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PRESS RELEASE

September 27, 2002

Source:        Harry Albertson, Florida Association of Community Colleges Executive Director, (850) 222-3222

Robert Judson, Chair of the Florida Community College Council of Presidents, (727) 847-2727 ext. 3400

Council of Presidents Oppose Two Constitutional Amendments

On September 27, Florida's Community College System's Council of Presidents (COP) formally opposed two proposed Florida Constitutional amendments, Amendments 11 and 9, that voters will consider in November. Amendment 11 aims to dissolve the K-20 governance structure currently in place and restore a separate governing board for the state's 11 universities. Amendment 9 calls for a reduction in class size for all public school classrooms in Florida.

In opposing Amendment 11, the council voiced its support of the K-20 governance structure, which is student-centered and gives greater authority to local governing boards. The council believes that the new governance structure proposed by Amendment 11 would ignore the state's community college system, which serves four times as many students as the state university system.

"We believe that the K-20 governance structure promotes greater cooperation between the state's educational systems and allows us to better serve students across Florida," said Dr. Robert Judson, COP Chair.

Although the Council supports measures that promote student learning, they believed a Constitutional amendment was an inappropriate vehicle for addressing smaller class size. The council's statement on Amendment 9 recommends that the Governor, the Legislature and the Florida Board of Education provide a broader discussion of initiatives and resources that lead to higher student achievement in the state's K-20 system.

"We support quality education and appreciate the concern of those who have brought forward Amendment 9," said Dr. Judson. "However, we believe that a Constitutional amendment is not the forum to find appropriate solutions to reducing class size and improving education in Florida."

Enclosed are the COP Resolution on Amendment 11 and the COP Position Statement on Amendment 9.

COP Resolution on Amendment 11

COP Position Statement on Amendment 9