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The annual debate over charter, traditional school capital funding resumes



Once again, Florida lawmakers will try to force school districts to share part of their local tax dollars with charter schools so that those privately managed schools can enjoy the same access to funding for maintenance and construction projects as traditional public schools.

The Legislature tried to enact such a mandate in 2015 and came close to doing it last year, too — until the House rejected a Senate plan to prevent charter-school operators from profiting off the taxpayer funding they receive.

MORE FROM POLITIFACT: “Do traditional schools get more capital funding than charter schools?”

The Senate is taking the lead this time by not only reviving its proposal to ban “personal financial enrichment” of charter school operators as a condition of getting public dollars for capital projects, but by pairing it with another controversial idea.

One year later, the debate resumes.

One Senate Republican leader, with some Democratic support, wants to let school boards raise taxes to generate more capital funding for their local schools’ needs. But that plan has already hit a roadblock — House Republicans and some senators who are wary of being labeled as having supported a “tax increase.”

More here.

Photo credit: Scott Keeler / Tampa Bay Times