"A child's learning is the function more of the characteristics of his classmates than those of the teacher." James Coleman, 1972

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Legislators File Open Records Request for Huffman Decision Trail to Delay State Test Results

On the day that TCAP scores were to be released in Tennessee, Kevin Huffman's team of TFA lawyers in Nashville called a quick "put down your pencils" timeout just before reporters were ready to write about this year's state test results.  

In a scurry to make sure that "post-test equating" had been done "properly," local systems were left holding the bag, since TCAP is supposed to figure into student final grades and, of course, teacher evaluations.  

What embarrassment and scandal will be required to finally get rid of the lawyers and corporate bottom feeders mismanaging the State's education system!

From Joey Garrison at the Tennessean:

Tennessee Democrats still want more answers from the state Department of Education on the late release of end-of-year test scores — and they’ve filed an open records request to fill in what they believe are gaps.
In a letter to Education Commissioner Kevin Huffman on Wednesday, Reps. Bo Mitchell, Gloria Johnson and Mike Stewart cited the Tennessee Open Records Act for emails and other documents distributed among the commissioner and other employees on the decision to delay the release of Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program scores.
“We are very concerned about your department’s decision, on the day TCAP test results were expected by school systems, teachers, parents and students throughout the state, to abruptly cancel the long-planned distribution of test score information,” the letter reads. “It seems improbable that your department was simply unaware that such an unprecedented delay would be warranted until the very day that the scores were to be revealed.”
All three of the House Democrats have been outspoken critics of Huffman and education reforms he’s advanced.
The letter outlines the following areas that the department needs to explain: reasons for the delay; the date the department learned it would not be able to release scores timely; the department’s reasons for “not timely informing the public about the delay”; steps taken to ensure that raw testing information would be preserved so that it would be available for review by the public; nature of the “post-equating” process cited as an explanation for the delay; and the legal basis to waive the use of TCAP scores in generating grades.

Democrats are joined by some conservative Republicans in continuing to press Gov. Bill Haslam’s administration on the last-minute delay of TCAP scores that left local districts scrambling. Rep. Rick Womick, R-Rockvale, called for the resignation of Huffman earlier this week. . . .

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