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Private Schools

family empowerment scholarship

House passes Family Empowerment Scholarship

After a lengthy, contentious hearing that lasted parts of two days, the House of Representatives on Tuesday sent to the governor a bill creating a new state-funded K-12 scholarship for 18,000 low-income and working-class students. Senate Bill 7070, which survived 24 failed Democratic amendments on Monday, passed 76-39 with the support of all Republicans and six Democrats. It creates the Family Empowerment Scholarship, an attempt to address the unmet demand for the 18-year-old Florida Tax Credit Scholarship, which serves 100,512 students this year and is funded by corporate contributions that receive dollar-for-dollar state tax credits. The rate of contribution growth...
vouchers

Study shows negative effects of Louisiana Scholarship Program in Year 4

Researchers at the University of Arkansas have found that math and reading scores for voucher students in Louisiana remained negative in the fourth and final report on the program. Voucher supporters had remained hopeful that negative results observed over the last several years would disappear. Despite a big first year plummet in test results, voucher students made significant gains in years 2 and 3, but by the third year, the difference between voucher students and their peers in public schools was not statistically significant. Meanwhile, fourth-year results dipped enough to be considered “statistically significant” by researchers, a term that implies the...
Jacksonville School for Autism

revisitED: Jacksonville School for Autism helps students adapt to outside world

Editor’s note: redefinED is supporting National Autism Awareness Month each Saturday in April by reposting articles from our archives that celebrate those who champion the educational rights of children with autism. Today’s post, which originally appeared in March 2018, features a couple whose desire to help their son led them to open an education center for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder. By Livi Stanford Michelle Dunham was troubled as she watched her son, Nick, struggle in school. He had autism and was grouped in a classroom with children with different learning disabilities at a public school. Dunham described her son as a...
family empowerment scholarship

‘Monumental day’: Senate passes Family Empowerment Scholarship

In a party-line vote, the Florida Senate on Thursday passed a bill that would create the state-funded Family Empowerment Scholarship, which would eliminate the waiting list for low-income families seeking the Florida Tax Credit Scholarship (FTC) and expand school choice opportunities for thousands of others. The legislation, SB 7070, would serve 18,000 students in the program’s first year. The number may expand each year by a quarter of one percent of the state’s total public school enrollment. A similar bill pending in the House, HB 7075, would accommodate 28,000 students in the first year. There are about 13,000 students on...
school choice

From held back to no holding back

LAKE CITY, Fla. – Sitting in the principal’s office of her twin sons’ school, Kim Glover pushed aside a couple of strands of wavy, auburn hair and took a breath to compose herself as she recounted the boys’ stunning transformation. “I’ll try not to cry,” she said with her mellifluous Southern drawl. After the family endured a drawn-out, painful divorce, Torey and Trinidy went from failing classroom distractions to model students, from being retained in seventh grade to posting high GPAs. Her boys did the heavy lifting, but Kim says it wouldn’t have been possible without the stable, nurturing environment of Lake...
education

The Hypocrisy of the For-Profit Attack

The term “for-profit” has been weaponized in public education by teachers unions and their tribal allies. They wield it against education improvement initiatives they oppose, especially education choice programs not covered by collective bargaining agreements. (Choice programs not operating under collective bargaining, such as Florida’s Voluntary PreK program, are not targets of for-profit attacks.) For-profit corporations are forbidden to operate charter schools in Florida and California. Yet these schools are constantly being attacked for profiting off students. The overwhelming majority of Florida private schools serving tax credit scholarship and voucher students are non-profit, but newspaper editorial boards regularly criticize them for...
school choice

Teacher-led micro schools, ESAs create opportunity in Native American education

I had the opportunity recently to visit a new, small private school on the San Carlos Apache Reservation in Arizona. The school illustrates an education trend that is providing a new avenue for addressing America’s largest achievement gap. The United States has done very poorly by Native Americans, including but hardly limited to K-12 education. Starting in the late 19th century, a group of “Indian Schools” was established. Authorities forcibly separated families and attempted to forcibly assimilate students, even beating them for speaking their native language. In addition to being barbaric and illiberal, these and other federal efforts have left...

revisitED: ‘A voice of calm’ for students with Autism

Editor’s note: redefinED is supporting National Autism Awareness Month each Saturday in April by reposting articles from our archives that celebrate those who champion the educational rights of children with autism. Today’s post, which originally appeared in June 2018, features a dedicated teacher who refused to give up on a child with profound autism. By Livi Stanford Abigail Maass never spoke. It was hard for her to connect with others. She grew impatient easily. Her struggles mirrored those of children everywhere who grow up with profound autism. This all changed when she met Trina Middleton, a teacher with Duval County Public Schools. Middleton said...