Saturday, April 21, 2018

Florida education news: Budget showdown, student choices, Publix and more

SHOWDOWN: The Florida House and Senate took to their respective floors to debate education funding, and walked away with significant differences. Most notably, while the House tied its Republican policy priorities to its spending plan, Senate leaders said they want nothing to do with that approach. "You've made the stakes (about) are we going to get to go home on time and have a budget completed, rather than if this is a good idea or not for the people of the state of Florida?" Senate budget chairman Rob Bradley said.

CHOICES: Some Pasco County schools are finding success in letting students take more control of how they learn each day.

WHAT'S FOR LUNCH? Publix is building a new grocery on the USF campus.

SPECIAL EDUCATION: Pasco County parents are raising concerns over the district's plan to consolidate and relocate some programs for students with special needs.

SPECIALS: The Lake County School Board decides not to require every elementary school to have an art teacher, the Daily Commercial reports.

SCHOOL SAFETY: Clay County schools increase law enforcement presence after receiving threats, WOKV reports. • Citrus County schools also received similar threats, which appeared to be a hoax, the Citrus County Chronicle reports.

CHARTER SCHOOLS: Collier County charter school officials say they fear the school district will take back shared capital projects tax revenue if a judge rules against the sharing law, the Naples Daily News reports. • State lawmakers consider provisions to undo much of the revenue sharing, WLRN reports. • A well-known Bay County charter school leader is ousted from his post, the Panama City News Herald reports. • The head of a Sarasota County charter school resigns, the Herald-Tribune reports.

TURNAROUNDS: Six low-performing Polk County schools will be run by outside contractors in the fall, the Ledger reports.

IN COURT: A federal judge rules against a Lee County student who sued the school district claiming a coach's hard foul was akin to corporal punishment, the Fort Myers News-Press reports.

POLITICS: The Leon County school district finds a board member's complaint against an administrator to be unsubstantiated, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.

TODAY IN TALLAHASSEE: Senate PreK-12 Appropriations, 10 a.m. (On the agenda are bills relating to Hope Scholarships, graduation requirements and more) • Senate Higher Education Appropriations, 12:30 p.m. • Full House, 1:30 p.m. (Third reading of appropriations acts, HB 7055) • Full Senate, 3 p.m. (Third reading of appropriations acts)

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Griffin will hold town hall at Pierce Middle School

Griffin will hold town hall at Pierce Middle School

Hillsborough County School Board member April Griffin is continuing her tour of town hall meetings with a gathering Monday evening at Pierce Middle School.The session will begin at 6 p.m. at Pierce Middle School, 5511 N Hesperides Street in Town 'N C...
Published: 04/20/18
Leon County judge issues formal order in HB 7069 case

Leon County judge issues formal order in HB 7069 case

Leon County Judge John Cooper has boiled his order against 13 Florida school districts' lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of HB 7069 down to writing.As announced two weeks ago, Cooper found against the districts' arguments that the Legislatur...
Published: 04/20/18
Florida education news: Student walkouts, security, constitutional amendments and more

Florida education news: Student walkouts, security, constitutional amendments and more

STUDENT PROTESTS: Aiming to keep their gun control and school safety message alive, high school students around the Tampa Bay area and Florida will hold another class walkout in memory of the 1999 Columbine shooting. "After Parkland, I've f...
Published: 04/20/18
Gradebook podcast: Arming Florida’s school employees – Bay County takes a closer look

Gradebook podcast: Arming Florida’s school employees – Bay County takes a closer look

Florida lawmakers recently created a program to allow schools to have armed employees on campus, as part of an expanded security measure. Most superintendents and school boards have balked. But not the folks in Bay County, in Florida's Panhandle, whe...
Published: 04/19/18
Florida education proposal tagged as Amendment 8 (sound familiar?)

Florida education proposal tagged as Amendment 8 (sound familiar?)

The Florida Constitution Revision's already controversial education proposal is quickly gaining its own social media tag based on its anticipated spot on the November ballot — #Amendment8.If that sounds familiar to education advocates across th...
Published: 04/19/18
Florida education news: Student activists, budget cuts, parent voices and more

Florida education news: Student activists, budget cuts, parent voices and more

STUDENT ACTIVISTS: After the Parkland school shooting, high school students across the Tampa Bay area and Florida rose up to say 'never again.' Articulate and poised, the students galvanized the nation on the key issues of school safety and gun ...
Published: 04/19/18
Teacher asks Pasco County School Board to revise its policy on service animals

Teacher asks Pasco County School Board to revise its policy on service animals

Pasco County school district rules are clear: Service animals helping students or staff are allowed in schools and district property.What's more vague is what to do with service animals in training.Wesley Chapel High School science teacher Susan...
Published: 04/18/18
Hillsborough district looks for rebuilding firms at Lee Elementary

Hillsborough district looks for rebuilding firms at Lee Elementary

Despite insisting no decision has been made concerning fire-ravaged Robert E. Lee Elementary School, the Hillsborough County School District this week invited contractors to step forward if they can rebuild the school.The district anticipates a budge...
Published: 04/18/18
Pasco parents still seek answers on proposed school rezoning

Pasco parents still seek answers on proposed school rezoning

At the end of a lengthy public hearing on school zones last week, Pasco County School Board chairwoman Cynthia Armstrong told parents to continue sending thoughts and ideas right up to the scheduled May 1 vote."This is still open for comment," Armstr...
Published: 04/18/18
Florida education news: Testing, security, unions and more

Florida education news: Testing, security, unions and more

TESTING: The Florida Department of Education again alters its recommendation on tests that high school students may substitute for their state graduation requirements. Amid heavy criticism, officials have now suggested that current high sch...
Published: 04/18/18