PTA Take Action Alert: 2015-2016 K-12 Funding

Miami-Dade County Council of PTAs/PTSAs

Advocacy and Legislation

The Time is NOW to Renew our Call for Increased K-12 Funding for 2015-2016
MAY 17, 2015

Dear PTA/PTSA Member,

It’s definite: the Florida Legislature will meet in Special Session from June 1-June 20, and the K-12 budget will be on the line as the House and Senate try to reconcile their differences over health care funding and–simultaneously–provide tax cuts that they will be able to point to during 2016 election campaigning.

Both chambers will be under pressure to pass a new state budget by July 1, or face a state government shutdown. The regular 60-day Session ended on May 1 without a budget deal after the House adjourned abruptly three days early.

Governor Rick Scott’s proposed budget called for an increase in K-12 funding to $7176 per student, or $50 above Florida’s previous high. It is important to note that even at the $7176 level, Florida will still remain well below the country’s average. According to a recent release from the U.S. Census Bureau, the average spending per student across the country totaled $10,608, with New York standing as the most generous at $19,552 per pupil.
Our students deserve more, and now is the time for our elected officials to hear from us!
TAKE ACTION EVENTS

E-MAIL CAMPAIGN:

On Monday, June 1, when our state legislature reconvenes, we ask that you send an electronic message to Senate President Gardiner and House Speaker Crisafulli. They need to hear from parents, educators, students, and community supporters regarding student funding. A sample e-mail is provided here:
Dear ___________________ (President Gardiner/Speaker Crisafulli),

As a concerned Florida ______________ (parent/educator/student/ citizen), I am counting on you to uphold the Florida Constitution to provide a uniform, efficient, safe, secure and high quality system of free public schools and appropriately fund public education in the interests of Florida’s children and the economic viability of Florida’s future workforce. Please pass Governor Scott’s budget recommendation for an increase in per student funding to $7176 for the 2015-2016 fiscal year.

Sincerely,

(Your name) 

Contact information: Please send your message to Senate President Andy Gardiner (gardiner.andy.web@flsenate. gov) and to House Speaker Steve Crisafulli (steve.crisafulli@ myfloridahouse.gov).

TWITTER CAMPAIGN:
On Wednesday, June 3, please tweet President Gardiner and Speaker Crisafulli to urge their support for the $7176 per student funding level. We would appreciate it if you include the hashtags #PTADayofAction and #EdFunding in your message. A sample tweet is provided here:

@SteveCrisafulli @FLSenate Support @FLGovScott education budget proposal. Fund K-12 at $7167 pp level. #PTADayofAction #EdFunding

Contact information: Please tweet to @FLSenate and @SteveCrisafulli
For a complete list of bills to be considered during the Special Session, please click here.
We know that you are your student’s best advocate. Please let us know if there is any issue that you would like us to highlight further.
Sincerely,
Nancy Lawther, Legislation Chair
Mindy Gould, Advocacy Chair
Miami-Dade County Council of PTAs/PTSAs