Putting Education Reform To The Test

Debit Cards Could Help Florida Teachers Purchase School Supplies


Florida teachers may soon have debit cards to cover their classroom supplies.

The governor who cut $1.3-billion in education funding during his first year in office – then put a billion back during the second year – now wants to give every teacher in Florida a debit card.

That’s one element of Governor Rick Scott’s new education plan.

The debit cards would enable teachers to stop spending so much of their own money on supplies for students. Scott is calling it the Teacher Supply Program.

He said it would be “supported by state, district and hopefully private sector jobs to purchase supplies for their classroom without spending personal money like they do today.”

A survey conducted by the National School Supply and Equipment Association found that teachers cover 77 percent of their classroom supplies.

The trade group’s survey found that teachers – with support from parents and the PTA – spent $3.5 billion on classroom supplies and instructional materials in the 2009-2010 school year.

That breaks down to more than $350 per teacher on average.

Gov. Scott’s debit card proposal needs to be approved by Florida lawmakers during the legislative session starting in March.

Scott hopes business leaders are willing to invest in it.

Teachers, how much do you spend on classroom supplies? What do you buy?

Parents, are schools asking you to contribute supplies?


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