Tennessee sees decrease in TCAP testing scores

JACKSON, Tenn. — Scores on statewide tests dropped last year during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“When we look at Tennessee over the last 12 years, we’ve seen incredible progress. The last time you know when we’re looking at test scores from this year last time we’ve seen scores similar to that is generally in that 2011-2013 time frame,” said Tennessee Department of Education Commissioner Penny Schwinn.

Scores on TCAP testing dropped as students adjusted to new learning methods during the pandemic.

“We also saw teachers who had some kids in front of them, some kids on a computer toggling back and forth trying to serve all kids and all manners of context, and I think what we know to be true is that children learn best when they are in front of their amazing classroom teacher everyday,” Schwinn said.

As administrators and teachers enter the new school year, there will be more of a focus on school tutoring.

“What we know is that high dosage tutoring, and that’s students in groups no more than three, are getting frequent tutoring 30 minutes two to three times per week focus on just what that child needs. We know that is the best thing we can do to move achievement forward,” Schwinn said.

The Tennessee Higher Education Commission plans to invest in students to help bring scores up and make learning help accessible to everyone.

“We are investing $700 per student per year for the next three years for those districts who want to offer high dosage tutoring to make affordable to every district,” Schwinn said.

The overall goal of this school year is to increase the amount of students who meet grade level expectations.

“If we invest our SR dollars, our federal relief dollars wisely, if we give students the additional time and support they need, we can catch them back up. We can get them on grade level, and we can help them be better off than they otherwise would’ve been,” Schwinn said.

If you’d like to review your student’s 2020-2021 test scores and past scores, click here.

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