FCAT 2.0 raises the stakes

Sydney Saunders, Staff Writer

FCAT 2.0 will soon be reaching the desks of Brevard Public Schools students. The proposed update for the FCAT will arrive during the spring of this year. The update will raise the requirements in order to pass the standardized test. The actual score has not been determined, but the State Board of Education approved the changes in December, arguing that raising the scores needed to pass will help ensure that students leave high school college and career ready and better able to compete in a global economy.

“Students must realize that FCAT is going to become more challenging every year,” sophomore English teacher Jeannine Griffin said. “It’s not the same test from previous years that students were able to pass with a mediocre score.”

With the increased requirements for passing the test, there is a possibility that more students could be held back or be placed into mandatory remediation classes. As a result, students who don’t pass will have limited selection of elective courses to fit into their schedule. The change could make it harder for students to reach scores needed to graduate and attend college.

“FCAT is almost like a chore, a continuous and tedious task that students have to deal with yearly,” sophomore Jay Kundumadathil said.

Raising the scores could reduce the  college remediation rates that have seemed to increase during the past five years.

“Whether it’s FCAT, an AP test or any other standardized exam, each year the test will be harder and the stakes will be raised even higher,” AP U.S History teacher, Jim Pustay said.

Although the proposed scores are not definite for the upcoming year, students are encouraged to prepare for a change of FCAT scores and standards.

“Not only is FCAT back this year, but it’s coming back with a vengeance, harder and possibly longer,” sophomore Bridget Lee said.