Letter: Put a face on three Florida education abusers

Letter: Put a face on three Florida education abusers

Dennis McDonald
Palm Coast, FL

Dear Editor:

Last week my wife, Janet O. McDonald, Flagler School Board District 2, and I spent a few days in Tallahassee working to save SB1018/HB899 so that our 67 local school boards could REALLY have local control over curriculum.

We had been up at the start of the session and had garnered a record number of supporters, just check the impressive listing. Three short weeks later this bill was not allowed to be heard, why?

What happened in just a few weeks was that Senator John Legg, House Rep. Janet Adkins and House Rep. Marlene O’Toole killed the bill because the Publishers that provide Florida Standards Assessment [FSA] aka. Common Core/Federal Education applied pressure, that simple.

This position is shared by the members of the Florida Citizens Coalition that worked alongside us to get this “fix it bill” passed.

The Legislators all came home from the 2014/2015 session touting that “they had passed a law that returned local control”. Indeed this was a lie.

So the good Senator Hayes set off to fix the miss wording in the 2015/2016 legislative session with SB1018/HB899 and all was well till the Lobbyists ROBBED our Florida students because this bill would have indemnified the school boards and have made publishers legally responsible for what they were selling in our state.

Florida has been at the bottom in high school graduation rates forever even though the Florida’s Education Governor got us up to 46th place. Having participated in this process for a while now I believe I see the problem that separates the top states from the bottom states … local control and local financing.

In other words do not send education $$ to Tallahassee as this allows STATE Control and the Lobbyists can then drive the whole of Florida Education by “contributing to reelection campaigns” of these key self-centered members.

One item that I would like to extend for the 2016 Elections is for the Voters to TERMINATE Legg, [Lutz, Florida] Adkins, [Fernandina Beach, Florida] and O’Toole, [The Villages, Florida] in their respective districts. Their so called “representation” at any level in our great state of Florida is not beneficial to anyone but themselves and their special interests. Legg is up for reelection, Adkins is running for School Superintendent Nassau Co. and O’Toole is considering replacing Senator Hayes.

If you and the citizens of Florida need to put a face on what is wrong with OUR Tallahassee Legislature, these three Florida education abusers are the lead dogs.

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