Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Accreditation


Stone Memorial High School

Tennessee School Improvement
Planning Process (TSIPP)
For Accreditation Through SACS/CASI


TEMPLATE 3.3.a:  Assessment Practices

Template 3.3.a: Assessment Practices
 (Rubric Indicators 3.5 and 3.6)

Current Assessment Practices

Uses student assessments that are aligned with the Tenn. Dept. Of Ed. Standards based curriculum.

Ensures that the appropriate assessments are used to guide decisions relative to student achievement

Provides professional development in the appropriate use of assessment

Assesses all categories of students

Provides support and technical assistance to teachers in developing and using assessments.


Provides assessment information to communicate with students, parents, and other appropriate stakeholders regarding student learning.

Evidence of Practice (State in definitive/tangible terms)

Teacher lesson plans are aligned with the Tennessee standards, and what they are teaching is assessed on daily, weekly and semester assessments.
A variety of assessments are used daily at SMHS such as technology assessments (i.e. the use of Power Point).  Students also create poems, posters, graphic organizers, cartoons, short stories, and plays.



The driving force behind teachers is authentic assessment.  Students can see how the subject matter relates to their daily lives.  If students can relate assessment to their lives or experiences then they will retain the knowledge.  An example of this is students in the CTE classes.  Many of these students are in these classes because they are interested in nursing or construction and this relates to them. 
Aside from authentic assessment, teachers often create 2-3 assessments per classroom to ensure that students are assessed according to their abilities.

Teachers and administrators attend workshops on science, English, math and social studies curriculum in which assessments are addressed.

The state-mandated tests, such as the Gateway, TCAP, and End of Course, ensure that all categories of students are assessed. 

All students are assessed formally or informally daily.

Students found to be in need are offered Credit Recovery classes.


Yearly staff attendance at workshops with topics that include testing, educational techniques, rubric formulation and use, and guidance related topics, such as, bullying and graduation rate.

Stakeholders may find the results of state achievement tests at the Tennessee Department of Education web site.  Students and parents also have access to their individual state test results.  Progress reports are given to students and parents every 4 1/2 weeks, and reports are given out at the end of each 9-week grading period.
The 9th Grade Academy teachers regularly communicate with parents with regard to student progress and achievement.

Is the current practice research-based?







Is it a principle & practice of high-performing schools?







Has the current practice been effective or ineffective?







What data source(s) do you have that support your answer? (Identify all applicable sources)

Gateway practice exam booklets, end-of-course practice booklets, on-line assessments.

Graduation rate, which is improving but is still short of the state’s goal, ACT scores, lesson plans, formal and informal evaluations.

ACT scores, end of course and Gateway data.

End of course and Gateway results.

Lesson Plans, formal and informal evaluations

Report cards, progress reports, Parent Involvement Logs.

Evidence of effectiveness or ineffectiveness (State in terms of quantifiable improvement)

Questions in the booklets are tied directly to TN standards.

ACT scores are slowly increasing for SMHS

Teachers will have increased professional on strategies to improve AYP.

Teachers will have increased professional on strategies to improve AYP.

ACT scores are slowly increasing for SMHS students. 

Positive midcourse adjustments by students are often shown when teachers and parents collaborate.


Evidence of equitable school support for this practice

Completion of Gateway exams with a score of proficient is required for all students for graduation by the state of Tennessee.

Teacher lesson plans are reviewed by administration.

All students are provided the opportunity to take the ACT.

All students are assessed.

Lesson plans and assessments are reviewed by administration weekly.

Formal and Informal assessment results.

Next Step (changes or continuations)

Continue using practice materials.

Staff development will address best practices in assessment.

Provide staff development to improve assessment strategies for subgroups not meeting AYP.

Provide staff development to improve assessment strategies for subgroups.

Provide training and materials to focus on best practices in assessment.

Continue providing regular-scheduled communication with stakeholders and individualized contacts as needed.


TEMPLATE 3.3.b:  Assessment Gap Analysis

Setting priorities is one way to narrow a school’s improvement focus.  As we know, we have more needs than we have resources.  Priority needs can be identified through a Gap Analysis.  The process will identify the discrepancy, or the gap, between the current state – “What Is” –Which is identified in your practices and – and the desired future state – “What Ought To Be” – which is found in the rubric.  Completing Template 3.3.b (the gap analysis) should help school team members discover “What Ought To Be.” 

Completion of the gap analysis should enable the School Leadership Team to answer the equity and adequacy questions relative to assessment practices, also to be recorded in Template 3.3.b.

Template 3.3.b: Assessment Gap Analysis

Assessment Gap Analysis – Narrative Response Required

“What is” The Current Use of:  TIME, MONEY, PERSONNEL And OTHER RESOURCES 
(How are we currently allocating our time, money, personnel and other resources and building capacity around understanding and implementing high quality assessment practices?)

  • TIME


  • Teachers use daily instructional planning time to plan assessments, strategies, and learning experiences in order to meet state standards.


  • The Cumberland County Board of Education distributes Coach Books for teachers administering state assessments.  Student practice books are also available to assist in student preparation for state assessments.
  • The TELNET web site is available for teacher and student use which contains several links to assessment sites.
  • Staff development is provided for teachers through the use of the Destiny Library Manager for curriculum correlation.
  • Computer labs are available for students to take pre-assessments using the Kuder and TELNET resources.


  • The Educational Supervisors provide support for assessments.
  • The Cumberland County Board of Education utilizes and staffs a Credit Recovery Program as a graduation intervention resource.
  • Dr. Brooker and the assistant principals, Mr. Wilson, Mr. Kennedy, and Mr. Maddox conduct evaluations with useful feedback.
  • The guidance counselors fully implement an ACT preparation class and coordinate the actual assessment.
  • CCBOE established and built the Phoenix High School for at risk students.
  • Dual-Credit classes are offered in cooperation with the Roane State Community College.
  • Vocational classes are also offered in cooperation with the Tennessee Technology Center.
  • Credit recovery classes are offered to help at-risk student recover potentially lost course credits.
  • Before and after school tutoring is offered in a variety of subject areas to help struggling students in regular and advance course offerings.


“What Ought to Be” – How Should we be Using Our:  TIME, MONEY, PERSONNEL And OTHER RESOURCES
(How should we be allocating our time, money, personnel and other resources and building capacity around understanding and implementing high quality assessment practices?)

  • TIME
  • Need time for teacher collaboration to develop and improve common assessments.
  • Need time for staff development on the use of current software applications in the classroom.


  • Need a technology budget to supply updated software and hardware to support assessment.
  • Need staff development training for strategies that are successful for all subgroups.
  • Need staff development to interpret data.
  • Need staff development to train teachers how to use authentic assessments.


  • Need more technology available for school-wide for use in the assessment process.






Equity and Adequacy:

Are we providing equity and adequacy to all of our teachers?
All teachers are give opportunities for inservice and training; however, some subject areas are difficult to find training opportunities.  Class size standards apply to all courses and teachers are encouraged to communicate with administration with any difficulties, challenges, or concerns.  


Are we targeting funds and resources effectively to meet the needs of all of our teachers in being effective with all their students?
Funds are spread as evenly as possible between the departments, however, with the funding at only the BEP minimum, it is very difficult to meet the needs of the staff and students.  More funds are needed to adequately meet the needs of staff and students.


Based on the data, are we accurately meeting the needs of all students in our school?
We are meeting the basic needs of the students at Stone Memorial High School.  However, additional funds are necessary to provide all the students with the best possible educational foundation to enable our students to become active and productive members of a global society.




TEMPLATE 3.3.c:  Assessment Summary Questions

The following summary questions are related to assessment.  They are designed as a culminating activity for your self-analysis, focus questions discussions, and findings, regarding this area.

Template 3.3.c: Assessment Summary Questions
 (Rubric Indicator 3.6)

Assessment Summary Questions- Narrative Response Required

What are our major strengths and how do we know?
     We are currently integrating Renaissance Learning’s Accelerated Reader program into our curriculum. This program helps us in two ways.  First, we can accurately and quickly assess our students’ reading levels.  Then, it provides flexibility in our literature program.  Teachers no longer need to require an entire class to read the same books at the same time.  Accelerated Reader enables the teacher to allow each student to choose a book that he/she will enjoy and that is on his/her own reading level. 
     Teachers of students of varied abilities are making use of this program. Students in the remedial reading course read thirty minutes of each class period and then test over the books they read on Accelerated Reader. On the other end of the learning spectrum, Advanced Placement students use this program to test over the books they are required to read outside of the classroom each month. One teacher of average English students is using the program to reward students who read above and beyond that that is required for class.   Freshman English teachers are developing a plan for integration this program into their curriculum to foster each freshman’s reading ability.   Teachers will also continue to improve Gateway scores by utilizing professional development skills gained from workshops and inservice opportunities designed to give insight into math, reading and English tested materials.  This will equip our students with needed skills which will help the fulfill graduation requirements.











Assessment Summary Questions- Narrative Response Required

What are our major challenges and how do we know. (These should be stated as assessment practice challenges identified in the templates above, that could be a cause of the prioritized needs identified in component 1.)
One of our major challenges is that our students must understand that assessments are
important.  Some students will simply mark the same answer repeatedly. 
Some teachers tend to give multiple choice and true/false tests. Students’ writing abilities
and critical thinking abilities are often not tested in this style of assessment. Students
cannot be ready for real world challenges if they do not know how to put their thoughts on
paper in writing.  All subject areas need to require some type of writing assessment.  
Teachers do not have time to examine assessments results, particularly state assessments,
and determine the needs for all students. If they do have time, many do not understand how
to interpret the data.








Assessment Summary Questions- Narrative Response Required

How will we address our challenges?
The school will create excitement during state-mandated testing. We will set school-wide
goals for the state assessments and celebrate when those goals are met. It is important for
our school to celebrate student and teacher achievement.
Teachers will be encouraged to create assessments that allow students to develop and use
their writing abilities. SMHS can plan staff development days which promote writing
across the curriculum. Teachers have adequate planning time to grade these assessments.
Staff development days can by used also to promote differentiated instruction, with more strategies for implementation within classrooms. Teachers will attend staff development concentrating on authentic assessment.  The administration must allow time for subject groups to meet to discuss the weaknesses of students concerning state mandated tests.  With an atmosphere of excitement that is communicated to all stakeholders, student will be encouraged to do their best work, first, and graduate on time.