Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett
Indiana Dept. of Education
(Indianapolis, Ind.) - The leader of Indiana’s department of education will soon be heading to Florida when his term in office ends, but it won’t be for vacation.
Indiana Superintendent of Public Instruction Tony Bennett, a Republican, was defeated in the November 6 election by Democrat Glenda Ritz. Bennett was unpopular with many teachers in Indiana because of the education reforms he supported and ushered in.
Bennett has been picked to take the same position in Florida, The Indianapolis Star reports. The state schools chief there is appointed by the Florida Board of Education, not elected by voters. Bennett’s selection was unanimous by the board members.
In a statement, Bennett said Florida is ready to implement reforms like those seen in Indiana.
“Gov. (Rick) Scott, Florida's Board of Education and state legislators exhibit an impressive commitment to providing all students an education that is globally competitive and sets no limits on their future accomplishments,” Bennett said. “Likewise, the state's educators show an inspiring dedication to helping all students reach their utmost potential.”
Bennett’s move will likely come with a pay raise. He made $80,000 each year as Indiana’s state superintendent. Florida’s last superintendent made $275,000, according to The Star.
Ritz, a teacher at Crooked Creek Elementary School in Indianapolis, will take the top position at the Indiana Department of Education in January.