As the saying “don’t stand by, stand up” has been preached in schools for decades as a means to stand against bullying, Florida lawmakers are taking an alternative approach to bullying. A bill is currently being considered by the Republican- controlled Florida legislature that would allow a public school bullying victim to transfer to a private school with a state-founded voucher.
This potential law is causing an abundance of controversy. As lawmakers are considering to subsidize private schools at the expense of public schools, private schools are being thrown under the general assumption that they do not contain bullying. The less students in public schools, the more profit private schools attain. The national center for education reported that “No measurable differences were observed in the percentage of students who reported being bullied at school by urbanicity or between those in public and private schools”. This law will be difficult to pass because being able to determine the extent of bullying and verification of a victim is questionable.
However, the money for the vouchers will be paid by car owners volunteering to siphon off a portion of their registration. It this law is passed, it will be fully supported by Education Secretary Betsy Devos, who targets public schools.