Gov. DeSantis laments Legislature stopping short on school board term limits

Desantis, Ron - 5
'I think it should be eight years, two terms.'

Gov. Ron DeSantis offered a qualified endorsement Tuesday of legislation (CS/HB 1467) imposing term limits on school board members statewide, but said it didn’t go far enough.

“I’m a big believer in term limits,” DeSantis said. “I think it should be eight years, two terms. They did three terms, which, you know, it’s fine and I wouldn’t veto the bill just over that. But if it were a standalone measure, I would have insisted on just two terms for school board members because I think that’s enough time to go, serve, get stuff done.”

“Is the 12 (years) the worst thing in the world? It may be good,” DeSantis said, “because we have some in the state that have been really entrenched for a long time.”

Eight years are enough for the Governor, he reiterated, saying the House measure was a model of doing it right.

“I’m a huge believer in term limits,” DeSantis added. “It tells these legislators that your time is limited. You come in, leave a legacy.”

In the “big morass” of Washington, DeSantis said, politicians “get elected and stay there as long as they can” because term limits are not in effect.

They “stay there for decades, create these little fiefdoms,” DeSantis decried.

The Governor did not comment on the fact that these term limits won’t affect anyone until well into the next decade.

The new clock starts running after the 2022 election cycle, and board members would be allowed to serve through 2034, however “entrenched” they might be.

A more controversial bit of the legislation, meanwhile, eluded specific comment from the Governor.

The bill will require school districts to list all library and instructional materials in use in an online database, with a multistep review process before adoption, including a mandatory public hearing and a “reasonable” opportunity for public comment.

It also requires elementary schools to hire a Department of Education trained media specialist to curate materials and compels school districts to report materials and books that draw public objections. The DOE would then publish that list for circulation to guide content management decisions, including withdrawing texts deemed objectionable from circulation to students.

DeSantis noted that he had not reviewed the legislation, but he offered conceptual support for what he called “curriculum transparency” in his remarks.

A.G. Gancarski

A.G. Gancarski has written for since 2014. He is based in Northeast Florida. He can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter: @AGGancarski


  • TJC

    March 15, 2022 at 1:04 pm

    When DeSantis complains about what he calls “little fiefdoms” in Washington D.C., it must be because they are little, not because they are fiefdoms, because he is the eager heir apparent to the largest fiefdom in America, The Fiefdom of Trump.
    Unless Donald Junior has some say in the matter, of course. Wouldn’t be medieval politics without a little backstabbing.

    • Antonio

      March 16, 2022 at 1:32 pm

      Serious question: Why would you not want term limits?

      • Inmates Are Running the Asylum

        March 16, 2022 at 1:54 pm

        That’s a fair question, and I can see the benefits of term limits.

        I also see the benefits of the continuity of relationships made between the board members while in term beween themselves and postive actors/donors at large. Those relationship could benefit the school very much, as well as public trust of those in office.

        • Antonio

          March 17, 2022 at 12:23 pm

          I understand the benefits to continuance, but there’s far too much room for corruption with any long standing position. It happens at the private level, and it’s much worse in positions of societal power. Term limits are a good guardrail to slow that from happening.

  • Yep

    March 15, 2022 at 3:45 pm

    Dumb””” Texas: where did all our teachers go? Why is everyone quitting?

    Soon to be dumb””” Florida: I know right?

  • tom palmer

    March 15, 2022 at 7:15 pm

    DeSantis has become a sad partisan hack. Florida can do better.

    • Antonio

      March 16, 2022 at 1:33 pm

      Term limits are partisan?

  • marcus

    March 16, 2022 at 3:42 pm

    tom palmer, I suppose you voted for the crack addicted, alcoholic, sexual pervert who ran on the dem ticket?

    Time to wake up, there are only two real men in politics today; Trump and Desantis.

Comments are closed.


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