Education Policy: Where the Florida Gubernatorial Primary Candidates Stand

These guides are NOT endorsements, but layout and rate the Common Core, federal education, preschool and related issues records of the Republican and Democrat candidates for governor of Florida, listed as¬†officially qualified by the Florida Department of State¬†to be on the ballot for the 2018 election, based on reviews of the candidates’ statements on their websites, in the media, at debates, polling data, endorsements, and voting records where available. PDF versions of these tables are available for the¬†Democrats¬†and the¬†Republicans. The Florida Primary will be held on Tuesday, August 28.

Democrat Primary:

Mayor Andrew Gillum

  • Expanded/Supported Federal Intrusion in Education: N/A
  • Supports Common Core:¬†Not mentioned –¬†His supporters¬†oppose CCSS 40%-27%.
  • Opposes High Stakes Testing: Yes
  • Supports Expanded Pre-K:¬†Yes, he wants an expansion of pre-K¬†despite overall research¬†of ineffectiveness and harm.

Former Congresswoman Gwen Graham

Businessman Jeff Greene

  • Expanded/Supported Federal Intrusion in Education: N/A
  • Supports Common Core:¬†Not mentioned, but his supporters¬†oppose CCSS 46%-33%.
  • Opposes High Stakes Testing: Yes
  • Supports Expanded Pre-K:¬†Yes, he wants two years “mandatory preschool”¬†despite overall research¬†of ineffectiveness and harm.

Former Mayor Phil Levine

  • Expanded/Supported Federal Intrusion in Education: N/A
  • Supports Common Core:¬†Not mentioned, there is no CCSS polling data available.
  • Opposes High Stakes Testing: Yes
  • Supports Expanded Pre-K:¬†Yes, he wants an expansion of pre-K¬†despite overall research of ineffectiveness and harm.

Alex “Lundy” Lundmark

Chris King¬†and¬†Jon Wetherbee¬†had little to no information on their views and plans for these pre-K through 12 education issues and received grades of “Incomplete.”

Republican Primary

Congressman Ron DeSantis

Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam

Businessman and Activist Bob White

  • Opposes Federal Intrusion in Education:¬†Yes, he clearly understands the lack of constitutionality of the federal role in education and cost to states.
  • Opposes Common Core:¬†Yes, and has led many grassroots efforts against Common Core throughout the state and at the legislature.
  • Opposes Expansion of Government Pre-K: Not discussed.
  • Pro-Common Core Endorsement or Rating: No
  • Anti-Common Core Endorsement or Rating:¬†Former Congressman Ron Paul.

The remaining qualified Republican candidates ¬†Don Baldauf, Timothy DeVine, Bob Langford,¬†John Mercadante, and¬†Bruce Nathan either do not have campaign websites, have no record, or discuss pre-K through 12 education issues minimally, if at all. These five candidates received grades of “Incomplete.”