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Press Release

Thursday, July 26, 2012

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

Diverse Group Meets, Provides Input as Standard-Setting Process for FCAT 2.0 Writing Gets Underway

Tallahassee, Fla., July 26, 2012 - As part of the accountability standard-setting process, the Florida Department of Education invited educators, a student, and business and community leaders from across the state to participate in the process that establishes the FCAT 2.0 Writing performance level standard for school grades. The FCAT 2.0 Writing Reactor Panel spent Tuesday, July 24, stepping through an overview of test design and scoring; anchor sets for grades 4, 8, and 10; and impact data before providing a recommendation that the school grade writing performance level be set at 3.5.

"I was pleased to be a part of this very important process," said Tallahassee attorney Harold Knowles, one of the panel members representing the business perspective. "The presentations and discussion were especially helpful and informative, and allowed me to make the decision I felt was appropriate to keep Florida moving forward."

The 19-member panel represented a diverse cross-section of stakeholders and reflected geographic distribution from the Panhandle to South Florida.

"I was really glad to be a part of the panel," said Reagan McKendree, another panel member and high school student in Baker County. "As a student, I had never had the opportunity to be exposed to the process behind the decisions that affect the FCAT. The experience was very informative, and I'm grateful I was given a chance to express my opinions."

The reasoning behind the panel's recommendation will now be summarized by department staff for consideration by Commissioner of Education Gerard Robinson before being placed on the State Board of Education agenda later this fall. The agenda and list of panel members are attached.