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December 12, 2007

Tom Butler
(850) 245-0413

Commissioner Smith Announces 2007 Kindergarten Readiness Results
~ Percentage of students demonstrating early literacy skills continues to increase ~

TALLAHASSEE – Education Commissioner Eric J. Smith today announced the results of the 2007 Florida Kindergarten Readiness Screener (FLKRS). The FLKRS measures each Kindergartener’s school readiness in seven areas, including language and literacy, mathematics, science, social studies, social and personal skills, physical health and fitness and the creative arts. The screening, administered within the first 30 days of Kindergarten, is used to determine student school readiness, inform classroom instruction and provide useful information to parents and teachers. This year’s results show a continued increase in the percentage of Kindergarten students demonstrating early literacy skills.

“A solid learning foundation, developed early in life, is one of the most important things we can do for our children,” said Commissioner Smith. “The more prepared these young children are entering school, the greater their chances for continued academic success.”

All kindergartners are measured through FLKRS, which assesses what students should know and be able to do as defined by the VPK Education Standards. The FLKRS screening instrument includes selected measures from the Early Childhood Observation System™ (ECHOS™), and the first two criteria of the Dynamic Indicators of Basic Early Literacy Skills™ (DIBELS™) for Kindergarten. Scannable response sheets were received for 193,817 kindergarten students, representing 98 percent of the total Kindergarten FTE for 2007.

A summary of the screening results is as follows:

  • Alphabet Recognition. The DIBELS Letter Naming Fluency measures pre-reading and early reading skills. Of the 177,996 students screened in 2007, more than two-thirds, or 71.7 percent, were determined to be above average/low risk – an increase of more than two percent compared to last year. The number of students considered moderate/high risk decreased to 28.3 percent statewide, more than two percent when compared to last year.
  • Sound Recognition. The DIBELS Initial Sound Fluency measures a student’s ability to recognize the beginning sound(s) in a spoken word. Of the 173,214 students screened in 2007, nearly two-thirds, or 64.8 percent, were above average/low risk – an increase of more than one percent compared to last year. The number of students considered moderate/high risk decreased more than one percent to 35.2 percent statewide compared to last year.
  • Classroom Readiness. The Early Childhood Observation System™ (ECHOS™) is an observational assessment tool that allows teachers to measure learning development. Of the 180,351 students screened by the ECHOS™ in 2007, 48 percent were considered to “consistently demonstrate” grade-level learning development, 39.7 were considered “emerging/progressing,” and 12.3 percent were identified as “not yet demonstrating.”

For more information concerning these results please refer to the following links: