Florida education news: School safety, education spending, and more

Gov. Rick Scott MONICA HERNDON | Times
Gov. Rick Scott MONICA HERNDON | Times
Published March 9

SCHOOL SAFETY: The Legislature's school safety and gun control bill landed on Gov. Rick Scott's desk Thursday. Today, after meeting with families of the Parkland school shooting victims, Scott is set to sign the measure into law. State Sen. Bill Galvano, a key sponsor, says amending the legislation to exclude many teachers from the armed "guardian" provision helped sway Scott's view. • President Donald Trump suggested lawmakers were "listening to me" in crafting the legislation. • The Florida Education Association has urged Scott to veto the funding portion of the "guardian" program, which it opposes. • Legal experts suggest the armed employees could become exposed to lawsuits as a result of the program, Reuters reports. • Critics also worry that 132 hours of training would not be enough to prepare the employees for a real crisis situation, USA Today reports. • Bay County school district leaders say they are open to the using the "guardian" program, the Panama City News Herald reports. Flagler County officials rejected the idea, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reports.

SHOOTING AVERTED: Brevard County officials tell parents that a local high school thwarted a Parkland-type shooting a year ago, Florida Today reports.

LOCKDOWN RULES: Escambia County schools post instructions for parents and others to follow if their children's school is locked down, the Pensacola News-Journal reports.

BUDGETS: Lawmakers unveiled their $89 billion budget, a record level boosted by school safety and hurricane responses. Base student allocation is up 47 cents, or 0.01 percent, leaving district officials concerned that any new funding will be restricted in use. See the proposed FEFP here.  More from the News Service of Florida.

CHOPPING BLOCK: A Miami performing arts school with a long list of famous alumni stands to lose added state funding, Politico Florida reports.

TAXES: Sarasota County leaders discuss their upcoming property tax referendum, the Herald-Tribune reports.

TEACHER DISCIPLINE: The Hernando County school district suspends a teacher accused of harassing a co-worker.

BAD ACTS: A Duval County teacher is arrested on federal child pornography charges, the Florida Times-Union reports. • A Broward County assistant principal loses his certification for a year after making lewd text messages to a student, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

UNWELCOME COMMENTS: Parents at an Orange County middle school raise concerns about a teacher's anti-Muslim statements on social media, the Orlando Sentinel reports.

TODAY: House session, 10:30 a.m. • Senate session, 1 p.m.