Tuesday, April 25, 2006

Tampa Senator Files Lawsuit to Require Release of Names, Qualifications of Temporary FCAT Graders

Senators Les Miller (D-Tampa) and Skip Campbell (D-Fort Lauderdale) have filed a lawsuit to force Education Commissioner John Winn to release information about the individuals grading the FCAT. The Senators first spoke openly about this possibility last week.

The Senators first asked Commissioner Winn for the names and qualifications of the graders on March 14.

"They're thumbing their nose at us. They told us they don't care. But we represent 800,000 people in our Senate districts and that includes a lot of students," said Miller. "We're talking about a test that determines the career of a student."

"If the agency can make public claims that everyone has a degree and more than half have educational backgrounds, it ought to be able to back up those assertions," added Campbell.

The Department of Education claimed that more than half of the graders were teachers or had teaching experience, but then indicated that they did not have a list of the graders or their experience or qualifications.

"They told us that 50 percent of the people who graded the tests were retired teachers or had educated degrees, and now they don't know," Miller said.

The lawsuit asks for the names and qualifications of all temporary graders.


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