~ 98 public schools will receive $8.47 million in School Recognition Funds ~

At Graham Elementary, Governor Rick Scott today announced 98 schools in Hillsborough County will share $8.47 million in school recognition bonuses. The funds are awarded based on the schools’ sustained high student academic performance or substantial improvement in student performance in reading, mathematics, science, and writing since last year.

Governor Scott said, “Thank you to our outstanding educators in Hillsborough County. I am pleased to award them with more than $8 million, because of their hard work. Florida has a great education system that helps our students by preparing them for success in college and a career. We know that having a well educated workforce is the best way to bring more jobs to Florida, and that is why as Governor I have made education a priority.”

Schools eligible for recognition awards include those receiving an “A” school grade, improving at least one letter grade from the previous year, or improving more than one letter grade and sustaining the improvement the following school year. Alternative schools that increase their school improvement rating or are rated “improving” also qualify for awards.

Education Commissioner Pam Stewart said, “It’s a pleasure to join Governor Scott in recognizing these high-performing schools. I am proud of the educators and students who worked so hard to achieve this great success.”

“I want to thank Gov. Scott for paying us a visit today to reward our schools for their academic achievement,” said Superintendent Mary Ellen Elia.”All our schools are working hard and deserve to be recognized for their accomplishments.”

The school staff and school advisory council at each recognized school jointly decide how to use the financial award. Schools can use their award dollars for faculty or staff bonuses, to purchase educational equipment or materials, or hire temporary staff to help maintain or improve student performance.

The School Recognition Program is funded by the Florida Lottery. Award distributions are based on $100 per full-time equivalent student for each eligible school for school grades earned in 2012-13.

For further information about the School Recognition Program, including individual school award amounts, visit


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