DeSantis Touts Bonuses, Boasts About Reopenings

Todays News

Image courtesy Rep. Fiona McFarland via Twitter

Gov. Ron DeSamtis swung through Sarasota to promote $1,000 bonus checks issued to educators across the state in recognition of working in the pandemic. While speaking at Sarasota School of Arts and Sciences, a charter school, he stressed the money would go to those working at traditional public schools and public charter schools.

“Principals and teachers across Florida understood the importance of getting kids back to school in person,” he said. “Virtual education quite frankly just doesn’t cut it.”

Teachers expressed gratitude. They also shared stories making clear they have worked to serve both students who came back to classrooms in the fall and those who remained at home for remote learning. Around 85% of students now have returned to on-campus instruction.

“As teachers we are used to adapting to any situation thrown at us,” said Kathleen Ferry, a 7th Grade team leader at SSAS. This year, that involved teaching students in-person and at home simultaneously. “Teachers and families, we did this and we adapted and we are resilient.”

Kevin Corwin, a math teacher and department head, noted that was done by many teachers himself included, while also dealing with education of their own children at home. He has children attending five schools in Sarasota or Manatee County and worked directly with some 75 educators professionally or personally.

A number of other elected officials and administration leaders joined DeSantis for the event at the Sarasota School. Chief Financial Officer Jimmy Patronis, in town already to meet with other local officials, attended the event. Sens. Joe Gruters and Jim Boyd also stood by the governor along with Reps. Tommy Gregory and Fiona McFarland. Superintendent Brennan Asplen also joined the governor for the event.

Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran also talked up the state’s decision to require districts this year to offer in-person learning five days a week. “We had a leader who said, despite all the onslaught, we will open our schools,” Corcoran said.

 

Image courtesy Rep. Fiona McFarland via Twitter

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