With technology glitches hampering testing in major school districts, a Senate committee on Wednesday advanced legislation that represents the first significant attempt to scale back the scope of exams in Florida’s public schools.
In a 7-4 vote, the Senate Pre-K-12 Education Committee endorsed a bill (SB 616) that would cap testing time at no more than 5 percent of total school hours, eliminate some state-required local testing and provide districts with the chance to ask the test results be “waived” if they can show technology problems may have affected results.
The legislation, written by Pre-K-12 Education Chairman John Legg, R-Trinity, would also reduce the use of the new Florida Standards Assessment (FSA) in evaluating teacher performance, lowering the test factor from 50 percent to 33 percent of an evaluation. The bill also eliminates the 11th-grade language arts test that Gov. Rick Scott halted with an executive order last month.
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