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State Board of Education releases school grades for 2022-23; Collier, Sarasota districts get 'A' marks

Florida Department of Education

School grades for the 2022-23 school year were released by the Florida Department of Education on Monday with Collier and Sarasota counties posting the only 'A' grades among Southwest Florida districts.

As a part of Florida’s first-in-the-nation transition to using progress monitoring instead of traditional high stakes testing, grades for the 2022-2023 school year serve as a baseline and carry no negative consequences.

Using this baseline, schools and districts can work toward improved performance in future years. For the full report, and grades for your district, click here.

Of the eight county school districts in Southwest Florida — Charlotte, Collier, DeSoto, Glades, Hendry, Highlands, Lee and Sarasota — only Collier and Sarasota was given an 'A' grade.

Lee and Charlotte county were given 'B' grades while 'C' grades went to DeSoto, Glades, Hendry and Highlands county schools.

CCPS A School Reaction w title.mp4

Collier County Superintendent Dr. Leslie Ricciardelli issued a statement on that county's top marks, prefacing her remarks by saying she had nothing but pride for that county's schools.

"I am so proud of of the work of the students. Of the dedication and commitment of the teachers to accomplish what they did with the students that we have with such a diverse population. There were only five districts in the state that outperformed us in the total number of points," she said. "And none of them compared to us and diversity or in size. I mean, this is the work of our teachers, our administrators, our support staff, all the people that work with those kids every day. Nothing but pride."

Other nearby counties and their grades include Monroe and Manatee, which were both awarded a "B" ranking.

The FDOE was tasked with developing new standards that were clear and concise and that outlined what a student should know and be able to do at each grade level. After dozens of workgroup meetings were held throughout state over a 1-year period with educators and stakeholders, the State Board of Education adopted the new Benchmarks for Excellent Student Thinking (B.E.S.T.) standards.

Following the transition to the B.E.S.T. standards, FDOE developed a new test, Florida’s Assessment of Student Thinking (FAST). Unlike end-of-year high stakes testing, FAST is a progress monitoring system that provides teachers, students and parents real-time, immediate and actionable data at the beginning, middle and end of the school year to drive student improvement. Florida was the first state in the nation to establish a system using progress monitoring.

Schools and Districts will now use their 2022-23 baseline grades from the FAST assessment to make changes in instructional practices that will lead to better outcomes for students.

Additional details pertaining to the 2022-23 informational baseline school grades are below:

  • There will be no negative consequences for schools or districts as a result of the 2022-23 informational baseline school grades.
  • Schools may receive the benefits of an increased school grade by qualifying for school recognition or exiting turnaround status.
  • A school or provider which receives the same or lower grade in 2022-23 compared to 2021-22 is not subject to sanctions or penalties that would otherwise occur.
  • The grades were calculated using the new performance standards for the English Language Arts and Mathematics assessments (FAST).
  • The percentage of schools that earned an “A,” “B,” “C,” “D,” or “F” are statistically equivalent to the 2021-22 grade results, as required by state law.
  • For the 2023-24 school year, learning gains and consequences associated with school grades will return.

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