Gov. Scott to add $1.2 billion in education funding to budget

rick scott w flagIn a pre-legislative gathering of the media at the state Capitol, Gov. Rick Scott delivered an address on  the state of Florida’s economy, cutting taxes and eliminating regulations on businesses, and one of his top priorities – funding for education.

Scott announced he will present his budget on Thursday, saying it will include an increase of $1.2 billion in funding for K-12 education and noting that an investment in education is an investment in Florida families.

The increase will bring the total funding for Florida schools to $10.7 billion, the highest level of in state history, the governor said. That amounts to about $6,800 per student, an increase of around 6.5 percent, or more than $400 per student.

The total education budget would include $480 million to fund a $2,500 pay raise for each teacher, which Scott announced earlier this month.

“We made the hard choices to recover and get back on track – now we must make the smart choices to invest in Florida’s future,” Scott said. “We are in a position to invest, and I can think of no better place to make such a major investment than in our Florida teachers and the future workforce they educate every day.”

Scott said he still supports accountability and rewarding high-performing teachers, noting that Florida ranks sixth in the country for educational quality.

“I have great partners in Speaker [Will] Weatherford and President [Don] Gaetz, who share the goal of moving our state forward and keeping our economy growing,” Scott said. “Together, I know we can put Florida families first and put our state on track to increased economic growth and job creation.”

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Cheryl Carpenter Klimek

Cheryl Carpenter Klimek has been a political consultant handling public affairs and PAC management for nearly 20 years. Cheryl can be reached by email at Cheryl@bizpacreview.com & on Twitter @CherylBPR
About Cheryl Carpenter Klimek

Cheryl Carpenter Klimek has been a political consultant handling public affairs and PAC management for nearly 20 years. Cheryl can be reached by email at Cheryl@bizpacreview.com & on Twitter @CherylBPR

  • Ralph

    That is 480 million that went to communist advancement in our schools. teachers that you attrack are nothing but money mongers.. they are there for the money and do nothing to advance education and will go on stick in a heart beat. Take the money away and the ones that stay are teachers and you may be able to even put GOD back in the school and also stop running down our country and supporting communist nature. Money does not fix socialism we all know but what we have to learn is that money does not correct useless

  • Julie

    Ralph – Do you have children in school? I have four, and the teachers we've had have all been wonderful, caring people. They get such a bad rap. True, don't have the best education system and unless the money is spent wisely, it will be a moot point. Something that they could do for starters that is free, however, is to get rid of the FCAT!

  • Quan

    This has nothing to do with education. It is time for Gov. Scott to rebrand. Unfortunately for him, voters have already filled out his pink slip the month after he was elected. He spends more time now overseas than at home attending to his future plans when he moves out from the People's Mansion.

  • http://Bizpac Ted

    "Bout time, Rick. I think it is too late for many good teachers. They left. How is it that some people think that teachers should exist on pure dedication? Florida State teachers have not had a pay raise in four years. They not only have to be experts in their subjects, they have to be psychologists to the personal problems of the 120 students they have to teach daily. I think a great suggestion is the ridding the system of the FCAT. It is teaching to the test. Worthless. Students learn the test. Then, some of us criticize teachers for not teaching not only their subjects, but morals and personal values. These last two items are being dumped on teachers by the parents. It is another case of parents wanting a lot for a little. When I was a little duffer, If I had problems with a teacher, I was mostly toast. How have times changed.

  • Daniel J.

    Okay this is what is called cornering my friends. and here is how it works.

    Governor puts out the word to legislature the year before. We need to cut we have no money. Legislature understands that is true and cuts. Governor signs the budget and vetoes items. States they should have funded education instead. Cornered the legislature. Now comes out with $1.2 billion this year. of which only a fraction goes to students and teacher raises are not tied to merit which he insisted on last year. Once again, cornering the legislature. Last year cut colleges by $300million this year he is putting it right back in plus $90million. Plus, in my opinion, he has promised the president of UF that if he returned to the position he would specifically give UP and additional $15million.

    This is not a budget. This is a spending proposal. How much can we give to the special interest to change their opinion. It is, buy votes with your money. That is the cold hard truth.

  • Jason

    Wow what a miss characterization of numbers from Scott.

    Of the $1.2 billion $300 million is money that must be put into the pension system. How is that money for education? The fact is, very little is going to the students in the classroom.

  • Jason

    Of the $1.2 billion for "education" $296.9 million goes toward teachers’ retirement, $118.2 million simply covers expected growth, $480 million goes to teachers. That is $895.1 million going to other areas rather than the students. You know of the remaining $304.1 million there will be raises for aides, counselors, janitors, bus drivers, cooks, office personnel and of course administrators.

    So how much is REALLY going to education?