by Steven Hale
Tennessee's standardized testing results were released today. They're not great, but they're getting better.
Andrea Zelinski with the details at The City Paper:
The greatest gains this year are in science and math while progress in reading and English is lagging behind, according to state Education Commissioner Kevin Huffman.
“My hope is that a year from now we will be standing up here saying math continued to grow really fast and reading grew just as fast as math,” Huffman told reporters after a press conference releasing the test results Thursday.
Test scores went up for low-income students, said Huffman, slightly narrowing the achievement gap between poor students and their peers. Other gaps between black and Latino students and their white peers also shrunk some this year, he said.
At least 50 percent of third- through eighth-graders are on grade level in every subject measured by the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program, a state-mandated standardized test given each spring. According to the state Department of Education, breaking through that 50 percent mark in all subjects in the lower grade levels is a first since the state reset standards in 2009.
Among high schoolers — who take tests called the End of Course Exams — about 60 percent or more are at least on grade level in Algebra I, English I and II and Biology. Roughly 40 percent are at least proficient in Algebra II and English III.