FCAT Testing Kicks Off

By: Kristy Wolski Email
By: Kristy Wolski Email

Bay County's 4th, 8th and 10th graders spent Tuesday trying to impress on the FCAT writing test.

Students in other grades aren't required to take the writing portion of the exam, but that doesn't mean they've completely escaped the FCAT this week.

Teachers are busy prepping students for the FCAT reading, math and science tests, which begin in exactly one month. The FCAT measures student progress toward meeting the Sunshine State standards.

Students in one Springfield math class are creating 3-D shapes, a fun way to learn geometry which could appear on the test.

"What we have to do is be able to cover all the possibilities. Since we don't know what is on it all we can do is say okay, these are the things that we know could possibly be on it according to the standards base and that's what we teach," said Dorothy Davis, a Springfield Elementary teacher.

Last year Bay District came in ranked 16th out of the state's 67 school districts. Twenty schools received an "A" ranking. But this year with all of the budget cuts around the state student scores could be down.

Bay District officials say they're doing all they can to prevent a letdown.

"If I had to pick one shining light out of this, we have done everything so far we can not to touch the classroom and our teachers haven't felt the impact that some districts have and what we're trying to do is protect that," said Bill Husfelt, Bay County School Superintendent.

But Husfelt says other economic factors could play a role in student success.

"We know there are homes out there where the economy is affecting what the home life is like and so when kids aren't happy or stable or there are problems at home it affects their academic performance. So we know there are going to be issues there and it's not just Bay County but all across the state," said Husfelt.

The bulk of the FCAT testing will take place from March 10-19. The exact dates are available on the Bay District Schools Web site.

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