Saturday, April 13

Florida’s governor wants to give public school teachers, principals $1,000 bonuses

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis wants to reward tens of thousands of teachers and principals who have made countless sacrifices during the COVID-19 pandemic.Speaking at Palm Harbor University High School on Wednesday, DeSantis said he’s asking the Florida Legislature to approve $216 million in funding to give $1,000 bonuses to public school principals and classroom teachers in pre-kindergarten through 12th grade.”Our Florida teachers and school principals have put student success first throughout the course of the coronavirus pandemic,” DeSantis said.WATCH NEWS CONFERENCE:If the plan is approved, the governor said nearly 180,000 full-time teachers and more than 3,600 principals would receive bonuses.The money would come from the state’s Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSER), which is part of the federal CARES Act.DeSantis is asking the Florida Legislature to approve the funding during its current legislative session so the bonuses can be distributed “as soon as possible.”Educators throughout the Sunshine State have been forced to deal with the struggles of simultaneous teaching — instructing students both in-class and remotely at the same time — during the COVID-19 pandemic.”As teachers, we need to continue the race that we signed up for. We signed up to do this,” said Sarah Painter, the Pinellas County Teacher of the Year, during Wednesday’s news conference. “We cannot control the weather, we can’t control our circumstances, but we can continue to push through, find joy.”Earlier this week, the Palm Beach County Classrooms Teachers Association released a survey which found that 93.1% of teachers polled said simultaneous teaching should be eliminated for the 2021/22 school year and replaced by “pure virtual-only classes and pure physical-only classes.”

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