Gov. Scott signs bill to help charter schools

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) – The Latest on Florida Gov. Rick Scott signing bill to shift students to charter schools (all times local):

4:05 p.m.

Florida Gov. Rick signed a sweeping education bill that will force school districts to share state and local money with privately-run charter schools.

Scott signed the bill Thursday at a ceremony at a private Catholic school in Orlando.

School superintendents have been pleading for weeks for Scott to veto the bill, which has also been roundly criticized by the union that represents teachers. The legislation narrowly passed the Legislature, but it was a top priority of House Speaker Richard Corcoran.

The legislation also requires recess in elementary schools and tinkers with the state’s oft-criticized standardized testing system. It also includes $30 million extra for a program that provides services to disabled children.

The bill also includes more than $200 million for teacher and principal bonuses.

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9:44 a.m.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott is signing a sweeping education bill that school districts and superintendents had been asking him to veto.

Scott is scheduled to sign the bill Thursday in Orlando.

The legislation (HB 7069) steers more money to privately run charter schools, requires recess in elementary schools and tinkers with the state’s oft-criticized standardized testing system. It also includes $30 million extra for a program that provides services to disabled children.

Superintendents say the legislation will be harmful to traditional public schools as some provisions require districts to share local tax dollars with charter schools.

Scott said in a statement he will sign the bill because it increases school choice options for Florida parents.

The legislation was a top priority for House Speaker Richard Corcoran.

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