Gibbs High students get pumped for the FCAT
ST. PETERSBURG - Gibbs High School hosted a motivational fair today to lift students’ spirits ahead of the Florida Comprehensive Achievement Test next week. The Gibbs High Gladiator Expo featured giveaways from 25 local businesses, games and booths run by school clubs and organizations to show what they have accomplished so far this year. Motivational speaker Eric Thomas, known as “the hip-hop preacher,” gave students advice on how to do their best on the FCAT and in every aspect of their lives. A street team from radio station WiLD 94.1 kept students’ energy high, while the school held workshops that provided parents with information on everything from graduation requirements to dress code options. Gibbs students have a lot to prove on the test, which impacts everything from teacher evaluations to school grades and funding. Last year, just 35 percent of Gibbs’ ninth-graders and 33 percent of 10th-graders passed the FCAT reading test, according to the Florida Department of Education. But students have been working hard leading up to the test and getting extra tutoring help, said Principal Stephanie Adkinson.Now, they just need to be in the right frame of mind. “The best advice students could follow for FCAT week is to get a good night’s sleep, eat a hearty breakfast and keep the partying to a minimum,” Adkinson said. Testing starts Monday and runs through April 26. Third- through eighth-graders will take the reading and math portions of the test, ninth- and 10th-graders will take the reading test, fifth- and eighth-graders will take the science test, and 11th-graders will take math and reading tests.