Legislation that would allow Florida’s countywide school districts to break into smaller ones has cleared a House committee with the cautious support of Gov. Jeb Bush.
A bill calling for a statewide ballot on a constitutional amendment that would allow the smaller districts was approved Jan. 10 by the House committee on prekindergarten through 12th grade education. It was headed for the House education appropriations committee later in the week.
Supporters of the initiative, which would allow current systems to split into as many as 18 separate districts, argued that the measure could eliminate bureaucracy and improve local control of schools. Opponents worried that the move could engender more racial and economic segregation in schools and districts.
Mr. Bush, a Republican, said earlier this month that large districts “end up creating larger schools, which is a bigger problem” than district size.
A version of this article appeared in the January 25, 2006 edition of Education Week