Florida Education Commissioner Stewart: Focus on lowest quartile

From Gradebook this evening:

State Education Commissioner Pam Stewart on Tuesday gave a sneak preview of her recommendations for a revamped school grading formula.

“It needs to be simpler so that everyone’s confidence is back in the school grading system,” she said.

Among her top priorities: removing factors that “complicate the system.”

“I think we need to look at not providing extra weighting, not providing bonus points, and not having automatic adjustments, those things that automatically lower school grades,” Stewart told an assemblage of about 30 superintendents (and Gov. Rick Scott) at the Florida Capitol. “I think all of that needs to come out of the school grading system.”

Instead, Stewart said she wants to focus on learning gains. She also intends to shine a spotlight on the lowest-performing students.

“I think looking at the lowest quartile is something that is important to every school,” she said.

Stewart will present the full plan at a state Board of Education meeting on Feb. 18.



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