What is 8isGREAT.org?
An organization created to promote the passage of proposed Florida Constitutional Amendment 8.
What is Proposed Amendment 8 (besides GREAT!)?
The ballot language in the November 6, 2018 general election will read:
ARTICLE IX, SECTION 4, NEW SECTION
ARTICLE XII, NEW SECTION
SCHOOL BOARD TERM LIMITS AND DUTIES; PUBLIC SCHOOLS.—
Creates a term limit of eight consecutive years for school board
members and requires the legislature to provide for the
promotion of civic literacy in public schools. Currently,
district school boards have a constitutional duty to operate,
control, and supervise all public schools. The amendment
maintains a school board’s duties to public schools it
establishes, but permits the state to operate, control, and
supervise public schools not established by the school board”
What’s in Amendment 8?
The language of the amendment speaks of its content. We view it as being good policy because it does three things:
- Limits the Terms of School Board Members to 8 continuous years, which will allow more people an opportunity to serve as citizen legislators on School Boards. Term limits reduce the power of incumbency and make elections more competitive through “open seat” races. This will increase innovative thinking on school boards by bringing in fresh ideas and experiences as new members come onto the board.
- Gives the State of Florida the flexibility to establish new education opportunities so that our system of free public education can be more innovative and adaptive as we head through the 21st century.
- Finally, it prioritizes the teaching of civic literacy in our public schools so that Florida students understand our form of government and their role in it.
Do We Really Need to Amend our Constitution To Do This? Why doesn’t the Florida Legislature Just do this?
Since school board member terms are in the Florida Constitution, the legislature cannot establish term limits for those Constitutional offices. Current constitutional language prohibits the state from operating, controlling or supervising free public schools, so this must be corrected through constitutional amendment. While the prioritization of civic literacy could be established by the current legislature, a future legislature could likewise de-fund and de-emphasize civics education.
Who is behind 8isGREAT.org?
Three current elected School Board Members have formed a Florida not for profit corporation to promote the passage of proposed Florida Constitutional Amendment 8. “8isGREAT.org” is headed by the main sponsor of the proposed Amendment on the Constitution Revision Commission and Collier County School Board Member, Erika Donalds. Commissioner Donalds is joined by Indian River County School Board Chairman, Shawn Frost, and Duval County School Board Member, Scott Shine, as executive board members.
Amendment 8 has already received incredible grassroots support as it moved through the CRC process. We expect this to continue as we draw volunteers and financial support from a broad base of concerned citizens who share our view that the necessary and transformative policy in Amendment 8isGREAT!
How Can You Help?
Be sure to sign up to get our email blasts and stay informed.
Or to Contribute online or by sending a Check for any amount payable to:
1103 Hays Street
Tallahassee, FL 32301