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Saturday, February 1, 2014

Where is the outrage over Rick Scott's appointments to the state board of education?

Before people blame unions and teachers for the state of education I hope they consider whom Rick Scott has appointed to the state board of education. First there is local Gary Chartrand a grocer who started a charter school who has never taught a day in his life. Then there is Andy Tuck a citrus grower and where he too has never taught a day in his life he was on the school board in his hometown. However before we celebrate a modicum of education related experience, this is what the Tampa Times has quoted him saying about evolution,  "As a person of faith, I strongly oppose any study of evolution as fact at all. I’m purely in favor of it staying a theory and only a theory, I won’t support any evolution being taught as fact at all in any of our school. Both of them have also donated considerable sums of money to Rick Scott’s reelection campaign 

Then there is Rebecca Fishman-Lipsey, this New York Transplant has two years of teaching experience (in New York) and five years of Teach for America administrative experience. Teach for America takes non education recent grads, puts them though a five week teacher boot camp and then into our most neediest schools, where they serve for two tears. Or the exact opposite of what we know to be best practices. Jacksonville has embraced them while cities like Tampa and Pittsburgh have rejected them preferring to hire people they can develop into life long educators.

Are these three really the best Florida has to offer? I don’t think so, in fact there are a half dozen teachers at my school alone who not only have they dedicated their lives to working with children and who have a better understanding of what works and what doesn’t but who have more relevant education experience than the three of them combined.

Charter schools, Teach for America and Creationists are well represented on the board but where are the professional educators and teachers? They aren’t but maybe that’s the point and we wonder why we have the problems we do. 


  1. As long as any of these appointments choose to oppose Common Core, they would then be superb choices

  2. Unfortunately, the Common Core standards are the least of our worries in the field of education. Until you have been in the schools as a teacher or administrator (at least 1 with more than 3 years of experience as a teacher), you really have no idea what problems exist and how to solve them. Listening to your kids, some business leaders, or governmental stooges does not qualify you to lead anyone's education. It always blows my mind that because people were students or have children as students in the public school system, they think they really know how to fix or prevent the major issues that occur every day. Just because I have plumbing in my house, it does not make me a plumber. In the case of Fishman-Lipsey, would you want anyone in the fields of medicine, law, or business leading a company with only 2 years of real experience? How come people get away with it in education? There are good teachers and administrators who have done the research and have loads of experience who know how to enact change. God forbid we use them!