State Seeking Public Input on Textbooks

Press Release from the State of Tennessee, Aug 16, 2011:

Tennessee education officials are looking for input on textbooks proposed for the 2012-2013 school year in the following subjects: section VI, visual arts, music, theater arts, dance, spelling, literature, driver education, computer science, health sciences education, business technology, marketing education, technology engineering, education and trade and industrial education. The textbooks are now on display in 10 district collection sites across Tennessee.

Those interested in reviewing the textbooks should contact the director of the textbook collection site in their area. Forms are available at each site for input, and must be completed by September 2, 2011.

Director of Textbook Services Morgan Branch encouraged parents, teachers and the general public to visit the sites and participate in the review process.

“It is very important for the public to have access to the textbooks under consideration,” Branch said. “Our goal is to provide a wide variety of materials that enrich and support the curriculum and to address the varied interests, abilities and learning styles of students.”

In addition to citizen input, a state review committee of 34 public school teachers will assist Tennessee Textbook Commission members with their evaluation of the textbooks. After the commission’s September 12 meeting, a workshop will be held for textbook publishers to respond to the reviews of their books and to answer questions from a representative panel of the reviewers and from commission members. Commission members will vote on October 11 on the the new editions to be recommended to the Tennessee Board of Education for the 2011 official list of textbooks. Local school systems can then adopt textbooks from the official state textbook list for a six-year period.

Public comments should be sent by Sept. 5 to: Morgan Branch, Director of Textbook Services, Tennessee Department of Education, 5th Floor, Andrew Johnson Tower, Nashville, Tennessee 37243-0379. Citizens with questions about the process may also call Morgan Branch at 615-253-3160.