AP: Common Core debate puts Rick Scott in the thick of education battle

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Hesitation to weigh in on Florida’s adoption of the Common Core State Standards is putting Gov. Rick Scott in the thick of an education controversy that could influence the 2016 presidential race, according to Gary Fineout in the Associated Press.

In the past, the Florida governor supported Common Core, , but he has recently backed off now that Republicans are questioning the standards.

As the most ardent proponent of the new standards, former Gov. Jeb Bush could suffer a blow to his 2016 presidential chances if his home state failed to adopt Common Core. Bush created Florida’s current A-F grading system.

Many in the GOP oppose what they see as a nationalization of school standards, including U.S. Sen. Marco Rubio, another 2016 White House hopeful. In addition, the Florida Legislature remains increasingly divided over the issue.

In a recent three-day education conference in Clearwater, Scott invited Common core opponents, further signaling his wavering support of the plan, which is already used in 45 states and the District of Columbia.

After the summit, both Scott and Bush met privately to discuss education, joined by State Sen. John Thrasher and the chair of the State Board of Education. Since then, neither Bush nor Scott spoke publically about the meeting, or if Common Core was mentioned.

Bush has not yet announced a 2016 presidential run, but if he does, it is evident that education will have a significant role in his campaign.

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Peter Schorsch is the President of Extensive Enterprises and is the publisher of some of Florida’s most influential new media websites, including SaintPetersBlog.com, FloridaPolitics.com, ContextFlorida.com, and Sunburn, the morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics. SaintPetersBlog has for three years running been ranked by the Washington Post as the best state-based blog in Florida. In addition to his publishing efforts, Peter is a political consultant to several of the state’s largest governmental affairs and public relations firms. Peter lives in St. Petersburg with his wife, Michelle, and their daughter, Ella.