The FCAT will begin to use more specific rubrics in the writing section starting next year and beyond. Also, starting in 2014, focus on details and proficiency of support will have more emphasis.
According to the Florida Department of Education, the new test will, “maximize the quality of our state writing assessment so that we can gain useful information about student achievement in this critically important content area.”
Another new change for this school year is the incorporation of the student pledge, in which the students guarantee they will not give, receive, or ask for help from others while they are taking the test.
Sophomore Alannah Stewart said she not worried about the changes.
“I don’t care,” she said. “It doesn’t affect me because I don’t cheat on the FCAT.”
Sophomore Kelly Etherton considers the changes little more than a nuisance.
“It’s unnecessary because it’s kind of dumb,” she said.
The new pledge is required for all students taking the test. Those who sign the pledge and then engage in questionable activity might face more severe repercussions than in years past.
“It’s more beneficial for the FCAT, but it doesn’t really change anything for the students,” sophomore Sam Unger said.
Even teachers face changes.
“This year I had to submit my Florida teaching certificate, along with [signing] the pledge,” English teacher Lisa Rehm said. “The script also had changes.”
These new changes will be revealed by the Florida Department of Education as time goes on.
By Natalie Brown