Friday, April 20, 2018

Spring testing window extended because of fall hurricanes

A busy 2017 hurricane season kept hundreds of thousands of Florida students out of school for days, if not weeks, this past fall.

First came closures in anticipation of Irma. Then came the extended time off to allow schools time to clean up, and staffs to return from evacuation.

Districts established some makeup days. But leaders also raised concerns that the lengthy period away interfered with learning, and said more time before Florida's high stakes testing season would help.

They asked for a week delay. They got a compromise.

K-12 Chancellor Hershel Lyons has informed superintendents that the state testing window for reading and math Florida Standards Assessments, and all state end-of-course exams, and will begin as previously scheduled. They will run an extra week longer.

That means the districts can start as originally planned if they want, or impose their own delay on testing days. Test windows are the time during which the students must sit for the assessments, but do not mean that children are taking exams every day during that time.

Lyons added that the state's writing and science test dates will not change. But the department offered an extra makeup week for writing a month later. The science test already was slated for late April.

Keep an eye on your local district for any changes to their test calendars as a result of this late change. See Lyons' memo for more details.

Comments
Gradebook podcast: Arming Florida’s school employees – Bay County takes a closer look

Gradebook podcast: Arming Florida’s school employees – Bay County takes a closer look

Florida lawmakers recently created a program to allow schools to have armed employees on campus, as part of an expanded security measure. Most superintendents and school boards have balked. But not the folks in Bay County, in Florida's Panhandle, whe...
Published: 04/19/18
Florida education proposal tagged as Amendment 8 (sound familiar?)

Florida education proposal tagged as Amendment 8 (sound familiar?)

The Florida Constitution Revision's already controversial education proposal is quickly gaining its own social media tag based on its anticipated spot on the November ballot — #Amendment8.If that sounds familiar to education advocates across th...
Published: 04/19/18
Florida education news: Student activists, budget cuts, parent voices and more

Florida education news: Student activists, budget cuts, parent voices and more

STUDENT ACTIVISTS: After the Parkland school shooting, high school students across the Tampa Bay area and Florida rose up to say 'never again.' Articulate and poised, the students galvanized the nation on the key issues of school safety and gun ...
Published: 04/19/18
Teacher asks Pasco County School Board to revise its policy on service animals

Teacher asks Pasco County School Board to revise its policy on service animals

Pasco County school district rules are clear: Service animals helping students or staff are allowed in schools and district property.What's more vague is what to do with service animals in training.Wesley Chapel High School science teacher Susan...
Published: 04/18/18
Hillsborough district looks for rebuilding firms at Lee Elementary

Hillsborough district looks for rebuilding firms at Lee Elementary

Despite insisting no decision has been made concerning fire-ravaged Robert E. Lee Elementary School, the Hillsborough County School District this week invited contractors to step forward if they can rebuild the school.The district anticipates a budge...
Published: 04/18/18
Pasco parents still seek answers on proposed school rezoning

Pasco parents still seek answers on proposed school rezoning

At the end of a lengthy public hearing on school zones last week, Pasco County School Board chairwoman Cynthia Armstrong told parents to continue sending thoughts and ideas right up to the scheduled May 1 vote."This is still open for comment," Armstr...
Published: 04/18/18
Florida education news: Testing, security, unions and more

Florida education news: Testing, security, unions and more

TESTING: The Florida Department of Education again alters its recommendation on tests that high school students may substitute for their state graduation requirements. Amid heavy criticism, officials have now suggested that current high sch...
Published: 04/18/18
Finally, a hearing on teacher pay in Hillsborough

Finally, a hearing on teacher pay in Hillsborough

Here's how far behind the Hillsborough County School District and its teachers union are in this year's salary negotiations:Tired of contract negotiations dragging on until after Christmas, the two sides agreed last year to begin bargaining no later ...
Published: 04/17/18
Pasco County schools consider safe-school officers as cheaper option to SRO’s

Pasco County schools consider safe-school officers as cheaper option to SRO’s

To meet new Florida school safety law, Pasco County school district leaders want to add trained law enforcement officers to all its elementary schools, which don't already have one.Just one problem, chief finance officer Olga Swinson told the School ...
Published: 04/17/18
Pasco teachers union raises concerns over late performance evaluations

Pasco teachers union raises concerns over late performance evaluations

In accepting 2017-18 contract terms with tiny pay raises, the Pasco County teachers union found some solace in a deal to refine the school district's performance evaluation system.Already tied to salaries and continued employment, the evalu...
Published: 04/17/18