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Civics Assessments

Per state law (T.C.A. § 49-6-1028), all districts must ensure that a project-based civics assessment is given at least once in grades 4–8 and once in grades 9–12. The project-based civics assessments are developed by the district to ensure students demonstrate an understanding of civics and achieve the learning objectives contained within the social studies standards. All districts must complete the compliance form by May 15, 2018.

Additionally, per state law (T.C.A. § 49-6-408A), students must Pass the United States citizenship and immigration test with at least a 70 percent during the student’s high school career (i.e., grades 9-12). Schools in which all seniors earning a regular diploma and also earn a passing grade (70 percent or higher) on the U.S. civics test will be recognized by the department as a U.S. Civics All-Star School. All districts are required to submit their compliance form by June 15 for their 2018 graduating seniors.

U.S. Civics All-Star Schools

2017

Frequently Asked Questions

Pursuant to state law, students are required to participate in the following civics assessments:

  1. A project-based assessment in civics is required at least once in grades four through eight (4-8) and at least once in grades nine through twelve (9-12). The project-based assessment is designed to measure the civics learning objectives contained in the social studies standards and to demonstrate understanding and relevance of public policy, the structure of federal, state and local governments and both the Tennessee and the United States constitutions.
  2. A United States citizenship and immigration services civics test is required at least once in grades nine through twelve (9-12). Schools in which all seniors earning a regular diploma also earn a passing grade on the U.S. Civics test will be recognized by the department as a U.S. Civics All-Star School.

All LEAs must submit verification of compliance with each civics assessment to the department.

LEAs will report the name of each school in the district that had 100% of their students pass the test with a 70% or higher on the U.S. citizenship and immigration services civics test compliance form. Once the form is submitted, the department will review and verify all schools that meet the requirements. All U.S. Civics All-Star Schools will be recognized on the department’s website.

  • The project-based assessment shall be developed by the LEA and should engage students in learning essential knowledge and skills through a student-influenced inquiry process structured around complex, authentic questions and carefully designed products and tasks. The project-based assessment should measure the civics learning objectives contained in the social studies standards and provide students the opportunity to demonstrate understanding and relevance of public policy, the structure of federal, state and local governments, and both the Tennessee and the United States constitutions.
  • The U.S. citizenship and immigration services civics test should be prepared by each district and should be comprised of between 25 and 50 questions. Questions must come from U.S. citizenship test administered by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. The assessment may be fill in the blank, multiple choice, open response, etc. Students must correctly answer at least 70 percent of the questions on the test to earn a passing grade. A student may participate in the test as many times as necessary to earn a passing grade.

All public school students, including the class of 2017, are expected to participate in the civics assessments at the appropriate grade levels. A passing grade on the project-based assessment or the U.S. citizenship and immigration services civics test is not a requirement for graduation. Each LEA may determine how a student’s grade on each assessment will be counted in the classroom or district.

A student who has an IEP under which the civics tests are determined by the IEP team to be appropriate shall take the civics test with the accommodations that are deemed necessary by the IEP team.

The IEP team will determine the most appropriate accommodations for the student.