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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Party lines vote launches 'parent trigger' debate



We told you earlier that the so-called "parent trigger" legislation would get its first hearing in Tallahassee today. As expected, there were plenty of people who signed up to speak both for and against HB 867 before the House subcommittee on Choice & Innovation took a vote. The final tally, 8-5, was strictly along party lines with Republicans on the winning side.

From The Buzz:

Advocates of the bill, including representatives from former Gov. Jeb Bush’s education non-profit, the Foundation for Florida’s Future, argued that the legislation would give parents a more prominent role in local school systems.

“As you look across the state of Florida, what you will see (is that) a lot of parents really want to do something about their schools,” said former state Sen. Al Lawson, a Tallahassee Democrat involved in the charter school movement.

But parent groups, school districts and the teachers’ union criticized the bill, saying it was crafted for private education interests seeking to boost enrollment, receive more money from the state and take control of taxpayer-funded school facilities.

“The Florida PTA feels very strongly that this is misleading the public and it could have devastating results to our kids,” said Dawn Steward, the organization’s vice president for education. “We want you to pull the bill, not the trigger.”

Read more here.

[Last modified: Thursday, March 7, 2013 6:41pm]


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