In Tallahassee a bill to arm teachers is racing through the legislature despite push back from unions, teachers and most districts.
A bill to give teachers a raise at the same time is nowhere to be found despite the fact Florida’s teachers are some of the lowest paid in the nation. Now there has been a new bonus scheme introduced that would make about a quarter of teachers eligible for a bonus if they met some arbitrary requirements.
A measure that would cut some of the red tape from a program to arm educators and school faculty in Florida passed a key committee this week. The bill, SB 7030, was reported favorably by state Senate Education committee 5-3 on Tuesday.
The proposal would allow school or contract employees as well as law enforcement officers to be armed under Florida’s new Guardian Program provided they are appointed by the local district superintendent and approved by the school board. Currently, the program is more limited to who can participate.
“My eight grandchildren, and their generation, they deserve to have someone ready to protect them if they are available,” state Sen. Dennis Baxley, R-Ocala, said. “I am asking you to understand that we want to empower those people who can do something, they are the only ones who will be there in a narrow amount of time to save those lives.”
Um they have people they are called police but the Florida legislature apparently doesn’t want to spend the money to put an officer into each of our schools.
Also Baxley apparently doesn’t think teachers who he wants to put their lives on the line a decent salary.
Teachers’ union reps around the state say the bonuses are nice, but teachers should make more in salary. The bonuses are a one-time thing, while a raise would enhance their standard of living long term. It is a fair concern, given that Florida ranks 45th in the nation in teacher salaries.
We get it. DeSantis’ idea is to reward high performers, as the Legislature sought to do when creating Best and Brightest in 2015. But he also wants to make that easier by ditching the asinine wrinkle pertaining to college entrance exams. Moreover, the current criteria rewards individual achievement. But under DeSantis’ initiative, if the school’s score improves just 1 percent, then all “highly effective” teachers in the school could benefit.
Yet, there is no escaping Florida’s national ranking on teacher salaries — something that is being blamed, in part, on the growing teacher shortage — there are more than 2,200 teaching openings statewide. And it is worse in Marion County than the state overall. Consider: The average teacher in Marion County earns $45, 651 a year. Statewide, the average is $48,651. Nationally, it is $60,483.
Florida wants to arm teachers because it doesn’t want to hire more cops and then pay teachers on the cheap. Since Florida if it was a country would be the 17th largest economy in the world, and the governor proposed a 91 billion plus budget, does this seem right to you?
I guess Tallahassee thinks guns not raises will solve the exodus of teachers from our classrooms, though to be honest I don’t think they want to stop, I think they want to exacerbate it. We are looking at ten thousand vacancies in Florida next year. Hmm who would have thought if you demonize and do all you can to hurt the teaching profession, teachers would leave, well Tallahassee, that’s who.