Florida tests: Apparent opt-outs on grade 3 ELA test drops from last year

In addition to learning how many of Florida’s third graders are in danger of failing the grade and having to repeat – about 48,500 of them, we now also have a peek into how many students opted out.

In third grade at least, it appears the number has fallen by just the tiniest bit from .11 percent of more than 220,000 students in 2015 to .10 percent in 2016.

But this is an imperfect measure at best.mouse

Florida does not provide a box for parent or child to check if they wish to forego testing. The common advice to parents wishing to have their protest count and keep their children from having to make up the test some other time, has been to have the student open or log on to the test and then stop without answering any question.

Such an incomplete test would earn a label NR2 – not enough questions were answered to label the test “attempted.”  But a test could also be labeled NR2 when, for example, a child got sick after starting the test and had to leave.

UPDATE: Opt Out Florida Network co-founder and parent Cindy Hamilton out of Orange County reports that looking at the NR2 labels alone is short of the full story. The grade 3 test is a paper test, and some students who have opted out and, fore example, left the school rather than sit and stare at a wall while classmates work, see their tests labeled something other than NR2. 

According to information released by the Department of Education at the request of the Palm Beach Post,  the number of NR2s on the third grade Florida Standards Assessment for English and language arts went from 229 last year to 224 this year. (We have not yet requested the full report with all of the so-called N-codes. )

In 2015, Broward recorded the most NR2s in the grade three ELA/FSA with 30. This year, Hillsborough topped the list with 25 of its 17,441 tests.

Palm Beach County, where 15,492 students took this test,  11 NR2s were recorded in 2015, and 14 in 2016.

The grade 3 FSA for reading and writing is only one of 14 FSAs in reading and math through grade 10. 

Last year, the number of NR2s across all state tests nearly quadrupled over the previous year, according to the Florida Department of Education’s count, going from 5,597 in 2014 to 20,709 in 2015. Still the test participation rates for all of the state’s tests remained high with most NR2s on the Algebra 2 end of course exam – and then that was only 1.42 percent of test takers.

See the charts for each of last year’s tests here.   




Reader Comments 1

One Response to “Florida tests: Apparent opt-outs on grade 3 ELA test drops from last year”

  1. Florida schools roundup: Enrollment growth, expulsions, testing and more - redefinEDFlorida schools roundup: Enrollment growth, expulsions, testing and more - redefinED

    […] Smooth testing: The state’s standardized testing, which ended Friday, went smoothly this year, according to the Florida Department of Education. More than 3 million computer-based exams and  650,000 written exams were taken. Orlando Sentinel. Gradebook. As far as state officials can determine, the percentage of third-graders who opted out of state testing declined slightly, from 0.11 percent in 2015 to 0.10 percent this year. Palm Beach Post. […]



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

Basic HTML is allowed. Your email address will not be published.

Subscribe to this comment feed via RSS

%d bloggers like this: