Two more Tennessee school districts have joined the push to move beyond TNReady and explore additional testing options. In meetings this month, the school boards in Tullahoma and Johnson City both passed resolutions asking the state for options to replace TNReady including the ACT suite of assessments. The districts also called on the state to work diligently to implement a valid and reliable student assessment.
The Johnson City resolution asks for flexibility and calls out the need for better implementation of tests:
WHEREAS, districts should have the flexibility to choose high school standardized assessments that align with the ACT College Readiness Benchmarks.
NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED that the Johnson City Schools’ Board of Education hereby calls on the Tennessee Department of Education to improve the state’s testing practices to ensure technical quality, grade-to-grade articulation, and validity and reliability in results.
The Tullahoma resolution asked for the freedom to use the ACT suite of assessments and also made recommendations regarding the amount of time spent testing. If adopted, these recommendations would significantly reduce the total testing time for students:
The Tullahoma City Board of Education implores the Tennessee General Assembly and the Tennessee Department of Education to allow school districts the opportunity to select either the math and English language arts assessments provided by the State of Tennessee or an English or math test that is part of the suites of standardized assessments available from either ACT or SAT.
BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, The Tullahoma City Board of Education implores the Tennessee General Assembly and the Tennessee Department of Education to direct psychometricians, contractors, and developers to construct assessments designed to inform instructional practice and to provide accountability that would not require for administration a period of time in hours greater in aggregate than the specific grade level of the said child, and not to exceed eight hours in length per academic year.
Tullahoma and Johnson City join Wilson County, Maury County, Davidson County, and Shelby County in asking for either a pause in TNReady or an alternative test.
None of these districts is asking to be absolved of accountability. All of them are asking that the state treat their students and teachers with fundamental fairness.
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