The 2010 census records a population of 18.8 million. The state capital is Tallahassee and the largest city is Jackonsville. Florida is known as The Sunshine State because of its generally warm climate - subtropical in many regions, with a true tropical climate in the far southern portions near Key West.
Education in Florida
Education in Florida consists of primary, secondary, undergraduate and graduate schooling.
There are 11 public universities and 28 community colleges. In 1998 there were over 216,000 college students in public universities. The state also has many private universities.
The state's public school systems are administered by the Florida Department of Education (FLDOE). As mandated by the Florida Constitution, Article IX, section 4, Florida has 67 school districts, one for each county. All are separate from municipal government. School districts have the power to tax their residents.
Florida has hundreds of private schools of all types. The FLDOE has no authority over private school operations. Private schools may or may not be accredited, and achievement tests are not required for private school graduating seniors. Many private schools obtain accreditation and perform achievement tests to show parents the school's interest in educational performance.
In 2008, about 55,000 students were homeschooled. Neither FLDOE nor the local school district has authority to regulate home school activities. The government supports and assists homeschooling activities. There is no minimum number of days in a year, or hours in a day, that must be met, and achievement tests are not required for home school graduating seniors.
The State University System of Florida manages and funds Florida's eleven public universities and a public Liberal Arts college: