Flurry of education bills pour into Florida Legislature
By now most Floridians have heard about the big-ticket education measures up for consideration in Tallahassee.
There are plenty more proposals that aren't generating headlines. If approved, many could have broad implications for the future of public schooling, too.
Here are but a few of the newest bills filed:
SB 1596 (Sobel) - would require charter schools to have a majority of their board members live in the county they serve. No more generic applications filed across Florida with the same set of leaders for whichever ones get approved.
SB 1614 (Alexander) - would add career and ROTC programs as acceptable high school graduation paths, answering criticism that tougher graduation rules adopted last year discounted programs for the non-college-bound. Also related is SB 1166 (Detert), which would count GED exit option completers as graduates for purposes of determining graduation rates.
SB 1656 (Wise) - would expand eligibility for McKay Scholarships.
SB 1680 (Storms) - would have K-3 teachers evaluate parent/guardian involvement in their children's education, after having schools develop and provide information about appropriate involvement. (Related to a House bill filed earlier in the year to much national fanfare.)
We expect even more education bills to come in the run-up to next week's start of session. Remember, only about 10 percent of all bills make it to the governor's desk (and that's being generous). We'll track as many as we can and let you know what happens. If there are any bills you hear of that you want to put on our radar screen, please let us know.