Sarasota, Florida-Should school board members work for free? Sarasota County Commissioner Eric Robinson thinks so. He’ll need to change Florida’s constitution to do it.
All Florida school board members receive a salary ranging between $25,000-$45,000.
Robinson submitted his proposal to the Florida Constitution Revision Commission and one of its members picked it up. Collier County School Board Member Erika Donald, sits on the commission she’s one of 37 members who meet every 20 years. They have the power to place constitutional amendments directly on the November ballot for 2018.
Robinson practices what he preaches. “I’m a public servant not a public master,” says Robinson.
Robinson donates his $40,728 salary and benefits back to the school district. The first-year board member uses his salaries to fund programs he likes. Robinson says he’s donated 5-thousand dollars to a reading program at Booker Elementary, 10-thousand dollars to Booker High School for a college/career readiness program, 10-thousand dollars to the Social Black Belt program at North Port High School and another 10-thousand dollars to start up a volleyball team at Venice High School.
According to the National School Board Association:
-75 percent of small-district school board members receive no salary.
- 40 percent of large-district school board members work 40 hours per month on board-related duties in return for a modest salary.
Sarasota School Board member and chairman Caroline Zucker disagrees with Robinson. She says Robinson’s proposal would limit only the rich to run for school board.
What do you think? Should school board members require a salary or do the job for free?