Scott Creates Education Task Force

Florida Gov. Rick Scott assembled Thursday a seven-member task force to study the state’s higher education system.

The Blue Ribbon Task Force comes one day after state prosecutors leveled charges against 13 persons for their alleged involvement in the Nov. 19, 2011, hazing that killed Florida A&M drum major Robert Champion in Orlando.

“It’s time to assess the progress of prior reform efforts and identify strategies to improve efficiencies and enhance the system’s effectiveness as an economic catalyst,” Scott was quoted as saying in a press statement.

Florida Chamber Foundation President Dale A. Brill will chair the task force of members chosen by state lawmakers. The task force is scheduled to presents its “final recommendations” on Nov. 15.

“Dr. Brill’s background combines knowledge of higher education and its role as a catalyst for economic development,” said Scott. “He is a proven consensus builder who will drive the strategic thinking necessary to make a comprehensive assessment and action-oriented recommendations.”

Florida Department of Law Enforcement had urged Scott and FAMU to hold off on assembling task forces pending the results of their investigation into the Champion hazing. They announced conclusively that his killing was homicide.