OAHU, HI - FEBRUARY 18: A kindergarten teacher prepares her students for a classroom lockdown drill February 18, 2003 in Oahu, Hawaii. Lockdown procedure is used to protect school children from possible threats on campus such as intruders, terrorism or military attack. (Photo by Phil Mislinski/Getty Images)
The Florida Department of Education released its school district rankings Monday with South Florida districts falling in the rankings the further south they were located, with the exception of Monroe County School District which ranked in the top 10 at 8th.
Miami-Dade County School District was ranked in the bottom half of the state’s 67 districts at 37th, while Broward County ranked 26th and Palm Beach County came in at 16th.
Despite the low ranking for Miami-Dade, it remains at a B Grade Level overall – the same as it has scored most years since the rankings have been made starting in the 2003-2004 school year.
Miami-Dade School Board officials did not immediately return calls from NBC Miami seeking comment on the rankings.
Broward, Palm Beach and Martin Counties were all given A Grades.
According to the department of education, the ranking are derived from controversial FCAT scores, with districts awarded one point for each percent of students who were enrolled for a full year and score at their grade level or higher and make annual learning gains.
In reference to the rankings, Education Commissioner Gerard Robinson said they were designed to start a conversation, not stigmatize those at the bottom of the list.
St. Johns County, which includes St. Augustine, ranked No. 1.
Madison County, where more than 70 percent of the students qualify for free or reduced-price lunches, ranked last among the 67 districts.