. Everyone who attended a conversation was asked to consider ways they can personally impact the five education priorities over the coming year. For example, teachers promised to set high expectations for all students and build relationships with parents, principals promised to support teachers as they begin teaching the Common Core State Standards, and county leaders promised to support their district’s technology needs. Whether you attended a conversation or not, SCORE wants to hear about the progress Tennesseans are making to impact these priorities and improve student achievement. Submit a summary and picture detailing one way you or a group are helping to sustain policy leadership, foster great teaching, support effective school leaders, use technology to enhance learning, or empower parents. One finalist from each of the CORE regions will be selected to be part of a Facebook poll in which the public will vote on the winning entry. The winner will receive a $100 Donors Choose gift card.

How to enter the competition
SCORE wants to hear from you about what you have done to advance one of the five education priorities. You can submit your story by doing one of the following:

  • Emailing a photo and a brief summary to
  • Tweeting your summary and a link to your photo using the hashtag “#edconvo.”
  • Uploading your photo and summary to your personal Facebook profile, and tagging SCORE.
  • Posting your photo and summary on the SCORE Facebook page, and tagging yourself (required) and your school (optional).
  • Leaving a comment on the blog post, including your summary and a link to your photo.

Dates to remember
All entries must be submitted by Wednesday, June 19, at 5 pm CT. Finalists will be announced on Facebook and the SCORE blog on Monday, June 24. Facebook voting will take place June 24-July 7. The winner will be announced on Monday, July 8.