Clock ticks toward deadline for parents of third graders to appeal TCAP results


Hardin County school officials are encouraging third grade parents to appeal TCAP testing results if their child is eligible in order to avoid being held back a grade.

Greg White, K-12 academic supervisor for Hardin County Schools, said a majority of third grade students qualify for the appeal process.

“The bulk of our third graders who did not succeed on passing the TCAP do qualify to appeal the results with the state. It is my understanding that the state will grant most of the appeals, and if that is the case, then less than 10% of our third graders would be affected by the new third grade retention law,” White said at Monday’s meeting of the Hardin County Board of Education.

He also said the school will help parents complete the appeals form.

“The whole process takes about a minute to complete. You just need to fill out basic information such as parent’s and child’s name, phone number and if they qualify to appeal the TCAP results. We have already helped many parents with the process and will continue to do so. We want to ensure that all students who are able to appeal the results do so because we would hate for any child to miss this opportunity,” he said.

The Tennessee Department of Education opened appeals of third-grade retentions from the end-of-semester TCAP exam on May 30 and the last day to file an appeal is Tuesday, June 13.

Eligibility for an appeal is based on if a student scored in the 40th percentile on the state Universal Reading Screener test, or if a “catastrophic event” occurred leading up to the TCAP exam.

“I should be receiving a list soon of students whose parents have filed an appeal and when I do, we will check to see if there are more students eligible and reach out to their parents, because again, it is important that a child who can advance to the fourth grade be able to. Also, parents are welcome to come or call our administrative office for help and will be more than happy to assist them,” said White.

According to the school district, 232 of the county’s third graders did not meet the requirements to advance to the fourth grade based on their TCAP reading results. Students had the opportunity to retake the test, which 89 did, but only 13 successfully passed. This number also includes students whose results may be exempt in determining whether they move forward due to English being their second language, if they were held back before, or if they have a learning disability.

If students who scored in the 40th percentile on the test and successfully appeal the results, they can advance to the fourth grade. If an appeal is not filed or if students scored below the 40th percentile they may still advance to the fourth grade if they successfully complete summer school or receive tutoring throughout the next school year.

The appeal form is available online here.