TAMPA, Fla (WFLA) – The state will not be taking over the Hillsborough County School District as feared. The state decided to use $101 million in COVID-relief money to help offset some major losses for the district.
“We did everything we could by closing the gap by $55 million in the last four months, and we were going to be about nine million dollars shy of it,” said Superintendent Addison Davis.
The Hillsborough County school district had a tight deadline of May 12 to meet Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran’s request to fix the budget shortfall.
“This is a celebration. This is an opportunity that after mitigation strategies that we put in place we not get to avoid receivership in Hillsborough County School district,” Davis said.
Superintendent Davis said now is the time to put the full focus back on student needs.
“Look at purchased educational platforms that we addressed without children as we addressed the digital and address the digital divide and addressed the achievement gap that our students were facing,” Davis said.
Some school board members, teachers and parents have criticized Davis for his handling of the budget crisis, especially when it came to staff cuts. Davis said it was necessary.
“That’s all led us to being prepared for next year,” Davis said.
District leaders tell 8 On Your Side they’re expecting even more money from the state. They’re also working on a financial advisory committee to help track the financial status of the school system.