Governor Ron DeSantis has made a landmark decision by signing House Bill (HB) 1, which brings forth significant changes to educational opportunities for Florida students.
School Choice for Florida Students
This historic legislation eliminates financial eligibility restrictions and the enrollment cap, opening up new avenues for school choice. With over 1.3 million students benefiting from school choice in Florida, this move solidifies the state’s position as a leader in providing educational autonomy. Governor Ron DeSantis stated, “Florida continues to prioritize education freedom and school choice, and today’s signing marks an unprecedented expansion that surpasses any previous initiative in the United States.” He expressed gratitude to the Florida Legislature, Speaker Renner, and President Passidomo for their support in making this legislation a reality.
Based on FLGov’s news, Commissioner of Education Manny Diaz, Jr. hailed the decision as a momentous day in Florida’s history, emphasizing the state’s commitment to a world-class education for all. Senate President Kathleen Passidomo recognized the achievement of making school choice accessible to every Florida family. At the same time, House Speaker Paul Renner highlighted the empowerment of families and students to shape their educational journeys. HB 1 eliminates financial eligibility restrictions, ensuring that every eligible K-12 student can access school choice options. The legislation prioritizes scholarships for students from households with incomes ranging from 185 percent to 400 percent of the federal poverty level. Additionally, HB 1 removes the enrollment cap and exemptions, allowing more students to benefit from school choice from the Florida Empowerment Scholarship for Students with Unique Abilities.
Governor Ron DeSantis and the Florida legislature have taken a meaningful step to expand school choice opportunities with the enactment of HB 1. This landmark legislation introduces an online portal to enhance parental decision-making in school choice and removes the mandatory virtual course requirement for graduation. It also streamlines the teaching profession by waiving general education requirements and extending temporary teaching certificates. The bill’s passage signifies a strong commitment to promoting school choice and its transformative impact on education in Florida. It allows students to access diverse educational options and fosters a future where school choice is accessible to all.