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Florida education news: Charter schools, magnet schools, teacher pay and more

By Jeff Solochek
About 15 Strawberry Crest High School students walked out of first period on Tuesday and gathered at the school's entrance to protest the Hillsborough School District's decision to deny teachers a scheduled pay raise. [TONY MARRERO/Times staff]

CHARTER SCHOOLS: An applicant to open a new Hernando County charter school withdraws its proposal after struggling to answer questions from School Board members. • Two applications to start new charters in Pinellas County also withdraw as district officials find deficiencies in their plans. • Four new charter schools seek approval to serve close to 4,400 students in Hillsborough County.

MAGNET SCHOOLS: The Pasco County School Board approves a plan to transform Ridgewood High School into a magnet technical school. The district will begin redrawing attendance boundaries immediately, with a new procedure.

TEACHER PAY: Some Hillsborough County high school students walk out of class in support of teachers' demand for pay raises.

TURNAROUNDS: Duval County school district officials discuss the possibilities for three schools with consistently low test scores, the Florida Times-Union reports. • A struggling Sarasota County charter school gets its improvement plan accepted, the Herald-Tribune reports.

WHAT'S GOING ON? The Okaloosa County school district endures a series of investigations into alleged bad acts, the Northwest Florida Daily News reports.

NEW SCHOOLS: The Manatee County school district breaks ground on a new high school, the Herald-Tribune reports.

NEW OFFICES: The Martin County school district considers where to build new administrative offices, TC Palm reports.

LABOR NEWS: Polk County non-instructional employees ratify a contract update, the Ledger reports. • Miami-Dade County teachers approve a new contract deal, the Miami Herald reports. • Palm Beach County teachers reject the district's latest salary offer, the Palm Beach Post reports.

SUPERINTENDENT SEARCH: Duval County parents offer ideas of what they'd like to see in a new superintendent, the Florida Times-Union reports.

SECURITY: The Pembroke Pines charter school system adds improved video surveillance at five campuses, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

TODAY IN TALLAHASSEE: Senate PreK-12 Appropriations, 10 a.m.; Senate Higher Education Appropriations, 2 p.m.; House PreK-12 Appropriations, 1:30 p.m.; House Post-Secondary Education, 1:30 p.m.; House PreK-12 Innovation, 4 p.m.