Show teachers the end-of-course exams, superintendent Elia urges
As the Florida Board of Education celebrated fourth graders' strong showing on international reading test, Hillsborough schools superintendent MaryEllen Elia pointed out that while exciting, the results were 12 years in the making.
Students and teachers could have done better faster if the state had shared its tests with teachers, Elia said, so they could better inform their instruction with questions similar to the ones the state and others use. She noted that Massachusetts, which regularly performs at the top of the nation, shares its tests with teachers.
She suggested that as the Florida moves more into end-of-course exams, which will be high school graduation requirements, it should give teachers the tests so they can get up to speed.
"It will transcend into instructional practice every day and move this quicker," Elia told the board. "Let’s speed this up and get our teachers the information. ... If you give teachers more specific tools on these shifts, we will get there quicker and the students will benefit."
Board members sounded interested, although they were concerned about the price tag. They asked for more details. Do you think that giving teachers the tests would help them better prepare lessons?