Rick Scott’s pretty pleased with himself will all the ed reform measures he’s signed into law. He wrote this in an Orlando Sentinel op-ed piece last Monday:
With these pieces of legislation, we open doors of opportunity for students with disabilities, create stronger charter and virtual schools, and strengthen Students at failing schools are more likely to drop out, which means they are most likely to have trouble keeping a job. To prevent this tragedy, we are expanding the Opportunity Scholarship program, so students at chronically low-performing schools can choose a better school.
We have redefined what makes a failing school from those that earn an “F” two years in a row, to chronically low-performing schools that are graded either “D” or “F.” That means more students and their parents will be empowered to choose a better school, and with it, a better future parents’ right to choose the best education for their children.
Charter schools, Governor?
Four days after Scott spiked the ball at a charter school in Winter Garden, Florida’s school grades were released. Thanks to the yeoman’s work of a colleague and FB friend, Floridians know that of the 31 failing schools in Florida, 15 are charter schools.
Sweetwater Branch Academy Elementary- CHARTER
Imagine School at West Melbourne- CHARTER
Imagine Charter/ N. Lauderdale- CHARTER
Imagine at N. Lauderdale Middle School- CHARTER
Charter School of Excellence at Riverland- CHARTER
Broward Community Charter Middle- CHARTER
Lenora Braynon Smith Elementrary- Public
Lawrence Academy Elementary Charter School- CHARTER
Comstock Elementary- CONTROLLED CHOICE
Florida International Elementary Academy- CHARTER
Kelsey L. Pharr Elemntary- CONTROLLED CHOICE
Brentwood Elementary- Public
Highlands Elementary- Public
John Love Elementary- Public
KIPP Impact Middle- CHARTER
West Jacksonville Elementary- Public
AA Dixon Charter School of Excellence- CHARTER
Central Hamilton Elementary- Public
Riverhills Elementary- Public
Mt. Pleasant Standard Base Middle- CHARTER
Beverly Shores Elementary- Public
Lee Charter Academy- CHARTER
G.D. Rogers Garden Elementary- Public
Rio Grande Charter- CHARTER
Kaley Elementary- Public
NAP Ford Community Charter- CHARTER
Joseph Littles-Nguzo Saba- CHARTER
Gulf Highlands Elementary- Public
Maximo Elementary- Public
Melrose Elementary- Public
Community Learning Center East- Public
Scott and the his legislative allies probably never planned for a contingency where a mass failure of charter schools would occur and be subject to their own trigger mechanisms. It even worse than they thought, too, as a report was released last week detailing significant abuse of the McKay scholarship program that was also expanded by Scott’s pen. McKay is for students with disabilities and now includes any child with an IEP.
You would think Floridians would be wary of such questionable expansions. SunRail is currently sucking up the state’s mainstream media oxygen right now. That will soon change as a few of the state’s large newspapers cover education in a responsible way.