NASHVILLE, Tenn. — At a press conference Thursday, Gov. Bill Haslam and the Tennessee Education Commissioner Dr. Candice McQueen unveiled the results from this year’s annual statewide TCAP assessments. The compiled scores show many promising gains for students in most grade levels, especially in mathematics and science.
In those subject areas, the state saw strong increases in proficiency levels, with roughly 131,000 more students in math and 60,000 more students in science testing on grade level compared to 2011.
The examinations also revealed steady gains in reading and literacy for seventh and eighth graders, as well as gains across all subjects for high school students.
Following the release of the TCAP scores, StudentsFirst Tennessee state director Brent Easley remarked, “Tennessee’s teachers, commissioner McQueen and the Department of Education should be commended on their continued progress. This year’s TCAP scores show promising academic gains for hundreds of thousands of students across Tennessee. Thanks to our state’s innovative reforms in education policy and the tireless dedication of our teacher corps, achievement gaps in key subject areas shrunk remarkably this year.”
Proficiency levels in math for African American, Hispanic and Native American students all saw a 5 percent uptick. This includes a 8.5 percent increase in Algebra II alone.
Students classified as economically disadvantaged also had a greater than 4 percent increase in math proficiency.
“The progress revealed today clearly demonstrates the department’s continued focus on an ‘all means all’ approach — that every student is capable of dramatic academic achievement,” said Easley.
With many future jobs predicted to require more training in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), this year’s gains also provide encouraging proof of Tennessee’s rise in workforce preparedness.
The Department of Education acknowledged that room for improvement remains in reading and literacy; students in grades 3-6 saw minor setbacks in reading proficiency.
The scores mark the final year using the current TCAP assessments, with a shift towards preparing for the next level of work with TN Ready next year.