Miami Jackson Senior High School has lost its appeal to become an A-rated school after disputing test scores , the Miami Herald reports.
The Florida Department of Education said the scores from students learning English would not have changed the school’s grade:
The state’s ruling was expected, even though Miami-Dade Schools Superintendent Alberto Carvalho said in January that the “English Language Learner” students in question should not have counted toward the calculation of the school’s 2012-13 letter grade because they had not been enrolled in a U.S. school for a full year prior to the start of testing, as state law requires.
School and district testing officials argued that the disputed test scores caused Miami Jackson, which earned enough points to receive an “A,” to miss out on a requirement that at least a quarter of students test at proficient reading levels in order to avoid a one-grade drop.
Losing the “A” was significant both for the pride of a school seeking its third straight “A” after years of failing marks, and for the finances of its faculty, who in two prior years received almost $200,000 in state school recognition bonuses. In arguing for the appeal, Jackson testing chairman Felix Diaz said it would be “inconceivable” not to receive the grade the school earned.
Reporter David Smiley spoke with StateImpact Florida about the grade challenge in January. Listen to that story here.
Education Commissioner Pam Stewart has proposed eliminating similar automatic grade reductions in an effort to streamline the state school grading formula.