Lake Park, Fla. – Today, Governor Ron DeSantis highlighted reforms to the Best and Brightest Teachers and Principals program and an increased investment to recruit and retain the best, most dedicated educators for Florida schools. This includes more than $284 million for bonuses to qualifying teachers and principals in public schools throughout Florida. The Governor was joined by Senator Gayle Harrell, Representative MaryLynn Magar, Representative Rick Roth and Representative James Bush.

“I’m proud to say that after a tremendous legislative session, we’ve made historic investments in our schools and took important steps to reform the Best and Brightest Teachers and Principals Program,” said Governor DeSantis. “This investment will help reward teachers who are making an impact in student’s lives. The program will also assist us in recruiting and retaining the best teachers for Florida schools to ensure our students are receiving the best education possible.”

“Teachers are often unsung heroes who help mold our most precious resource— our children,” said Lt. Governor Jeanette Nuñez. “Governor DeSantis recognizes the importance of investing in teachers and as such, made changes to the Florida Best and Brightest Teacher and Principles Program. By doing so, qualification standards will now be more focused on how teachers are affecting student outcomes and will not be based in any way on a test they may have taken years ago.”

Photo Credit: Governor’s Press Office

Governor DeSantis recognized Pam Girard, a teacher from Lake Park Elementary School, and Dr. Mary Joe Murray, a teacher from Suncoast Community High School. These teachers exemplify the kind of educators that are making a difference in student’s lives and are committed to working hard to equip students with the knowledge they need to lead full lives.

This reformed program includes more than $284 million for the best teachers and principals in our public schools, which is a $50 million increase for the program. The revised program also includes bonuses of up to $5,000 for dedicated principals at schools across our state who are rapidly improving student outcomes at their school.

As Governor DeSantis promised, the SAT/ACT requirement for qualifying for a bonus has been removed to ensure that teachers are not excluded due to a test they took, in some cases many years ago.



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