Recruitment & Retention

Qualifications Questioned

By Rhea R. Borja — April 25, 2006 1 min read

Two senators in the Sunshine State may sue the Florida education department if it doesn’t release the names and qualifications of $10-an-hour temporary workers who grade the state’s high-stakes tests.

Sen. Lesley “Les” Miller Jr. and Sen. Walter G. “Skip” Campbell Jr., both Democrats, gave the department until 5 p.m. on April 22 to give the information about the temporary workers who score portions of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test, or FCAT. If the department refused, the two were “prepared to seek all legal remedies as provided by law,” according to an April 18 letter from the lawmakers.

The letter was the latest salvo in an escalating fight between the state lawmakers, who question the competence and fairness of the temporary workers, and the education department and the company that administers the test, CTB/McGraw-Hill. CTB is a subsidiary of the McGraw-Hill Cos., based in New York City, and subcontracts with Troy, Mich.-based Kelly Services Inc. to score the FCAT.

Florida has an $86.5 million, three-year contract with CTB to administer the FCAT. About 1.7 million Florida students each year take the tests, which are used to grade schools’ performance and to determine whether students are promoted to the next grade.

Both the Florida education department and CTB officials say that the information being requested by the senators is a “trade secret” and thus exempt from disclosure under the Florida Public Records Act. “Further, releasing the names to the public would subject scorers to potential intimidation and attempts to influence their work,” a CTB lawyer wrote to the department in an April 6 letter.

Florida has used temporary workers to score the FCAT for 10 years, Cathy Schroeder, an education department spokeswoman, said last week. “Nothing has changed,” she said, “but the picture has been painted that just because they’re temporary workers, they’re unprofessional, which is not true.”

All temporary workers who grade the FCAT must have a bachelor’s degree, and more than half are former educators, she said.

Ms. Schroeder said the department would not supply the information the lawmakers requested.

That’s not good enough, Sen. Miller says. He says test-graders should have a bachelor’s degree in education or experience in teaching. “You have to realize that this test is the ultimate determining factor in a child’s academic career,” he said.

Events

Student Well-Being Webinar Boosting Teacher and Student Motivation During the Pandemic: What It Takes
Join Alyson Klein and her expert guests for practical tips and discussion on how to keep students and teachers motivated as the pandemic drags on.
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
A Holistic Approach to Social-Emotional Learning
Register to learn about the components and benefits of holistically implemented SEL.
Content provided by Committee for Children
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Student Well-Being Webinar
How Principals Can Support Student Well-Being During COVID
Join this webinar for tips on how to support and prioritize student health and well-being during COVID.
Content provided by Unruly Studios

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Interdisciplinary STEAM Specialist
Smyrna, Georgia
St. Benedict's Episcopal School
Interdisciplinary STEAM Specialist
Smyrna, Georgia
St. Benedict's Episcopal School
Arizona School Data Analyst - (AZVA)
Arizona, United States
K12 Inc.
Software Engineer
Portland, OR, US
Northwest Evaluation Association

Read Next

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Recruitment & Retention Whitepaper
Teacher Recruitment, Retention & PD in the COVID Era: What the Research Tells Us.
Get your copy of this year’s PowerSchool TalentIndex to find out how schools and districts are recruiting, hiring, and managing staff to ...
Content provided by PowerSchool
Recruitment & Retention The Scramble to Find Substitute Teachers
Some districts are paying bonuses, some are lowering qualifications, and one is assigning central office staff to substitute at least one day per week.
5 min read
tsj substitute 13
DigitalVision Vectors/Getty
Recruitment & Retention Quiz Quiz Yourself: How Much Do You Know About Teacher Shortages?
Quiz yourself: How are districts responding to existing and expected teacher shortages, and what factors influence teacher shortages?
Hayley Hardison
1 min read
Recruitment & Retention Teacher Morale and Student Enrollment Declining Under COVID-19, Survey Shows
A new EdWeek Research Center survey examines what educators are thinking on a host of issues as they begin the 2020-21 academic year.
9 min read