Miami-Dade County Public Schools (MDCPS) asked county voters to support a referendum that would compensate teachers and improve school safety – and the community responded with a 71 percent resounding approval.
“This is a monumental victory for the teachers and students of Miami-Dade County Public Schools,” said Schools Superintendent Alberto M. Carvalho. “It's a victory that ensures the safety of our schools and high quality instruction in our classrooms. I am extremely proud and grateful to the voters of Miami-Dade,” Carvalho said Tuesday night at iPrep Academy, where an enthusiastic crowd had gathered to watch the results. “By voting in favor of 362, our community has honored the fiscally responsible leadership of the School Board, the strong partnerships enjoyed by the school district, and the incredible work of teachers, which has yielded remarkable student outcomes. Once again, our community has stepped forward to invest in schools.”
Approval of the referendum by voters will generate revenue for teacher salaries and additional safety and security. Higher teacher compensation can help attract professionals with experience and expertise in other high-demand industries, who are seeking a career change. These professionals bring a level of experience and expertise to classroom instruction that prepares students for careers locally and abroad.
Attracting committed and talented people to the teaching profession requires that they see a promising financial future in the profession. Miami-Dade County has one the highest costs of living of any Florida county, eight percent higher than the state average.
Better compensation for teachers translates into increased buying power providing a significant return on investment for the community and local business owners.
The Secure our Future initiative will positively impact the local economy through home sales and rentals, automobile sales, and other purchased goods and services from the local economy.
The referendum approves a levy based on determined property value at approximately $75 per $100,000 of assessed value for up to four years. This levy would allow M-DCPS to raise $232 million annually. The average homeowner would make a contribution of $0.39 a day, or $12 a month.
A citizens’ oversight advisory committee will be established to monitor the use of proceeds generated by the passage of the referendum to safeguard the taxpayers’ investment.
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