Parents are definitely interested in Florida’s latest educational choice program.
The Personal Learning Scholarship Accounts are for students with significant special needs, including autism, Down syndrome and cerebral palsy. And since applications became available a week ago, more than 1,200 parents have started the process. (As of 6:46 a.m. Friday, the number stood at 1,250.)
Not every applicant will qualify. But the initial burst suggests real demand.
The numbers jibe with the enthusiastic comments we’re hearing from parents. And they seem even more notable given that applications opened just two days after the state teachers union sparked widespread publicity by filing suit against SB850, the bill that created the PLSAs. (Step Up For Students, which is authorized to administer the program, and co-hosts this blog, includes a notice about the lawsuit on its application site.)
Florida’s PLSA is the second of its kind in the nation, passed by the Legislature last spring and signed into law last month by Gov. Rick Scott. The state set aside $18.4 million for the first year of the program, enough for an estimated 1,800 students.
Last week we noted a steady stream of stories about PLSAs that thankfully included the voices of parents. More continue to trickle in. Continue Reading →