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May 20, 2005

Melanie Mowry Etters
(850) 245-0413

or Jacob DiPietre
(850) 488-5394

Governor Bush and Commissioner Winn Announce FCAT Science Scores for Grades 5, 8, and 11

TALLAHASSEE — Governor Jeb Bush and Commissioner of Education John L. Winn today released Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) Science scores for students in grades 5, 8, and 11. This year's average scores are higher than last year. Each year, the average Science scores have increased since the test was first introduced in 2003. This is the first year 11th graders took the test. The prior two years, the high school test was administered in 10th grade.

"I applaud the efforts of our students, teachers, and parents. The Science achievement of students in fifth grade has continued to increase, jumping 11 points since the test was first administered in 2003," said Governor Bush. "The increased scores in reading, math, and science are evidence that high standards and accountability produce results."

Today's highlights include:

  • 5th grade students' average score was 296 this year compared to an average score of 285 in 2003
  • 8th grade students had an average score of 291 in 2005 compared to 287 in 2003, a 4 point increase
  • 11th grade students showed an increased average scale score of six points compared to when they first took the test as 10th graders in 2004, 293 compared to 287 respectively

"The fact that 11th grade students are scoring higher than when they took the test one year before shows that by the time a student reaches the 11th grade, they have been exposed to more science curriculum. They are now better equipped to demonstrate their ability in science," said Commissioner Winn.

Though the scores have increased, the work of setting proficiency levels is not yet complete. The State Board of Education will consider and establish the achievement standards for Science at its December meeting this year. The Department of Education will collect input and recommendations from teachers, administrators, and other interested groups about these performance levels before making recommendations to the SBE. If adopted at that time, they would be reported for the first time in the 2006 FCAT cycle. These achievement levels would provide districts with an indication of the impact on their school grades when Science is added as a component in 2006-07.

For more FCAT Science results, please visit