In today's installment of the "Rick Scott letters," parents of kids in school are now the target of a routine letter turned self-promotion for the governor.
In an email today to every parent on its list serv, the Department of Education is asking them to read the letter from Scott about a SB 1108, a bill passed last session to help parents of students who qualify for exceptional student education.
"The letter will be distributed by the governor’s office and the Department in a variety of ways and we have requested school districts provide this letter to parents during IEP meetings,'' the email reads.
The bill was a priority of Sens. Andy Gardiner, R-Orlando, and John Thrasher, R-St. Augustine, who wanted to provide a Bill of Rights of sorts for parents of students with disabilities.
But rather than leave it to school districts to inform parents of the new law, the governor spells it out himself in a letter dated Nov. 5, and injects a little about himself in the process. "As a father and grandfather, I know the positive impact of parents taking part in thier children's education,'' the governor writes. Download Letter to Parents SB 1108
The governor, whose popularity in the polls continues to remain lower than opponent and former Gov. Charlie Crist, has found new ways to turn the routine duties of his job into a self-promotion machine in an effort to win popular appeal. In addition to today's letter to parents, Scott has written congratulatory notes to lottery winners, Florida bar candidates, professional license applicants, recent college graduates and even agency staff. More here.
The governor defends the practice, especially those that contain kudos. "“I want to congratulate everybody that is doing a great job,'' he told reporters Tuesday. "And I’m going to continue to do that.”
Here's the DOE email:
Subject: Governor Scott's Letter to Parents Regarding Senate Bill 1108
Please see the attached letter from Governor Rick Scott to parents regarding Senate Bill 1108 related to Exceptional Student Education services. The letter will be distributed by the governor’s office and the Department in a variety of ways and we have requested school districts provide this letter to parents during IEP meetings. If you or your parents have further questions regarding this letter, please contact us at email@example.com.
Florida Department of Education
Office of Communications and External Affairs