Published May 16th, 2012
The State Board of Education passed an emergency rule that will lower the passing grade for Florida's standardized writing tests, but only for this year. This comes after preliminary results showed the failure rate would dramatically increased otherwise. Many students confirm the content of the test was much tougher this year.
These kids are energetic because they're playing a game called "stealing the bacon." Once they get the jitters out of their systems, its time to began on their homework. Fourth Grader Sonya Howton says she got some help with the F-CAT here from the counselors at the "Boys and Girls Club of Alachua County"
"They help us with homework and help me understand it better," Sonya said.
Sonya says the Math portion of the F-CAT was simple, but the writing section, she did not feel comfortable.
"You had to write like more of a longer story than we usually do," Sonya said.
State Education Officials lowered the passing grade for the writing portion of the FCAT since about only a third of all students would have passed. Instead of a passing score of "4" it will now be a 3 on a 0 - 6 scale. State Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson says the change is not a step backwards.
"We took a look at the fact that there was some lack of communication on our part to really prepare teachers and educators for the kind of impact it would have," Gerard Robinson, State Education Commissioner said.
Counselors at the Boys and Girls Club say they've worked hard with the children and hope another change can be made to the FCAT.
"Come up with something else because if they don't pass, some kids, they don't graduate," Doris Washington, Counselor at Boys and Girls Club said.
But in the meantime, Sonya says she's getting ready for Summer.
"I'm going to Ohio," she said.
Going out of town with the assurance that its more likely that she and these other kids, have now made the grade.
County and school reports have not been released.
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