Senate panel passes legislation encouraging longer school days, wraparound services in failing schools

Struggling public schools in Florida would be encouraged to extend their days by at least one hour and offer students social services, such as health care, under a new Senate proposal.

The Senate budget committee that oversees pre-kindergarten to 12th grade education advanced legislation on Tuesday that would overhaul state laws governing districts’ mandatory efforts to turn around failing schools.

State Sen. David Simmons, R-Altamonte Springs, introduced the new language as an amendment to SB 1552. The existing bill contains his plan for expanding “best and brightest,” a teacher and principal merit pay program.

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