TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami) – The grades are out for Florida’s school districts, and in South Florida, the only districts to get an A report card are Broward and Monroe County. Miami-Dade was rated B, among 23 districts to get that score in results released Monday by the Florida Department of Education.
Florida has already seen individual schools graded for performance on the FCAT exam, but this is the first time the state has graded entire districts on how good a job they are doing, on a whole, educating their students.
The Sunshine State is among the first in the nation to take this step. Like the school rankings, the district rankings are based on the controversial FCAT exam. The total is the sum of scores for reading, math, science and writing, as well as for learning gains in reading and math. The rankings also consider the scores for learning gains in reading and math among the lowest 25 percent of students in each school.
With that data, the school district ranking is set based on the assessment scores of all students in the district that were enrolled for the full year.
“Ranking districts and schools based on data-driven results demonstrates Florida’s focus on ensuring students receive a high quality education and provides another helpful tool for parents, educators and taxpayers,” said Florida Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson in a statement released with the results.
VIDEO EXPLAINING THE RANKING SYSTEM (FROM FLORIDA DOE)
“Ranking school districts by performance allows taxpayers to see their investment in education at work,” said Governor Scott about the release of the rankings.
This initial ranking also comes with a built-in history. The state went back as far as the 2003-2004 school year, applied the formula to data for each year, and generated a grade for each year to show a trend.
In Miami-Dade, data shows that this year’s “B” ranking is consistent. The county would have received a “C” rating in the 2006 and 2003 school year. Miami-Dade has never achieved an “A” ranking.
In Broward, the trend shows this year’s “a” ranking was consistent with the last 4 years, when the district would have been ranked “A”.
Monroe County is the only South Florida district to receive an “A” ranking, and would have received the same ranking for the last 6 years.
The scoring criteria ranked Monroe 8th in the state, tied with Brevard County. Broward tied with Bay county for 26th, and Miami-Dade, the state’s largest district, was 37th.