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Thursday, June 14, 2012

The Florida School Boards Associations’ board of directors vote against the FCAT

From the Orlando Sentinel, by Leslie Postal

The Florida School Boards Associations’ board of directors voted today to endorse a resolution that urges the state to put less emphasis on standardized testing.

The board decided not to endorse the national resolution and instead focus on a similar, but more Florida-specific one. Association staff said they worried the politics around the national association — it was started by groups viewed as liberal and focuses partly on the federal No Child Left Behind law — would distract from Florida educators detailed issues with FCAT and the state’s accountability system.

Board members, meeting in Tampa, said the FCAT dominated too much of public education, forcing schools to divert money and narrow the curriculum. They complained that it had morphed from a “diagnostic tool” into something that was punitive, for students, teachers, school and districts.

“It has become a political billy club,” said Colleen Conklin, a Flagler County school board member.

The full school board group is to vote tomorrow afternoon on the resolution. I don’t have an electronic version right now, but I will post when I do.

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