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State education commissioner names testing task force

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Tennessee Education Commissioner Candice McQueen on Monday announced the establishment of testing task force to examine school-level tests to determine how those assessments align with state tests.

“We have heard some concerns that there is ‘too much testing’ taking place. So as education leaders and stakeholders, it’s important that we clearly understand current testing policies and practices at both the state and local levels,” McQueen said in a news release.

Members named to the task force represent the Tennessee General Assembly, State Board of Education, Tennessee School Boards Association, and 10 local school districts, including Shelby County Schools. The 23-member group will meet later this month to discuss the results of a district assessment survey and will issue a report on its findings this summer.

Members are:

Candice McQueen, Tennessee education commissioner

Sara Heyburn, executive director, State Board of Education

Sen. Dolores Gresham, chairwoman, Senate Education Committee

Rep. John Forgety, chairman, House Education Committee

Rep. Harry Brooks, chairman, House Education Committee

Mike Winstead, director of schools, Maryville City

Wanda Shelton, director of schools, Lincoln County

Mary Reel, director of schools, Milan Special Schools

Nancy Ashe, assistant director of schools, Lebanon Special Schools

Beth Unfried, director of elementary schools, Clarksville-Montgomery County Schools

Sharon McNary, principal, Richland Elementary, Shelby County Schools

Philip Eller, teacher, Cedar Grove Elementary, Rutherford County Schools

Becky McBride, teacher, Brighton High, Tipton County Schools

Valerie Love, teacher, Dobyns-Bennett High, Kingsport City Schools

Susan Lodal, president, Tennessee School Boards Association

Jasmine Carlisle, 11TH-grade student, Mt. Juliet High, Wilson County Schools

Virginia Babb, member, Knox County Parent-Teacher Association

Kathleen Airhart, deputy commissioner, Tennessee Department of Education

Stephen Smith, deputy commissioner, Tennessee Department of Education

Emily Freitag, assistant commissioner, curriculum and instruction, Tennessee Department of Education

Nakia Towns, assistant commissioner, data and research, Tennessee Department of Education

Eva Boster, teacher ambassador, Tennessee Department of Education

Alyssa Van Camp, director of policy, State Collaborative on Reforming Education

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