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From the staff of the Tampa Bay Times

Gov. Rick Scott smooths out ruffled feathers at Board of Education



Florida Gov. Rick Scott called members of the state Board of Education this week to smooth feathers that were ruffled after Education Commissioner Eric Smith suddenly announced his resignation on Monday.

Smith, who had strong support from both lawmakers and former Gov. Jeb Bush, said in a written statement that he was stepping down June 10 so Scott could have input "on the type of leader to pursue his goals for education."

Smith declined to comment further. But longtime board chair T. Willard Fair of Miami, a close ally of former Gov. Bush, immediately fired off a letter to fellow board members, expressing anger over Scott's behind-the-scenes role in Smith's departure.

"It is distressing that the Governor made no effort to meet with Commissioner Smith, at any time, since his Inauguration," Fair wrote. "Therefore, the Governor cannot know whether Commissioner Smith would have been the right person to carry his educational priorities foward."

Read more here.

[Last modified: Thursday, March 24, 2011 10:52am]


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