fbpx

Education legislation

family empowerment scholarship

Florida Legislature: Week 5 wrap-up

The fifth week of the legislative session may have been most notable for what didn’t happen, as a House floor hearing on a bill that would eliminate a waiting list for the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship was postponed. The bill, HB 7075, would create a state-funded program to eliminate a waiting list for those who applied for the tax credit scholarship for lower-income families. (That program is administered by non-profits such as Step Up For Students, which hosts this blog.) The measure would accommodate about 28,000 students in 2019-20, including some 13,000 students currently on a waiting list...
Vance Aloupis

podcastED: Rep. Vance Aloupis on early childhood education, school choice

Rep. Vance Aloupis, R-Miami, narrowly beat his Democratic opponent in 2018 to represent Florida’s 115th District, a seat held by former Education Committee Chair Michael Bileca. One of many freshman members serving this year on House education committees, Aloupis wants to become a legislative leader in early childhood development. The Children’s Movement of Florida’s chief executive officer is carrying HB 1027 this session, which requires the state’s Office of Early Learning to develop training and course standards for school readiness program providers. “We have done a disservice to our public education system, and more importantly our children, by not professionalizing early...

Accountability’s rocky legal road, Part 1

Editor’s note: March 2 marked the 20th anniversary of the legislative session in which Florida Gov. Jeb Bush launched a number of K-12 reforms that transformed education throughout the state. With the start of the 2019 legislative session earlier this month, redefinED embarked upon a series of articles that examine aspects of Bush’s K-12 education revolution and how it continues to reverberate. Today’s piece is the first of two retrospectives that chronicle the plan’s legislative roller coaster ride. Part II is available here.     OPPORTUNITY AWAITS In January 1999, Gov. Jeb Bush’s recently announced “A+ Plan” was generating bipartisan praise. Democrats, school...
family empowerment scholarship

Florida Legislature: Week 4 wrap-up

The House Committee on Appropriations moved forward with a bill that would end the waiting list for families seeking the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship. Here’s a brief recap of that bill and the week’s other education choice news from Tallahassee. Despite objections from Democratic lawmakers who deemed it unconstitutional, HB 7075 passed in a party-line vote, 16-9. The legislation would create a state-funded program to eliminate a waiting list for families who applied for the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship for lower-income families. (The program is administered by non-profits such as Step Up For Students, which hosts this blog.) The “Family Empowerment...
school choice

House bill to create Family Empowerment Scholarship moves ahead

TALLAHASSEE – A bill that would eliminate a waiting list for the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship for low-income students – but also slash the value of the vouchers – passed in a party-line vote Wednesday by the House Committee on Appropriations. The bill, HB 7075, would create the Family Empowerment Scholarship, which would accommodate about 28,000 students in 2019-20. That includes some 13,000 students currently on a waiting list for the tax credit scholarship. Unlike the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship, which is funded with private donations from corporations that receive tax credits, the new program would be funded with tax dollars...
family empowerment scholarship

Florida legislature: Week 3 wrap-up

Both chambers of the Legislature considered several bills related to education choice during the third week of the session. Here’s a brief recap of the week’s news from Tallahassee. The Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Education voted to advance a bill that would eliminate the waiting list for the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship for lower-income families. The bill, SB7070, creates the Family Empowerment Scholarship program, which would allow about 15,000 low-income students to attend the private school of their choice in 2019-20. Nearly 13,000 students are on the waiting list for Florida Tax Credit scholarships. Senate education leaders released a plan to increase education spending...

House, Senate far apart on school funding

Jim Saunders / News Service of Florida TALLAHASSEE --- Florida House and Senate leaders will go into budget negotiations hundreds of millions of dollars apart on spending for the state’s public schools. House Republicans on Wednesday released an initial proposal that calls for a $579.3 million increase next year in the key part of the budget for public schools, a 2.75 percent bump per student. That came a day after Senate leaders proposed a $1.1 billion increase, or 4.71 percent per student. Funding for what is known as the Florida Education Finance Program, or FEFP, is always one of the most closely...
family empowerment scholarship

Senate bill to end FTC wait list moves forward

TALLAHASSEE -- In a 5-3 party-line vote, the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Education voted Tuesday to advance a bill that would eliminate the waiting list for the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship for lower-income families. The bill, SB7070, creates the Family Empowerment Scholarship program, which would  allow about 15,000 low-income students to attend the private school of their choice in 2019-20. Nearly 13,000 students are on the waiting list for Florida Tax Credit scholarships. The legislation, which previously passed the Senate Education Committee on an identical party-line vote, includes other provisions related to a teacher bonus program and funding for social services...