StateImpact Florida

Your Guide To Florida's New GED

Jan 2, 2014

Florida gets a new GED exam today. The high school equivalency test is going exclusively online.

Education advocates are greeting it with mixed feelings.

The new GED has been retooled to emphasize workplace and college skills. That’s part of why advocates say it makes sense to offer it only as a computer-based exam. Test-takers will also get their unofficial results instantly.

Abrams Books

  Children’s author Michael Buckley has spent a lot of time thinking about bullies. He’s the bestselling author of the NERDS series, which features a bunch of nerdy kids who deal with bullies during the school day and moonlight as top-secret superheroes the rest of the time.

Sheila Keenan, author of a new graphic novel for kids, called Dogs of War, says she tries not to think too much about classroom policies when she writes.

Her latest work is about the relationships between soldiers and dogs during World War I, World War II and the Vietnam War. It’s fiction, but she did a lot of research to make sure it was historically accurate.“Good storytelling is good storytelling,” says Keenan.

Daniel Moyle


Florida is one of 45 states that have fully adopted new math, English and literacy standards known as Common Core. Political opposition to the standards built throughout the year in both Florida and across the country.

Every Florida grade is scheduled to switch to the new standards this fall. The standards outline what students should know at the end of each grade.

Tony Bennett / StateImpact Indiana

Here’s our pick for the biggest education stories of 2013 — a few of which will likely dominate 2014 as well.


Bennett came to Florida in January with a reputation as a rising star among self-proclaimed education reformers and a leading voice for the Common Core English, literacy and math standards fully adopted by 45 states. He also came on the heels of losing his reelection bid as Indiana’s state schools chief to Democrat Glenda Ritz.

John O'Connor / StateImpact Florida

From Common Core, to Florida's next standardized test and changes to high school graduation requirement, education was a top story time and again this year.

Here's a selection of some of our most important, interesting and favorite education stories of 2013.

Click on the headlines to read the full story and listen to the broadcast versions.

Adam Mizrahi / Flickr CC

  New testing data shows Hillsborough County schools beat the performance of other large urban school districts in math and reading. Miami-Dade fourth grade readers outscored other large urban districts, but were on par in eighth grade reading and fourth and eighth grade math.

albertogp123 / Flickr

As the GED prepares for a major overhaul in January, a growing number of states are trying a new class of tests designed as alternatives to the GED.

Nearly half of Florida high schools -- 48 percent -- earned an A grade on the state's report card, according to a report Florida Department of Education released Wednesday.

That's up from 31 percent of high schools earning a top grade two years ago. More than 80 percent of Florida high schools earned an A or B grade. No Miami-Dade or Broward County schools earned Fs.

Wikimedia Commons and Sammy Mack



In 1959, Forrest High was named for Nathan Bedford Forrest — the Civil War general and early leader of the Ku Klux Klan.

After more than a half century of controversy, Nathan B. Forrest High School in Jacksonville is looking for a new name.

But Monday night, on the recommendation of Superintendent Nikolai Vitti, the Duval County School Board voted unanimously to rename the high school.