New Education Commissioner Named in Florida

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Members of the board added approval as they voted unanimously on Tony Bennett.

"I think you're about to, we're about to select an excellent commissioner," said Roberto Martinez at Wednesday's meeting.

"His willingness to carry out that really important task, I'm very very supportive of Tony Bennett," said Dr. A.K. Desai.

Bennett also spoke at Wednesday's meeting.

"I think we have a great opportunity to capture Florida's moment to continue to get the results you've gotten and to continue to propel forward to be an example for the rest of the country."

Department of Education Release: State Board Takes Action

Tallahassee, Fla., December 12, 2012 – At today’s State Board of Education meeting in Tampa, board members unanimously selected Dr. Tony Bennett as the next Commissioner of Education. He was chosen from among three finalists who were interviewed, including Murray State University President Dr. Randy Dunn and education consultant Charles Hokanson Jr.

Board members approved new achievement levels for the Geometry and Biology I End-of-Course and FCAT 2.0 Science assessments. The recommendation reflects input from Florida educators, superintendents, postsecondary faculty, and business and community leaders, as well as the general public. The new benchmarks continue Florida’s ongoing commitment to ensure that all students are ready for college, career, and life.

The board also approved the grading criteria and point system used to determine school grades. The FCAT Writing standard is set at 3.5, and the base year in which the school grading scale can be evaluated for automatic adjustment is changed to the 2012-2013 school year.

In addition, the board approved a baccalaureate degree proposal from Brevard Community College for a Bachelor of Applied Science in Organizational Management. The degree program offers two concentrations – General Organizational Management and Healthcare Management – that will allow program graduates to enter the workforce prepared to work in local manufacturing, technical, and healthcare fields.


About the Florida Department of Education: The department’s mission is to increase the proficiency of all students within one seamless, efficient education system by providing them the chance to expand their knowledge and skills through world-class learning opportunities. Serving more than 3.5 million students, 4,200 public schools, 28 colleges, 188,000 teachers, 47,000 college professors and administrators, and 318,000 full-time staff throughout the state, the department enhances the economic self-sufficiency of Floridians through programs and services geared toward college, workforce education, job-specific skills, and career development. Florida ranks first in the nation for teacher quality, first in the nation in advanced placement participation, and first in the southern region for graduation rate and degrees awarded by the Florida College System. For more information, visit

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