What the bill does
- HB 1(full text)/SB 202 (full text) is a massive transfer of taxpayer funds to unaccountable, private and religious schools and corporations. The bill creates universal vouchers and will take funds currently used for public school students to subsidize private school tuition. The ultimate goal is the complete privatization of Florida’s public schools.
- HB 1
- 13-4, Choice and Innovation Subcommittee, Rep. Dunkley (D-Lauderhill) joined with all the Republicans on the committee to vote for the bill.
- 11-3, PreK-12 Appropriations Committee, Reps. Daniels (D-Jacksonville) and Dunkley (D-Lauderhill) joined with all the Republicans on the committee to vote for the bill.
- 16-4, Education and Employment Committee, Reps. Daniels (D-Jacksonville) and Franklin (D-Tallahassee) joined with all the Republicans to vote for the bill.
- 13-3 House Education Quality Subcommittee Reps. Daniels (D-Jacksonville) and Franklin (D-Tallahassee) joined with all the Republicans to vote for the bill.
- 83-27, Full House
- SB 202
- Having passed both chambers, HB 1 is headed to Gov. DeSantis’ desk for his signature.
- No matter where a parent chooses to send their child to school, they should be confident their child’s teachers are professionally trained, the school is safe, and students are receiving a high-quality education. Florida’s public schools all held to strict requirements to ensure student success. Voucher schools, meanwhile, are not required to have standard or inspections, and there is no guarantee that any real education is actually happening.
- No parent wants their child’s school to meet just bare minimum standards, but parents are unaware that many voucher schools have no standards at all. No standards for who can teach there, no standards for what students are expected to learn, and no standards for safety.
- The teacher and staff shortage in Florida’s public schools means many students lack the small class sizes and one-on-one attention they need and deserve. Focusing resources on the schools 90% of Florida’s students attend should be the focus, not expanding vouchers for private and religious schools.
- If we have more funds to invest, the state should invest in our underfunded public schools. Ensuring equitable access to a high-quality, adequately funded public schools is not just a much higher priority than voucher programs, it is constitutionally obligated.
- There’s no link between vouchers and gains in student achievement. There’s no conclusive evidence that vouchers improve the achievement of students who use them to attend private school. Nor is there any validity to claims that, by creating a “competitive marketplace” for students, vouchers force public schools to improve. Where there is conclusive evidence is that investing more money in public education improves student achievement.