Tennessee schools to get A-F letter ratings under bill Senate sending to Haslam

Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam answers questions during an interview Thursday, Feb. 11, 2016, in Nashville.

NASHVILLE - Tennessee public schools will be graded in an A-F system similar to their students under a bill now going to Gov. Bill Haslam for his consideration.

Senators voted 30-0 to accept a House amendment on the bill, previously passed by both chambers.

The House amendment accepted by senators directs the grading scale be developed by state Education Department officials as opposed to the State Board of Education.

If Haslam signs the measure, the grading system would be implemented before the start of the 2017-2018 school year. The grades would be shown on the state's annual report cards.

Proponents say it would provide an easy-to-understand measurement for parents. But critics say the letter grades will oversimplify how well or badly individual schools are doing and lead to unfair stigmatization.

For complete details, see tomorrow's Chattanooga Times Free Press.