Amy Tardif

Five-year-old Levi Adkisson had never been exposed to Spanish before this school year. But only a few weeks in, he’s following directions and reading in the language. He’s one of the native English-speaking students in Lilia Abuerne’s Spanish classroom in the new dual language program at Tice Elementary school in Lee County.

The program began this fall more than 50 years after the first school in Florida launched a dual language program. Two classes of kindergartners at Tice Elementary are learning in Spanish half the day and the other half in English. Some of the kids are native Spanish-speakers and some are native English-speakers. By the end of 5th grade, the goal is for all of them to be bilingual and biliterate.

Debit Cards for Teachers

Oct 26, 2012

Governor Rick Scott released his education plan today. One of his goals: To give teachers the tools they need to succeed.

Teachers spend a lot of their own money on supplies for their students. Now, the Governor who cut $1.3 billion in education funding during his first year in office is saying he's wants to give every teacher in Florida a debit card.

He's calling it the Teacher Supply Program and he's asking business leaders to invest in it. The program needs to be approved by Florida lawmakers during the legislative session starting in March.

Governor Rick Scott introduced his legislative agenda for education at a summit in Fort Myers today.  It’s based on what he learned from educators and others on a recent statewide listening tour.  Its aim is to implement a smooth transition to national Common Core Standards within two years and to support teachers.   

Scott to Release Education Agenda

Oct 24, 2012

Governor Rick Scott will make some new education proposals this week, including more access to charter schools and debit cards for teachers to buy classroom supplies. He said he'll roll out the details Thursday at an education conference in Fort Myers, but gave a preview to reporters Tuesday.

Scott said he'll push to issue debit cards to public school teachers so they won't be out of pocket for supplies. He said at least some of the funds will come from private donors.

StateImpact Florida: 70 Students in a Classroom

Oct 23, 2012

In order to accommodate so many students at the girls locker room at Hialeah High School in Miami is being used as a physical education classroom.

It’s dark, and it reeks of too much perfume. Schools can pack as many students as they want into classes like PE - there's no cap. But as teacher Julia Holden explains, there is the issue of space.