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Press Release

Thursday, May 28, 2009

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

2009 FCAT Reading, Math and Science Results Highlight Increases in Student Achievement
~ Sustained minority student performance builds on Florida’s long-term academic gains ~

TALLAHASSEE – A greater percentage of Florida students are performing at or above grade level in reading and mathematics compared to all test years since 2001, according to the 2009 Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test (FCAT) results released today. Additionally, more students in grades 5 and 8 are performing at or above grade level in science compared with previous years. The results also indicate a closing of the achievement gap between minority and White students in elementary reading, as well as middle and high school math.

“The overall academic progress of our children is a direct result of the phenomenal work of our teachers who sacrifice daily to ensure their students are successful,” said Education Commissioner Dr. Eric J. Smith. “While our high schools have room for improvement, I’m confident that our continued efforts to ramp up the college and career readiness of our students will result in higher achievement and a desire for every student to excel beyond expectations.”

Overall, 61 percent of students in grades 3 through 10 are reading at or above grade level compared to 60 percent in 2008. Sixty-seven (67) percent of Florida students are demonstrating math skills at or above grade level compared to 65 percent last year. Additional highlights of this year’s results include:

  • Elementary School (Grades 3 – 5 reading and mathematics, and grade 5 science)
    • Seventy-two (72) percent of elementary school students are reading at or above grade level, up two percentage points from last year and up 18 percentage points since 2001.
    • Seventy-two (72) percent of elementary school students are demonstrating mathematics skills at or above grade level, up two percentage points from last year and 20 points since 2001.
    • Forty-six (46) percent of fifth grade students are performing at or above grade level in science, up three percentage points from last year and 18 points since 2003.
  • Middle School (Grades 6 – 8 reading and mathematics, and grade 8 science)
    • Sixty-two (62) percent of middle school students are reading at or above grade level, up one percentage point from last year and 14 points since 2001.
    • Sixty-one (61) percent of middle school students are demonstrating mathematics skills at or above grade level, up one percentage point from last year and 14 points since 2001.
    • Forty-one (41) percent of eighth grade students are performing at or above grade level in science, up one percentage point from last year and 13 points since 2003.
  • High School (Grades 9 and 10 reading and mathematics, and grade 11 science)
    • Forty-two (42) percent of high school students are reading at or above grade level, equal to last year’s performance and up 10 points since 2001.
    • Sixty-nine (69) percent of high school students are demonstrating mathematics skills at or above grade level, up two percentage points from last year and 17 points since 2001.
    • Thirty-seven (37) percent of eleventh grade students are achieving in science at or above grade level, down one percentage point from last year and up four percentage points since 2005.
  • Additional highlights include:
    • Hispanic and African-American elementary school students narrowed the achievement gap with White students in reading by one and two percentage points, respectively.
    • African-American and Hispanic middle school students narrowed the achievement gap with White students in math by one and two percentage points, respectively.
    • Both African-American and Hispanic high school students narrowed the achievement gap with White students in math by one percentage point.

Individual student score reports will be available to parents at each school district after June 5, 2009. Districts and schools can use their secure login and password provided by the Department to access electronic copies of their reports today.

To view the 2009 reading, mathematics and science FCAT fact sheet, visit http://fcat.fldoe.org/mediapacket/2009/pdf/2009RMFactSheet.pdf. To view school, district and state FCAT reports, visit http://fcat.fldoe.org/mediapacket/2009/default.asp#press.