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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Will Pasco School Board challenge new Florida charter school law?



Last week, Pasco schools superintendent Heather Fiorentino expressed her displeasure with new state law giving charter schools labeled "high performing" almost a free pass to replicate anywhere in the state.

Next week, Fiorentino and the School Board will have the chance to take a firm stance on the provision, which Gov. Rick Scott signed into law earlier in the year.

Broward-based Charter Schools USA has applied to recreate its Homestead Keys Gate Charter School in Pasco County, invoking the "high performing" statute. The firm has refused to budge on the 60-day response requirement, unlike the county's 10 other charter applicants, meaning the board must act by Tuesday.

Nancy Scowcroft, Pasco's charter schools supervisor, told the Gradebook that Fiorentino had not yet decided whether to recommend approval. She wouldn't share her advice to the superintendent, either, although Scowcroft did pointedly express her disdain for the funneling of tax dollars into the pockets of private charter management companies.

Will Pasco become one of the first districts in Florida to challenge the new law? Should it be?

[Last modified: Thursday, September 29, 2011 1:51pm]


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