Simulated school grades released

The Department of Education has released simulated school grade numbers in advance of the confirmed grades. These grades compare school performance for 2014 and 2015, but are based on a new school standardized exam. Educators feel this makes it impossible to accurately calculate gains.

The following is from a memo released by Superintendent of Collier County Schools Kamela Patton:

On December 9, 2016, the Florida Department of Education (FDOE) issued a simulation of baseline 2014-15 school grades for informational purposes only. The simulation is based on Commissioner Stewart’s proposed achievement level out scores for the Florida Standards Assessment (FSA). This simulation was published for informational purposes based on proposed school grades rule language to implement changes required by Senate Bill 1642.

The State Board of Education will vote on this rule, along with the FSA achievement level out scores, at next month’s meeting, which is scheduled for Wednesday, January 6, 2016, in Tallahassee Reviewing simulation data is the final phase of the process for this rule proposed by Commissioner Stewart. The FDOE school grade simulation was provided based on Commissioner Stewart’s proposed achievement level out scores and the school grades rule in its current form. If the State Board adopts the rule, the DOE will calculate and release the official baseline school grades, which eventually will be the basis for school recognition dollars. It is important to note that the 2014-15 grade simulation does not include learning gains as 2014-15 was the first school year the Florida Standards Assessments (FSAs) were administered. Learning gains will be included within the school grades calculation beginning with the 2015-16 school year, projected to be released this summer.

Florida school superintendents are wary of the simulated grades because grading formulas have changed. Superintendents doubt the importance of these simulated numbers.

In a memo to the school board, Patton also explained that the state has also reconfigured what it will take into account for measuring performance. The most stark changes are seen in how the state calculates a high school’s performance.

These grades are further questions because several categories are no longer counted including number of students in accelerated courses, graduation rates and college readiness in reading or math.

Immokalee Schools Simulated Grades (comparison for 2014 and 2015)
Eden Park D and D
Highlands F and F
Lake Trafford D and C
Pinecrest F and F
Village Oaks F and D
IMS D and D
IHS B for 2014; 2015 grades have not been released as yet
Immokalee Teen Parenting B and C
Immokalee Community (Charter School) B and C.

The Immokalee Bulletin is published every Thursday.

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