Monday, October 23, 2006

Legislative Alert for Florida School Counselors

Legislative Alert for Florida School Counselors



The CANDIDATES For GOVENOR ARE: Charlie Crist of the Republican Party and Jim Davis of the Democratic Party.

T.V Debates for Governor’s Race
Public T.V. - October 24

NBC Affiliates - October 30 Check you local listing for the station on your T.V. and times
FSCA does not formally endorse any particular candidate or political party. The legislative issues and platforms are shared with the candidates and their particular positions are compared with the concerns of school counselors. Of particular concern to school counselors this year are:

*Use of the FCAT
*Mandated multiple year grade retention
*Students dropping out of school early and high school graduation rates
*Inclusion of counselors in the receipt of the same benefits as classroom teachers.

As your FSCA legislative representative, it is my responsibility to try and stay up on the issues of concern to counselors. Information about each candidate can be found on their individual web sites.

Jim Davis states he wants to change the use of FCAT and has expressed great concern about High School graduation tied to FCAT alone. Davis states that the FCAT should be used as a diagnostic tool and a check up on students and schools. Too much emphasis is being placed on FCAT scores alone. He has also said, as governor,he wants a committee of school counselors and teachers to convene with him on the issue of third grade mandated retention. Davis was an early supporter of the class size amendment and wants to fully fund class reductions. Other Democratic candidates throughout the State are following this as their positions as well.

Charlie Crist states he wants to maintain the use of FCAT and continue the high standards achieved under Florida ’s FCAT use. Crist supports grade level retention as a solution to social promotion and states ” children must learn to read before they can read to learn.” Therefore third grade retention must be implemented if a child does not pass the FCAT which is the instrument of choice for accountability. Initially Crist opposed the class size amendment as being too costly. His position now is that the voters have spoken and fully supports the implementation of the amendment. Most other Republican candidates throughout the state are following this as their positions as well.

Thank you for your continued child advocacy.

Barbara Barry, FSCA Legislative Committee Chair
Barb Barry
407 970-2262
407 677-1771

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