The Florida Department of Education (FLDOE) has recently come under scrutiny regarding its assessment methods for English language learners. Current federal law dictates that states adhere to standards put forth by the No Child Left Behind Act. In early August, Florida received an extension to a waiver which allows the state to use its own testing standards in order to accommodate students whose primary language is not English. According to Lesli Maxwell, an Education Week contributor, “Florida public schools educate more than a quarter million English-language learners.” Some education leaders criticize the waiver, arguing the importance of holding Florida schools accountable, while others argue the need to provide English-language learners more time to become proficient in English before including their test scores among school scores. The issue will be a topic up for discussion for FLDOE officials in the coming months.
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