Gov. Scott: Florida Students Continue to Make Achievement Gains

Results show progress in closing the achievement gap and big gains in Science.

Tallahassee, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott announced that scores on 2018 statewide, standardized assessments continue to move up and that the achievement gap is closing across many grade levels and subjects. These results are consistent with results from the National Assessment of Educational Progress (NAEP) announced in April.

Governor Scott said, “This year’s assessment results demonstrate that Florida students are continuing to achieve. Florida’s teachers and school administrators, coupled with the state’s six straight years of historic investment into Florida’s K-12 education system, have prioritized student success. In fact, since 2011, funding for Florida’s K-12 public schools has increased by $4.5 billion, giving our schools the resources they need. I’m proud of the results that our students are delivering, and I will never stop fighting to make sure that every student in every Florida community has access to a great education.”

Florida Department of Education Commissioner Pam Stewart said, “I am incredibly proud of our state’s students, parents, teachers and school administrators for their hard work throughout the 2017-18 school year. Our expectations are the highest they’ve ever been, and Florida’s educators and students continue to excel. Today’s results show that Florida’s accountability system is integral to ensuring all students have access to the high-quality education they deserve. We are thrilled to celebrate our students’ accomplishments, and we will continue to work hard every day to ensure all Florida students have the opportunity to achieve their academic, professional and life goals.”

Statewide Highlights for English Language Arts (ELA) and Mathematics

Compared to 2017, more students passed the 2018 statewide, standardized English Language Arts and Mathematics assessments. --In grades 3-10, the percentage of students who passed (Level 3 or higher) the English Language Arts portion of the assessment increased by one percentage point. --In grades 3-8, the percentage of students passing the Florida Standards Assessment in Mathematics and end-of-course assessments increased by one percentage point. --The percentage of students passing the statewide end-of-course assessment in Algebra 1 increased by one percentage point. --The percentage of students passing the statewide end-of-course assessment in Geometry increased by three percentage points.

Statewide Highlights for Science and Social Studies

Compared to 2017, a higher percentage of Florida students passed the statewide, standardized Science, Civics and U.S. History assessments. --In grade 5 Science, the percentage of students passing increased by four percentage points, while in grade 8 the percentage increased by two percentage points. --The percentage of students passing the statewide Civics assessment and the Biology I assessment both increased by two percentage points. --The percentage of students passing the statewide U.S. History assessment also went up.

“Our students’ improved performance on the science assessments is impressive,” added Commissioner Stewart. “Now more than ever our economy is dependent on diversity and achievement in STEM fields, and I am thrilled to see these results that show the hard work of students and educators.”

Closing the Achievement Gap and Subgroup Increases

The achievement gap in English Language Arts, Algebra 1 and Geometry narrowed between 2017 and 2018, and subgroup performance increased across multiple subject areas.

--In grades 3-10, the percentage of African American students passing the statewide assessment in English Language Arts increased by one percentage point, while the percentage of Hispanic students passing increased by two percentage points. Both groups narrowed the achievement gap with their white counterparts. --African American students, Hispanic students, economically disadvantaged students and students with disabilities all decreased the percentage scoring at the lowest level in English Language Arts. --The percentage of economically disadvantaged students in grades 3-8 passing the Mathematics assessments (Florida Standards Assessments and end-of-course assessments) increased by two percentage points, while African American students, Hispanic students, and students with disabilities each increased performance by one percentage point. --In Algebra 1, Hispanic students increased the percentage of students passing the assessment by 2 percentage points, narrowing the achievement gap with their white counterparts. In addition, economically disadvantaged students increased their performance by two percentage points and African American students and students with disabilities increased their performance by one percentage point. --In Geometry, Hispanic students increased the percentage passing by four points, narrowing the achievement gap with their white counterparts. Additionally, economically disadvantaged students increased their performance by four percentage points while African American students increased the percentage passing by three percentage points. --Also in Geometry, the percentage of English Language Learners and students with disabilities passing both went up.

View the statewide and district-level results here: http://www.fldoe.org/accountability/assessments/k-12-student-assessment/results/2018.stml.