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Ron DeSantis Will Sign Education Bill to Help Struggling Schools Convert to Charter Schools

Earlier today, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced that he would sign HB 1285 into law. After the bill becomes a law, public schools in the state that receive consecutive low-performance evaluations will be streamlined through the process of finding a new direction and potentially converting to a charter school.

“Governor DeSantis has made it clear: we are committed to ensuring our students receive a high-quality education, and we will not tolerate those trying to score cheap political points at the expense of our educational system,” said Commissioner of Education Manny Diaz, Jr. “Because of Governor DeSantis’ leadership, Florida remains the beacon of educational opportunity, and I am proud of the work we are doing across the state.”

According to an official statement from DeSantis’ office, the bill requires that a charter school must give preference to kids in the previous school zone and must serve the same grade levels as the previous school. The charter school cannot be charged rent for the facility and the school district cannot charge an administrative fee.

Other details about HB 1285:

  • Ensures that book challenges are limited for individuals who do not have children with access to the school district’s material.
    • Unlimited objections remain for parents with children in the school district, which includes homeschooled students accessing district materials.
    • Individuals without children in the district will be limited to one objection per month.
    • Protects schools from activists trying to politicize and disrupt a district’s book review process.
    • Continues to support military families with the Purple Star Schools of Distinction Program.
    • Institutes Purple Star School Districts, which recognizes districts with Purple Star Schools making up 75% of schools in their district.
    • Helps to ensure a seamless transition for military families moving into Florida by requiring schools to provide them with support and resources.
See also  14 More Florida State House Candidates Endorsed by Americans for Prosperity Action

“Florida is number one in the nation for education, but there’s always more to be done,” said Governor Ron DeSantis. “We won’t stop working for Florida’s students and parents. HB 1285 codifies several great enhancements for education that will keep Florida number.”

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