The Future of Parent Trigger in the Florida Senate

In short, the cash and electioneering from Michelle Rhee, for-profit charter schools, ed privatization PACs and the RPOF didn’t help Parent Trigger in Democrat state senate races, but may have in Republican ones.

For the opponents of parent trigger who helped defeat it last March, the expected victory’s by former representatives to the senate, John Legg and Kelli Stargel, will be grudgingly recognized as unwavering votes for the charter school takeover bill. Legg is a charter school owner, who due to lack of any ethics rules in the Florida legislature, will be allowed to vote on parent trigger even though it provides a clear benefit for a business he owns. Stargel has already demonstrated a willingness to run interference for for-profit charter schools by throwing a wrench into Polk schools desire to open its own charter schools.

A clear effort was made to elevate Key West democratic Rep. Ron Saunders to a win in  Senate District 39, but was defeated by Miami Rep. Dwight Bullard, long a champion of public schools. Pro-privatization forces also got behind the candidacy of Victoria Siplin in Senate District 12, but former teacher and current state representative Geraldine Thompson was victorious. Charter school owner Mark Bernard is behind Jeff Clemens this morning by 35 votes in the Senate District 27 race.

A huge push by privatization advocates and party power brokers delivered a victory for republican Aaron Bean in his race against Rep. Mike Weinstein in the Senate District 4 race.

Still, its going to be very difficult to defeat whatever Parent Trigger bill emerges in the senate this time. Three key no votes from republicans are gone in Evelyn Lynn, Mike Fasano and Paula Dockery. But Floridians know that the school grade formula that would judge schools to be failing for triggers to happen is fatally flawed. Even though Jeb Bush has maintained his full-court press, republican legislators shoved Parent Trigger through last March believing it to be credible and accepted by Floridians on the whole. FCAT’s reputation has been destroyed, and organized opposition to testing exists from local school boards across the state. Counting noses today doesn’t really matter as the circumstances that the republican-dominated legislature will face in March is far less rosy.


About Bob Sikes

A long time ago and a planet far, far away I was an athletic trainer for the New York Mets. I was blessed to be part of the now legendary 1986 World Series Championship. My late father told me that I'd one day be thankful I had that degree in teaching from Florida State University. He was right and I became twice blesses to become a teacher in the late 1990's. After dabbling with writing about the Mets and then politics, I settled on education.
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7 Responses to The Future of Parent Trigger in the Florida Senate

  1. Ro says:

    Bob…really, there are no ethics rules concerning voting for something that benefits you personally?!

  2. Chris says:

    So pleased that Dwight beat Saunders and Geraldine beat Siplin!

  3. Bob If you want to beat you need to start now-

    The idea that’s being sold sounds good. The school system is mucked up. parents have an option to fix it. What know tells them is they’ll no control- nothing changes in that Department- You still have Local Control being dictated from DC and Tally.. The people will be sitting on school boards giving taxpayers the same answers they’re giving now– Federal or State Law forces us to ______ ( Fill in the blank) Point out that Parent Trigger could make Joe Biden’s Brother rich– Point out that Jeb Bush isn’t governor any more, he’s a high paid salesman, working for people who stand to profit from reform…

    Point out Obama’s entire education scheme has no real basis in law- most of it is Executive Over reach that violates the Constitution. Let people know that Bill Gates is paying both Obama and Bush to promote a scheme he had a great deal to designing and will profit from..

    As for the teachers- they need to quit bad mouthing the parents that pay their salaries.. Public comments about teachers knowing what’s best and most parents care– you’ve head them. Notice I said public– Those comments sound like they came straight from Mao or Hitler—- While we’re on the subject of Mao, teacher’s need to put a lot of distance between themselves and the NEA. If the NEA’s current resolutions are ever become common knowledge, at least half the country won’t let a teacher near their kids..

  4. Bob; unfortunately their philosophies didn’t die with them, both still have believers in places that range from motorcycle bars to the halls of Ivy League Universities.

    Believe it or not Bill Ayers is now the Vice President for Curriculum Studies at the American Educational Research Association (AERA). I believe you’re familiar with Oak Norton from Utah, he put it this way ”

    Bill Ayers, the godless Marxist terrorist, is all about “democracy in education” because he recognizes the ease of transforming a nation into a communist/socialist system through the classroom by making youth believe their voice must be heard on every issue.”

    In 2006 Ayers attended an Education in Venezuela where he talked about education as the “motor-force of revolution” and ended with cries of “Viva Presidente Chavez! Viva La Revolucion Bolivariana! Hasta La Victoria Siempre!”

    Ayers makes a good example because he has a lot of name recognition.,,, There’s actually a lot of once violent communists, (who still believe in revolution) with a great of influence in the education world- But Ayers should be enough to make my point- In their heyday they discussed the need to eliminate roughly 25,000,000 American they believed couldn’t be re-educated

    In the early 1960s the FBI captured a document, In 1963 it was read into Congressional Record. The document contained the 45 goals the communists believed they would need to achieve the destruction of the United States as we know it. In a number of them you can substitute United Nations for Soviet Union. You’ll find it here

    Yesterday one of my authors, Torimom reported on the NEA and their goals., It won’t take long to start spotting similarities..

    • Bob Sikes says:

      I’ll not quibble with you on Ayers, but its a stretch to frame NEA and teachers in the Orwellian manner you did. Some of I’ve encountered over the past two years will openly admit to being sympathetic to the Ayers-like radicalism (without the violence) of the sixties. Aside for some’s devotion to the dominate union model, they don’t engage or advocate for the sort of indoctrination you infer. When it occurs, its isolated. A former student of mine came by to vist before returning to NYU where she has made friends from India and China. She told me her friends were taught nothing of the holocaust in their home countries. I doubt that even Ayers would suggest such curriculum. But isn’t it fair to point out that attempts to mandate teaching creationism per Genesis is similar. We are running into this from the other side in Louisiana’ hyper-voucher scheme. Florida’s insistance on choice spawed a crooked Scientology charter school in Pinellas county. I’ve brought up concerns that Amendment 8 will open the door for radical madrasas to seek out taxpayer dollars. So blind are self-described ed reformers (they’re really privatization advocates) to their goals their rhetoric has becomes shrill. A few months ago, journaist turned privatizaton flack Ron Matus labled such concerns are Islamaphobic.

      The NEA and AFT are in a freefall. Many of the radicals I reffered to were livid when union bosses endorsed Obama’s reelection a year ago. They knew they only reason was to protect the union industry and in no way represents the interests of teacher, students and public schools. Their days of real influence among the rank and file are over. Contributing to this is the fact that the education policy battle ground has moved to state capitols where the NEA leaves battles to state organizations.

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