Florida schools are transitioning into the Next Generation Sunshine State Standards, and some proof of the success of that move already is showing up in the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test scores.
Pasco County schools showed improvement in reading and science, but has room for improvement when it comes to math, based on test details released by Pasco County Schools on Friday.
“We are seeing that what we are doing is starting to pay off,” said Vanessa Hilton, director of teaching and learning with the school district, in a release. “We are starting to see strengths in the cohorts of students who have been receiving instruction based on the new Florida Standards as they progress from grade to grade.”
Several schools demonstrated significant improvement on the FCAT 2.0 Reading sections in 2014 compared to the year before. The biggest increases came from local elementary schools like Taylor, Pasco, Cox, New River, West Zephyrhills and Watergrass. They also improved with seventh graders at Academy at the Farm, and underclassmen at Pasco eSchool and Wesley Chapel High School.
For science, 52 percent of students in fifth grade were performing at or above satisfactory scores, while 52 percent of students in eighth grade had similar results. This is up 49 percent from the previous year in fifth grade, and 48 percent in eighth grade.
A little more than 25 elementary schools in the county maintained or increased the percent of students scoring at or above satisfactory levels, joined by 11 middle schools. Odessa, Pasco, Seven Oaks and Watergrass elementary schools were some of the local schools that had significant improvement in science, along with Pasco and Stewart middle schools.
The picture wasn’t so rosy when it came to math, however. The percentage of elementary school students in Pasco scoring at satisfactory levels was below the statewide percentage. However, some schools had some marked improvement in math, including Centennial, Odessa, Cox, New River, San Antonio, Taylor, Watergrass and West Zephyrhills elementary schools. Pasco and Long middle schools also had strong improvement in math, as did Academy at the Farm.
“This was a year of transition, and we know that our teachers have been focusing on the new Florida Standards in the classroom,” Pasco superintendent Kurt Browning said, in a release. “It will be important for us to consider not only these scores, but also additional data that our schools have been collecting to make decisions as we move forward.”