A judge has ruled that Florida school districts can’t hold 3rd graders back just because they score badly on a mandated standardized reading test, saying that classroom grades and teacher evaluations have to be considered.
The ruling by Judge Karen Gievers is in response to a lawsuit filed by parents protesting a law put in place by then-Gov. Jeb Bush that ties advancement to 4th grade to performances on reading tests. The parents instructed their children to fill their name in on the test but not answer any questions. Children in six counties were told they’d have to repeat 3rd grade even though they otherwise proved they were reading at or above grade level.
Gievers chastised the counties and the state education department for allowing the practice, saying the children involved had shown they could sufficiently read.
A version of this article appeared in the September 07, 2016 edition of Education Week as Test Can’t Be Used to Hold Students Back, Court Rules