DeSantis Announces Funding Plans For STEM And Student Resiliency

Governor DeSantis announced Florida school funding proposals from relief funds set to bolster STEM initiatives and student resiliency.

By Erika Hanson | Published

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florida school funding

Florida Governor Ron DeSantis continues his missions to improve the Sunshine State’s education sector.  He recently signed sweeping legislation staving off critical race theory teachings in classrooms, along with legislation in regards to how teachers discuss gender identity with students. Now, DeSantis takes aim at this coming fall’s state education budget, as the Governor announced a hefty sum proposal for Florida school funding.

The Governor attended a news conference at the City of Hialeah Educational Academy on Wednesday morning. During his speech, DeSantis announced another $289 million for Florida school funding. He said the state would maintain its dedication to “high standards and academic performance”. However, the governor advised that the state would spend the funds in a manner to provide “meaningful feedback” for teachers and parents while helping students more. 

Within the proposed Florida school funding budget, the governor set aside $105 million for after-school programs and summer learning camps to help struggling students catch up to standards. $47 million was attached to primary materials that better align with the state’s new standards for english, math, civics, and Holocaust education. $50 million would support reading intervention and professional development for reading coaches. An impressive $44 million would bolster STEM-related programs, while $22.5 million would be set aside for resources to help parents become more enriched in students’ education. Lastly, DeSantis looks to spend $5 million to establish a new regional mental health resiliency team to serve students. 

florida school funding

The hefty amount of Florida school funding heading for STEM support in education is a big step in the innovative state that has been bolstering STEM efforts for over a decade. The Sunshine State may not be the top leader in STEM initiatives, but they have shown steady and promising inclines in development efforts over the years. According to research from the National Science Board, research and development in STEM investing increased drastically in the state from 2000 to 2016. Similarly, Florida showed a much higher average in venture capital investment for STEM than other states. States with high values in this level were more successful at attracting new businesses and expanding economic growth.

The Florida school funding proposal from DeSantis also covered the mental health crisis affecting students across the nation. Initiating a targeted team to advocate student resiliency is something all parents can likely agree is needed inside schools. Resiliency efforts can harness inner strength and help students to be more capable of overcoming setbacks or challenges in schools. The initiative doesn’t necessarily look to solve problems, but instead, gives students the ability to see past them and move forward. The American Psychology Association has plenty of resources to get parents and educators started on this endeavor. 

Governor DeSantis has been quite busy dealing with the state’s education sector. On Tuesday, he passed another bill that ended Florida FSA testing in public schools. Instead, program monitoring assessments will be used throughout the year as a means to better gauge individual student progress. The move only further divided the state education department from its teachers’ unions, as teachers warned it would only create more work for everyone, as federal law still requires each state to perform standardized tests on students. As the news of the governor’s Florida school funding proposal makes its way through Florida, it will be interesting to see how teachers’ unions respond to DeSantis’ budgeting plan.