Schools prep for TNReady standards program switch
Published 8:58 am Friday, April 17, 2015
Members of the Carter County Board of Education approved some routine business matters and received an update on the school system’s preparation for the new TNReady state standards and testing.
TNReady will be implemented for the 2015-16 school year, Director of Schools Kevin Ward said.
The Tennessee Department of Education worked with educators across the state to develop TNReady, which will be the state’s new student achievement assessment in reading, writing, and math for grades 3–11.
The program is designed to assess student knowledge as well as critical thinking and problem-solving skills.
“No longer will we have what is known as TCAP testing,” Ward said.
Student assessment tests under TNReady will be conducted completely online and will move away from the multiple choice test format to incorporate a variety of question types, including written essay questions.
With testing being conducted online, Ward said it will be important for the school system to maintain a schedule to allow students the time they need in the school computer labs to develop their computer skills.
Some of the tests also allow students to participate in practice tests, allowing them to get used to the online format.
“Scheduling has always been important but now more so than ever, with all the testing and practice tests,” Ward said.
During the summer break, Ward said the school system will be holding training sessions to help teachers and staff prepare for the changes that will come with the new state standards and assessment.
“TNReady is our next big challenge,” he said. “I look forward to working with our teachers and principals as we move forward. TNReady is going to be a whole new ballgame.”
In business matters, the board unanimously approved to allocate $52,245 for the installation of drop ceilings at Cloudland, Hampton and Unaka High Schools.
The board also unanimously approved the purchase of a new school bus using money already in place in the bus garage’s budget.
On a recommendation by Transportation Director Wayne Sams, the board deferred a decision on the purchase of two pickup trucks and referred the matter to the next workshop meeting.
Members also voted unanimously to approve a field trip for the Happy Valley High School Scholars Bowl Team to travel to Atlanta to compete in the National Scholars Bowl competition.