Florida Standards Assessments on as normal this school year

Published: Sep. 28, 2020 at 8:00 PM CDT
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The COVID-19 ripple effect continues.

“When COVID hit our county or our state in the springtime we were in the springtime testing window so those assessments for that window in the spring were stopped," Bay District Schools Coordinator of Assessment and Accountability Camilla Hudson said.

What was halted in the spring, students are now making up for in the fall, or later in 2021.

“Students in high school mostly are taking the assessments they need for graduation requirements which are Algebra 1 and the Grade 10 ELA assessment, so if they didn’t take that test in the springtime and they need it to graduate, they’re testing now," Hudson said.

There are two makeup periods this school year for Florida Standards Assessments missed in the spring due to school closing down.

The testing periods are Sept. 14 - Dec. 18, 2020, and Feb. 22 - March 12, 2021. These periods are for the Grade 10 ELA Reading Retake and the Grade 10 ELA Writing Retake, as well as the Algebra 1 Retake.

BayLink students are required to take the tests in person.

“They will have to go to their home zone schools to take these required assessments," Hudson said.

In elementary schools, those missed tests are waived.

“We will be starting fresh with scores from this year. It’s my understanding the state is coming up with some kind of formula to compare scores from the year before to now," Northside Elementary School Principal Amy Harvey said.

This year’s FSA’s are still on as normal as mandated by the Florida Department of Education, creating a cause for concern for Harvey.

“I do worry that’s there going to be some learning gaps with our students that are BayLink versus those that are coming to campus every day," Harvey said.

Giving a high stakes test following a difficult year worries Harvey.

“Kids are retained based on that test. Our school grade is based on that test and the teacher’s VAM score is based on that test. So is it really fair to have all of that happen this school year?" Harvey said.

Officials hope that ripple effect doesn’t carry over into 2021.

The Florida Statewide Assessment Program for the 2020-2021 school year can be found here.

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