Tennessee's TCAP test scores show improvement after pandemic decline

Staff File Photo / TCAP test booklets from several years back are pictured in a fifth-grade classroom at George R. Stuart Elementary School in Cleveland.

Tennessee's latest standardized test scores, released by the state Department of Education on Tuesday, mark the start of a comeback after the pandemic caused a sharp decline last year.

Tennessee's second set of test scores from the pandemic era improved across all subjects and grades, largely returning to pre-COVID levels.

But historically underserved student populations - including children with disabilities, those from low-income families and students of color - continue to lag behind their peers.

State-level results released Tuesday showed an overall increase in proficiency since 2021, when the first pandemic scores followed national trends and declined across all subjects and grades for public school students in grades 3-11.

The latest scores start Tennessee on a new trajectory for improvement based on standardized tests under the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program, also known as TCAP.