TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami)On Friday, the Florida Department of Education notified the superintendents of 40 Florida schools that it is changing the way grades are calculated.

However, Commissioner of Education Gerard Robinson is pleased that only slight changes were needed.

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“The fact that eight percent of school grades will increase not only affirms the hard work of Florida’s students, teachers and district leadership, it demonstrates the value of the continuous review process,” said Commissioner Robinson. “The strength of our accountability system depends on the partnership between school districts and the department, and these revisions are a direct result of that process.”

During the continuous review process, the department identified preliminary revisions for both schools and districts that will result in increases. The revisions involved 213 of the initially graded 2,586 schools as follows:

  • 116 school grades changed from a B to an A.
  • 55 school grades changed from a C to a B.
  • 35 school grades changed from a D to a C.
  • 7 school grades changed from an F to a D.

The impact of these preliminary revisions to the initial school grades will result in the following changes to nine initial district grades.

  • Collier will increase from a B to an A.
  • Desoto will increase from a D to a C.
  • Gadsden will increase from a D to a C.
  • Hillsborough will increase from a C to a B.
  • Okeechobee will increase from a D to a C.
  • Osceola will increase from a C to a B.
  • Palm Beach will increase from a B to an A.
  • Pasco will increase from a C to B.
  • Union will increase from a B to an A.
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These changes were identified during the review process that occurs between the time initial school grades are released and final school grades are published after an appeals process has been completed. This phase of the school grading process, which involves district validation, is important because it provides transparency and helps ensure the final grades are correct.

The department informs districts of anticipated changes to initial school grades as they are identified throughout this phase of the process to assist them in local planning decisions pending the release of the final school grades, which will occur during the first week in September.

Commissioner Robinson has seems intensely focused on improvement.

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“While I am pleased that the continuous review process has resulted in better grades, we will continue to look for ways to improve the grade calculation process,” said Robinson.