The Florida Department of Education did well on threats of withholding funding from local school districts that rejected a ban on Gov. Ron Descentis’ mask order.
A few days after the state judge ruled that the governor should be banned Unconstitutional, Florida’s commissioner of education announced Monday that the state is withholding funding from Alachua and Broward counties “for persistent violations of their law.”
“We will fight to protect parents’ right to make health care decisions for their children. They know what’s best for their kids, ”Richard Cocoran said in a statement Monday.
He said the “monthly school board member’s salary amount” would be withheld in Alachua and Broward counties until the school district complied.
“Politicians who raise their right hand and swear to uphold the Constitution, but do not do so, are unacceptable. Simply put, elected officials cannot and do not choose what laws they want to follow,” Corcoran said.
Alachua County Public School Superintendent Carly Simon said in a statement Tuesday that she was “deeply disturbed by the state’s action.”
“Our school board members made a bold decision to protect the health and lives of students, staff and people in this community, and the court has already ruled that they have a legal right to do so. They deserve punishment, not punishment.” Said.
Simon added that “the school district has already begun to take legal action to ensure that Florida districts have the right to act in the best interests of those who serve them.”
Vicky Cartwright, interim superintendent of Broward County Public Schools, who did not immediately respond to a request for comment Tuesday, said the school district is also complying with the law.
“The health and safety of our students, teachers and staff is our top priority. As BCPS masks continue to be mandatory, knowing the statistics will help reduce the prevalence of Covid-19 in our schools,” Cartwright said in a statement. “As mentioned earlier, the school board will review this decision after Labor Day because circumstances may change and changes may be appropriate.”
Jared Oakes, communications director of the state Department of Education, told NBC News in an email on Tuesday that the school’s funding has been frozen since Thursday.
“Our department decides to abide by the rule of law, until the court issues its decision, and after that decision, we plan to immediately appeal this decision to the first DCA, from which we will try to defer this decision,” he said.
Florida became the epicenter of the latest wave of epidemics in the United States Record new cases and hospitalizations since the start of the school year earlier this month. In July, Descentis, Republican, Restricted local school districts The country is required to wear masks to students even as the state faces a resurgence of coronavirus.
A Florida judge on Friday overturned Desantis’ order, saying the widespread action by Tallahassee “does not pass the constitutional muster.” According to Leon County Circuit Judge John C. Cooper’s decision, school districts have the right to set policies as long as they have a “compulsory state interest” and a “narrowly crafted” action plan.