Knox County Board of Education
2013 Legislative Priorities
The Knox County Board of Education has identified the following legislative priorities:
Focus on Implementation
With higher academic standards, innovative instructional initiatives, and intensive accountability, Tennessee has become a national leader in public education reform. To maintain this leadership position, and accelerate our achievements, educators must now be provided the time and resources to fully implement the important initiatives adopted by the General Assembly over the past few years.
Funding for Public Education
The Knox County Board of Education believes it is crucial to the future of our state that the Legislature fully fund the Basic Education Program (BEP), including the recent recommendations of the BEP Review Committee, and implementation of the second phase of education finance reform ("BEP 2.0").
Support the Tennessee Educator Acceleration Model (TEAM)
The Knox County Board of Education embraces and supports the TEAM performance evaluation system as a critical instructional improvement effort. The Board recognizes that the TEAM model may be adjusted and refined over time, but urges the legislature to keep this important structure in place to help improve teaching, and ultimately student learning.
Opposition to School Vouchers
The Board of Education opposes any legislation to create a voucher program in Tennessee that would divert money intended for public education to private schools. Private schools are not required to serve all students, nor meet Tennessee's nationally recognized standards and accountability measures. Vouchers would therefore diminish equal opportunity and public accountability by channeling public tax dollars to private schools that do not face state equity standards and accountability requirements.
The Knox County School Board urges the legislature not to revert to elected Superintendents. We believe the popular election of school superintendents is inefficient, and a poor governance structure that would lead to less accountability, not more.
Local Control of School Calendar
The Knox County Board of Education urges the legislature to leave the power to set a school calendar in the hands of local school boards, who understand their communities' needs best.