Information for Districts

Overview of Local Textbook Adoption Process

Per state law, local districts are responsible for the adoption of curriculum. The State Textbook Commission seeks to provide local school systems with a broad range of flexibility by including a range of books that meet the content standards on the official list that it recommends to the State Board of Education for approval.

Once the State Board of Education approves the list of textbooks, school districts may choose to adopt a book from the state approved list or apply for a waiver to use a different text.

Local boards of education are expected to select teachers and instructional supervisors in their district to serve on local review committees. These committees review the textbooks on the state approved list and may also review textbooks that are not on the list. Local boards of education may use the reviews completed by these committees to inform which textbooks to adopt. Districts are also encouraged to provide a public review process on proposed textbooks and instructional materials from community members to guide their decision on which textbooks to adopt.

The selection of a textbook is exclusively the responsibility of the local district. Each community has the opportunity to review the content of the books to ensure that the content reflects the values of the local community.

Information and Procedures for District Textbook Adoptions

During the each school year, school systems will be adopting new textbooks in a subject area or several subject areas. The State Textbook Commission formulates the recommended list in its October meeting and sends it to the State Board of Education for their consideration. Once the State Board of Education has approved a list of textbooks, districts follow the procedures listed below.

Review Committee

You may appoint as many review committees as necessary to conform to your local organizational structure. All members of the local textbook selection committees are required to subscribe to the oath appearing on ED-2154, which may be administered by any notary public.

Caravan Stop

CORE Offices will be contacting districts regarding options for the textbook Caravan. These normally last from mid-January through mid-March.


Publishers will be notified that sample textbooks are to be delivered to you by early January. Tennessee Book Company coordinates the distribution of your requests for adoption samples to the publishers. To enter your requests, log on to the Tennessee Book Company website, click on "Section # Information" under "State Information," and follow the instructions. The textbook commission has established a six sample limit per title per system.


Districts' Report of Adoption is due April 15th. It will also be completed online at the Tennessee Book Company website. A hard copy and an electronic copy is to be sent to the Office of Textbook Services. The timely filing of these reports is critical in assisting the depository and the respective publishers in projecting needs and acquiring sufficient inventory to deliver books to meet your needs prior to the opening of schools in the fall. We recommend that you appoint your committees as soon as possible and provide opportunities for them to discuss curriculum needs and to plan for careful evaluation of the approved textbooks.

Adoption of Textbooks Not on the Official List

Systems may adopt and purchase books not on the official list by following the Guidelines for Use of Textbook Programs Not on Contract.

  • Process I – No books are listed on the Official Textbook List for the course
  • Process II – Books are listed on the Official Textbook List for the course – Special Permission

Please refer to the Forms section to access applicable forms in regard to this process.

News and Updates for Textbook Coordinators

Last Update: October 16, 2014