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The Sullivan County Department of Education is committed to utilizing student assessment information in enabling teachers to maximize learning opportunities for all students.  Through a variety of formative and summative assessments, student learning is measured throughout the school year.  Administrators and teachers constantly monitor student progress to plan and to provide interventions, remediation, and enrichment opportunities for students.

Our various departments strive to support a secure, organized, and comfortable testing environment for our students.  Building level testing coordinators attend system information and training sessions before each assessment and keep abreast of the latest changes in student accommodations, assessment expectations, and state requirements.
Building coordinators then work with teachers, staff, and parents to ensure that the most current information is available and that assessment guidelines are understood and followed.  Building data coaches work hand-in-hand with testing coordinators and administrators to interpret results of both formative and summative assessments and plan for further student success.

Debbie Hamilton

District Testing Coordinator
423-354-1030
debbie.hamilton@sullivank12.net

Joyce Appel

Secretary, Testing & Title I
423-354-1048
joyce.appel@sullivank12.net

ACT

Sullivan County participates in the EPAS series of college-readiness assessments for 11th graders (ACT).  We are committed to utilizing these results to help direct student interests and career selection as well as more rigorously align our curriculum.
The EPAS system provides a longitudinal, systematic approach to educational and career planning, assessment, instructional logo-act-exploresupport, and evaluation.  The system focus on the integrated, higher-order thinking skills students develop in grades K-12 that are important for success both during and after high school.

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National Assessment of Educational Process (NAEP)

NAEP is the largest nationally representative assessment of what America’s students know and can do in various subject areas including mathematics, reading, and science.

Since the same tests are used across the nation, NAEP results serve as a common metric for all states and selected urban districts. The assessment stays essentially the same from year to year, providing a clear picture of student academic progress over time.

Tennessee is the fastest improving state in the country since 2011, with students showing more growth over time than those in any other state.  Thanks to the hard work of educators and students, Tennessee is on the right track toward long-term success.

Only a small number of students from sample of public schools take NAEP. Schools that receive federal Title I funding are required by law to participate. To ensure the validity of the results, states, districts, and schools are not allowed to pick the schools or students who are assessed. In 2017, about 12,000 Tennessee students in 350 schools will take a NAEP test in one of these subject areas: math, reading, writing, civics, geography, or US history. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) administers NAEP and it ensures that a representative set of students is assessed. NCES selects a sample of schools that reflect the varying demographics of each state. Within each selected school, students are chosen at random. Every student has the same chance of being chosen— regardless of race or ethnicity, socioeconomic status, disability, status as an English language learner, or any other factors.

NAEP is not designed to show individual results. Since the first NAEP assessment in 1969, students’ names have been kept completely confidential. After students complete the assessment, their names are physically removed from the booklets and never leave their schools. Instead of reporting individual scores, NAEP reports overall results for the nation, the states, and for demographic groups of students.

NAEP is designed to be minimally disruptive for students, teachers, and schools. Students spend up to 90 minutes on most NAEP assessments. This includes setting up, taking the assessment (up to 60 minutes), and getting back to instructional activities. Teachers do not need to specially prepare their students. NAEP representatives work with the designated coordinator in each school to organize assessment activities.

Facts about the 2017 NAEP in Tennessee

–  Grades 4 and 8 will participate in the assessment between January 30 and March 3. Three schools in Sullivan County will be participating in NAPE: Innovation Academy, Bluff City Middle and Ketron Elementary.

–  NAEP will assess math, reading, civics, US history, geography, and writing.

–  The results of the assessment will be posted to The Nation’s Report Card

–  Tennessee will receive results in math and reading in the fall of 2017.

–  Civics, geography, and US history are pilot programs for NAEP 2018 and no 2017 results will be published.

Only a small number of students from sample of public schools take NAEP. Schools that receive federal Title I funding are required by law to participate. To ensure the validity of the results, states, districts, and schools are not allowed to pick the schools or students who are assessed. In 2017, about 12,000 Tennessee students in 350 schools will take a NAEP test in one of these subject areas: math, reading, writing, civics, geography, or US history. The National Center for Education Statistics (NCES) administers NAEP and it ensures that a representative set of students is assessed. NCES selects a sample of schools that reflect the varying demographics of each state. Within each selected school, students are chosen at random. Every student has the same chance of being chosen— regardless of race or ethnicity, socioeconomic status, disability, status as an English language learner, or any other factors.

Data Coach & Team

In a unique process, the Sullivan County Department of Education employs at least one professional staff member at each school as a data coach.  These data coaches attend extra workshops and then lead professional learning sessions at their schools in regards to data interpretation, analysis, and usage.  Our data coaches are crucial to the ongoing school improvement process at each school.   All coaches possess an interest in data and curriculum and are committed to being an important resource for their teachers.

Under the leadership of the Data Coach, each school maintains a Data Team. These teams are charged with conducting analysis and proposing goals for the school based on student achievement trends. Teams work to maximize the involvement of not only classroom teachers but related arts and special education teachers as well.  This leadership team directs many of the planning aspects related to Title I at our Title I schools.