Kathleen Passidomo

Florida Senate President Kathleen Passidomo Targets ‘Red Tape’ in Education

Kathleen Passidomo
Senate President Kathleen Passidomo, R-Naples, led efforts to pass a bill to address affordable housing. Colin Hackley/File

Florida Senate President Kathleen Passidomo, R-Naples, is trying to facilitate feedback that could lead to lawmakers “cutting red tape for public schools” amid an effort to take education regulations off the books.

The deregulation initiative stems from a law (HB 1) approved by the Legislature and Gov. Ron DeSantis earlier this year.

The law included a major expansion of the state’s school-voucher programs.

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In a memo to senators Thursday, Passidomo highlighted steps that would lead to deregulation and said the measure “took the first step towards reducing onerous and excessive regulations” on public schools.

As part of the law’s requirements, the state Board of Education will review the Florida Early Learning-20 Education Code for potential repeals.

That review is designed to lead to recommendations that would go to lawmakers for consideration during the 2024 legislative session, which is slated to start in January.

“HB 1 requires the Board to consider input from teachers, superintendents, administrators, school boards, public and private postsecondary institutions, home educators, and other entities, and that process is ongoing,” Passidomo wrote in Thursday’s memo.

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The Senate president also asked senators to share with constituents an online survey launched by the education department that seeks to compile ideas related to regulations that could be put on the chopping block.

Passidomo also pointed to several “immediate” revisions to the state’s education code that were included in the 2023 law.

“The bill repeals the requirement that a student take one online course in order to graduate from high school, which is not currently required in private schools. The bill also offers districts flexibility in facility costs for new construction, and offers student transportation flexibility to improve efficiency, while maintaining student safety,” Passidomo wrote.

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