School board members would not be allowed to receive a regular salary, instead getting per diem pay that would be capped at $100 per meeting under a proposal in the Senate, reports Lilly Rockwell of the News Service of Florida. – Lawmakers will consider a measure (SB 7234) on Tuesday pushed by Sen. Stephen Wise, R-Jacksonville, that eliminates a formula in state law used to pay school board members based on the size of the school districts. Critics say it is another attack on public schools by the Republican-dominated Legislature, but proponents argue it’s a way of shifting dollars spent on board member salaries to fund classroom necessities. Under the proposal, school board members would be paid $100 per meeting, with a cap of $2,400 per year. Travel expenses would also be reimbursed. – Current law sets a minimum salary between $5,000 and $10,000 for school board members, but all school board members now make far more than that, with the amount differing depending on the county’s population. Last school year, the average salary of a school board member was $30,850, according to a state survey. The lowest pay was $22,300 in Liberty County and the highest was $39,000 in Broward County. – “We will be opposing that proposal because it’s singling out one group of constitutionally elected officers who are part time and not singling out other constitutional officers and we think it’s not fair to do that,” said Florida School Boards Association Executive Director Wayne Blanton.
School boards, whose sole purpose is to help schools educate children better, are being attacked here because the Republicans don’t want to raise revenue from those who use the most resources — the wealth and corporations — and because education is an easy target and public education is something that Republicans seem to hate. They’ll probably succeed on this one and Florida’s education system will get even worse.
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