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Monday, June 27, 2011

A dark day for Florida's public schools

On the heels of the disastrous merit pay bill that cripples Florida’s present and future teachers and the three billion dollar cut to the statewide education budget, the governor today signed five more bills designed to hurt Florida’s education system and speed up the privatization of our schools.

The five bills are: S.B. 1546, Charter Schools; H.B. 7197, Virtual Education; H.B. 1331, Opportunity Scholarships; H.B. 1329, McKay Scholarships; and H.B. 965, Florida Tax Credit Scholarship Program.

All of these bills take resources and money out of our resource and money starved public schools and for several of them, like the merit pay bill was, are not backed up by facts. Charter schools as a group do no better and often do worse than their public school counterparts and the problems with virtual schools both with quality of instruction and cheating are many. Then there is the opportunity scholarship bill, which says district must pay for busing kids to their new schools, even if these new schools are in different counties.

The answer should be to commit our resources to our public schools, to develop effective curriculums and programs that serve all our children, not just a few and then to bring in competent leadership. If education in Florida were a three legged stool and each of above was a leg then our stool as things stand now wouldn’t be standing because all three of its legs are broken.

The answer should not be to further cripple our public schools and siphon money into the for profit corporate world where the bottom line is more important than our children.

Chris Guerrieri
School Teacher


  1. I'm really glad you aren't teaching my children. Did you even bother to proofread your blog?

  2. That is what upsets, you a comma or two out of place? Nothing else? Maybe the destruction and privitization of our schools? Nothing huh?

    Two things, your kids are really missing out then because I am the kind of teacher that children rave about and second feel free not to come back.

  3. When a public school teacher posts a comment about the importance of public school education, her message is lost if it is embedded in text replete with instances of improper diction, mangled syntax, and errors in grammar, punctuation, and spelling. Surely a teacher appreciates the importance of both substance AND form.

    Two examples from the text: (1) If you are "bussing" children, you are kissing them. The word you intended was "busing," which is defined as transporting by bus. (2) The plural of "curriculum" is not "curriculums," but "curricula."

    And, thank you, but my children will remain with their excellent teachers.

  4. Florida's public schools are performing relative to state standards. School grades are calculated based on annual learning gains of each student toward achievement of Sunshine State Standards, the progress of the lowest quartile of students, and the meeting of proficiency standards.