Florida official says students benefit from A-F grading of schools

BY ERIC SMITH Published: October 20, 2012
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A 2007 study by several university researchers and the Urban Institute concluded that “student achievement significantly increased in elementary schools that received an F grade” in the first year, and found that the impacts persisted three years later.

Education reform is a long journey that never ends. States become laboratories for change and learn from each other's successes. We're seeing this in action today.

Our students' futures depend on whether their K-12 schools prepare them for postsecondary education and the workforce. The traditional American education system is failing in this regard, making reforms based on standards and accountability all the more urgent. Congratulations to Gov. Mary Fallin, the Oklahoma Legislature, state schools Superintendent Janet Barresi and the State Board of Education for placing the success of students at the forefront of education in Oklahoma.

Smith is a former Florida education commissioner and emeritus member of Chiefs for Change, a coalition of state school superintendents committed to education reform. Release of Oklahoma's inaugural A-F grading system results has been delayed until at least late October.