Broward News and Entertainment Today

Crist vetoes teacher merit pay bill

Florida Governor Charlie Crist

After teachers, students and parents heavily protested around the state, Florida Gov. Charlie Crist vetoes Senate Bill 6, a bill passed by the House and Senate that would have drastically changed a teacher’s pay structure, to merit pay based on test scores.

Teachers unions and many parents cried loud and hard, including local teachers, of which a protest was scheduled tonight in Cooper City and Pembroke Pines. Earlier this week, Miami-Dade held a walkout of teachers and Cooper City High School had 1,000 students leave in protest.

“The incredible outpouring of opposition by teachers, parents, students, superintendents, school boards and legislators has greatly influenced my decision today,” said Crist. “They brought to light many of the concerns that were not addressed in the amendatory process.”

The Broward Teacher’s Union was thrilled to hear the news.

“We applaud Govenor Charlie Crist’s decision to listen to Floridians and veto Senate Bill 6 and House Bill 7189,” said Broward Teacher’s Union president Pat Santeramo, “and congratulate the thousands of Broward teachers and students who have made their voice heard loud and clear in this long and difficult process.”

Crist sent out a statement detailing why he was vetoing the bill.

“I veto SB 6 because the bill is contrary to my firmly held principle to act in the best interest of the people of Florida,” said Crist. “After reviewing the legislation, I identified several issues of concern.”

Crist said the bill does not appropriately accommodate special education students and their dedicated teachers.

“These children can and do learn; however, there must be more consideration given to their individual needs than is afforded in this bill,” explained Crist. “Further this bill does encroach on local decision making.”

Crist also express concerns about teachers being placed in jeopardy of losing their jobs and teaching certificates without a clear understanding of how gains will be measured.

Another reason was because Crist has concerns with the way the bill was passed.

“This legislation sped through committees without the meaningful input of parents, teachers, superintendents and school boards,” said Crist. “It was troubling to learn that the bill would not be amended after it passed in the Senate.”

In a response to Governor Crist’s decision to veto SB6, Broward County Public Schools Superintendent James F. Notter stated, “The Governor has exercised foresight, leadership and wisdom in vetoing SB6.  I applaud his decision.  It’s clear that he pays attention to the voices of the thousands of teachers, administrators, parents, students and citizens across the state.”

The House Majority Leader, Adam Hasner, R-Delray, was very disappointed.

“I’m disappointed that after sending his top policy staffer to the House Committee to testify in support of the proposal,” said Hasner, “Governor Crist would change his mind and now veto the bill.”

Click here for Senate Bill 6 – Gov. Charlie Crist’s veto letter.

Related posts:

  1. Crist vetoes abortion bill
  2. Broward teachers taking to the streets in protest again
  3. Crist Signs Bill for Child Safety laws and Sexual Predators
  4. Crist releases preliminary details on $22.7 billion state education budget
  5. Gov. Crist signs Florida’s Race to the Top application

Short URL:

Posted by Andrea Freygang on Apr 15 2010. Filed under Broward County, Families, Fort Lauderdale, Local news, Schools, Tallahassee, cooper city. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

Subscribe to for free!