A little sidestep
Gov. Charlie Crist dropped by Plant High in Tampa for Citizenship Day, and he gave a nice little civics lesson complete with white-board diagrams of the government structure. (Of course, the "people" were on the top.)
He fielded questions, and the kids didn't hold back. Senior A.J. Betts pointedly asked the governor why the standards for the state's Bright Futures Scholarships are so "low"?
Crist's response: He does not want to micro-manage the state's government.
Pointing to his organizational chart, Crist said decisions such as standards for scholarships belong in the hands of department heads, and not his own. He then noted that he expected the State Board of Education to have a new commissioner in place "this week." (The board is interviewing candidates today, and could make an offer as early as tomorrow, though the schedule doesn't call for an official choice until October.)
- Amber Mobley, Times staff writer
UPDATE: Before leaving town, the gov also dropped in on the State Board of Education, reminding the board to choose wisely as it reviews commissioner candidates. He wouldn't reveal if he had any favorites, though he did say he had called some friends on the board over the weekend to give some input. Pressed on the issue, Crist simply said he thought the board had some great candidates and only time would tell whether he's happy or very happy with the board's decision.
- Ron Matus, state education reporter