Tennessee Education Association

Great Public Schools for All Students


TEA to Host Five Rally Days on the Hill

Join educators from across the state and take part in the 2014 TEA Rally Days on the Hill. Last year’s events drew great crowds and were a huge success. We hope to have even more members take part in the 2014 Rally Days. This year's events are scheduled for March 11, 18, 25, and April 1 and 15 – all on Tuesdays. Each Rally Day will begin that morning with a short legislative briefing at TEA. Members will then ride a shuttle to the Legislative Plaza to attend committee meetings and meet with legislators. TEA will provide shuttle transportation back to TEA after your legislative visit. 

TEA Successful in Effort to Reverse State Board Action to Tie TVAAS to Licensure

The State Board of Education voted this morning, Friday, Jan. 31, to rescind the portion of the licensure policy that would use TVAAS as a factor in license renewal and advancement. The vote only applies to the portion of the policy related to the use of TVAAS. It does not affect the entire policy the board voted on in August of last year. The vote to rescind the use of TVAAS came after TEA President Gera Summerford and General Counsel Rick Colbert shared the association’s “The Trouble with TVAAS” presentation.

Why TEA’s Position on TVAAS has Changed From the First-to-the-Top Discussions in 2009-10

When Tennessee applied for Race to the Top money in 2010, TEA was part of the conversation on how a new teacher evaluation would be implemented. Unfortunately, the agreements made with the former administration and commissioner of education have not been honored by Commissioner Huffman and Gov. Haslam.

TEA agreed to include TVAAS in evaluation based on these agreements:

TEA Announces Road Trip to Fight Testing, Improve Public Education

TEA is hitting the road to share its exposé, “The Trouble with TVAAS” with educators, parents and community members across the state. The road trip events will also include a presentation of the association’s aggressive legislative agenda for 2014.

TEA’s Road Trip will make numerous stops across the state where local educators and TEA staff will meet with media, visit schools and host  an after-school or evening event to present the hard facts about this year's high-stakes legislative session. 

TEA General Counsel: TVAAS Creator Bill Sanders Would Have Found Current Misuse of Value-Added Data "Parochial and Ineffectual"

TVAAS estimates do not have the sort of mathematical precision Tennessee Commissioner of Education Kevin Huffman has suggested. “In fact, the often-acknowledged imprecision of these estimates calls for great care in how these estimates are used and makes the commissioner’s licensure idea so wrong,” says TEA General Counsel Rick Colbert in this video. Citing data from the Strategic Data Project at Harvard University, Colbert points out the limitations of the value-added measures that must be taken into consideration when interpreting results.

Wear Red for Public Ed on December 9

TEA invites all staff and members to show their support for public schools by Wearing Red for Public Ed on December 9, the day designated as a National Day of Action for Public Education.  In part because the designated date is so close at hand, TEA will not be initiating any other action from the state level though local affiliates may wish to plan some appropriate local or regional activity on December 9. 

TEA General Counsel on "The Trouble With TVAAS"

“Basing teacher licensure decisions solely on TVAAS results, regardless of what teachers have made on their overall evaluation scores, is misguided,” says TEA General Counsel Rick Colbert in this video, available on the TEA YouTube channel. In the second presentation of a four-part series highlighting problems with using TVAAS data as a basis for license advancement and renewal, Colbert explains why using TVAAS estimates as blunt tools with which to end teachers’ careers is the wrong and destructive approach.

Announcing new TEA Executive Director

At its October meeting, the TEA Board of Directors voted to employ Carolyn Crowder as TEA’s new executive director.  Crowder was selected for the position through a very deliberative process by a special Executive Director Search Committee convened by TEA President Gera Summerford.

“We extend our congratulations to Ms. Crowder and look forward to her leadership at TEA,” said President Summerford in announcing the board’s decision.