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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Moore predicts defeat for voucher, class size proposals



Jade Pinellas Classroom Teachers Association executive director Jade Moore (left) is one of the few Democrats sitting on the Florida Taxation and Budget Reform Commission. He acknowledges he doesn't hold the majority view on many of the issues coming before the group. But after 30 or so years in the world of Florida education and government, he certainly has a well-honed nose for politics.

And his sense is that many of the education-related measures moving through the commission will not make it to the voters, despite making their way out of committee.

A proposal to allow public money to pay for private schooling "is limping through the subcommittees ... as a courtesy to the sponsor," Moore said. But "it's not going to go anywhere," he added, noting that the commission wants to put no more than eight items on the ballot and that it has bigger fish to fry (read: tax reform) than this idea.

He suggested a proposal to scale back the class-size amendment has "more legs than the voucher thing," but predicted getting 17 needed votes from the commission could be tough. "I think the (no) votes will materialize in the full commission," Moore said. "If not, it's going to go to the voters (where) it's going to go down."

Polls have shown growing support for reduced class sizes, suggesting a lack of interest in changing the rules.

The commission is scheduled to take up the class size proposal on March 17. The commission also scheduled to discuss proposals that would change the way the state funds education, depending more on sales taxes and less on property taxes. You can see the agenda here.

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:36am]


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