The Director of Schools in Maury County has joined those in Memphis and Nashville in calling for a pause in TNReady as a result of repeated problems with the testing platform.
The Columbia Daily Herald reports Maury County Director of Schools Chris Marczak said he agrees with the letter sent by Dorsey Hopson of Memphis and Shawn Joseph of Nashville. Marczak offered an alternative:
“I believe it would be best for us to focus solely on the ACT and align ourselves with outcomes that can affect students’ college acceptance and scholarship ability,” Marczak said.
Maury County district leadership has indicated the results from this year’s botched test administration are of limited value:
“Due to the issues with testing, we will not be adding TNReady/EOC data to the Keys’ scorecards for either the district or the school levels when they eventually come in,” Marczak said in an email sent to staff in July. “In light of the numerous testing issues, please know that the results of the assessments will be used to inform conversation only. These are the conversations we will have with principals and the principals will have with teachers/staffs.”
In response to the ongoing testing issues, Marczak shared accounts of students completing 75-minute long examinations in 10 minutes. When reviewing the examinations, Marczak said the district had over 600 missing scores. Questar, the contractor hired by the state to administer the test, reported that 600 individual assessments were incomplete.
Despite the growing concern over the inability to effectively administer the TNReady test, Commissioner of Education Candice McQueen has said the test is still an important tool:
TNReady serves as a vital feedback loop for teachers, parents, and administrators to tell us where we are, and the results inform what steps we need to take to help all students and schools succeed.”
TNReady might be an important feedback loop if it ever worked the way it was intended. But it hasn’t. Instead, it’s been fraught with problems since the beginning. Now, education leaders are standing up and speaking out.
The push to pause TNReady and possibly move forward with a different measure comes at the same time the TDOE is being taken to task for a failure to properly execute Pre-K/Kindergarten portfolios. Knox County’s School Board last night voted to send a message that they have “no confidence” in the portfolio process or in the TDOE.
The push against TNReady from key district leaders figures to make the test and overall administration of the Department of Education a key issue in the 2018 gubernatorial and state legislative elections.
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