TALLAHASSEE, Fla., December 18, 2013 – A record number of Florida high schools and combination schools earned an “A” this year, with 240 schools – or 48 percent – making the highest grade. Since 2010-11, the number of “A” high schools and combination schools jumped by 92 schools, an increase of 17 percentage points. The results are preliminary pending an appeal window that ends January 22, 2014.
Governor Rick Scott said, “With more high schools earning A’s, it is clear that our teachers are succeeding in providing Florida students with a quality education. A great education is the cornerstone of Florida’s future – and that’s why we fought to provide $480 million for teacher pay raises.”
“Thank you to Florida’s teachers, parents and school leaders for their outstanding commitment to continuing academic success,” said Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart. “Today’s results show that more students are ready for college or a career than ever. I am proud of the work our educators are doing every day in the classroom to prepare them for success.”
The increase in the number of “A” schools came about even as the grading formula became more rigorous. Learning gain targets for the lowest performing 25 percent of students were not accounted for last year. Current State Board of Education rules ensure that the challenge will be maintained as schools continue to improve their performance. As more schools earn grades of A and B the grading scale is adjusted upward to encourage continued improvement. Based on the rule adopted in 2011 and since more than 75 percent of high schools earned an A or B, the grading scale for high schools will be adjusted upward for the 2013-14 school grades.
The number of Florida high schools and combination schools earning School Recognition awards remained steady with 281 schools eligible based on the preliminary grades issued today. Recognition bonuses are given to eligible schools that earn an “A” grade, increase their letter grade by at least one grade, or maintain the same grade after having improved at least two letter grades in the prior year. The awards will be sent to all Florida schools after the high school grade appeals are finalized next year.
Detailed information on the 2013 high school grades and a press packet with graphic displays of results are available on the department’s website at School Grades.
For more information about the Florida Department of Education, visit www.fldoe.org.