WELLINGTON, Fla. – Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis approved $800 million in the state’s budget to increase teacher pay.
The governor made the announcement during a news conference Monday in Wellington.
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“We did $800 million for teacher pay initiatives and this is something that will go a long way, not only to continue to support strong average minimum salaries across the state, but also to support increased salaries for veteran teachers and so you’re going to have more money into this kitty for both of those than we’ve ever had in modern Florida history,” he said.
DeSantis said the pay increases will help educators “make ends meet” and the line item in the Florida budget is “not the exclusive amount that teachers will see.”
“We have a record amount of per-pupil funding in the budget and the highest base student allocation. I think we’ve never had that what we have, and so that gives school districts the ability to do even more and so we’d encourage them to do just that,” DeSantis said.
The bill, titled “Student Assessments,” will take effect July 1 and provides that end-of-year FSA testing is removed in favor of progress-monitoring tests for English-language arts (grades 3-8) and math (grades 3-10) at the beginning, middle and end of a school year. The governor prefaced the bill-signing Thursday by referring to a roundtable he attended in Okaloosa County in September 2021, where he discussed Florida’s transition away from FSA testing.
The governor made a similar announcement at Fleming Elementary School in Orange Park Monday afternoon.