Schools Grades Drop as “A” Schools Decrease
The number of elementary and middle schools with a grade of “A” dropped precipitously this year as the percentage of schools making a “D” or “F” nearly doubled, according to numbers released by the Florida Department of Education on Wednesday.
The number of “A” schools dropped by more than 300, from 1,481 in 2011 to 1,124 this year.
After a majority of schools — 58 percent — earned an “A” last year, 43 percent did so this year. Every other grade level saw an increase.
The percentage of “D” and “F” schools went from 6 percent in 2011 to 11 percent this year. But Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson found some comfort in the numbers.
“I am particularly pleased that it is the first time that we have included students who are just learning English and students with disabilities in the school grade performance component,” Robinson said in a statement. “It is important that we measure our schools by the performance of all students, since that is the most accurate and fair way to represent our diverse state.”
Because of the inclusion of students with disabilities and English language learners, the State Board of Education approved a policy keeping all schools from dropping more than a letter grade. The schools in Tuesday’s report included the non-high school grades of some combination schools as well as elementary and middle schools.