Test taking

Photo credit: Flickr

The Tennessee Department of Education released state- and district-level data for TNReady, a statewide standardized test administered to elementary, middle and high school students every spring.

TNReady, introduced in 2015, measures proficiency in math, language arts, science and U.S. History. Due to testing complications this year, Metro did not include TNReady scores on report cards for either high school or grades third through eighth.

This year data shows Nashville schools saw district-wide declines in most subject areas with the exception of English/Language Arts for third through eighth grade students. High school scores also declined, with science being the most significant down 10 percent from last year.

Davidson County schools

TNReady scores are divided into four categories, including below grade-level expectations, approaching, on track and mastered. An on-track student is proficient in the subject, while a mastered student has "extensive understanding" of the content.

English/Language Arts—22.4 percent of third through eighth grade students are on track, up from 21 percent in 2017. High school students are 16.3 percent on track, down more than 3 percent from last year.

Math—19.3 percent of third through eighth grade students are on track, down from 21.2 percent in 2017. High school students are 8 percent on track, down nearly 3 percent from last year.

Science—31 percent of third through eighth grade students are on track, down from 34 percent in 2017. High school students are 16.7 percent on track, down 10 percent from last year.

U.S. History—High school students are 7.7 percent on track, down just more than 3 percent from last year.

Statewide results

In 2018, for elementary school (grades 3-5) TNReady exams:

  • 35.7% of students were on track or mastered in ELA, up from 33.9% in 2017
  • 40% of students were on track or mastered in math, same as 2017
  • 56% of students were on track or mastered in science, down from 58.6% in 2017

For middle school (grades 6-8) TNReady exams:

  • 32.1% of students were on track or mastered in ELA, down from 33.5% in 2017
  • 34.6% of students were on track or mastered in math, down from 35.7% in 2017
  • 60.2% of students were on track or mastered in science, down from 62.2% in 2017

For high school end-of-course exams:

  • 29.4% of students were on track or mastered in ELA, down from 34.6% in 2017
  • 22.5% of students were on track or mastered in math, up from 21.5% in 2017
  • 45.3% of students were on track or mastered in science, down from 51% in 2017
  • 27.8% of students were on track or mastered in U.S. history, down from 30.8% in 2017

Putting the results in context

According to the department, the majority of the 650,000 students who took TNReady this year did so on paper, while 300,000 students took the standardized test online.

Given the challenges with online testing this spring, the department hired a third-party to analyze the results to see if the disruptions impacted scores. The department said the source found minimal impact on the overall scores, and the state has made policy adjustments "to ensure no adverse action is taken against any student, teacher, school or district based on the 2017-18 data."

The third-party report is being finalized and will be shared along with school-level results in a few weeks. You can find more scores and information here.

Dylan Skye Aycock is a Nashville-based journalist and photographer. As a reporter for Rover, Aycock follows transportation, housing and retail trends, as well as other hyperlocal and city-wide issues that affect residents in Green Hills and Belle Meade.

She previously contributed written and visual content to The Murfreesboro Pulse, American Songwriter Magazine and The Tennessean. Aycock earned a journalism degree from Middle Tennessee State University, where she honed her craft as editor-in-chief of Sidelines, the university's student-run publication. When she's not out on assignment or live-tweeting city council meetings, you can find her discovering new local spots or catching a show at one of Nashville's many music venues.

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