Saturday, August 18, 2012

Florida Testing and Accountability System Creates Havoc in Private Schools

The smooth system of transferring credits from private schools to public schools has apparently been eliminated. According to an email sent to Governor Scott, the Volusia County Director of Assessment informed the Trinity Christian Academy in Deltona that credit will not be given to private school students who transfer to public school for courses, such as Algebra and Biology, because the standardized end-of-course tests are not available to them. If this information is correct, the Florida legislature, Commissioner of Education, and State School Board, by an act of incompetence or by design, have removed all alternative testing measures available to students in a private school that would serve in lieu of end-of-course-exams, leaving students unable to graduate from a public high school.

One Florida private school has raised this issue with Governor Scott in an August 10, 2012 email requesting a remedy to this surprising turn of events. Thanks to Sunburst, the open government email system, the public caught a ray of an additional lapse of serious magnitude in the state's accountability system that redefines parental choice.

“… these families bear the cost of education that our government would have had to carry. Private school students should not be penalized for choosing to go to Florida's private schools.”

Is this lapse a way to insert Florida's controversial testing and accountability system into private schools and exert control over religious schools? Will the standardized end-of-course requirement ultimately be required of all schools, public and private? Does the requirement apply to homeschoolers who transfer back to public school?

State education authorities have some explaining to do and an unambiguous remedy to develop. The public deserves a clear plan on how they intend to clean up yet another mess they have made with the state accountability system. In the meanwhile, parent choice has just been thrown under the bus.


  1. Private and home schooled children must be held to the same standards as state school children. Too many of them are uneducated compared to their peers and have no concept of science or how to function in society.

  2. I'm afraid we have to disagree on this one Anonymous. Provide the evidence to support your generalization on the comparisons between private schoolers and homeschoolers compared to public schoolers.

    Grumpy Educators is opposed to the current excessive testing and accountability system promoted by Florida. If you must defend it, give evidence.

  3. That believe would seem to contradict some other findings for example

    Study Shows Homeschooled Students Excel

    And this article explains some of the opposition to home schooling

    Homeschoolers Excelling at College

  4. This is very interesting indeed and I am guessing this had to be part of some legislation. It could strand students in an education setting their family can no longer afford while eliminating a path back to public school. Unable to pay, the student may be lost and deprived of earning a meaningful diploma. it seems like forced privatization...or will thee be a way out via FLVS? Choice appears to be a word without meaning in Florida, only a cover for the instituionalization of privatization. HUGE find and looking forward to the media mining Scott, Robinson, and the legislature about this.

  5. Aug. 19 Anonymous - Here is the reference to the regulation standing for this development. The rule change became final on April 30, 2012.