By Chris Gregory, Managing Editor

Trousdale County Schools received mostly good scores on a redesigned state report card for the 2017-18 school year from the Tennessee Department of Education last week.

The new report card is intended to help families better understand school performance and support student success. The updated design of the report card includes information was broken down by achievement, growth, chronically out of school, proficiency in English language, ready to graduate and graduation rate.

Trousdale County Schools had an overall success rate (defined as students who are on track to or have mastered subject material) of 50.7 percent, well ahead of the state average of 39.1 percent.

Screenshot of Tennessee state website

Broken down by subject, the success rates were: 42.0 percent in English/Language Arts, 75.2 percent in Science, 39.9 percent in Social Studies and 41.1 percent in Math. All but math were ahead of state averages.

“This is a brand-new format from the state,” said Director of Schools Clint Satterfield, “and I think there’s some good things in there. Our ELA is up and that’s one of the things we’ve tried to improve.

“Our science has been traditionally high. The only tarnish on us is our math success rate was down. We know where that came from and we’re working to improve that.”

Trousdale County’s ready to graduate rate was a perfect 4.0 score with 50 percent of students at that mark.

The rating system provides a score of 0.0 to 4.0 on each indicator for each school, similar to a GPA, with 4.0 being the highest. Parents can click through to see more information behind each rating, including how both the full student population and different student groups.

Jim Satterfield Middle School received a 4.0 in academic achievement, a 3.6 in academic growth and a 3.9 in chronically out of school.

Trousdale County High School received a 2.2 in academic achievement, a 3.3 in academic growth and a 2.0 in chronically out of school.

“Their science is 16 percent above the state, ELA is 13.6 percent over state and the overall success rate is 8 percent over the state,” Satterfield said of the high school.

Trousdale County Elementary School received a 1.7 in academic achievement, a 1.3 in academic growth, a 3.6 in chronically out of school and a 3.0 in proficiency in English language. TCES was the only of the three schools with enough students to be counted in the last category.

“The academic achievement at the elementary school is down, but our success rate (43.3 percent) is still over the state average (39.1),” Satterfield said. “We are really happy with what we did in math and ELA. We went up 7.3 percent in achievement there.”
Satterfield also praised the local success rate in two of three subgroups: Black/Hispanic/Native (BHN) 43.1 percent and Economically Disadvantaged (ED) 39.0 percent. Both were at or above the state average in those areas.

Trousdale County is also based well compared to other schools in the Upper Cumberland district, according to Satterfield. Trousdale was first or second in each of 10 categories except for grades 3-5 math and 3-5 science.

The updated design of the report card and information that is included in the tool, including the new rating system, is based on input the department received as it developed a plan to transition to the new federal K-12 education law, the Every Student Succeeds Act, and has several components that are unique to Tennessee.

“We want families to have easy access to information about their school’s performance and how it is meeting the needs of all students, and we want them to have that context on a variety of metrics that encompass success,” Commissioner Candice McQueen said in a press statement. “The report card provides parents and community members with an additional snapshot of information to understand how their school is performing, see successes, and know where to ask questions and get engaged.”

Reach Chris Gregory at 615-374-3556 or cgregory@hartsvillevidette.com.