Florida’s 3rd Grade Reading Scores Show Troubling Trend

Florida’s 3rd Grade Reading Scores Show Troubling Trend

Florida’s latest third-grade reading scores report has shown only one-quarter of students are able to read proficiently. The latest numbers from the Florida Department of Education were released recently, numbers which indicate students are struggling across the state, based on their performance on the Florida Standards Assessment (FSA).

The state education department defines “proficiently” as scoring a four or five on a scale of one through five. A level three is considered passing, and just over half of Florida’s students passed at 53 percent.

The passing number has gotten lower in the past few years, most recently peaking in 2017 and 2019 at 58 percent. However, the 2015 number matched this year’s 53 percent.

Certain rural counties were also some of the lowest-performing. The lowest percentage of passing third-graders, 19 percent, was found in Jefferson County.

Hillsborough County School District officials, encompassing Tampa, said that the effects of lockdown schools and at-home learning greatly disrupted scores in their district.

“Nearly 1,000 more third-grade students were tested this year compared to last year, and many of these students learned from home during some or all of 2020-2021,” Tanya Arja, a communication official with Hillsborough Schools, said. “With now 99 percent of third graders tested this year, we are now finally getting a complete picture of the impacts that disrupted and at-home learning caused.”

Similarly, Gadsden County only had a rate of 27 percent, while Madison County came in 39 percent.

Gadsden County Superintendent Elijah Key said they are “greatly disappointed” but “not surprised” at their county’s low score.

Conversely, the counties surrounding Jacksonville had some of the highest scores in the state. Clay County had a passing rate of 61 percent, Nassau County’s rate was 64 percent, and St. Johns County had one of the highest scoring rates at 76 percent of third-graders passed.

Overall, the highest performer was Florida High School, the charter school affiliated with Florida State University.

The largest year to year increase in passing students was accomplished by Dixie County with 8 percent more students passing than the previous year. Lafayette County, however, had the largest year-to-year drop, with 12 percent fewer third graders passing the Florida Standards Assessment.

The DOE also noted that charter school outperformed non-charter schools.

“Though the decline in grade 3 ELA performance at Level 3 and above between 2021 and 2022 was greater among charter schools than non-charter schools (2 percentage-point decline compared to a 1 percentage-point decline), charter school performance was higher than non-charter school performance by 7 percentage points on the 2022 Grade 3 FSA ELA (59% vs. 52%).”

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Grant Holcomb is a reporter at The Florida Capital Star and The Star News Network.

7 Responses to "Florida’s 3rd Grade Reading Scores Show Troubling Trend"

  1. @David T. Hawkins.

    It doesn’t take “trained” Parents to teach your kid, it take a DEDICATED parent to teach your child. No training or degree required. Millions of homeschool families prove it every day.

  2. There are some people that cannot compete in (insert what ever) without the Government giving them an unfair advantage. When I started working it was “Affirmative Action”. All of my transfers and promotions had to go through Equal Employment Opportunity office before I could be given the job.

    Then it was the “participation ribbon” that every kid got because their Mom was bullied and she didn’t want her kid to endure that. The end result was a whole generation of kids that grew up not knowing how to fail. All the kids got a ribbon to nail to their bedroom wall.

    Flash forward 40 years and society has dumb-down everything. Axe yourself, how hard is it to complete law school. If Bubba Crump is any example…not too hard. To be a television reporter/anchor, all you have to be able to do is read a teleprompter.

    In the early eighties, American Airlines only hired ex-military pilots and Southwest Airlines only hired pilots already qualified to fly their Boeing 737’s. Thats all changed. They dumbed it down so people of color could compete for a job. Was it right? You tell me. There was a time when the FAA only hired ex-military controllers. Today, it only requires a two year degree. And the FAA academy is not longer graded. My time at the FAA academy required a minimum score of 70 percent. Those that scored a 69.9 were fired immediately. Today, no grades. Everyone passes.

    Gadsden County Schools really suck. But we all know that. If Gadsden Co could make their schools Ivy League, my home would be worth a Million Dollars. Why the teachers at Gadsden Co are still being paid is beyond me.

    So lets just keep dumbing it down so stupid people can get hired. And the consumer will pay the price. I remember wanting to put my Nephew through a SAT prep class. I called a local provider to enroll him. The lady wanted to tell me about the training. She said, “a trainer will AXE him some questions….”. Well I ain’t paying no one to “Axe” my nephew anything.

    Today, it isn’t about being well trained and experienced to apply for a job. It is only a matter of time before the Sexual Dysphoria/Transvestit is a protected class and must be considered first before anyone is hired.

    You get what you pay for. Democrats want to make excuses for all the failures in the community.

    FAMU. I had the “privilege” of working with a FAMU Engineering Grad. He couldn’t tell you why the rubber in a pencil eraser was soft but the rubber in a tire was hard. He graduated and now has a thriving business selling weed in the community. He’s easy to spot because his infant daughter often goes with him in the car without a car seat.

    I miss the sixties and seventies. Then if you worked you ate. And everyone worked. You could buy a gun through the mail and if you needed Dynomite, the local hardware store had all you wanted to buy. Companies only hire the best applicants. People were great at their jobs. That was before “the token” was coined.

    Gas is averaging over $5.00 per gallon today thanks to all the Biden voters. We are expected to believe there are a million different genders and abortion should be provided up to and after the baby’s birth.

    Good luck Tallahassee. You voted for this now enjoy it.

  3. “With now 99 percent of third graders tested this year, we are now finally getting a complete picture of the impacts that disrupted and at-home learning caused.”

    If at-home learning caused the decline then how come “the counties surrounding Jacksonville had some of the highest scores in the state.” (61 – 76% passing rate)? How come homeschoolers are such high performers? Nice try; covid is the newest excuse for failing public schools.

    Since the leftist, who run the public schools, like to talk about slavery, let’s talk. Slaves did not read. The story was, they were not able to learn to read but the truth was they were not allowed to learn to read. It’s easier to control people who can not read than those who can read and may become independent and not agree with you, much less serve you.

    If those running the public schools really care about the little guy, they will make certain the children of the little guy can read; no excuses, no stories.

  4. Schools are so busy worrying about teaching young kids about Adam and Steve, they don’t have time to do their real jobs.

  5. @ FLC ….If you remember, just over 20 Years ago, FAMU had the lowest number of Graduates than any other Black College then a Year later, they had one of the highest Numbers. Then it came out that FAMU moved the Grade Curve back so more could Graduate. The Democrat did a huge Story on it.

  6. If you take 100 Vehicles and have 100 Doctors and Professors rebuild the Engines in them with in 1 Year, I will bet that maybe 1 or two will Run proficiently and a couple more will run just under proficiently and the rest, not so much. This is what happens when you have someone untrained doing the Job instead of someone who IS trained.

    Before Covid, you had Trained Teachers teaching the Kids and During Covid, it was UNTRAINED Parents trying to Teach Kids.

    If you remember, when it was time to open the Schools back up, the Teachers fought like hell to keep them closed. So NOW, you have to ask yourself, is the Teachers “giving it their all” to teach the Kids?

  7. Success! Lowering standards to meet the level of the lowest common denominator in society has successfully ensured none of the lower iq demographic is left behind!
    Liberal education!

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