SCORE Evaluation - Full Report - Page 3

Supporting Effective Teaching in Tennessee: Listening and Gathering Feedback on Tennessee’s Teacher Evaluations EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Tennessee has emerged over the past three years as a national leader in education reform. To ensure that more of its students graduate from high school with the skills they need to be successful in life, Tennessee has made a series of significant policy changes. In 2009, teachers began teaching the higher academic standards of the Tennessee Diploma Project in classrooms. In 2010, the General Assembly passed the First to the Top Act, the most sweeping education reform legislation in the state since 1992, which laid the groundwork for Tennessee’s first-round Race to the Top win. Rapid implementation of the state’s First to the Top plan is now underway, putting Tennessee in a unique position to start realizing significant gains in student achievement.1 “There is no state that has a greater opportunity…to be a national leader than Tennessee,” U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan told an audience in Nashville last year. “There is a commitment, a sense of courage here that we find absolutely remarkable…My challenge to you – and my hope – is that Tennessee can be the fastest improving state in the country.”2 EXECUTIVE SUMMARY 1