Education in Florida

Tom-OMaraTo save Florida’s children from failing schools, I took on the powerful education unions, created the most ambitious school choice program in the nation and coupled that with a bold accountability system. As a result, Florida’s children have made vast improvements in reading and math.–Jeb Bush

Jeb is right that education in Florida has improved as it has throughout the South. Education in Florida had much room for improvement. Here is an interactive report on progress:

Depending on the year chosen for comparison (there is no data for 2000), Florida can be seen to have made at least modest gains. So how are children in Florida doing in school?

Pinochio FraudFlorida’s fourth grade mathematics scores are average, slightly better than NY and slightly below PA. Jeb’s suggestion that Florida’s schools have improved is correct, most states have improved, but the implication that Florida’s schools are exceptional is wrong.

Jeb’s mistaken claims are much like Scott Walker’s, who also claims success in improving education that can’t be documented.

About whungerford

* Contributor at where we discuss the politics, economics, and events of the New New York 23rd Congressional District (Allegany, Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Chemung, (Eastern) Ontario, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben,Tioga, Tompkins, and Yates Counties) Please visit and comment on whatever strikes your fancy.
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3 Responses to Education in Florida

  1. josephurban says:

    This comment is based a my very limited contact with Florida students in my 30 plus years of teaching in NY. Over the years I taught a few students who came up from Florida in high school for some reason. To a student they all complained about the following.
    1. Too much homework.
    2. Tests were too hard.
    3. Teachers expected too much.
    4. Florida was much easier.
    All of these students had been “successful” in Florida. One of the students talked about having to go to the “black school” even though another public school was closer to her home. (Segregation is dead?) Almost all the students I had from Florida ended up going back to Florida to finish high school because they could not pass the basic NY competency tests.
    I am in no way condemning Florida schools or the education system. But unless we have NATIONAL standards of some kind there is no way to compare the education kids are getting in each state. It is easy to pass kids and have a “successful” graduation rate. But what does it mean to graduate? Does it mean you are an educated person or were simply pushed through a flawed testing regime?


  2. whungerford says:

    To Jeb’s credit, I believe he still supports national standards.


  3. pystew says:

    I know teachers who have left New York and moved to Florida and began teaching there. The stories they tell make our schools look exceptional–but that was almost a decade ago. I sure hope Florida schools have improved.


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