The Department of Education rolled out a communications outreach program Monday to teach parents about its role in state education. It includes a new website, hotline, and online forums and blogs for parents.
It comes a week after much lower Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test scores were released, prompting the State Board of Education to lower the standard writing score from a 4 to a 3. It's graded in a range from 0 to 6. Education officials, however, say the call to reach out directly to parents came before the release of the FCAT scores.
“That’s just not true,” Department of Education spokeswoman Jamie Mongiovi said of reports the new outreach efforts were in response to the department’s handling of the FCAT scores. “This was in the works for a while."
The home page of the new website, www.floridapathtosuccess.org, however, explains why the department and the board increased the scrutiny and grading of the FCAT, and why that has led to lower scores this year.