Education

Anatomy of a Grade

April 11, 2001 1 min read
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Fessenden Elementary School had to meet the following state grading criteria based on student scores on the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test.

To Earn an A: In reading and mathematics, 50 percent of students must score on Level 3 or above. Level 1 is the lowest performance level, while 5 is the highest.

In writing, 67 percent of students must score a 3 or above, out of a possible score of 6.

The percentage of students scoring in the lowest reading level(s) must be decreased or maintained within 2 percentage points from the previous year. The school must post more than a 2-percentage-point increase in the percent of students scoring at Level 3 or above. The school should have no substantial decline in math or writing scores.

A school must test at least 95 percent of its students; however, only the scores of students who were enrolled in the same school during both the October and February student counts are used to determine a school’s grade.

To Earn a C: In reading and math, 60 percent of students must score on Level 2 or above, while 50 percent must score a 3 or above in writing. Schools must test at least 90 percent of eligible students. Schools failing to meet the minimum performance criteria in all subjects earn an F.


1998-99

Grade F

4th Grade Reading

  • 39 percent scored on Level 3 or above
  • 56 percent scored on Level 2 or above
  • 61 percent scored on Level 1 or 2

4th Grade Writing

  • 37 percent scored a 3 or above

5th Grade Mathematics

  • 13 percent scored on Level 3 or above
  • 57 percent scored on Level 2 or above

Percent tested: 98


1999-2000

Grade A

4th Grade Reading

  • 53 percent scored on Level 3 or above
  • 74 percent scored on Level 2 or above
  • 47 percent scored on Level 1 or 2

4th Grade Writing

  • 71 percent scored a 3 or above

5th Grade Mathematics

  • 59 percent scored on Level 3 or above
  • 88 percent scored on Level 2 or above

Percent tested: 100 (88 percent eligible for grade)

SOURCE: Marion County Schools and the Florida Department of Education

A version of this article appeared in the April 11, 2001 edition of Education Week as Anatomy of a Grade

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