On March 18, Truth 4 Okaloosa received an anonymous letter in the mail, purportedly from a current Okaloosa School Teacher, which reveals behind-the-scenes insight into unfavorable classroom conditions in Okaloosa County. It also cites low morale among teachers, who are working hard to do their best for students despite constant problems due to overcrowded classrooms.
The letter, which describes the teacher’s own experiences in the classroom, includes a supporting news article, originally published in the Orlando Sentinel.
To read the letter in its entirety, click here: Anonymous letter from Okaloosa Teacher
To read the Orlando Sentinel supporting news article, click here: Florida ignored voter mandate for small classes. Now social-distancing is even tougher
It makes several allegations, notably:
- The Florida legislature has disregarded the requirements of the Class Size Amendment to Florida’s constitution.
- Overcrowded classrooms are systemic throughout the Okaloosa School District.
- Teachers have no one advocating for them, and teachers don’t advocate for compliance with the amendment for fear of losing their jobs.
- The Okaloosa Schools Superintendent and the School Board have not spoken out against the class size amendment manipulation. This is despite Governor DeSantis’ multiple visits to Okaloosa Schools (ironically he visited Florosa Elementary on March 17 to sign a bill regarding new standardized testing).
IT’S NOT THE FIRST LETTER!
This anonymous letter from an Okaloosa School Teacher is not the first to surface detailing poor classroom conditions inside Okaloosa County Schools. On February 19, 2022, a former teacher with 30 years of experience wrote a Letter to the Editor of the Northwest Florida Daily News telling the story of a current Okaloosa teacher’s experience with violence in her classroom (read the Letter to the Editor below or Here).
This letter echoes the concerns voiced by the anonymous letter writer and highlights what our teachers, staff and students are enduring inside a typical Okaloosa County classroom at the hands of poor policy enforcement and weak leaders. YES For Okaloosa Schools is focused on our local school issues, and we find these allegations to be VERY SERIOUS.
The MOST Serious is that teachers are reluctant to speak up for fear of losing their jobs. It is unacceptable that our teachers – who are responsible for the safety and education of our youth – suffer in this type of work environment.
We are calling on our School Board to address this immediately!
ELECT NEW SCHOOL BOARD MEMBERS
Truth4OK will continue to closely monitor the Okaloosa County School District.
We will continue to push for much-needed improvement in Accountability and Transparency.