Tony Bennett: Florida education commissioner resigns

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) -- Florida Gov. Rick Scott is defending the state's resigning education commissioner, saying he did a good job.

   Scott's statement to reporters in South Florida came at the same time as a news conference in Tallahassee where Education Commissioner Tony Bennett announced his resignation.

   The resignation comes days after The Associated Press reported that Bennett had changed the grade of a political donor's charter school when he was Indiana's education chief.

    Bennett denied wrongdoing but said he didn't want to be a distraction to Scott's efforts to overhaul the state's education system.

    Emails published by the AP this week show that Bennett and his Indiana staff scrambled last fall to ensure Christel DeHaan's school received an A, despite poor 10th-grade algebra scores that initially earned it a C.

   Bennett lost his re-election bid last November in Indiana. He was hired by Florida in December

    Scott said that he did not fire Bennett and that he resigned on his own.

   Scott refused to answer questions about the accusations against Bennett in Indiana. Scott repeated only that he was pleased with Bennett's work in Florida.

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