Three Pinellas public schools have Florida's worst third-grade math scores
Three Pinellas County public schools had the unfortunate distinction last week of earning the lowest math scores in the state.
At Fairmount Park Elementary and Maximo Elementary, just 4 percent of third graders tested earned a score considered on grade level or above. That's a Level 3 or above on a five-point scale. At Fairmount Park, 63 percent of third graders scored on the lowest possible level. At Maximo, 78 percent did.
Hamilton Disston's scores were worse than Maximo or Fairmount Park, with none of its third graders scoring a Level 3 or above. But Hamilton Disston is a special education center and only tested 11 third graders in math this year. For privacy reasons, the state doesn't report scores for schools with fewer than 10 students tested.
The only schools statewide that did worse than Fairmount Park and Maximo - leaving out Hamilton Disston - were small charter schools. The biggest of the charters that performed worse was Village of Excellence Academy in Hillsborough County, with just 3 percent of third graders earning a Level 3 or above for math. The school tested 36 students.
Imagine Charter School, which the School Board voted to close because of chronic low performance, earned better math scores, though the scores for its third graders still were among the lowest in the state. Of Imagine's third graders, 13 percent were on grade level or above.
Fairmount Park Elementary and Maximo Elementary also earned some of the state's lowest reading scores. At Fairmount Park, 12 percent of third graders earned a Level 3 or above in reading. At Maximo, 15 percent of third graders hit that mark.
Both Maximo and Fairmount Park are going through turnaround plans required by the state after chronic low performance. As part of the district-managed turnaround option, the schools are required to replace the principals and have teachers reapply for their jobs. Superintendent Mike Grego switched principals at Fairmount Park for the 2013/14 school year, but declined to change Maximo's leader. The hiring process for teachers at those schools is ongoing.