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Wednesday, March 2, 2016

Florida, one of the most corrupt states in the nation

Harvard’s Center for Ethics came out with a new report measuring the legal and illegal corruption in the states. Florida faired particularly poor.  The study said Illegal corruption is “moderately common” in Florida’s executive branch, Illegal corruption is “very common” in the state’s legislative branch and no state has a high ranking for illegal corruption in its judiciary. Nowhere is this more evident than with charter schools.
Not only have charter schools give hundreds of thousands of dollars in campaign donations for favorable treatment but legislators like representatives. Manny Diaz, future House Speaker Richard Corcoran, House Budget Chairman Seth McKeel, House Education Appropriations Chairman Erik Fresen and Senators Anitere Flores and John Legg all either own charter schools, work for charter schools or who have spouses that own or work for charter schools and they routinely propose and vote on charter school legislation that benefits them. Holy conflict of interest Bat-Man.
Maybe I wouldn’t care if 313 charter schools hadn’t taken public money and failed, the Associate Press hadn’t reported that the state has wasted 70 million dollars on failed charter schools over the last few years or of charter schools as a group did better than public schools but they don’t.
What’s Tallahassee’s response to all this failure? A bill requiring districts to share their local tax base with for profit charter schools, another making it easier for them to open and nearly double the amount that public schools get in maintenance funds.
Florida needs to stop the corruption taking place in Tallahassee and charter schools are a great low hanging fruit place to start.
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