English Language Arts

The State Board of Education is charged with conducting a review of all sets of academic standards at a minimum of every six years. In October 2014, Governor Haslam announced the creation of a standards review website that would be open to the public to review and offer feedback on what Tennessee students should know and be able to do by the end of each K-12 school year in both mathematics and English language arts (ELA). At the time of that announcement, the Governor laid out a process for review. As part of this process, the State Board of Education was charged with overseeing a transparent, comprehensive review of math and ELA standards that would culminate in replacement of Common Core State Standards with rigorous Tennessee Education Standards.


The ELA public review website was available from November 2014 through April 2015. Thousands of people responded to the draft standards resulting in 131,424 reviews and 20,344 comments. After the data was compiled, it was sent to the math and ELA Educator Advisory Teams. The educators that comprised these two teams reviewed every individual standard and revised them using the public feedback and their content expertise. Through this process, they created a new draft of Tennessee-specific standards, which was reposted to the website for a second period of public feedback in October 2015. The second posting of the review website for math and ELA standards closed on December 1, 2015.

Throughout Fall 2015, the Standards Recommendation Committee (SRC) — appointed by the governor, lieutenant governor, and speaker of the House of Representatives — solicited feedback from across the state through regional meetings and roundtables with educators, parents, the higher education community, and other stakeholders.

The SRC used all of the feedback collected via the website and roundtables to guide their final recommendations for additional standards revisions. In January 2016, the SRC approved the new Tennessee academic standards and presented the new standards to the State Board for their first reading. The standards were heard on final reading at the April 2016 Board meeting. After the standards were approved, the 2016-2017 school year was used to train Tennessee’s educators on the new standards. In the 2017-2018 school year, the new math and ELA standards were implemented and assessed.

The ELA standards will next go under review in Fall 2023

Additional questions about the ELA standards review process can be directed to TNStandards.Review@tn.gov