Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Florida's Future

I recently received this email from student first that outlined changes in education that is soon to take place:

Dear Florida Member,

Thanks to your diligent efforts, next year Florida students will have a much greater chance at having a great teacher and attending a great school. Last week, following the transformative Student Success Law, Florida passed additional bills which will give parents the information and choices they deserve to ensure their child gets a great education.

Next year, Florida will be putting students first by:
  • Allowing the expansion and fair financing of high performing charter schools, creating more choices for the 37,000 students that were turned away last year.
  • Providing parents with information about the effectiveness of their school through a school rating system and giving parents the right to move their children out of failing schools and into high performing schools, even if that means changing districts.
  • Expanding the number of children with disabilities that will be able to attend private schools that can meet their needs, through the McKay Scholarship.
  • Implementing a fair and robust teacher evaluation system and rewarding the best teachers with salary increases.
  • Saving great teachers by ending seniority-based layoffs so that more students will have a great teacher.
  • Giving principals the tools to only hire effective teachers.
Congratulations Florida! Please take a minute to inspire our members in other states to work to follow Florida's lead.

Please tell us what this ground-breaking education reform means to you and to the students and teachers of Florida.

Thank you for your important role in putting students' interests first in Florida

The StudentsFirst Team

True story
 A parent called one day concerned thinking that their student would have to change to the Mckay school...I quickly explained what the Mckay scholarship was. I think most parents are unaware of this opportunity that their students have through the Mckay Scholarship...even though they receive multiple letters through the year about the Mckay scholarship!

Florida's school choice programs ensure that no child will be left behind by allowing parents to choose the best educational setting—public or private—for their child. The McKay Scholarships for Students with Disabilities Program provided over 20,500 Florida students with special needs the opportunity to attend a participating private school during the 2008-09 school year. The McKay Scholarships Program also offers parents public school choice. A parent of a special needs student who is dissatisfied with the student’s current school may choose to transfer the student to another public school.
"The school-choice issue is not about public versus private; it's about choice. It's about knowing what works well for my family and being able to make that choice for them." -- Parent of a McKay Scholarships Student

Also why are charter schools all of a sudden favored

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