Director of Jefferson County Schools Addresses TNReady Scores


“(Tuesday) the Tennessee Department of Education released data from the 2018-2019 school year. We have numerous positive things to celebrate from last year’s scores and we will make sure we take the time to recognize the teachers and schools that have demonstrated academic success in student achievement, student growth, or both.”

Celebrations from Data Release

  • Overall District Designation – “Advancing”
  • Level 5 Status in 3 System-Wide Categories
    • Composite / Literacy / Literacy and Numeracy
  • Two Schools Recognized as Tennessee Reward Schools
    • New Market Elementary and Maury Middle School
      • Reward Schools  Overall accountability score greater than or equal to 3.1
  • Jefferson County High School all Level 5 in TVAAS (Growth)
  • Reduction in Students Chronically Absent in the following schools
    • Elementary Schools  Mt. Horeb, New Market, Piedmont
    • Middle Schools  Maury Middle, White Pine School (K-8)
  • Significant increases in achievement levels from last year
    • Algebra I, English I, English II, ELA Grades 5 and 7, Math Grades 4, 5, and 7
  • Two schools “above expectations” (Level 4 or 5) in all TVAAS categories
    • Jefferson Elementary School and Maury Middle School
  • Increase in Achievement Scores (Score is ELA and MATH combined)
    • 3rd-5th – Up from 30.9 to 32.4
    • 9th-12th – Up from 31.4 to 35.2
  • Jefferson County Graduation Rate remains well above the state average (96.2 for JCHS)

“I want to recognize the countless hours of work and dedication that our teachers and administrators pour into our students. It’s not just a job, or even a career, but a calling and there has never been a time when stakes were higher. The educators in our system work hard and when these positive things are identified it can be very rewarding to everyone in the system.’

Focus Areas to Strengthen

“The data also reveals specific content or grade levels that we need to make a priority. These areas include Algebra II, Geometry, 4th Grade ELA, 6th Grade Math, and focus on sub-group performance. We will also be monitoring all students with disabilities to see where additional support is needed. Work in these areas is identified in the District’s Improvement Plan that was submitted to the state for 2019-2020 earlier this year.”

“Our teachers work very hard and we want to come beside them during this school year and provide coaching that will help them be more successful. Our evaluation model has changed to provide teachers with more support through more frequent visits to classrooms from administrators. Following each visit to a classroom the administrator will provide specific oral feedback to the teachers. This ongoing collaboration has proven to help teachers be more successful as they work with our students.”

“We do have one school that was identified as a Targeted Support and Improvement School. Jefferson Middle School will be identified as a TSI school this year for issues related to some of the sub-group scores. I am confident that the leadership team and faculty of Jefferson Middle will work very hard throughout the year to address the deficiencies in the identified sub-groups and our district will work with the Tennessee Department of Education’s East Core Office to provide additional support.”

FYI – A targeted support and improvement school is identified when scores fall in the bottom five percent of any given student sub-group. Examples of sub-groups include: Black/Hispanic/Native American, Economically Disadvantaged, English Learner, or Students with Disabilities, or any given racial or ethnic group.


“The timing of this release by the state is very helpful because individual schools have improvement plans due to the state on September 1. Now, the leadership teams in each building can address specific needs based on current data and that should help as we all work together to help our students.”

“The district leadership team will look at the data and compare to our District Improvement Plan. If an alignment is needed, we will modify our plan to do what is best for students. We want to make sure our students are ready for the path they desire when they leave our system whether that’s a four-year college, two-year college, technical school, or military.”

Source: Dr. Shane Johnston, Director, Jefferson County Schools