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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Florida Department of Education to change student test score reports



Amid heated debate over what Florida Standards Assessment levels mean, the Florida Department of Education has offered up a revamped student score report.

It aims to make more clear exactly what a Level 1 through Level 5 mark represents, commissioner Pam Stewart told State Board of Education members Wednesday.

"It's not just a number," Stewart said, noting the definitions of Mastery (Level 5) through Inadequate (Level 1) on the template she provided.

She specifically pointed to the definition of Level 3, which state law calls Satisfactory. That's quite different than Proficiency, which some board members have pushed to have Level 3 signify.

"Satisfactory cannot and should not ever be used interchangeably with Proficient," Stewart said.

Board members praised the changes.

"I am so grateful to see this," said member Rebecca Fishman-Lipsey. "It is a great step forward in terms of us saying what it is we mean."

Advocates of testing reforms were less generous, noting among other things that a new color-coded report does little to improve the system.

"It is apparent at a glance what level the student achieved" because instead of their face the child's picture now reflects their FSA score, Keys activist Sue Woltanski said via Facebook. "Parents will be offended by the look of this report."

[Last modified: Wednesday, January 6, 2016 11:31am]


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