Tag Archives: promotion

Cattlemen Vote to Raise Their Taxes (well, something like that)

News release from state Department of Agriculture:
NASHVILLE, Tenn. – The results are in and Tennessee cattle producers have voted to increase the assessment they pay to support in-state promotions of beef announced state Agriculture Commissioner Julius Johnson.
“In today’s competitive market, it’s important for farmers to reassess their efforts in the marketplace and how they can best reach today’s consumer,” Johnson said. “I’m pleased to have authorized this referendum and to have provided an opportunity for producers to have a say in determining their business future.”
Tennessee cattle producers cast their votes last week in a statewide referendum authorized by the Tennessee Department of Agriculture. The referendum was requested by the Tennessee Cattlemen’s Association, the state’s largest cattle organization.
More than 56 percent or 718 of the 1,275 producers who cast ballots at local UT Extension offices supported the measure. The measure increases by 50 cents the assessment farmers pay per head of cattle sold to support in-state research, education and promotion of beef. Only a majority of the votes cast were needed to pass.
The 50 cent increase will go into effect in the spring. Currently, cattle producers pay $1 per head to help build consumer demand for beef products nationally. The national beef program was authorized by a vote of cattle producers and implemented in 1985.
Tennessee ranks as one of the top beef producing states in the nation with nearly two million head of cattle. According to the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service, cattle and calves generated $545 million in Tennessee farm cash receipts in 2010, making beef the state’s top commodity. There are approximately 47,000 cattle producers in the state.

Burks, Kelsey Join Hands Against Social Promotions of 8th Graders

News release from Senate Republican Caucus:
(NASHVILLE, TN), November 30, 2011 — State Senators Brian Kelsey (R-Germantown) and Charlotte Burks (D-Monterey) today announced the introduction of a bill that will ensure 8th graders have learned the material necessary to start high school. Senate Bill 2156 will end the practice of social promotion for 8th graders. Social promotion is the practice of passing students to the next grade level even though those students have not mastered the material.
The bill expands upon Public Chapter Number 351 by Sen. Burks, which passed last year and ended the practice of social promotion for third graders. The legislation is the eighth in a series of announcements by Kelsey in his “12 for ’12” initiative for the next legislative session, which is set to reconvene January 10, 2012.
“Our high school students in Tennessee must enter the 9th grade with the skills they need to succeed,” said Sen. Kelsey. “Passing students regardless of their test scores sets these children up for failure. It denies them the quality education they deserve.”
Currently, over 20,000 students in grades 4 through 8 are promoted to the next grade every year without demonstrating a basic understanding of the curriculum or the skills tested by the Tennessee Comprehensive Assessment Program, the end of year test administered in grades 3 through 8. Approximately 1,600 of those students are promoted from 8th to 9th grade.
Florida, which has proven a leader in education results, passed a similar bill in 2002. Students there who repeated third grade performed better than they would have if they had been passed to a higher grade. The improvement was measurable within only two years, according to a Colorado University study. The practice has also helped reduce racial gaps in education. Latino students in Florida now outperform all students in Tennessee.

On the New ‘No Social Promotion’ Law

Starting next school year, Tennessee third-graders will no longer be allowed to move on to the next grade unless they can demonstrate understanding of the curriculum and basic reading skills, reports the News Sentinel.
The new state law, approved this month, exempts special education students. It also permits school systems to promote struggling third-graders if they provide them with proven remedial help before the beginning of their fourth-grade school year.
“It’s not about punishing students by retaining them,” Gary Nixon, executive director of the state Board of Education, said last week. “It’s providing intervention and ensuring they are successful.”
The bill is another step in Tennessee’s push toward higher and more rigorous academic standards, he said. School systems agree with the legislation’s intent to get all students reading on grade level but are working to figure out its practical implications, said Jim McIntyre, superintendent of Knox County Schools
“What we know from a lot of the research is social promotion is really not a particularly productive solution, but neither is retention in grade,” he said. “The challenge is to ensure that we look at each individual student and based on a variety of academic and developmental considerations, really make a good decision that meets the needs of the student academically.”