Florida Department of Education proposes rule to address ‘substantial math deficiency’ in students

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. — The Florida Department of Education has put forth a new proposal aimed at identifying and addressing students with a “substantial math deficiency,” potentially paving the way for individual education plans (IEPs) for those affected. The proposal, made public on Monday, is set to target students ranging from kindergarten to fourth grade.


According to the proposed rule, students falling below certain criteria will be designated as having a substantial math deficiency.

This determination can be based on a variety of factors, including scores below the 10th percentile in screening, diagnostic assessments, progress monitoring, other classroom data, or statewide assessments. Alternatively, teachers’ observations of minimum skill levels for specific mathematics competencies may also lead to the designation.

For each grade level, the proposal specifies key areas of emphasis that will be used to evaluate students’ math proficiency.

For instance, for kindergarten students, this would include “measuring, comparing, and categorizing objects according to various attributes, including their two- and three-dimensional shapes.”

Meanwhile, fourth-grade students would be assessed based on their understanding of “interpreting data to include mode, median, and range.”

Students identified with math deficiencies under this proposed rule would be required to be covered by a federally mandated student plan, such as an individual education plan (IEP).

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IEPs are written plans tailored to address the unique educational needs of students with disabilities.

The Florida Department of Education aims to implement this rule to ensure that young students struggling with math receive the support and resources they need to succeed academically.

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