If Students Fail the FCAT Can They Go on to the Next Grade?


The Florida Comprehensive Achievement Test, the FCAT, is a standardized test given to all students in Florida public schools. The test is linked to the Florida Sunshine Standards, which teachers use to teach students in the state of Florida. Some grades link passing to success on the FCAT.

FCAT 3rd Grade Requirements

  • Study with your child to help him pass the FCAT. Third grade students take the reading and math portions of the FCAT test. Only the reading portion is included in requirements for advancement to the next grade. A student must pass the reading portion of the FCAT with a 2.0 out of a score of 5.0. If they do not pass, they are sometimes allowed to take it again in the summer. This depends on the school district.

FCAT 8th Grade Requirements

  • Testing a passing score--which is a level 2 out of 5--on the Math and Reading section of the FCAT was formerly a criteria for eight grade advancement. The FCAT is no longer used for advancement in eight grade. However, the scores are used to decide which classes a student will take in the ninth grade. Recently, the Florida Department of Education added writing and science tests to the yearly FCAT testing procedures. These sub tests are for placement also; they are not used to determine grade advancement.

FCAT 10th Grade Requirements

  • Graduating with a standard diploma requires a student to pass the reading and math portions of the FCAT in tenth grade.The FCAT is given at least twice a year, so students who do not pass the test in the tenth grade can take it again. If a student does not pass the FCAT the first time, he will be placed in remedial classes and offered after-school tutoring in the problematic subject area. If the student cannot pass the FCAT, he graduates with a certificate. Students with an Individual Educational Plan can request an FCAT waiver, exempting them from passing the FCAT. However, they must have taken the FCAT at least two times before requesting this waiver.

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