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- Public Notices
FCAT standardized testing in schools is a dismal failure. It should not have any funding attached to it, and it should not be used to determine if teachers are doing their jobs. Teachers waste a lot of valuable educational time preparing students for these tests, and still most of the students leaving high school will not be ready for college. Regardless of whether or not a student graduating high school intends to attend college, the discussion and focus should be on preparing students for higher education.
ACT scores show that only 17 percent of Florida high school graduates will be ready for higher education. This means Florida schools are doing only slightly better than Tennessee and Mississippi in preparing their children for the next level of education. These figures are abysmal, but the nationwide average of 25 percent being college-ready is not great, either. What this means for parents is, despite the fact your child may have graduated from a Florida school system that is A-plus by FCAT standards, your child, fresh out of high school, will most likely have to take some remedial courses for the basics before they take regular college courses. What it means for the student entering college is the road to any level degree just became more difficult than it should have ever been in the first place.
The issue should not be whether a student can pass an FCAT exam, but whether or not a student graduating high school will be able to do college-level work good enough to start meeting their Gordon Rule requirement without having to do remediation work first.
Our school systems here in Florida can move forward toward attaining this simple goal and if they did, our schools would automatically exceed any goal they had hoped to accomplish with the stupid FCAT tests. We can fix this problem or we can continue to pat ourselves on the back for having an A-plus school system that continues to graduate students who are unprepared or not prepared enough for college level work.