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Press Release

Monday, September 23, 2013

DOE Press Office
850-245-0413

What They Are Saying…
State Legislators Applaud Governor in Paving Path for Student Success

Senate President Don Gaetz said, "Today our Governor affirmed Florida will maintain our state's constitutional primacy in establishing education policy, particularly with regard to control over standards, curriculum, instructional materials and student assessments. Florida has risen steadily and dramatically in national education rankings not because of some policy dictated from Washington but because the people of Florida have made education accountability and academic achievement a moral imperative."

House Speaker Will Weatherford said, "I applaud Governor Scott for taking decisive and bold action to affirm Florida's constitutional role in education. For the past 15 years, Florida has been on a purposeful road to improve our schools through higher standards, greater accountability and higher pay for our best teachers. These efforts are paying off and our students are achieving better results. In the Common Core debate, Governor Scott's actions today strike the perfect balance between states' rights and states' responsibilities. While I support our current standards, I think it is appropriate to undertake a transparent and thorough review with public input. We will not retreat one inch from our ambitious pursuit of the highest quality education system in the nation."

Senator John Legg said, "I commend Governor Scott for taking a solid stance that reaffirms state and local control of education policy while at the same time confirming a commitment to high, rigorous standards. For years, Florida has been a national pioneer in education because we've continued to raise the bar and focus on providing our students and teachers the guidelines and tools necessary to succeed. Now, as we search for ways to maintain high, rigorous standards for our students, public input is critical. I look forward to working with the Governor and my colleagues in the Legislature as we strive for continued excellence in our state's education system."

Senator John Thrasher said, "Governor Scott is laying out a framework that provides high standards for Florida students, while halting further federal intrusion in our schools. We must do what's right for Florida teachers and students, and Governor Scott is taking the right steps forward."

Senator Tom Lee said, "With the start of a new school year and the next legislative session more than five months away, I applaud the Gov. for providing leadership in clarifying education policy in Florida and ensuring that Florida maintains high standards for student achievement."

Senator Bill Montford said, "We need an education system that's fair to our teachers and students, and one that recognizes Florida has particular needs that may not fit with the current federal directives. I applaud the Governor's efforts to put the teachers and students of Florida first, and to bring fair and consistent direction to our public education system."

Senator Jack Latvala said, "Governor Scott is paving the way in making Florida the best place in the world where students can receive a quality education. His decision to keep standards high and not subject our classrooms to cumbersome federal assessments means educators will be able keep their focus on providing our students with a quality education."

Senator Bill Galvano said, "For Florida's future generations to succeed, we have to make sure we're doing the right things for our teachers. I support the direction the Governor is taking. The Governor deserves a lot of credit for making education a top priority and by charting our own path, Florida educators and students will benefit."

Representative Steve Crisafulli said, "Governor Scott's actions today were bold and decisive. Florida must not turn back from our pursuit of high standards and quality schools for our children. I support the Governor's Executive Order issued today, and I look forward to continuing to partner with him on prioritizing education excellence."

Representative Erik Fresen said, "Education is the key to ensuring Florida has the right climate for job growth - and Governor Scott is taking the right steps forward in making sure we support Florida's high standards."

Representative Janet H. Adkins said, "I applaud the executive order from Governor Rick Scott that the state of Florida will not be participating in PARCC. I plan to work with Gov. Scott to ensure that Florida is protected against federal overreach on state and local control of public education. I am committed to continuing to listen to parents, teachers, business owners and taxpayers on how Florida can ensure we have high standards and make sure we protect Florida from any federal encroachment. I believe that higher standards are necessary if Florida is to create a competitive workforce that can compete in a global marketplace of ideas and innovations."

Representative H. Marlene O'Toole said, "I applaud the Governor for staying strong in his commitment to high standards. I welcome the news that Florida is charting its own path by putting our children's needs first over Washington red tape."

Representative Elizabeth W. Porter said, "Florida's had incredible success in preparing our children for the future, and we're not letting up in demanding high standards from classrooms. That's why the Governor should be applauded for setting a path forward to determine what's best for Florida's needs. The Governor also took an important step in informing the U.S. Department of Education that we will not subject Florida's classrooms to PARCC. We need to put our energy into what matters most, rather than placing additional burdens on our schools."

Representative Michael Bileca said, "In making high standards for education a top priority, the Governor is setting Florida's system of education on a path of success. Floridians know what's best for Florida families, and the Governor's rejection of PARCC sends a strong message that we won't let Washington red tape hinder our efforts to improve education outcomes for Florida families."

Representative Manny Diaz said, "Thanks to our high standards, Florida has made incredible gains in education. The Governor is right to put Florida's education needs first - and I look forward to continuing our work on enhancing Florida's education system so our children have the tools they need to succeed."

Representative Dana D. Young said, "I commend Gov. Scott for his commitment to excellence in education and high standards for our students. A quality education is essential for our competitiveness, both in the US and around the world."