A Tennessee initiative spearheaded by Bill Frist, the former U.S. Senate majority leader, last week issued a plan to help the state’s schools become the top performers in the Southeast within five years.
The four major strands of the effort are embracing high standards, cultivating strong principals and superintendents, ensuring excellent teachers, and using data to improve student learning.
“We’ve put together a very specific roadmap and a very specific goal,” Mr. Frist, a Republican and the chairman of the Tennessee State Collaborative on Reforming Education, or SCORE, said in an interview.
The recommendations include calls to allow alternative providers to certify school principals; develop and roll out a statewide teacher-effectiveness measure that is based in part on student achievement; and require students to score at the basic level or higher on select end-of-course tests to graduate from high school.
A version of this article appeared in the October 28, 2009 edition of Education Week as Tenn. Collaborative Envisions Major Changes in K-12 Education