When Schools Get It Wrong! FCAT and EOC Land A/B Students In Summer School

When Schools Get It Wrong

The report card comes and you see that A or B (sometimes even a C if it’s a course you were really struggling in) and both you and your child are so proud. That end of the year 4.0 is something to celebrate….right? Wrong! Apparently, thanks to the End of Course tests given to students in my county (and I think the whole state), that 4.0 student is now a candidate for summer school!

I’ll wait a minute and let you process the fact that an A average student will be in summer school thanks to these tests…….

There is a serious flaw in the school system here. Now, normally you will hear me raving about our schools, because we have some of the top scores in the states on tests, but you will never hear me raving about is the flaw with these tests. What flaw? Glad you asked…let me tell you a story about two girls.

Once upon a time there were two girls who worked hard all year long and ended the year with great grades. With their mid-terms (or finals whatever they call them now days) one of the girls had an A average and one of the girls had a B average. So proud were their parents and they were proud of themselves, as they should be. Finally it was time to take the EOC test for Algebra. With this test, you can only miss so many questions. Girl 1 (the girl with the A) average missed the mark by two questions and Girl 2 by just a few more. Of course, they knew algebra, they had passed with flying colors. Summer and fun awaited the girls, as they geared up for their next year in high school. Two weeks into summer, these girls get a call from their school to be told, despite having passed the class, with wonderful grades,  they were being invited (another word for required) to summer school because of their EOC test. So now, for most of the summer, said girls will be heading back to high school for 4 hours a day, 5 days a week! The end.

When I found this out, I was livid. These aren’t even my children, though one of the girls is related to me. When I was growing up, we had the best school for college readiness, and never took the EOC tests. We had finals (mid-terms, whatever) and our quarterly/half-year averages. Whatever grade you made, was what determined if you pass or fail. Now with FCAT and EOC scores, you can almost fail (obviously F is not going to move up) and pass your EOC or FCAT and you are good to go. You can also have amazing grades and pass every test, except the FCAT and/or EOC and be held back or have to go to summer school.

It’s a very flawed testing system it seems. Can you imagine having the highest scores in your class, and get held back or have to go to summer school over an EOC or FCAT score?? I am still trying to wrap my head around what is going on with our school system. If 54% of a class is having to go to summer school b/c they missed 1 or 20 too many on an EOC test, it seems to me there is not something wrong with the students (okay well maybe some of them were too lazy, I know people who care not about their grades but soar on tests because they are super smart and they barely pass, but they do) but something wrong with the curriculum or the test. If kids are failing these tests that are meant to show their aptitude for what they’ve learned, then something is wrong.

I am all for making sure we make sure our kids are ready to go to the next grade (or college) but one test, should not determine that. I think those tests should be for kids who are not doing well, grade average wise (without extra credit), let them take the FCAT and EOC to make sure they know that they have learned. To punish kids, who have worked their butts off and passed, seems like a great way to make a lot of them want to turn to getting their GED instead. Why would they want to work hard all year long only to miss one too many questions on a standardized test and have to go to summer school?

Our school system seriously needs to change a few things: the way they have this set up and Common Core (but I won’t go back into that)! Do your school systems base passing, failing, or summer school on the standardized tests even if they do well through the year?

Maybe I should start homeschooling my kids! *rant over*

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Toni is a professional lifestyle blogger living on the sunny Florida Gulf Coast. She has a passion for Disney, Travel, Fashion, Cooking, Tech, Family Fun Ideas, Reviews, Giveaways and loves being able to share that with her readers!

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