Florida Class Size, Amendment 8 (2010)

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Florida Class Size, Amendment 8 appeared on the November 2, 2010 ballot in Florida as a legislatively-referred constitutional amendment where it was defeated.

The legislation asked for voters to change the Florida Constitution's "'maximum' class sizes to school-wide 'average' class sizes."[1][2][3]

Specifically the measure would have amended Section 1 of Article IX and created Section 31 of Article XII in the Florida State Constitution. Revisions would have amended class size requirements for public schools and provided an effective date.[4] At least 60 percent of voters was required to approve the measure.[5]

However because the measure was defeated by voters class caps remained as previously scheduled and classes were required to meet those caps: 18 students in kindergarten through third grade; 22 students in fourth through eighth; and 25 students in ninth through 12th.[5][6][7]

The proposed amendment, also known as SJR 2, was proposed by Sen. Don Gaetz and Rep. Will Weatherford.[8][9]

Aftermath

Non-compliance penalties

Since Amendment 8 failed to achieve the minimum 60% approval rating in the November 2, 2010 general elections the original class size requirements remained. In early January 2011 Florida education officials announced that they planned to issue $43 million in penalties to school districts, laboratory and charter schools for violations in class size limits.[10]

At the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year the State Department of Education estimated that a total of $131 million in fines would be issued. According to reports, 25 of the 35 school districts that have been found in violation of the state law have appealed. The appeals will be considered during the state board's January 18 meeting. However, before the fines are issued they must be approved by the Legislative Budget Commission. According to reports the commission may issue their decision in February.[10]

Part of the funds collected due to non-compliance will be redirected to those that are in compliance. According to news reports schools and districts found in non-compliance will have a chance to re-collect their funds if a plan is submitted that outlines how they plan to meet the state's requirements and ensure compliance by October 2011.[10]

Proposed legislation

In early 2011 the Florida Senate education budget committee proposed altering the state's class size rules. The proposed legislation developed following the November 2010 vote on Amendment 8. According to Sen. David Simmons, he wants to create a more "rational" class-size law. Some of the proposed changes include: "delete from the current requirements many high school electives, including art courses, career education classes and 'courses that may result in college credit'; class sizes to be counted once in October and for school districts to be able to put more kids in certain courses, if they enroll later in the year."[11] In March 2011 Simmons' proposed legislation was approved by a Senate committee. The bill is SB 1466.[12]

On February 3, 2011 Sen. Miguel Diaz filed legislation to remove the "accountability" section of the Florida Class Size statute. If the bill is approved, it would amend the fines issued to non-compliant schools.[13]

Class sizes amended

On April 7, 2011 the Florida State Legislature approved expanding the state's class-size limits. The legislation cut the number of classes subject to class-size limits by almost 2/3rd. Specifically, the legislation changes the definition of core curricula covered by the limits. It does not however change the classes covered in grades K-3. A total of 288 classes are now considered part of the core curriculum. Previously, 849 classes were considered in this category. The approved legislation allows for school districts to exceed the limits by up to three students in K-3 and five students in grades 4-12.[14]

The Senate voted 30-7, while the House voted 79-39 in approval of the legislation.[14]

Election results

See also: 2010 ballot measure election results

This measure required a minimum of 60% approval. Although the chart below appears to show the measure was approved, it failed to collect the minimum number of approval votes and thus was defeated Defeatedd.

Amendment 8 (Class Size)
ResultVotesPercentage
Approveda Yes 2,751,878 54.49%
No2,298,00145.51%

Official results via Florida Division of Elections

Text of measure

According to the Florida Department of Elections the summary of the measure read as follows:[15]

The Florida Constitution currently limits the maximum number of students assigned to each teacher in public school classrooms in the following grade groupings: for prekindergarten through grade 3, 18 students; for grades 4 through 8, 22 students; and for grades 9 through 12, 25 students. Under this amendment, the current limits on the maximum number of students assigned to each teacher in public school classrooms would become limits on the average number of students assigned per class to each teacher, by specified grade grouping, in each public school. This amendment also adopts new limits on the maximum number of students assigned to each teacher in an individual classroom as follows: for prekindergarten through grade 3, 21 students; for grades 4 through 8, 27 students; and for grades 9 through 12, 30 students. This amendment specifies that class size limits do not apply to virtual classes, requires the Legislature to provide sufficient funds to maintain the average number of students required by this amendment, and schedules these revisions to take effect upon approval by the electors of this state and to operate retroactively to the beginning of the 2010-2011 school year.[16]

Constitutional changes

See also: Florida Amendment 8 (2010), constitutional text changes

The proposed measure would have amended Article 9 Section 1 of the Florida Constitution and added Section 31 to Article 12.[17]

Background

See also: Florida Reduce Class Size, Amendment 9 (2002)

Class size limits were first introduced in 2002 when Amendment 9 was approved by Florida voters - 52% were in favor. The amendment to the state Constitution required that the class sizes be limited by Fall 2010. High school classes would have been limited to 25 students; fourth through eighth grades to 22 students; and pre-kindergarten through third grade to 18 students.[18][19] The Florida Department of Education estimated in early 2010 that 2,769 schools statewide still would not be able to comply.[20] According to the Department of Education 33% of pre-kindergarten classes didn't meet the cap in Fall 2009. Additionally, 30% of middle schools and 38% of high schools didn't meet the requirement that same year.[21][22]

Fiscal impact

According to reports, from 2003 till early 2010, the state spent approximately $15.8 billion in order to help reduce class sizes through out the state. The Florida Department of Education reported that an additional $350 million was needed to meet class-size caps - including more classroom space and teachers. This cost took into account cuts to health, education and other state programs in order to eliminate a looming $3.2 billion state budget shortfall. According to reports, if the proposed amendment was approved, no costs would be incurred.[23]

Support

The class size amendment was sponsored by Sen. Don Gaetz and Rep. Will Weatherford, who said they were trying to "right class size." According to the two lawmakers, the amendment was necessary to "save millions that could go, instead, for such purposes as teacher pay raises."[24] Weatherford said, "If we don't create flexibility, we will have rezoning. We will have busing all over the state of Florida."[21]

Four gubernatorial candidates announced their support for the proposed constitutional amendment - Democrat Alex Sink, Independent Bud Chiles and Republicans Attorney General Bill McCollum and Rick Scott.[25][26] Gov. Charlie Crist was also in support of the proposed constitutional amendment. Crist described it as "a more reasonable approach that does not overburden taxpayers."[18]

Arguments

  • Walton County Superintendent Carlene Anderson said, "We’re asking the voters to support this because there is no flexibility in the current constitutional amendment."[27]
  • Okaloosa County Superintendent Alexis Tibbetts said, "Although smaller classes are desirable, it’s not the overriding factor for student success. What the research shows is it’s not the number of students in the classroom, it’s the person standing in front of the classroom."[27]
  • Sen. Stephen Wise, chair of the Senate Education Appropriations Committee, described the proposed amendment as a "necessity" financially. "When it comes down to it, the amendment sounded good until you have to do it. Principals know that. And I don’t know of a principal I’ve spoken to who couldn’t do with some extra flexibility," said Wise.[25]
  • Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush was a supporter of the 2010 proposal and was an opponent of the class size cap approved in 2002. In an August 24 education meeting in Utah that Bush was invited to address he said, "I do not know of any research that suggests that lower-class size has any impact on student learning until you get down to a significantly lower number. And the research there is very scant."[28]

Supporters argued that the amendment would:[18]

  • "allow school administrators more flexibility by allowing up to three additional students in pre-kindergarten to third-grade classrooms and an additional five students in grades four through 12"
  • "keeps class sizes at a level where teachers can teach and children can learn"

Donors

Below is a chart that outlines major cash contributions to the campaign in support of Amendment 8:[29].

Contributor Amount
Florida Chamber of Commerce $75,000
Charter Schools USA $25,000
TECO Energy $25,000
Charter School Associates $500
School Financial Services $500

Tactics and strategies

  • The Escambia County School Board held a workshop at Northview High School in late August 2010 in support of Amendment 8. "Please, please help us by getting the word out that Amendment 8 is a yes; please help us help the students," said board member Bill Slayton. The board argued that in addition to a statewide economic downturn, schools simply cannot afford to implement the class requirements.[30]
  • Jeff Bergosh, Escambia County School board member, opted to recycle his old campaign signs and re-use them in support of Amendment 8. The school board as a whole supports the proposed measure. Bergosh said, "I have begun to make signs and deploy them around town, and if I can at least get people to wonder what Amendment 8 is– that will be a good start."[31]
  • The campaign for Amendment 8 was officially kicked off on September 21, 2010 with numerous speakers, including Rep. Will Weatherford.[32] According to Ron Sachs, a spokesperson for the campaign, said they plan to rely on grass roots support from local superintendents and principals.[33]

Opposition

The proposed amendment was opposed by the statewide teachers union - Florida Education Association and U.S. Rep. Kendrick Meek, who first introduced an amendment to reduce class sizes in a 2002 campaign. Mark Pudlow of the Federal Education Association said, "voters were pretty clear in 2002 that they wanted this."[24] Florida Democrats also argue that the measure is "meddling with voters' decision in 2002."[5]

Arguments

  • Sen. Frederica Wilson argued that the measure would have led to massive spending on campaigns and advertisements, when instead the funds could have been used to help the state's economy.[5]
  • Rep. Bill Heller said, "I really do feel that class size is the right thing for children. We have it. It's in the constitution and we ought to maintain it." Heller argued that the proposed amendment would have only "unravel[ed]" the existing limits.[18] Rep. Heller said,"Class size does matter. It makes a difference to students and those who teach them."[21]
  • FEA president Andy Ford said, "I think it's time the Legislature keep the promise to the voters and make sure we have a school system that is high quality, well funded and able to compete in a global economy."[34]
  • In response to arguments that school districts were unable to comply with the class size restrictions Ingrid Olsen, spokesperson for the No on 8 campaign said schools were only struggling because the Florida Legislature did not "adequately pay to reduce class sizes."[33]

Donors

Since first forming in August of 2010, Vote No on 8 received over $1.2 million in campaign contributions.

Below is a chart that outlines major cash contributions to the campaign in opposition of Amendment 8:[35].

Contributor Amount
America's Families First $600,000
America's Families First-Action Fund $400,000
Public Education Defense Fund $200,000
Meyer, Brooks, Demma, and Blohm (Law Firm) $100

Tactics and strategies

Media editorial positions

Main article: Endorsements of Florida ballot measures, 2010

Support

  • The St. Petersburg Times supported the proposed measure. The editorial board said, "There WAS no disputing that a constitutional amendment on the November ballot to loosen class size requirements would save taxpayers money. Now Florida TaxWatch has estimated the savings, and they are substantial: Up to $1 billion annually. That is a lot of money that could be better spent on real education reform, not just counting heads in the classroom. Amendment 8 won't eliminate Florida's smaller class sizes; it will just make the voter mandate far more manageable."[38]
  • The Palm Beach Post supported Amendment 8. In an editorial the board said, "By loosening the class-size amendment passed in 2002, voters can preserve the progress from the original without forcing the state to spend tens of millions of dollars to eke out the final measure of compliance . The Post recommends a YES vote on Amendment 8."[39]
  • The Bradenton Herald supported Amendment 8. The editorial board said, "Florida’s revenues are predicted to drop another several billion dollars in the next budget after several years of steeper plunges, and the state cannot afford the predicted $4 billion expense next year to attain full class-size compliance. We recommend voters approve Amendment 8.[40]
  • Florida Today supported the proposed measure. "Implementing the new limits is has been estimated to cost $40 billion in the next 10 years. That’s money districts can’t afford because of deep budget cuts from declining property tax revenues...Amendment 8 spares schools that impact by keeping more workable schoolwide averages in place. It also caps the numbers of students in core classes to prevent a return to badly overcrowded classrooms," said the editorial board.[41]
  • The Pensacola News Journal supported Amendment 8. In an editorial, the board said, "It revises the class size amendment, passed in 2002, that sets class size maximums in Florida schools. While well-intended, the amendment is squeezing school budgets as local and state tax revenues have fallen, yet districts are still required to hire more teachers. This amendment would allow districts more flexibility."[42]
  • The Naples Daily News supported Amendment 8. "We were wary of the class-size reduction amendment when it appeared on statewide ballots in 2002. There was no clear estimate on how much it would cost, and we feared the unintended consequences of having no flexibility — either at each school or countywide. In the past few years we have seen those concerns come true. Now, because it is part of the state constitution and not mere law, we come back to the voters yet again for a realistic adjustment that we can afford. Problem is, that realism will require at least 60 percent of the vote," said the editorial board.[43]
  • The Herald-Tribune supported the proposed measure. In an editorial, the board said, "We respect the views of Villalobos and his allies. But the support of Amendment 8 from local superintendents and their staffs, who must cope with the effects of per-class limits on class sizes, is persuasive enough for us to support the change.If there were an "undecided" box on the general election ballot, we would suggest checking in on Amendment 8. But voters face a yes-or-no question. The Herald-Tribune reluctantly recommends voting "Yes" on Amendment 8."[44]
  • The (Panama City) News Herald supported Amendment 8. "Ever since it passed in 2002, Florida’s Class Size Amendment increasingly has restrained local school districts on how they can best allocate classroom resources. Friday, when the measure’s third and final phase is implemented, those restrictions will become handcuffs....We recommend a "yes" vote on Amendment 8 to give schools the flexibility they need to tailor educational needs to their students," said the editorial board.[45][46]
  • The Orlando Sentinel supported the measure. "This amendment would simply tweak the earlier one by giving schools some flexibility. It's reasonable, and it deserves a YES vote," said the editorial board.[47]
  • The South Florida Sun-Sentinel said, "The 2002 constitutional amendment has boxed educators into a corner. It's time to give them back the flexibility they need. It's also time to remember what the constitution is really for: a basic enumeration of the powers of government and the rights of the people. The rest is, and should be, up to elected officials. Insist that they do their jobs."[48]
  • The Florida Times-Union said, "Voters can do something constructive by saying "yes" on Amendment 8."[49]
  • The Ledger said, "We hope that times will improve, allowing the smaller class sizes, which are more favorable for students, to be implemented someday soon. In the meantime, The Ledger recommends a Yes vote on Amendment 8."[50]

Opposition

  • Creative Loafing's Irreverent View was opposed to Amendment 8. The editorial board said, "While elements of this revision are worth considering, the amendment as a whole is an attempt to erode public education by denying funds to achieve the limits on class sizes voters already approved. Our public education is a mess and that is in large part due to the liberal/Democrat teacher unions, but failing to maintain small class size limits is not the answer to our public education spending and teacher accountability problems."[51]

Polls

See also: Polls, 2010 ballot measures
  • A March 2010 poll by Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. revealed that of the 625 polled registered voters approximately 50% supported repealing the state's current class size requirements, 42% opposed the repeal. Additionally, 48% of polled voters said they opposed tying teacher salaries to test scores.[20]
  • During May 3-5 Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. conducted a poll of 625 registered Florida voters. According to the poll 44% of registered voters said they supported the proposed amendment, while 39% said they opposed it. A total of 17% said they remained undecided. According to Mason-Dixon the poll had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent.[52][53]
  • A September 20-22 poll conducted by the Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. revealed that of the 625 polled registered voters 35% supported Amendment 8, while 53% were opposed and 12% were undecided. The poll had a margin of error of +/- 4 percentage points.[54][55][56]
  • An October 15-19, 2010 poll conducted by Ipsos Public Affairs for Miami Herald/St. Petersburg Times/Bay News 9 poll 43% supported Amendment 8, while 40% were opposed and 17% were undecided. The poll surveyed 577 likely voters and had a margin of error of 3.5 percentage points.[57][58]
Legend

     Position is ahead and at or over 50%     Position is ahead or tied, but under 50%

Date of Poll Pollster In favor Opposed Undecided Number polled
March 2010 Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. 50% 42% 8% 625
May 3-5, 2010 Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. 44% 39% 17% 625
Sept. 20-22, 2010 Mason-Dixon Polling & Research Inc. 35% 53% 12% 625
Oct. 15-19, 2010 Ipsos Public Affairs 43% 40% 17% 577

Local impact

School district postpones rezoning

In early February 2010 the Collier School District Superintendent Dennis Thompson announced that he was recommending a delay in the district's elementary school rezoning. The delay came in light of the proposed ballot measure which called for a change in the state's current class size law. According to Thompson the board would postpone redistricting until April, when they hoped the Florida Legislature would decide whether or not the proposed amendment would appear on the 2010 ballot. "I think we can give it two months to see if they can make it come to fruition," said Thompson. The district was preparing to rezone it's elementary school in order to comply with the current class size law.[59]

School board delays staffing plan

With the proposal of a class size amendment, the Hernando School Board decided to delay a decision on 2011's staffing plan. The proposed plan called for eliminating 46 positions and rearranging teachers into the open slots. The cuts were developed in light of budget cuts and the expenses the school faced in order to meet the currently established class size requirements. According to reports, the school board supported the measure appearing on the ballot.[60]

School districts plan to hire more teachers

In order to comply with the current class size requirements, school districts in Florida announced plans to hire more teachers. Polk County School District said in May 2010 that they planned to hire an additional 200 teachers in 2011. Specifically the district planned to allocate an additional 1 to 2 teachers to each school. According to districts officials the cost for the teachers totals approximately $11 million. The state is expected to contribute $2.7 million. Should the proposed amendment be approved, according to officials, the newly hired teachers would be able to remain the district. In 2009 the district reported hiring 700 new teachers.[61]

At Brevard Public Schools Superintendent Brian Binggeli presented a plan to hire new teachers and pay current employees more to teach additional classes. The cost, according to officials, was estimated to be between $3-5 million. However, in order to balance the budget according to reports the district needed to cut almost $12 million from its budget.[62]

Reports and analyses

Harvard class size study

In May 2010 Harvard University released a study that revealed that Florida's 2002 class size amendment had had "no discernible effect on student achievement."[63][64] It was the first study to look at its effects on class-size reduction in Florida. According to reports the study used data from the Florida Department of Education and was conducted by Harvard research fellow Matt Chingos. Specifically Chingos looked at the impact of smaller class sizes on grades 4-8 through 2007. Chingos concluded that for the amount of money the state of Florida spent on reducing class sizes it had "no greater or lesser effect on academic performance than allowing schools to spend similar pots of money as they see fit."[65]

The full study is available here.

Response by FEA

Shortly following the release of the Harvard study the Florida Education Association (FEA) said the study was flawed because the study was developed by a program - The Program on Education Policy and Governance - that had an advisory committee chaired by the former Gov. Jeb Bush. Bush was an opponent of the 2002 education amendment.[66]

Lawsuit

See also: 2010 ballot measure litigation

On July 23 the Florida Education Association filed a lawsuit to block Amendment 8 from the 2010 statewide ballot. The teachers union argued that the proposed measure was misleading and an under-handed attempt to reduce state funding for education.[67][68] "The Florida Legislature devised a classic scheme of ‘hiding the ball’ from Florida voters by misrepresenting the chief purpose of Amendment 8 – which is to free the state’s obligation to adequately fund public schools," said Ron Meyer, the union’s attorney.[69] In a press release, Meyers added, "The failure of the legislature to be honest with parents - to tell them that Amendment 8 cuts funding to public schools which will result in crowded classrooms once again - is what makes this lawsuit necessary."[70] Several local school boards joined FEA in the lawsuit, including the Alachua County School Board.[71][72]

In response to the filed lawsuit, Rep. Will Weatherford, who sponsored the amendment, said he believed the amendment was "very honest." Weatherford added, "We're trying to protect the integrity of small class sizes in the state of Florida. At the same time, we're providing flexibility for the thousands of principals and administrators and school board members and superintendents and, frankly, the hundreds of parents...whose children are not able to go to the school they want because of the class size restraints."[73][74]

The filed lawsuit can be found here.

The case was heard September 8 in Tallahassee.[75][76][77]

Measure upheld

On September 10, 2010 Leon County Circuit Court Chief Judge Charles Francis upheld the measure after citing that the measure was neither misleading or ambiguous.[78] In the 10-page opinion Francis said, "When read together, the ballot title and summary clearly and unambiguously advise the voter that the Legislature is still obligated to provide the funding required to meet the class size approved by the voter." In response to the judge's decision, FEA attorney Ron Meyer said he planned to appeal the case to the Florida Supreme Court.[79][80]

Supreme Court hears case

As expected following the early September court ruling, an appeal was filed. The 1st District Court of Appeals expedited the case by sending it directly to the Florida Supreme Court without ruling on the issue. The appellate court wrote, "This appeal involves a question of great public importance and requires immediate resolution by the Supreme Court of Florida."[81] According to reports, it was too late to remove Amendment 8 from the ballot but opponents wanted the court to prevent the cast votes from being counted.[82]

Arguments for Florida Education Association vs. Florida Department of State were heard October 6, 2010.[83][84]

High court upholds measure

On October 7, 2010, a day following the hearing for Florida Education Association vs. Florida Department of State, the Florida Supreme Court ruled that Amendment 8 would remain on the November 2, 2010 ballot.[85] According to the October 7 ruling, the high court said, "We conclude that the ballot title and summary accurately represent the chief purpose of the amendment. It further provides fair notice of what the amendment contains and does not mislead the voters as to the amendment‘s true effect. Accordingly, we hold that the ballot language is not defective and that Amendment 8 complies with the requirements of law. We affirm the trial court‘s judgment that Amendment 8 shall remain on the ballot for the November 2010 general election."[86]

The ruling in its entirety can be read here.

Path to the ballot

See also: Florida law for legislatively-referred constitutional amendments

In order to qualify for the November 2010 ballot the proposed amendment was required to be approved by a minimum of 60% in the both the House and the Senate. In order to appear in an earlier election the proposal was required to acquire 75% of the vote in each chamber.[8]

See also

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Related measures

Approveda Florida Reduce Class Size, Amendment 9 (2002)

Articles

External links

Additional reading

Editorials

References

  1. Sunshine State News, "Amendments 7 and 8 on Ballot," May 20, 2010
  2. Associated Press, "Class size issue on Fla. ballot as Amendment 8," May 19, 2010
  3. St. Petersburg Times, "A look at the nine amendments on Florida's ballot," May 30, 2010
  4. Florida Senate, "SJR 2 full text," accessed March 10, 2010
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 The Tampa Tribune, "Class size vote likely," March 26, 2010
  6. Navarre Press, "Class Size Modification Wins Place on the Ballot," April 9, 2010
  7. The Palm Beach Post, "Class-size law poses dilemma for schools," April 23, 2010
  8. 8.0 8.1 The Palm Beach Post, "Florida GOP aims to weaken class-size amendment as final caps take effect this year," February 1, 2010
  9. Tampa Bay Online, "Class size revote bill clears Senate panel," March 5, 2010
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 Associated Press, "Fla. may impose $43 million in class size fines," January 6, 2011
  11. The Palm Beach Post News, "Senate panel looks to make Florida class-size law more 'rational'," February 11, 2011
  12. Associated Press, "Bill to loosen Florida's class size cap advances," March 17, 2011
  13. Sunshine State News, "Sen. Miguel Diaz de la Portilla Files Bill to Kill Class-Size Fines," February 5, 2011
  14. 14.0 14.1 The Tampa Tribune, "Lawmakers OK higher class sizes for hundreds of classes," April 8, 2011
  15. Florida Department of Elections, "Revision of the class size requirements for public schools:Summary," accessed May 20, 2010
  16. Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  17. Florida State Department of Elections, "Amendment 8(SJR2) full text," accessed August 20, 2010
  18. 18.0 18.1 18.2 18.3 Herald Tribune, "Scrutiny for class size caps," February 3, 2010
  19. CBS4, "New Class Size Caps Begin Monday, But Could Change," August 22, 2010
  20. 20.0 20.1 The Tampa Tribune, "Saving trumps class size," March 30, 2010
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 St. Petersburg Times, "New class-size amendment clears state House; will be on November ballot," April 9, 2010
  22. Washington County News, "A look at the amendments: Amendment 8," September 13, 2010
  23. The Miami Herald, "Anger erupts over school bills in Florida Legislature," March 26, 2010
  24. 24.0 24.1 Associated Press, "Proposal to weaken Fla. class size limits filed," February 2, 2010
  25. 25.0 25.1 The Florida Times-Union, "Florida gubernatorial candidates back changes to class-size law," June 23, 2010
  26. Sun Sentinel, "Gubernatorial candidates back class-size referendum," June 23, 2010
  27. 27.0 27.1 Daily News, "Proposal to loosen class-size limits filed with Legislature (DOCUMENT)," February 2, 2010
  28. Associated Press, "In Utah, former Fla. gov slams class size limits," August 24, 2010
  29. Florida Campaign Finance, "Vote Yes on 8-Campaign Detail," accessed October 18, 2010
  30. NorthEscambia.com, "School Board Lobbys For Amendment 8, Against Strict Class Size Law," August 27, 2010
  31. North Escambia, "School Board Member Going Grassroots For Amendment 8," September 20, 2010
  32. Orlando Sentinel,"‘Right Size Class-Size’ campaign kicks off," September 21, 2010
  33. 33.0 33.1 St. Petersburg Times, "Will Weatherford rolls out Amendment 8 campaign," September 21, 2010
  34. Associated Press, "Legislature to consider class size, replacing FCAT," February 17, 2010
  35. Florida Campaign Finance, "Vote No on 8-Campaign Detail," accessed October 18, 2010
  36. Public News Service, "Teachers Campaign For Smaller Class Size Against Amendment 8," August 13, 2010
  37. WTSP.com, "Florida teachers fight proposed changes to class size amendment," August 13, 2010
  38. The St. Petersburg Times, "Flexibility on class sizes saves money, makes sense," July 28, 2010
  39. The Palm Beach Post, "Endorsement: Yes on Amendment 8: Change the class-size law," October 1, 2010
  40. Bradenton Herald, "We recommend: on Amendment 8, a yes vote BRADENTON HERALD EDITORIAL | Flexibility, not strict limits, on classroom size," October 1, 2010
  41. FloridaToday.com, "Our views: Vote 'no' on Amendment 1, 'yes' on 2, 8 (Oct. 5)," October 5, 2010
  42. Pensacola News Journal, "Editorial Board recommendations: The Amendments," October 9, 2010
  43. Naples Daily News, "Editorial: Election 2010 | Florida Ballot Amendments 5, 6 & 8," October 14, 2010
  44. The Herald Tribune,"'Yes' on Amendment 8," October 15, 2010
  45. The News Herald, "EDITORIAL: Yes on Amendment 8," October 12, 2010
  46. News Herald, "EDITORIAL: Assessing amendments," October 24, 2010
  47. Orlando Sentinel, "Our Endorsements: Amendments made simple," October 23, 2010
  48. Sun Sentinel, "Vote yes on Amendment 8," October 10, 2010
  49. The Florida Times-Union, "Yes on Amendment 8: Worthy of support," October 21, 2010
  50. The Ledger, "The Ledger Recommends - Amendments, Referendum: Redistricting, Class Size; U.S. Budget," October 29, 2010
  51. Creative Loafing, "Irreverent View’s ballot recommendations," October 1, 2010
  52. SaintPetersblog 2.0, "Going inside the Sachs/Mason-Dixon poll numbers on Florida’s cabinet races and constitutional amendments," May 13, 2010
  53. Orlando Sentinel, "Class size (again): The “right size” measure doesn’t have needed support, poll says," May 12, 2010
  54. Mason-Dixon Polling, "August 2010 Florida Poll," accessed September 27, 2010
  55. WESH, "Poll: Voters Want Control Over State's Growth," September 24, 2010
  56. Highlands Today, "Voters fluctuate on ballot initiative," September 27, 2010
  57. Ipsos Public Affairs, "Political Polling in Florida: Wave 3," accessed November 1, 2010
  58. Miami Herald, "Key amendments unlikely to pass, new poll indicates," October 25, 2010
  59. Naples News, "Collier School District could postpone rezoning elementary schools," February 9, 2010
  60. St. Petersburg Times, "Hernando School Board hopes class size mandates change enough to save jobs," March 27, 2010
  61. The Ledger, "Polk Schools Plan to Hire 200 More Teachers," May 11, 2010
  62. Florida Today, "Binggeli class-size plan adds teachers," May 12, 2010
  63. Associated Press, "5/15 FLORIDA BRIEFS: Study: No effect from class size cuts," May 15, 2010
  64. WCTV, "Study Says Class Size isn't Tied to Student Learning," May 14, 2010
  65. St. Petersburg Times, "Class size debate heats up: Is it working? Is it worth it?," May 14, 2010
  66. CBS News, "Study Refutes Class Size Amendment," May 14, 2010
  67. PNJ.com, "Educators look to block cuts, class-size plan," July 25, 2010
  68. Examiner, "Florida teachers sue to prevent class size ballot," July 24, 2010
  69. Orlando Sentinel, "FEA suing to block class-size amendment," July 23, 2010
  70. The Palm Beach Post, "Teacher union files lawsuit to keep class size amendment off ballot," July 23, 2010
  71. The Gainesville Sun, "Alachua County joins class-size amendment suit," August 17, 2010
  72. The Miami Herald, "Miami-Dade School Board might join class-size lawsuit," August 14, 2010
  73. St. Petersburg Times, "Teachers union sues to stop class size vote," July 24, 2010
  74. Sun Sentinel, "Teachers union files suit to take class-size amendment off ballot," July 23, 2010
  75. Associated Press, "Challenge to Fla. class size amendment in court," September 8, 2010
  76. Associated Press, "Challenge to Fla. class size amendment in court," September 8, 2010
  77. WJHG, "Right Sizing Class Size Challenged," September 8, 2010
  78. St. Petersburg Times, "Judge clears class-size amendment for Florida ballot," September 11, 2010
  79. Associated Press, "Class size ballot proposal upheld," September 11, 2010
  80. The Palm Beach Post, "Judge keeps class-size amendment on the ballot; teachers union to appeal," September 13, 2010
  81. Sunshine State News, "High Court Gets Amendment 8 Appeal," September 17, 2010
  82. Associated Press, "Fla. Supreme Court gets class size amendment case," September 16, 2010
  83. CBS4, "Florida Supreme Court To Hear Class Size Issue," September 22, 2010
  84. St. Petersburg Times, "State high court will hear debate over class size and so will most voters," October 3, 2010
  85. The Palm Beach Post - Post on Politics, "Class size amendment stays on ballot," October 7, 2010
  86. Supreme Court of Florida,"(Florida Education Association vs. Florida Department of State) ruling," October 7, 2010
  87. WCTV, "Class Size Amendment," March 5, 2010
  88. The Jacksonville Observer, "Class Size Adjustment Wins First Round Vote," February 17, 2010
  89. The Florida Times-Union, "Florida Senate panel approves class size amendment," February 16, 2010
  90. The Tampa Tribune, "Florida Senate OKs ballot measure on easing class-size limits," March 25, 2010
  91. Tallahassee Democrat, "House approves constitutional amendment relaxing class-size requirements," April 8, 2010
  92. Associated Press, "Conservatives hail Fla. teacher bill as model," April 8, 2010
  93. St. Petersburg Times, "New class-size amendment clears state House; will be on November ballot," April 9, 2010