Fix the meter
I loved the fluency meter because it motivated me. Now it is broken. Can someone please fix this
Fluency is indicating how well you are going at the lessons (in terms of mistakes made, weak words, and how often you peek at the hints), it really has nothing to do with levels or how close you are to finishing. It's also not out of 100%, but instead out of about 65 (I think the idea is that because duolingo is only the intro course, completing it doesn't indicate 100% fluency).
Fabian Becker's skill strength userscript might explain it http://blog.fabianbecker.eu/duolingo-skill-strength/
If you install the script somewhere, you could both log in to see your overall percentages and also the individual skill strengths. I've found it really helpful for identifying which lesson I need to review next.
For me, the script reports (for Spanish) Overall Strength: 75.7 % Dead Words (0 Strength): 302/2717
This compares to a Duolingo fluency percentage of 46%.
I'd be curious to know if there is a consistent link between those two percentages, or if there's more to the fluency score.
Please read http://duolingo.wikia.com/wiki/Fluency
However, keep in mind:
Duolingo's fluency % is a nonsense number.
It says nothing about your fluency in the real world.
Duolingo's Fluency % is unreliable.
Recently appeared that the Duolingo staff had manipulated this "fluency %" for testing purposes (https://www.duolingo.com/comment/22225104)
Duolingo will only bring you to an A2/B1 skill level in reading/writing and A1 (maybe A2) in listening/talking.
Info about language levels: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Common_European_Framework_of_Reference_for_Languages
Read from "Common reference levels".
In the comments of this discussion you can read some tips to improve your French:
However, I think Duolingo's courses are excellent.
Just enjoy the courses and don't worry about Duolingo's fluency %.