Scott wants to double-down on education

Gov. Rick Scott called his pay raises for teachers “a double-down” on what he claims has been a billion-dollar investment on the state’s K-12 education system.

Having taken credit for the turnaround of Florida’s economy, the governor said at press conference yesterday, “We must be focused on creating the business climate where Florida businesses will hire more Floridians, where we can invest in student achievement, and where our families can afford to live.”

He said the that more job opportunities are needed so that “all Florida families to have more job opportunities to pursue their dreams.” He believes that a strong education system that supports student achievement is what will connect Floridians with those jobs.

Today, I am excited to be here to announce that as we continue to move forward and create more jobs, we are doubling down on our investment in education.

Today, I am announcing that I am asking the legislature to join with me in supporting my 2013 budget request to give every Florida full-time public classroom teacher a $2,500 pay raise. (Total cost: $480 million)

I can think of no better investment for our state than investing in those teachers who work on the frontline of Florida’s future every day by teaching our children.

The governor said that he will propose an overall increase in education funding in his budget, that will be announced in few weeks. He asked teachers to support him in getting the raises and budget passed by the state legislature.

“I am asking every educator at every level in our state – and every elected official at every level to stand with me over the next few weeks and months to support this major investment in Florida teachers; they are critical to increasing student achievement.”

Here is his full speech: Teacher-Pay-Raise-Remarks