Brevard Public Schools’ Position On School Grade Calculations Coming Soon
By Space Coast Daily // July 8, 2016
BREVARD COUNTY, FLORIDA – School grade calculations, as determined by the state using the Florida Standards Assessment (FSA), will be released in the coming days.
Superintendents from the 13-district Central Florida Public School Boards Coalition, which represents over one million students along the I-4 corridor, encourage parents, students, and their communities to view the 2015-2016 results as a baseline year for school grade calculations.
“I have consistently stated that there are two worthwhile tests to place before our students: those that inform us of student difficulties to help us adapt our practices to the student’s needs and those that demonstrate successful completion of a program of study that ultimately results in a credential,” said Superintendent of Brevard Public Schools Dr. Desmond Blackburn.
“However, placing a test in front of any student with the primary purpose of evaluating a teacher has limited, if any, benefit to the child. The FSA, the foundation of school grade calculations, is this type of test.”
School districts across Central Florida believe the new calculation of learning gains implemented in this year’s formula will result in school grade drops for many schools as compared to partial grades that were released last year.
The learning gains calculation is complicated and confusing and should be further revised. High schools will further be impacted because the 2015-2016 grades will not account for current students who successfully completed Algebra 1 in middle school.
Also, the 2015-2016 high school grades are calculated using data from 2014-2015 in areas such as graduation rates, and the number of students who take advanced coursework. These factors will not accurately depict the high schools’ measure of success.
Superintendents stand firmly behind the hard work of their students, teachers, and administrators. Potentially lower grades will misrepresent what happens in our classrooms and in our school districts every day during the school year.
“When grades are released we will see opportunity for celebration and disappointment. For both sides of the coin, it is imperative that this community understand that a school’s grade is an incomplete reflection of the many wonderful accomplishments that occur day in and day out in our learning communities,” said Blackburn.
The districts will continue to advocate for a more accurate and improved accountability system where schools are not simply labeled with a single letter grade.
“I stand united with my fellow superintendents to reiterate the need for a complete overhaul of the Florida Accountability System,” said Blackburn.
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