On Monday, March 24, the House Education Appropriations committee will vote on HB 7117, which makes revisions to Florida’s education accountability system. This is certainly the most important education bill that legislators will vote on during this legislative session. The decisions they make will impact our kids, teachers and public schools for years to come.
The bill is an attempt to fix the problems that plague our school grading system - and give our students and teachers a short reprieve while transitioning to the new state standards and the FCAT replacement. HB 7117 revises the way school grades are calculated, allows for a one-year transition before using test results to make decisions about student retention, graduation, and teacher evaluations.
While the bill is a good start, the bill does not address the obsession with high-stakes testing programs that do nothing to enhance learning or support teaching.
Lawmakers need to hear from you. Please contact your House Representative, today.
$1• Ask them to support establishing a Transition Education Accountability Task force made up of education leaders, teachers, parents and members of the business community to oversee the implementation and transition of the new standards, along with acting to advise the Governor, the President of the Senate, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, and the State Board of Education.
$1• Tell them to support the proposal in HB 1187 by Rep. Joe Saunders that provides for a more realistic time period for the implementation of state standards and to verify the validity of the new test that will replace the FCAT.
$1• Tell your representative that Florida must slow down and correct the accountability system. There are too many moving parts to the system – we need to take the time to fix Florida’s broken system. It took 15 years and millions of our tax dollars to get it wrong. We can afford to take 3 years to get it right!
Contact your House of Representative, today. After you have sent your message, please join the social conversations on the FEA Action Center.
The Action Center gives you the power to influence change and reach out to others who may not understand the issues that are important to public school teachers and ESPs. Here's a short video to show you how to navigate through the action center to make your voice heard. Please share this with your colleagues.