For the Record

It’s not hard to find the grim social, economic and educational statistics that plague Memphis. Therefore it’s easy to be distracted from the extraordinary reform efforts on the ground today. Here we will arm you with the good news about Urban Education. Please help us spread the word.

The most recent study from Tennessee looked at 42 teacher preparation programs and found that Teach For America corps members outperformed the average new teacher across all subject areas and grade levels, and in some areas they outperform veteran teachers. Teach For America was the top new teacher preparation program in Tennessee.
This year in Memphis, the New Teacher Project team met every target for hiring, and opened the school year with 100 percent of known vacancies filled—a district first.
At Ida B. Wells Academy the proportion of students reaching standards increased by nearly 20 points in both English/language arts and math in 2008. Dunbar Elementary school's first-year principal led a 24-point gain across ELA and math in 2008. Both schools are led by principals from the New Leaders for New Schools program.
Memphis Stand for Children increased community awareness on the state of public schools through launch of Education Study Circles, engaging more than 500 residents to learn how to be effective education advocates; implementation of education campaigns on the consolidation of Memphis and Shelby County Schools and outreach initiatives to rally support that contributed to the restoration of funds, educational programs and teaching positions for Memphis City Schools.
Since opening our region in 2006, Teach For America teachers have impacted more than 33,000 students enrolled in Memphis City Schools (MCS) highest-need schools. During the 2011-2012 school year, our teachers will impact nearly 19,000 students enrolled in MCS.
For two years Teach For America have partnered with the state to receive direct Tennessee Value-Added Assessment System (TVAAS) data on our teachers. The report indicates that in nearly every tested subject, our teachers outpaced the results of those teachers with one to three years of experience and teachers with one to five years experience in Memphis and across the state.
At Cornerstone Prep kindergarteners improved almost three grade levels in one academic year; their average scores were higher than 82% of the national norm in math and the class average for reading and math combined exceeded 86% of the students in the national norm.
The TCAP scores in Reading and Math at Charter school Freedom Prep surpassed the District averages. Math scores surpassed averages for the entire state of Tennessee. Seventh graders (students who have been there for two years) scored the same in math as seventh graders in Williamson County, Tenn. (the wealthiest county in TN). Freedom Prep students progressed an average of 2 to 2.5 years in one academic year in Reading and Math on the Stanford 10 exam, a nationally-normed exam.
Jubilee Schools achieves their highly respected school quality at approximately one-half the per-pupil cost of neighboring public schools.
Memphis Teacher Residency has 80 total teachers and/or residents working in Memphis urban schools this year. Their applications have grown 320% over three years: 84, 159, 269.
Power Center Academy outperformed the district and the state in all subject areas on the 2011 TCAP. Power Center Academy scholars have served over 3,000 hours of community service.
The inaugural kindergarten class (College Class of 2027) at Memphis College Prep scored, on average, in the 76th national percentile in reading and math. Only 31% of students began the year academically prepared to enter kindergarten. By the end of our first year, 90% of the inaugural kindergarten class was reading at or above grade level. 94% of students who ended the 2010-11 year with Memphis College Prep reenrolled for the 2011-12 school year.
High school students at The Soulsville Charter School outperformed the state in 4 of 5 TCAP End-of-Course subjects and rivaled it in the remaining one.