CRC - 2017                                                  P 90
       By Commissioner Levesque
       levesquep-00100-17                                      201790__
    1                         A proposal to amend                       
    2         Section 1 of Article IX of the State Constitution to
    3         revise requirements relating to class size limitations
    4         in public schools and to require that any funds not
    5         expended towards the maintenance of average class
    6         sizes be applied towards increasing teacher pay to the
    7         national average.
    9  Be It Proposed by the Constitution Revision Commission of
   10  Florida:
   12         Section 1 of Article IX of the State Constitution is
   13  amended to read:
   14                             ARTICLE IX                            
   15                              EDUCATION                            
   16         SECTION 1. Public education.—
   17         (a) The education of children is a fundamental value of the
   18  people of the State of Florida. It is, therefore, a paramount
   19  duty of the state to make adequate provision for the education
   20  of all children residing within its borders. Adequate provision
   21  shall be made by law for a uniform, efficient, safe, secure, and
   22  high quality system of free public schools that allows students
   23  to obtain a high quality education and for the establishment,
   24  maintenance, and operation of institutions of higher learning
   25  and other public education programs that the needs of the people
   26  may require. To assure that children attending public schools
   27  obtain a high quality education, the legislature shall make
   28  adequate provision to ensure that, by the beginning of the 2010
   29  school year, there are a sufficient number of classrooms so that
   30  within each public school:
   31         (1) The average maximum number of students who are assigned
   32  to each teacher who is teaching in public school classrooms for
   33  prekindergarten through grade 3 does not exceed 18 students;
   34         (2) The average maximum number of students who are assigned
   35  to each teacher who is teaching in public school classrooms for
   36  grades 4 through 8 does not exceed 22 students; and
   37         (3) The average maximum number of students who are assigned
   38  to each teacher who is teaching in public school classrooms for
   39  grades 9 through 12 does not exceed 25 students.
   41  The class size requirements of this subsection do not apply to
   42  extracurricular, blended learning, or virtual classes. Payment
   43  of the costs associated with reducing class size to meet these
   44  requirements is the responsibility of the state and not of local
   45  schools districts. Beginning with the 2003-2004 fiscal year, The
   46  legislature shall provide sufficient funds to maintain reduce
   47  the average number of students in each classroom by at least two
   48  students per year until the maximum number of students per
   49  classroom does not exceed the requirements of this subsection.
   50  Any funds not spent by districts to maintain the school-level
   51  average class size maximums must be spent towards raising
   52  teacher pay to the national average.
   53         (b) Every four-year old child in Florida shall be provided
   54  by the State a high quality pre-kindergarten learning
   55  opportunity in the form of an early childhood development and
   56  education program which shall be voluntary, high quality, free,
   57  and delivered according to professionally accepted standards. An
   58  early childhood development and education program means an
   59  organized program designed to address and enhance each child’s
   60  ability to make age appropriate progress in an appropriate range
   61  of settings in the development of language and cognitive
   62  capabilities and emotional, social, regulatory and moral
   63  capacities through education in basic skills and such other
   64  skills as the Legislature may determine to be appropriate.
   65         (c) The early childhood education and development programs
   66  provided by reason of subsection subparagraph (b) shall be
   67  implemented no later than the beginning of the 2005 school year
   68  through funds generated in addition to those used for existing
   69  education, health, and development programs. Existing education,
   70  health, and development programs are those funded by the State
   71  as of January 1, 2002 that provided for child or adult
   72  education, health care, or development.