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Grades, teacher evaluations hinge on TCAP

April 24th, 2012 9:51 pm by Rick Wagner

As area students continue, start or soon begin TCAP tests, student grades, teacher evaluations and ultimately principal evaluations are riding on the results for the first time.

The grades 3-8 Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program (TCAP) test results account for 15 percent to 20 percent of student grades and at least 35 percent of teacher evaluations statewide.

Kingsport City Schools are holding TCAPs today through Friday, then will finish up Monday. Makeup days are Tuesday and Wednesday, May 1-2.

Sullivan County starts its TCAP testing Monday. The tests run through Thursday, May 3, with Friday, May 4, the makeup day.

And in Hawkins County, the tests started Tuesday and run through Friday. Monday, April 30, is the makeup day.

No matter which system or what part of the TCAP window that system uses, the testing goes in the same order: reading, math, science and social studies.

“I think business as usual has been the case because we’ve been focused on improving teaching and learning all year long,” Sullivan County Director of Schools Jubal Yennie said.

Assistant Director of Schools David Timbs said that with all the attention on curriculum and instruction, missing only one snow day, and giving the test the latest ever in the school year, he is predicting good results.

“I’m really optimistic,” Timbs said.

Recommendations to students taking TCAPs and other tests are to get a good night’s sleep and eat breakfast. Sullivan Middle School will provide a home-cooked breakfast to students during TCAPs next week at no charge.

“The PTA is cooking homemade breakfast for every kid in the building,” Timbs said.

TCAP tests in Sullivan County will count for 15 percent of the second semester grades in subject areas covered by the TCAP, while the scores count for 20 percent for Kingsport students in grades 3-8.

As for teacher evaluations, the TCAP scores for students who the teacher in question has instructed at least 150 days that school year will count at least 35 percent of the teacher evaluation.

Another 15 percent, chosen by teachers, can be that or other academic measures, Timbs said.

Second grade testing began this week in the county system, while end-of-course testing at the high school level begins May 1 in the county and city systems.

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