Florida Governor Rick Scott went to Freedom Middle School in Orange County to dole out more than $23 million in performance incentives for schools from Lake, Flagler, Volusia, Seminole, Brevard, Osceola, and Orange counties. The money is given as a reward for top performing schools, and the Governor says big improvements are being made.
"According to Education Week, we're now number six in the country. Our fourth-graders are number two in the world for reading. The National Council for Teacher Quality says we have the most effective teachers in the country," the governor said.
With students behind him, and signing checks for each county, Gov. Scott has a suggestion for how that money should be spent.
"I think they ought to spend it on teacher compensation. These teachers are doing a great job."
Orange County alone received more than $9 million for its well-performing schools. The governor spent the entire day in Orlando, including lunch with State Senator Andy Gardiner at Beefy King, an Orlando icon.
"It was great. I especially like the tater tots, but the sandwich, the beef and cheese was really good."
He smiled recounting lunch, but his faced tensed up a little more when asked about a potential primary challenge from a fellow Republican, like Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam.
"Nope. He's going to run for Ag Commissioner," he replied. When asked if he anticipated any Republican challengers, Gov. Scott answered, "Nope. We're doing the right thing."
The governor also expressed frustration over sequestration. He is upset that Washington is taking a "meat clever" to the budget as opposed to a scalpel. He tells FOX 35 that President Obama and Congress should not receive pay if they are not going to do their jobs.