The Pasco school district has a new message for the Dayspring Academy charter school regarding teacher performance pay funding: Keep it.
"After a lengthy dialogue with the (Florida Department of Education), I have concluded that Dayspring Academy does not need to return any of the MAP funds it distributed to its employees in 2007," chief financial officer Olga Swinson wrote in a letter Thursday to the school's leadership. "Please accept my sincere apology for any confusion related to this misunderstanding."
Swinson had told the charter school's leaders late last week that the school would have to send back the $23,000 of state money it had given to five teachers through the Merit Award Program. That just wasn't the case, though.
No apology needed, said charter co-founder and state Rep. John Legg. "We're all adults. Mistakes happen."
Unfortunately, Legg added, district officials frequently make mistakes when it comes to charter school issues, and then they get peevish when the charter schools challenge them.
"When we approached them for clarification on the issue, they automatically took the position that they were correct," he said. "The only thing we ask is that, if we ask for clarification, people don't get upset that we ask."
See tomorrow's St. Petersburg Times or tampabay.com for the rest of the story.