Commissioner of Education Richard Corcoran announced that Florida remains ranked 4th in the nation for K-12 student achievement, according to Education Week’s Quality Counts 2019 report. The annual report compares state-by-state data and trends related to achievement levels, achievement gains, poverty gap, achieving excellence, high school graduation and Advanced Placement.
“Maintaining a top national ranking for student achievement for the second year in a row is a testament to our educators and students,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “The investments and policy changes we made this year in education will only continue to ensure our students’ success, regardless of income or zip code.”
Highlights of the Quality Counts 2019 report include:
- Florida’s overall rank for the K-12 Achievement category remained 4th in the nation.
- Florida’s achievement gap for low-income 4th grade reading and 8th grade math students is tied for 10th lowest in the nation.
- Florida is one of only eight states to reduce the achievement gap for both low-income 4th and 8th graders since 2003.
- Florida is ranked #6 for reducing the achievement gap for low-income students in both 4th grade reading and 8th grade mathematics.
- Florida’s 4th grade students are #2 in the nation for achievement gains in both reading and mathematics.
- Florida’s 8th grade students are #3 in the nation for achievement gains in reading.
Commissioner Richard Corcoran said, “I am thankful to Governor DeSantis for his bold vision to make Florida first in the nation for education. During the 2019 Legislative Session, his leadership secured big wins for students, parents and teachers through policies that will change the educational landscape for decades to come. The fact that Florida has sustained its national ranking is a testament to our dedicated teachers who work tirelessly to make sure every student receives a top-notch education that prepares them for life’s opportunities.”
Florida’s students continue to succeed, as witnessed by Florida’s increasing graduation rate – up to 86.1 for the class of 2018. Florida students also continue to rank highly on AP exams, where Florida students are first among the 50 states in participation and 3rd among the 50 states in performance. The fact remains – more students in Florida continue to enroll in and succeed in these rigorous accelerated programs.
Some of Governor Ron DeSantis’ actions to make Florida first in the nation for education:
- A record $21.84 billion in state and local funding, an increase of $782.9 million to the FEFP (Florida Education Finance Program, Florida’s key method to fund education).
- $75 per student increase to the Base Student Allocation (BSA), the largest increase since 2015-2016.
- $242.60 per student increase to the Florida Education Finance Program (FEFP), the largest increase since 2013-2014 and the second largest increase since 2007-2008.
- Nearly $423 million to create a Best and Brightest Teacher Bonus Program that rewards Florida’s most effective teachers and principals and the best schools ($413+ million for teacher bonuses; $9+ million for principal bonuses).
- $15.8 million in federal funds to incentivize teachers with proven records of success to serve at Florida’s most fragile “D” or “F” schools. Eligible teachers will receive as much as $15,000 in supplements.
- $10 million per year for the next five years to launch a loan/tuition forgiveness program for as many as 1,700 new teachers per year who commit to working as a Florida teacher for 5 years. Florida is going to need 8,500 news teachers to keep up with student growth over the next five years, in addition to those schools that already have critical shortages.
- $10 million to fund teacher professional development in computer science and reward those teachers for earning credentials to teach high quality computer science courses.
For more information on the Quality Counts 2019 report, click HERE.
For more information about the Florida Department of Education, visit fldoe.org.