Schools to Begin Using New Visitor Entry Procedure Oct. 23

If you have visited our schools in the past few weeks, you may have noticed a new video phone in the entry area close to the office door. This equipment is part of our school’s safety plan and will require a new school entry procedure for visitors. As a pilot for this procedure, Liberty Elementary is in its second year using the video phones. The video phone system enables all exterior school doors to remain locked during the school day, which provides an extra layer of protection and is a national standard in school safety. Signage will be clear and visible when the video phone system becomes operational on Tuesday, October 23. Office staff will be sure to remind you to sign in and show your valid government-issued photo ID if you plan to leave the office area for another area of the school as we currently do. The new procedure will only take a few more seconds to enter your child’s school, but it is a critical part of our campus safety plan. To see how simple the new procedure will be, please watch this short video: https://youtu.be/60qnjwh5b0s We are excited that our district is able to provide this system in all FSSD schools and office buildings using a state safety grant and at no cost to our schools and we appreciate your cooperation and patience as we begin to implement this plan. Thank you for your support and for being a positive part of your child’s school safety...

FSSD 1 of 14 Exemplary Districts Celebrated by State

Late Friday afternoon, districts across the state waited anxiously for the Tennessee Board of Education to ratify the Department of Education’s accountability results, which places schools and school districts in several distinct categories. Education Commissioner Candice McQueen announced the 2018 District Designations as well as the Reward and Priority schools, which are two key designations under Tennessee’s school accountability system. There are 147 school districts across the state. The FSSD is one of only 14 districts to be named Exemplary. The good news didn’t stop there, though. Five of the eight FSSD schools were named Reward Schools, another top designation. “We were very excited and extremely proud of the Accountability Results released Friday. Being an Exemplary district and having 62% of our schools designated as Reward Schools are noted accomplishments,” said Director of Schools Dr. David Snowden. This was the first year Tennessee implemented its new school accountability model, which looks at multiple measures of success based mainly on the results of the TNReady tests given to students in grade 3-12 each spring. According to the Department of Education’s website, districts designated as exemplary are generally exceeding expectations on average for both all students and each historically underserved student group. “All of these positive results are due to the work of our passionate, dedicated and talented teachers, the hard work by our students and the support of parents, school and district leaders and the School Board,” Snowden...

FSSD Represented on Governor’s TNReady Panel – Online Feedback Requested

On September 4, several Franklin Special School District teachers and administrators were able to participate in a roundtable discussion, along with other educators from across the region, with Governor Bill Haslam and state Education Commissioner Candice McQueen about the difficulties of the 2018 administration of TNReady testing.  The Governor plans to take the feedback from the six events held across the state, as well as from an online form available to anyone who wants to provide input, and formulate a report by the end of September. The input will guide the discussion on TNReady assessment timelines, vendor selection, and the meaningful communication of the value of assessment results. The listening tour panels consisted only of educators; however, the state welcomes input from all teachers, staff, parents, and community members. If you would like to provide your input through the online engagement process, please go to www.tn.gov/governor/contact-us/listening-tour-feedback.html Hosted at Freedom Middle School, Governor Haslam and Commissioner McQueen listened as teachers, principals and testing administrators shared their experiences and frustrations regarding last year’s testing process. Feedback from around the region included concerns over lack of computers for testing, online testing failures and delayed test results. “Governor Haslam and Dr. McQueen were very receptive to each person’s input,” said FSSD Student Performance Supervisor Dr. Kay Boan, who was an invited member of the panel. The discussion was led by Wayne Miller, former executive director of Tennessee Organization of School Superintendents (TOSS), who is serving as a consultant to the state on this project. Boan said the preponderance of concerns was for online delivery, particularly in schools without 1:1 technology, and for high school...

FSSD’s Commitment to Excellence Evident in 2018 TNReady Results

The release of TNReady results August 16 demonstrates Franklin Special School District’s continued commitment to maintaining high levels of achievement and growth. “We are very proud of the district’s results,” said Director of Schools Dr. David Snowden. “The FSSD continues to be one of the top performing school districts in the state. We are proud of the work of our teachers and students that places us again in the top 10 districts in all grade bands (3-5 and 6-8)  and all tested subjects.” The FSSD is one of only five school districts state-wide to hold this distinction. Snowden said the district is pleased with increased proficiency and growth in ELA/Literacy as this has been a focus for improvement in recent years. The district brought its ELA/Literacy growth score up from a 1 to a 5 this year. Another highlight the district is celebrating is the increase in growth in Science (from a 3 in 2017 to a 5 in 2018). The FSSD’s overall composite, which includes ELA/Literacy, Math, Science and Social Studies, also improved from a 3 in 2017 to a 5 in 2018. Other district achievements include: Percent of proficient students in grades 3-8 increased in ELA/Literacy. Of particular note was the growth of 5th-graders with 14% more students proficient in 2018 and 3rd grade with 9% more students proficient in 2018. Percent of proficient students in grades 3-8 fell slightly in Math. Fifth-graders again showed strong performance with 5% more students scoring at the proficient level in 2018. Percent of proficient students in grades 3-8 increased in Science. Fifth-graders continued to shine with 6% more students proficient in 2018....

Student Health Reminders

While not at critical levels, our schools are seeing an increased number of student absences due to illness, including flu. We would like to remind parents of our district’s wellness policy: Students with a temperature of 100 or greater should NOT be in school until they are fever-free for a full 24-48 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medications. Students with vomiting or diarrhea should be symptom-free for a full 24 hours before returning to school.  If you do not have a thermometer, or you are unsure if your child is well enough for school, please bring them to the school nurse before they go to the classroom.  Please monitor you child for signs of the flu, such as fever, headache, body aches, dry cough and fatigue. Your doctor can give a quick swab test to determine if they have the flu. To prevent the spread of illness, school staff will continue referring students who do not look, act or feel well to the clinic and remind students to practice good hand washing and to cover coughs and sneezes.  In addition, custodians are diligently cleaning water fountains, faucets and other surfaces....