TALLAHASSEE — Florida’s littlest learners won’t have to worry about some standardized tests this year, the state education department said Monday.
The announcement came after school systems, including Miami-Dade, ran into technical troubles administering the Florida Assessments for Instruction in Reading to students in kindergarten through second grade.
State Education Commissioner Pam Stewart promptly suspended the computer-based tests for the rest of the year.
While young students may still take some other standardized tests, critics of Florida’s high-stakes assessment program claimed Monday’s announcement as a victory
“This is a recognition that the statewide testing mandates have gone way too far,” said Bob Schaeffer, public education director for the anti-testing group FairTest.
Testing has become a hot-button issue of late, with parents, teachers and school district leaders raising concerns about the number of standardized assessments students in Florida must take. Last month, the Lee County School Board approved a moratorium on all state-mandated tests — a vote it later rescinded after learning the school district could lose millions in state funding.