Education Policy: 9 Issues to Address in 2019

Tennessee Star

Public education is not “broken.” Public education policy is “broken,” and neighborhood public schools are suffering the consequences.  Here are nine of the most critical and challenging issues in public education we should address in 2019 in Tennessee.

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Tennessee Might Bow Out of Nationwide Plan to Arm Teachers

armed teachers

Public schools nationwide might use federal money to arm teachers in class, but don’t look for  Tennessee to participate. “With very few exceptions, it is unlawful for anyone in Tennessee – educator or otherwise – to possess a firearm on school grounds,” said Sarah Gast, spokeswoman for the Tennessee Department…

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JC Bowman Commentary: Tone Deaf School Districts 

JC Bowman

“If you don’t understand — from the school district to the superintendents — that we want our teachers held harmless, then I’m sorry, you’re tone-deaf.” —-State Representative Eddie Smith (Knoxville). That message was heard and understood statewide, right?  Apparently not.  We are receiving reports from across the state that some districts are denying their teachers their justified and earned bonuses, which harms the educator.

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Gov. Bill Haslam Says Don’t Throw in the Towel on TNReady

Bill Haslam

Before he packs up and vacates the Tennessee governor’s mansion early next year, Bill Haslam wants a dialogue with you about ways to improve TNReady. Haslam, at the state capitol Tuesday, announced what he described as a listening tour to do just that. The current governor and a team of…

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Tennessee Department of Education Under Fire For Administrative Incompetence

Steve Gill

Tennessee Star Political Editor Steve Gill was flabbergasted on Monday’s edition of The Gill Report – broadcast on Knoxville’s 92.3 FM WETR – regarding the repeated incompetence displayed at the Tennessee Department of Education. Gill commented, “The Tennessee Department of Education has stepped in it again.” He continued: One of…

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JC Bowman: A Few Thoughts on Educational Assessment and Evaluation

JC Bowman

The risk of misidentifying and mislabeling teacher performance based on test scores is too high for it to be the major indicator of teacher performance, especially when you look at issues such as student demographic characteristics. A number of states, including Michigan, have since taken steps to lessen the impact test scores have on teacher evaluations, repeatedly mentioning factors outside an educator’s control which can influence a student’s academic performance. 

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Tennessee Department of Education Announces Testing Changes

McQueen

The Tennessee Department of Education announced at a noon press conference on Thursday several changes to the state TNReady test that teachers, administrators and superintendents have been asking the state to make, the Professional Educators said in a statement released on Thursday. “Among the changes include rebidding the testing contract,…

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Problems Reported on First Day of TNReady Testing

After months of preparing for the annual year-end assessments, many Tennessee students struggled to log on to the TNReady testing platform Monday morning. The Department of Education says the problem was quickly fixed by the vendor, and over 20,000 students took the test after the problems were resolved. “We share…

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