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Florida Standards Assessments (FSA Assessments)

With Students As Top Priority, Florida Chooses Replacement for FCAT: Florida’s new assessment tool will assess student progress on new Florida Standards

As many Floridians are aware, our state has been in a period of transition as we have made important decisions to improve our education system and raise the bar for our schools, educators and students. Please see below for an overview of the direction we are moving in statewide assessments, which assessments will be offered in the upcoming school year, how those assessments will be offered and ways families can support their children in preparation for the new assessments.

The Florida Standards and Florida Standards Assessments

The Florida Standards in Mathematics and English Language Arts were approved by the Florida State Board of Education in February 2014 and will be fully implemented in grades K–12 in the 2014–2015 school year. All Florida schools will teach the Florida Standards, and the Florida Department of Education (FDOE) has contracted with the American Institutes for Research (AIR) to develop and administer new statewide assessments. These assessments will provide parents, teachers, policy makers and the general public with information regarding how well students are learning the Florida standards.

What assessments will my child be taking?

The following Florida Standards Assessments will be administered for the first time in Spring 2015:

  • • Grades 3–11 English Language Arts (Writing component in grades 4–11)
  • • Grades 3–8 Mathematics
  • • Algebra 1 End-of-Course Assessment
  • • Geometry End-of-Course Assessment
  • • Algebra 2 End-of-Course Assessment

Finding Resources

Families are encouraged to take advantage of the information and and resources available on the Florida Standards Assessments portal (www.FSAssessments.org) and the FDOE website (www.fldoe.org). More resources will be made available throughout the 2014–2015 school year, so parents and students should

Computer-Based Testing

Florida has been transitioning to computer-based testing since 2010 and will continue to do so in Spring 2015. AIR offers a dynamic computer-based test delivery system. Students will respond to items in multiple ways, including creating graphs, writing short responses and using other interactive features. The various question types are designed to assess higher-order thinking skills and offer exciting new ways for students to show what they know and can do. Training tests are now available for students, parents and educators to become familiar with the new testing system. The training tests can be accessed at www.FSAssessments.org/training-tests.

In Spring 2015, all grades 5–11 English Language Arts and Mathematics assessments will be administered online, with paper-based versions available for students with disabilities who have this accommodation outlined in their Individual Educational Plans (IEPs). Computer-based accommodations, such as text-to-speech, will also be available in the platform for eligible students who require them. Grades 3 and 4 assessments in 2014–2015 will be paper-based tests only. Please reference the 2014–2015 Statewide Assessment Schedule located on the FSA portal (www.FSAssessments.org) for information about when the tests will be administered.

Promoting Success and Family Support

Parents can promote student success by staying involved in their child’s education, offering positive support and feedback and encouraging them to relax and do their very best. By staying connected with their student’s school and teachers and taking advantage of online resources, such as school websites and portals, parents can stay informed and be best equipped to meet the needs of their students at home.