Formula for Florida school grades may change

Grades currently based primarily on student performances on tests

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ORLANDO, Fla. - Florida is going ahead with last-minute changes to the formula used to calculate annual school grades.

The decision could mean that more than 100 schools will avoid getting an F grade this year.

The State Board of Education on Tuesday voted 4-3 to approve the formula change pushed by Education Commissioner Tony Bennett.

Each year the state hands out A-to-F grades that are used to reward top schools and sanction those that get failing marks.

But Bennett on Friday recommended a "temporary rule" that would limit a school grade from dropping more than one letter at a time.

Board members opposed to the change said they were manipulating and disguising the true academic performance of the state's schools.

Miami-Dade schools superintendent Alberto Carvalho, however, called the change the "right approach."

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