Tony Bennett: I’m thinking, praying about applying for Florida ed commissioner

Tony Bennett is on many a Florida ed reformer’s wish list to be education commissioner. And on Tuesday, he said he was considering applying for the job.

“My wife and I are still thinking about it and praying about it,” Bennett told redefinED after appearing on a panel at a national education reform summit in Washington D.C.

Considered a leading light in the national ed reform movement, Bennett lost his re-election bid this month in an upset to Glenda Ritz, an elementary school media specialist and teachers union leader. But some saw Indiana’s loss as Florida’s potential gain, and at least two Florida Board of Education members said they would like to see Bennett apply for the post left vacant by Gerard Robinson’s abrupt departure in August.

Bennett made his brief comment to redefinED after appearing on a panel at the summit organized by Jeb Bush’s Foundation for Excellence in Education. He mentioned he and his wife have been through a lot during his four years as state superintendent, so they want to be totally sure applying for the Florida job is the right decision.

The application deadline is Friday. The Board of Education technically makes the hiring decision, but Gov. Rick Scott is expected to have a huge say.

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