The State Collaborative on Reforming Education (SCORE) has issued the following statement from Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jamie Woodson about the TNReady decisions announced today by Tennessee Commissioner of Education Candice McQueen:
We are disappointed that many students in third through eighth grades in Tennessee will not be able to take Part 2 of the new TNReady assessment this spring. It is clear that our students, teachers, principals, and district leaders have prepared for a test that better measures the real-world skills needed for success after high school.
Parents and teachers deserve to know how much progress their students have made this year. And all Tennesseans deserve an annual snapshot of the progress our schools and school districts are making.
Based on the announcement this afternoon, it appears that Tennessee’s testing vendor is incapable of providing this year’s assessment to all students in a timely manner. That obviously makes both the decision to terminate the state’s relationship with the vendor and to address district accountability for this year the right one.
But we have a responsibility to learn from this transition year, and to ensure that in the 2016-17 school year, our students and teachers actually receive a test that honors their hard work.
We can’t know what we can’t measure. And we must have a first-class assessment in place each and every year to make sure all Tennessee’s students are mastering the concepts and skills they need to be successful.
We must sustain our commitment to ensuring that every student is assessed on what they have learned throughout the year, and to use these assessments to inform decisions about teaching, learning, and accountability.
We look forward to joining parents, teachers, and other stakeholders across the state in actively insisting we have a timely annual assessment in Tennessee that clearly, rigorously, and fairly indicates what all students are learning.