Three-Day Florida Education Accountability Summit Kicks Off Monday

Aug 22, 2013


Tallahassee, Fla.– As the school year is beginning for Florida’s students across the state, Governor Rick Scott has asked a panel of Florida education leaders to discuss the sustainability and transparency of the state’s accountability system to ensure each student has the opportunity to succeed.

Governor Scott asked Commissioner of Education Pam Stewart to convene the summit to provide the opportunity to openly discuss ideas and options to continue improving Florida’s public school system.

“Florida’s education accountability system has become a national model, but we are at a critical point in our history,” said Governor Scott. “Our students need and deserve a quality education that emphasizes critical thinking and analysis. Our teachers and schools need our support as we continue to compete nationally and globally in preparing students for success in college, career and in life.”

Governor Scott asked Stewart to lead the summit with a focus on four strategic priorities:

1.  State Standards. Continuing to raise the bar on education standards, by including an emphasis on critical and analytical thinking, to drive continued improvement by Florida students;

2.  State Standard Assessments. Ensuring the assessment that replaces the FCAT will accurately measure the more challenging standards that will be taught to our students, provides meaningful performance information to our students, is cost effective, results are timely provided and we do not unnecessarily become intertwined with the federal government.

3.  School Grades. Improving our education accountability system to further ensure transparency and fairness while providing meaningful and useful information to our parents and educators about how our students and schools are performing; and

4.  Teacher Evaluations. Understanding how our teachers are evaluated, ensuring transparency throughout the process and using a fair system to identify, recognize and reward our highly performing teachers.

Senate President Don Gaetz and House Speaker Will Weatherford are key partners in the summit and have designated leaders from the Legislature to participate.

“Governor Scott’s Education Accountability Summit will provide the leaders of our Senate Committees on Education and Education Appropriations the opportunity to collect various perspectives and ideas which will be used in committee meeting discussions scheduled to begin next month,” said President Gaetz. “The Senate looks forward to working with the Governor to build on the gains Florida’s public education system has made over more than a decade and we appreciate the opportunity to have a seat at the table for this significant event.”

“Florida has made significant progress in improving education over the last 15 years, and it’s important to have a vision so we can continue to ensure our children are succeeding and have the skills they need to compete in today’s global economy,” said Speaker Weatherford.  “I commend Governor Scott for convening this education summit and taking a strong leadership role on the future of educational standards, assessment, school grades and teacher accountability in Florida.”

“Everyone attending this summit shares the same goal:  Ensuring that every student in Florida is given the opportunity to gain the knowledge and skills necessary to be successful in the career of his or her choice,” said State Board of Education Chairman Gary Chartrand. “This is a great opportunity for educators, business leaders, and policy makers to share strategies that will benefit not only our students but our state as a whole.”

To view the meeting via live webcast, visit Florida Department of Education.

To submit ideas or feedback, please share via email at


WHAT:  Education Accountability Summit
Monday, August 26, 1 p.m. through Wednesday, August 28, 4 p.m.
(A more detailed schedule will be posted at
Collaborative Labs at St. Petersburg College
13805 58th Street North
Clearwater, FL


Attendees include:

Invited by Governor Scott and Commissioner Stewart with the assistance of education partners:

Gary Chartrand

State Board of Education

Marshall Criser

Business Community Leader

Mark Wilson

Business Community Leader

Superintendent Alberto Carvalho

Miami-Dade County

Superintendent Joe Joyner

St. Johns County

Superintendent Bill Husfelt

Bay County

Patricia Levesque

Foundation for Florida’s Future

Andy Ford

Florida Education Association

Jeff Wright

Florida Education Association

Joanne McCall

Florida Education Association

Patty Hightower

School Board Chair, Escambia County

Wayne Blanton

Florida School Boards Association

Eileen Segal

Florida PTA

Linda Kearschner


Juhan Mixon

Florida Association of School Administrators

Laura Zorc

Parent, Florida Parents Against Common Core

Anthony Lockhart

School Principal, Atlantic Community High, Palm Beach County

John Kirtley

Florida Charter School Alliance

Doug Tuthill

Step Up For Students

Keith Calloway

Professional Educators Network, Broward County

Steve Chambers

Professional Educators Network, Okaloosa County

Dorina Sackman

2014 Teacher of the Year, Orange County

Alex Lopes

2013 Teacher of the Year, Miami-Dade County

Apryl Shackelford

Teacher of the Year, Duval County

Jennifer Grove

Business Community Leader, Workforce Florida Inc. Vice Chair

Randy Osborne

Community Leader

Joe Gruters

CPA, Sarasota County

Mark Wilson

Florida Chamber of Commerce

Maureen Wilt

Florida Power & Light





Invited by President Gaetz:

Senator John Thrasher

Senator John Legg

Senator Bill Galvano

Senator Bill Montford


Invited by Speaker Weatherford:

Representative Marlene O’Toole

Representative Erik Fresen

Representative Janet Adkins

Representative Reggie Fullwood