Tennessee Education Association

Great Public Schools for All Students


TEA statement on new testing vendor, state emphasis on test data

“Our students and teachers have been through three straight years of testing problems. TEA is hopeful that the state’s move to a new vendor and back to pencil and paper tests will keep this from becoming the fourth year of frustrations.”

“More important than the selection of a new vendor is the issue we really need to focus on – which is the disruptive and inappropriate role standardized tests play in our public schools. Our students need more time to learn the information and skills that will prepare them for future success. Wasting time training our students to be excellent test takers is a disservice to our children, our educators and our communities. This practice will continue, unfortunately, as long our state continues to prioritize test scores over everything else.”

“Tennessee has the opportunity now to really change how we do things and take steps to make sure our students are receiving the best possible education. The passage of the Every Student Succeeds Act at the federal level gives Tennessee a chance to reevaluate how it measures student and teacher performance. The new law allows for the development of innovative assessments, giving states a way out of the test-and-punish system we have operated under for many years. It will also allow us to look at other success indicators, as opposed to relying on a single test to determine if a school is meeting students’ needs.”

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