Preliminary state test results released for school district

Press release from Alachua County Public Schools

ALACHUA COUNTY, Fla. – Preliminary state test scores released this afternoon by the Florida Department of Education show local students earned higher scores this year on their end-of-course exams, particularly in Geometry, and slightly outperformed their peers statewide in English Language Arts (ELA).

This was the first year Florida students took the new FAST test (Florida Assessment of Student Thinking), which is based on the state’s new BEST (Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking) standards. The FAST test was given three times during the school year, with the final administration (PM3) given in May.

On the ELA assessment, which is administered to students in grades 3 through 10, Alachua County students performed at or above the state average in all grades. Overall, 50% of Alachua students earned a 3 or above on the FAST PM3 ELA exam, the same rate as students across the state. (Science scores for Hidden Oak and Foster Elementary Schools are missing from the state’s calculations.) The state considers a score of 3 to be the standard for proficiency.

On the new BEST Algebra EOC (End of Course) exam, the percentage of students scoring 3 was 52%, matching last year’s results and higher than the state’s 50% rate. For the new BEST Geometry EOC exam, the local percentage rose from 51% to 57%, higher than the state average of 48%.

On the statewide Grade 5 Science exam, 51% of Alachua County’s students scored a 3 or above, matching the state rate. The same was true for the 8th-grade Science exam, with local students matching the statewide pass rate of 44%.

Local students also matched the state rate of 63% on the Biology EOC, and the U.S. History EOC also had a proficiency rate of 63%.

The proficiency rates released today by the state are not the final figures. Because FAST is a new test, the state will be revising the test score that will be considered “proficient” later this year. The final results are expected to be released in December.

The new test also cannot be compared with the previous FSA (Florida Standards Assessments) results, which means there’s no accurate comparison with last year’s scores except on the Biology, Civics, and U.S. History EOCs.

School grades, which are based primarily on test scores, are typically released by the state in the summer. However, this year’s grades will be delayed until later in the year, when the FAST proficiency rates and scores are finalized.

There will be major changes to the school grading formula this year. First, grades typically reflect student growth from one year to the next, but that will not be possible this year because there’s a new test.

Also, the state previously assigned each school a certain number of points based on their students’ performance, with the number of points determining the school’s grade. This year, the state will assign school grades to match the percentage of As, Bs, and other grades earned last year.

As a result, the state does not plan to assign any consequences to schools based on their grades this year.

  • Elementary schools do not take Science tests, I don’t know why you said Hidden Oak and Forster were missing the scores.

  • Are the scores going to be broken down by race, so we can aggravate the self imposed racial divide again and confuse equal opportunity with equal results for unequal effort?

  • There are a LOT of school board employees that are wondering how the hell Arduser made it to principal. There is undiscovered rot throughout Kirby Smith. Look into each appointment recently and ask “why?”. More than half are questionable

    • That is bizzare and is reckless at best . Maybe she has something on one of the Board Members? Hopefully they are all on the States Watchlist. They are effective at everything but education.

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