Time limit changes for FSA ELA test

New information about the time limit for the Florida Standards Assessment for English Language Arts writing test has been revealed. Students would have originally had 90 minutes to read through the sources, plan their essay and write the essay. Now students may request an extra 30 minutes if they need it.

English teacher Adrienne Gent found this information in a workbook adopted and authorized by the state.

“I sent one [email] to…the publishing house contact person, and so she immediately wrote me back and said there had been a change from earlier in the school year,” she said. “The state had now said there was going to be a 90 with the option of an additional 120 and they discussed that I guess earlier, but had not put anything out.”

Gent also said that because there was not an option for an extra 30 minutes on Monday’s practice test because the practice was handwritten. The actual test will be typed on a computer.

“The theory on it is that if the student is a slower typist or has technical issues navigating the website that it won’t cut into their writing time,” she said. “That everyone should get the equal opportunity for the 90 full minutes of writing regardless of technical things.”

Students grades seven through eleven are scheduled to take the test in March.

By Helen McSorley