Activists, teachers, and students were protesting in downtown Orlando on Thursday afternoon, ahead of a Rick Scott event later in the day where he is expected to sign the controversial education bill HB 7069.
Participants waived signs and took turns talking to reporters in front of the Orange County School Board building during the protest. Both school boards in Orange and Seminole counties oppose the measure in addition to many others around the state. Opponents say the legislation was put together behind closed doors and gives too much power to charter schools, while pulling away valuable resources from public schools.
“This is the bill we have that’s aimed to privatize schools in Florida and destroy the public education system.” said Wendy Doromal of the Classroom Teacher’s Association.
Supporters of the bill say it will empower parents in the education system to find a better schooling options for their children, while promoting the bonuses the included in the legislation.
Rick Scott will be signing the bill at a private school in College Park. Protesters at the rally say they will be exploring legal options they can take to avoid parts of 7069 from going into effect.