StateImpact Florida

Common Core
2:14 pm
Wed July 17, 2013

Explaining What Florida's Next Standardized Test Should Cost

Originally published on Wed July 17, 2013 9:00 am

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Schools
5:48 pm
Tue July 16, 2013

State Board Of Education Approves School Grade "Safety Net"

Originally published on Tue July 16, 2013 11:40 am

Florida school grades will drop by no more than a single letter grade this year after the State Board of Education approved temporary changes to the school grading system.

But the issue revealed a divide among board members about the value of the state’s school grading system.

Board member Sally Bradshaw said the changes would only protect the self-esteem of adults leading school districts while ignoring students receiving a substandard education. Other board members said the school grading system needed an overhaul.

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Testing
11:30 am
Mon July 15, 2013

Explaining Florida's Choices For Its Next Standardized Test

Originally published on Mon July 15, 2013 11:13 am

In the next few weeks, the man in charge of kindergarten through twelfth grade education in Florida has to answer a multiple choice question: Which standardized test should the state pick to replace the FCAT?

The new test is part of Florida’s move to new, tougher education standards known as Common Core. Students will begin taking the test in 2015.

Education Commissioner Tony Bennett said recommending a test is the Florida Department of Education’s top short-term priority.

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Teaching
9:53 am
Mon July 15, 2013

Classroom Comtemplations: Lessons After The School Day Ends

Originally published on Fri July 12, 2013 8:30 am

Madame Logan is a retired high school French teacher. She was filled with stories of former students who had contacted her to tell her of the effects she had on them.

Most of these effects were, at best, indirectly related to the French they had learned in her class.

One of her students is now a film critic, and he said the the foreign films he watched on French class trips (this was before DVD players when Madame Logan took students to an actual movie theater near the school) contributed to his career choice.

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Teaching
11:04 am
Fri July 12, 2013

Classroom Contemplations: Overlooking The Value Of Veteran Teachers

Originally published on Thu July 11, 2013 12:15 pm

A student went home to complain to her mom about Mattie Williams, her social studies teacher. The mother went straight out to the school for a conference.

To the mother’s surprise, she found herself sitting face-to-face with her own former teacher from a generation before at the same high school (Williams had since taken on a married last name).

Whatever she was now called, Williams remained a teacher who demanded respect.

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Testing
2:40 pm
Thu July 11, 2013

More States Concerned About Cost of Next Generation Tests

Originally published on Wed July 10, 2013 11:12 am

Two new states are backing away from next-generation standardized tests, this time because of worries about cost.

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Technology
2:24 pm
Thu July 11, 2013

Why Mobile Devices Might Mean Shorter Attention Spans

Originally published on Tue July 9, 2013 10:15 am

Mobile gadgets such as phones and tablet computers may be eroding kids’ attention spans and contributing to a rise in attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder diagnosis, according to researchers in this Time magazine piece.

That’s because mobile devices condition their users to expect constant, electronic stimulus. When kids put down those devices, the real world can seem slow-paced and less interesting.

From the story:

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Education
6:30 am
Tue July 9, 2013

Not Your Typical Summer School: A Summer Camp Fights Learning Loss Using The Common Core

Campers at Sallye B. Mathis Elementary School will learn Common Core lessons this summer.
Credit Karelia Arauz

It’s summertime and Angela Maxey, principal of Sallye B. Mathis Elementary School, is observing a classroom of 9- and 10-year-olds draw and identify different kinds of triangles.

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Classroom Contemplations
12:09 pm
Tue July 2, 2013

Why Relying On Tests Only Reinforces Bad Behavior In Schools

Originally published on Thu June 27, 2013 10:00 am

There are some real perils to systems which try to reduce teacher performance to a single number, such as many of our new “value-added” formulas.

The first is that whatever you decide to measure — and, implicitly or explicitly reward — is what you are going to get.

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Classroom Contemplations
11:58 am
Tue July 2, 2013

Classroom Contemplations: The Teaching That Evaluations Ignore

Originally published on Tue July 2, 2013 11:22 am

One of the things I want to do through this series is to expand the discussion of a teacher’s value. We cannot let the worth of teachers be defined narrowly by the test scores of their students.  We need to consider all of the different ways teachers have positive impacts on the lives of their students before we choose the criteria with which we judge who is doing a good job as a teacher and who is not.

One of the best ways to do this is to hear from teachers themselves.

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Schools
11:32 am
Tue July 2, 2013

Bennett Will Suggest Grading System Changes This Week

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 5:11 pm

Florida Education Commissioner Tony Bennett said he will recommend changes to the state’s A through F school grading system by the end of the week.

Bennett met with school superintendents and researchers Monday to gather concerns and suggestions about the school grading system.

Superintendents said they were concerned state requirements had changed too quickly the past two years for students test scores to keep pace.

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Common Core
12:46 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Union Worried Testing Could Cause Public To Turn On Common Standards

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 10:19 am

About 10,000 educators from around the country are in Atlanta this week for the National Education Association’s annual meeting.

The group will debate issues from school safety to immigration reform as the NEA develops its legislative priorities for the coming year.

Florida Education Association President Andy Ford says Common Core State Standards and assessments will be heavily discussed.

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Schools
12:17 pm
Mon July 1, 2013

Superintendent Nikolai Vitti On His First Year in Jacksonville, Race, And The Challenges To Florida

Originally published on Mon July 1, 2013 11:00 am

Nikolai Vitti knows how dissimilar Florida’s school districts can be — but as the new Superintendent of Duval County Public Schools, he also recognizes common challenges.

Vitti arrived in North Florida last November, leaving behind a job as chief academic officer for Miami-Dade County Public Schools.

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Teaching
3:59 pm
Fri June 28, 2013

Common Core Opponents Expecting Protesters From Across Florida On June 29

Originally published on Fri June 28, 2013 11:48 am

A group organizing a protest Saturday at an Orlando conference for new common education standards is expecting caravans of protesters from around the state and country will join them.

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Common Core
2:15 pm
Tue June 25, 2013

How Common Standards, New Lessons Could 'Weed Out' Some Teachers

Originally published on Tue June 25, 2013 7:45 am

Before she retires, Shara Holt is getting teachers around the state ready to use Common Core standards. Holt is a literacy coach in St. Johns County who’s spent 41 years as an educator.

Florida is one of 45 states transitioning to Common Core State Standards right now.

It’s a new way of teaching that focuses heavily on fewer subjects, sets benchmarks for students at each grade level, and forces students to explain their answers.

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