A Thousand Manatee 3rd Graders May Be Held Back

BRADENTON, Fla. (AP) _ More than 1,000 Manatee County third-graders could be held back after taking state exams this spring.

An update by Manatee Superintendent Diana Greene shows about 29 percent of the students fell into the bottom fifth across the state. In 2014, the percentage of third-graders flagged for retention was at 26 percent.

If students are flagged for retention by the state test, they still can be promoted. A portfolio review of the student’s work can establish “good cause” to move the student on to the fourth grade. Greene says nearly 70 percent of the flagged third-grade students are either not native English speakers or are identified as having learning disabilities.

Greene expects 500 students to attend summer school and take another test at the end of the program to move on to fourth grade.