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Press Release

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

DOE Press Office
(850) 245-0413

Florida Schools Receive $147.1 Million for Outstanding Academic Performance

~ More than 1,900 schools statewide earn school recognition funding ~

TALLAHASSEE – Approximately $147.1 million was recently distributed to 1,959 Florida schools in recognition of their academic achievement and improvement during the 2007-2008 school year. Based on the state’s school grading system, schools that either receive an “A” grade or improve at least one grade from the previous year are eligible to receive the recognition funds. Since the program began in 1999, Florida has awarded more than $1.129 billion in school recognition.

“Florida’s students, teachers and administrators are to be commended for their continued achievements in increasing school performance and student learning,” Governor Charlie Crist said. “Education is the foundation for every student’s future success, and we remain diligent in ensuring the best learning environment possible for Florida’s children.”

“I’m honored to recognize these outstanding schools for their unwavering commitment to the success of our students,” said Education Commissioner Dr. Eric J. Smith. “Through the collaborative efforts of teachers, parents, and school administrators, we can continue to inspire our children to achieve to their highest potential.”

Schools that qualify for the recognition funds are awarded $85 dollars for each student at the school. The funds are then allocated based on a joint decision by the school’s staff and school advisory council. These funds can be for non-recurring faculty bonuses, educational equipment, new technology or hiring temporary personnel to assist in maintaining and improving student performance.

The Florida School Recognition Program continues to have a positive effect on school performance. Of the 1,959 schools that were eligible for recognition funds in 2008, there were 1,202 schools that maintained an “A,” 32 new schools that earned an “A,” 348 schools that improved to an “A,” and 350 schools that improved to a grade other than an “A.”

In addition, 27 schools qualified for the recognition program according to the following provisions:

  • Thirteen K-3 feeder schools (schools that do not earn a school grade and serve any combination of students in kindergarten through third grade) earned recognition funds this year based on the performance of the school that received the majority of their students.
  • Three schools earned recognition funds through a new provision of the law that enables schools that improved more than one letter grade in the previous year and sustained that improvement this year to receive recognition funds (Section 1008.36, Florida Statutes).
  • Eleven alternative schools received a school improvement rating of “improving” and became eligible for recognition funds in 2008.

To view a list of schools receiving recognition funds visit,