Monday, July 16, 2018

Florida education news: Diversity, demands, rivalries and more

SEEKING DIVERSITY: Two Pasco County African-American moms are asking the school district to better train faculty and staff on how to handle cultural differences among students.

FIGHTING BACK: Recently fired former Hernando County superintendent Lori Romano demands a hearing to prove she was dismissed without cause, which could allow her access to retirement benefits.

RIVALRIES: Pasco High's football coach tries to cancel his school's long-running grudge match against nearby Zephyrhills High, alleging recruiting violations. Superintendent Kurt Browning steps in to ensure the game goes on.

AMENDMENT 8: The bulk of money behind Amendment 8 on the November ballot is coming from charter school firms and supporters of a controversial visa program, News Service of Florida reports. Amendment 8 would allow creation of a state charter authorizer, among other things.

GROWTH: The emergence of two new charter schools could eliminate the Brevard County school district's need to build new schools of its own to ease crowding, Florida Today reports.

TAX HOLIDAY: Computers are back on the list of items exempted from sales tax during Florida's annual back-to-school tax holiday, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

SECURITY: The Sarasota County school district has had a winding path to arrive at its new security plan, the Herald-Tribune reports. • Districts around the state are interpreting Florida's new school security law differently, leading to a variety of results, TC Palm reports. • Volusia County school guards begin training, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reports. • Palm Beach County school district officials and police union leaders negotiate a 5 percent raise for school officers, the Palm Beach Post reports.

SCHOOL GRADES: Duval County school district leaders discuss plans to improve based on their state grades, WJXT reports. • Clay County school district leaders see progress in their schools' performance and aim to move even higher, Clay Today reports.

CERTIFICATION: Nearly 100 Polk County teachers will lose their jobs because of problems with their state certification, the Ledger reports.

LABOR NEWS: Florida's teacher organized labor movement appears to be gaining membership in the face of new requirements to remain active, the Orlando Sentinel reports.

TURNAROUNDS: Some Bay County parents complain about the replacement of their school principal, the Panama City News Herald reports.

NIMBY: The Duval County School Board seeks to make it harder for marijuana dispensaries to locate near schools, the Florida Times-Union reports.

MENTAL HEALTH: Critics raise concerns that Florida's new law requiring students to reveal their mental health records to schools will continue the stigma those children face, Florida Phoenix reports.

CAMPAIGN TRAIL: The Broward Teachers Union does not endorse any School Board candidates with ties to Marjory Stoneman Douglas High, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

ON BOARD: Manatee County Sheriff Rick Wells considers leaving the board of a charter school amid allegations the school's principal wrote a job recommendation for a teacher accused of child pornography, the Herald-Tribune reports.

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Florida education news: Addresses, ethics, security and more

Florida education news: Addresses, ethics, security and more

WHERE DO YOU LIVE? The Pasco County School Board will consider tightening rules for when it can remove students from schools over fraudulent registration forms.ETHICS: A Hillsborough County disability rights advocate files an ethics complai...
Updated: 1 hour ago
ICYMI: Florida education news in review, week of July 8, 2018

ICYMI: Florida education news in review, week of July 8, 2018

Another week, another lawsuit. This time, it’s the League of Women Voters challenge to Amendment 8, a measure headed to the November ballot unless a judge stops it. The group contends the proposal is misleading because it aims to change charter...
Published: 07/14/18
Ethics complaint against Hillsborough School Board member Lynn Gray

Ethics complaint against Hillsborough School Board member Lynn Gray

A disability rights advocate in Tampa has filed a state ethics complaint against Hillsborough County School Board member Lynn Gray, based on reports that appeared in recent months in the La Gaceta newspaper.Karen Clay has asked the state agency to in...
Published: 07/13/18
Pasco school district looks to strengthen student address verification rules

Pasco school district looks to strengthen student address verification rules

Pasco County parents have demanded their school district amplify its efforts to make sure students are not lying about their addresses for more than two years. They've done so in hopes that drive might alleviate the need to change attendance zon...
Published: 07/13/18
Gradebook podcast: Why the Hernando School Board fired its superintendent

Gradebook podcast: Why the Hernando School Board fired its superintendent

Florida's Hernando County school district is proving that not only the biggest systems suffer from politics and infighting.After years of internal disputes, and growing discontent within the general public, the board recently fired superintendent Lor...
Published: 07/13/18
Florida education news: Amendment lawsuit, charter appeals, safety and more

Florida education news: Amendment lawsuit, charter appeals, safety and more

AMENDMENT 8: Calling the title and summary "misleading," the Florida League of Women Voters asks the Leon County Court to remove Amendment 8 from the November ballot. The measure includes three items — civics education, school board t...
Published: 07/13/18
Pinellas School Board candidates talk inequity, retaliation and more at wide-ranging forum

Pinellas School Board candidates talk inequity, retaliation and more at wide-ranging forum

ST. PETERSBURG — Pinellas School Board candidates fielded questions about school security, educational inequity and retaliation in a wide-ranging Thursday evening forum at Pinellas Technical College.A dozen candidates, spread across four races,...
Published: 07/12/18
Pasco teacher contract talks continue focus on evaluations

Pasco teacher contract talks continue focus on evaluations

With some key financial data still unavailable, Pasco County teacher contract negotiators kept their attention turned to improving annual performance evaluations as they met Thursday afternoon.Representatives from both sides continued their focu...
Published: 07/12/18
Lawsuit challenges education amendment on Florida ballot

Lawsuit challenges education amendment on Florida ballot

A constitutional amendment on the November ballot that would allow charter school organizers to bypass local school boards to get approval is "intentionally misleading" because it doesn't directly explain to voters that the amendment is designed to c...
Published: 07/12/18
Approve those charter schools, Florida review panel says

Approve those charter schools, Florida review panel says

The Palm Beach County School Board lost its court battle in 2017 challenging the state's authority to overturn its denial of a charter school application.Now the board is poised to see its rejection of two charters overturned.Applicants to open ...
Published: 07/12/18