Gov. Scott Applauds FL Student Performance in National Center for Education Statistics Report

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Tallahassee, Fla., December 11, 2012 – Today, Governor Rick Scott applauded the success of Florida fourth and eighth grade students who earned impressive scores on international reading, mathematics, and science assessments according to results released today by the National Center for Education Statistics. Results of the 2011 Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS) and the Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS) show that Florida students outperformed many of their national and global counterparts on both tests.

Governor Scott said, “For families to benefit from the expanding global economy, Florida students must compete and succeed with students internationally. This report is great news for Florida as our state becomes a hub for global commerce, and grows jobs aimed at meeting the world’s needs. We’ll continue taking steps to enhance Florida’s K-12 system so every Florida child has access to a quality education.”

“I am extremely pleased that Florida students have once again shown that our state’s long-term commitment to academic success is paying off,” said Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart. “As we move forward to implement more rigorous standards, I am confident we are on the right path to move even higher. My thanks and appreciation to our educators, parents, and school leaders for their exceptional commitment to student educational achievement.”

The reports compare the performance of U.S. fourth-grade students in reading, mathematics, and science, and eighth-grade students in mathematics and science to their peers internationally. TIMSS is an international assessment of mathematics and science knowledge and skills at the fourth and eighth grades given every four years. PIRLS is an international assessment of fourth-grade reading comprehension conducted every five years. The results are reported as scale scores – a conversion of raw scores to a common scale – that allows for a numerical comparison between education systems.

Progress in International Reading Literacy Study (PIRLS)
The average scale score of Florida fourth-grade students is 569. That is the second highest among 53 participating education systems, above the U.S. average of 556, and significantly higher than the PIRLS average scale score of 500. In addition, Florida ranked second behind Singapore in the percentage of fourth-grade students scoring in the advanced level, with 22 percent of students reaching that benchmark. Florida was the only state in the US to participate at a level that allows state-level data to be reported.

Trends in International Mathematics and Science Study (TIMSS)

Fourth-grade results show Florida’s average scale score of 545 in mathematics is ninth among 57 education systems, four points above the U.S. average, and notably higher than the TIMSS average scale score of 500. Florida’s eighth-grade average scale score of 513 is above both the U.S. average scale score of 509 and the TIMSS average scale score of 500, and ranks sixteenth out of 56 education systems.

Florida fourth-grade average scale score of 545 ranked seventh, slightly above the U.S. average scale score of 544, and above the TIMSS average scale score of 500. Eighth-grade students’ average scale score of 530 placed them seventeenth, above the U.S. average of 525 and the TIMSS average scale score of 500.

For more information, visit PIRLS and TIMSS.


About the Florida Department of Education: The department’s mission is to increase the proficiency of all students within one seamless, efficient education system by providing them the chance to expand their knowledge and skills through world-class learning opportunities. Serving more than 3.5 million students, 4,200 public schools, 28 colleges, 188,000 teachers, 47,000 college professors and administrators, and 318,000 full-time staff throughout the state, the department enhances the economic self-sufficiency of Floridians through programs and services geared toward college, workforce education, job-specific skills, and career development. Florida ranks first in the nation for teacher quality, first in the nation in advanced placement participation, and first in the southern region for graduation rate and degrees awarded by the Florida College System. For more information, visit


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