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Press Release

Thursday, June 24, 2010

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

Statement By: Education Commissioner Dr. Eric J. Smith Regarding initial request for Liquidated Damages for FCAT delays

“Earlier this week I instructed my staff to issue a letter to our testing contractor, NCS Pearson, requesting a payment of $3,025,000 for Liquidated Damages associated with their delays in the delivery of this year’s FCAT results. This initial request addresses the delays associated with 3rd grade reading/mathematics and 10th grade retake results. As indicated in the letter, once the remaining results are delivered to the Department I plan on seeking additional damages that are consistent with all other missed delivery dates.

“I fully realize that assessing these damages does not completely make up for the significant inconveniences being felt by students and their families, teachers and school administrators, but it does show very clearly that we are holding Pearson accountable for their failure to uphold the terms of the contract. Additionally, I will be doing everything possible within the confines of the law to ensure these funds are used to reimburse our school districts for whatever additional costs they might have to incur as a result of the delays.”