2 lawmakers ask for probe into Tennessee test score delay

Associated Press • May 30, 2014 at 1:16 PM

NASHVILLE — Two Republican Tennessee lawmakers have asked for an investigation into the delay of student test scores.

Meanwhile, three Democrats have filed an open records request seeking information about the late release of student scores on the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program.

TCAP scores are used in the calculation of final grades for students primarily in grades 3 through 8. The Education Department said last month the scores would be delayed because of a change in assessments and allowed school districts to give grades without the scores, which were released May 23.

Rep. Billy Spivey, R-Lewisburg, told The Tennessean that he and Sen. Janice Bowling, R-Tullahoma, sent a request on Thursday asking the Tennessee Comptroller's Office to launch a formal investigation.

Comptroller spokesman Blake Fontenay declined to comment on the request.

Meanwhile, Democratic Reps. Gloria Johnson of Knoxville and Bo Mitchell and Mike Stewart of Nashville have asked for emails and other documents related to the delay under the Tennessee Open Records Act.

All of the lawmakers have been critical of Education Commissioner Kevin Huffman. However, Gov. Bill Haslam has defended the decision to delay the scores, saying the state wanted to err on the side of caution and not send out wrong information to districts.

Spivey said he feels a probe by the comptroller's office would be beneficial for all involved.

"There's such a level of distrust between the Department of Education and the director of schools in our respective districts, and members of the General Assembly and the Department of Education, the only way I can see us ever getting beyond all this frost that has formed is to have a third party look into it," Spivey said.

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