ORLANDO, Fla. – Today, Governor Rick Scott signed HB 7069 which provides nearly $419 million to Florida’s K-12 education system, expands teacher bonuses, increases funding for the Gardiner Scholarship for students with unique abilities and ensures Florida’s students can get a great education at the school of their choice. Additionally, during the recent Special Legislative Session called by Governor Scott, the Legislature allocated the highest per student K-12 funding in state history, increasing funding by $100 per student.

Governor Scott said, “Today, I am proud to sign legislation that expands the Gardiner Scholarship program to help support even more students with unique abilities and provides nearly $234 million in bonuses for Florida’s incredible public school teachers. This legislation, combined with the historic $100 per student increase in funding I called for during the special session, will put all of Florida’s students on a pathway toward success.

“When I was growing up, I had access to a good quality education, and every Florida child should have the same opportunity. Florida’s K-12 education system is so important to the future of our children and our state, and we will never stop looking for ways to improve how our students learn and achieve.”

Florida House of Representatives Speaker Richard Corcoran said, “Today is a great day for the students of Florida. Today is also a great day for parents and teachers who care deeply about our kids. Today is not a good day for the status quo or for those who accept failure as part of the system. I thank the Governor for his courage and his commitment to the hopes and dreams of the next generation. I look forward to working with him to make the promise of HB 7069 a reality.”

Former Senate President Andy Gardiner said, “Providing educational opportunities, resources and services to Floridians with unique abilities is so important in helping these individuals lead successful and independent lives. My wife Camille and I are proud to have Governor Scott sign this legislation today expanding the Gardiner Scholarship so that more children with unique abilities can receive a great education in Florida.”

Since taking office, Governor Scott has focused on ensuring that Florida’s children receive a quality education in K-12 public schools. Over the past six years, state funding for Florida’s K-12 public schools has increased by nearly $3 billion or 34 percent from a total amount of $8.7 billion in 2011 to $11.7 billion in this year’s Fighting for Florida’s Future budget.

Governor Scott is also a strong supporter of school choice. Along with expanding virtual education to all Florida students, the legislation signed by Governor Scott today continues the Governor’s commitment to supporting school choice for students across the state. Since taking office, Governor Scott has signed legislation providing flexibility and more than $450 million in funding to Florida’s high performing charter schools, allowing these schools to grow and serve more students.

To view the transmittal letter, click HERE.