Tuesday, October 23, 2012
Rick Scott calls for more testing and charter schools
From the Orlando Sentinel, by Jeff Solochek
Gov. Rick Scott is to present his education plan for the coming year at an education summit in Fort Myers this week. The Tampa Bay Times obtained a copy of the draft proposals (attached below), and they look to be more of the same.
Scott, who supported major spending cuts in his first year, now seeks to hold per-student funding steady a year after pushing to add some of his cuts back. He does look to move some of the money around, though, to accomplish certain goals such as supporting teacher supplies and professional development. One of the sources would be teacher lead money.
Building on his theme of moving away from the FCAT, a direction the state headed before Scott became governor, Scott calls for an end to changing any testing rules and requirements not tied to the transition to Common Core standards.
Most notably, Scott continues his theme of expanding choice options. He doesn't repeat his failed call for universal vouchers, but he does recommend eliminating enrollment caps for existing charter schools, a removal of barriers to choice options in low-income areas, and the establishment of school district run charter schools of innovation.
He also calls for deregulation, based on the work being done by a committee of superintendents that he convened about a month ago. The committee has yet to complete its work, but is talking about some big issues that could prove controversial.
Scott has said most of this before, in some form or fashion. But as he aims to make education a priority, at least he keeps talking about it.