Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Florida education news: Sales tax, security checks, social media scanning and more

SALES TAX: Hillsborough County voters will get a say in November whether to increase the local sales tax to support school construction and maintenance projects. The School Board met all the requirements, including obtaining an outside audit, to place the item on the ballot.

SECURITY: Many Florida schools failed to conduct security assessments and to accurately report campus crime in the years before the Parkland school shooting, the Associated Press reports. • Brevard County's former superintendent speaks against arming more school personnel, as a state panel weighing security concerns advances the idea, Florida Today reports. • Debate continues over whether the state should redirect unused school guardian funding, TC Palm reports.  • The Marion County school district tightens security efforts for high school football games, the Ocala Star-Banner reports.

SOCIAL MEDIA: A growing number of school districts and universities in Florida and elsewhere have hired companies to scan social media sites for potential threats of violence, the NY Times reports. • A Citrus County teen is arrested for posting a school threat on social media, the Citrus County Chronicle reports.

TEACHER TESTS: Several Florida school districts seek changes to the state's required teacher certification exams, which have a rising failure rate, WFTS reports.

CAREER EDUCATION: The Gulf County school district seeks grant funding to create an industry certification program in unmanned aircraft operation, as the industry is poised to grow in the region, the Port St. Joe Star reports.

TECH TROUBLES: Understaffing caused delays and frustrations in the Manatee County school district's effort to implement a massive new software system, the Bradenton Herald reports.

DRINKING WATER: Two Polk County schools have high lead levels in their water supply, the Ledger reports.

DRESS CODE: Some St. Johns County parents demand changes to a school dress code they say discriminates against girls, the St. Augustine Record reports.

GETTING THERE: A Charlotte County community will provide self-driving school buses to a nearby charter school, the Charlotte Sun reports.

LABOR NEWS: Lake County teachers ratify a negotiated contract agreement, which next heads to the School Board, the Daily Commercial reports.

TODAY: The Florida Supreme Court is expected to release its order on whether Amendment 8 will return to the Nov. 6 ballot. A Leon County judge has removed it, calling the measure's title and summary misleading. While you wait, watch the court's 45-minute hearing on The Florida Channel.

ICYMI: Yesterday's Florida education news roundup

Comments
Six of seven ‘just one of many ideas’ to get more money to Pasco teachers, official says

Six of seven ‘just one of many ideas’ to get more money to Pasco teachers, official says

The idea of having Pasco County teachers work longer days in exchange for more pay has generated significant opposition since school district administrators floated the concept in late August.At the time, officials said they were serious about the "s...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Pinellas school officials push for solution to attendance problems at Plato Academy Pinellas Park

Pinellas school officials push for solution to attendance problems at Plato Academy Pinellas Park

The Pinellas County School Board on Tuesday okayed an improvement plan for Plato Academy Pinellas Park, which earned a D grade last year.Lisa Cunningham, principal of the charter school, presented the plan to officials during a workshop last week. Sh...
Updated: 1 hour ago
New name, veterinary science center for Pinellas Technical High School after $5 million donation

New name, veterinary science center for Pinellas Technical High School after $5 million donation

After a unanimous vote by the Pinellas County School Board Tuesday, Pinellas Technical High School will be renamed to honor the late businessman and philanthropist Richard O. Jacobson of Clearwater.A foundation in his name recently gave $5 milli...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Gum is not a food: Pasco schools seek ‘common sense’ tweaks to football game security

Gum is not a food: Pasco schools seek ‘common sense’ tweaks to football game security

With news of shootings at high school football games in other parts of Florida still fresh, the Pasco County school district amped up security at its sporting events, beginning Sept. 14.It didn't take long for some spectators to spot some flaws in th...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Florida education news: Teacher bonuses, school security, classroom technology and more

Florida education news: Teacher bonuses, school security, classroom technology and more

BONUS CHALLENGE: The Florida Education Association's legal challenge of the "Best and Brightest" bonus program is headed to mediation for a possible resolution. The union contends the program discriminates against educators of a certain age and ...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Florida ‘Best and Brightest’ bonus lawsuit heads to mediation

Florida ‘Best and Brightest’ bonus lawsuit heads to mediation

A year-old case contending Florida's "Best and Brightest" teacher bonus program discriminates against educators of a certain age or race is headed to mediation in November.The complaint focuses on the part of the 2015 program that relies upon...
Published: 09/24/18
Hillsborough Sheriff joins oversight board for school tax

Hillsborough Sheriff joins oversight board for school tax

Sheriff Chad Chronister has agreed to serve as vice chair of an oversight committee for the proposed half-cent sales tax to benefit the Hillsborough County Public Schools.The school district announced his selection Monday morning. Betty Castor, who s...
Published: 09/24/18
First donations are logged in school referendum campaign

First donations are logged in school referendum campaign

Strengthen Our Schools, the political committee that is promoting the half-cent sales tax to benefit the Hillsborough County Public Schools, reported its first $150,600 in contributions this week.The biggest checks, each for $75,000, came from the Hi...
Published: 09/24/18
Florida education news: Scholarships, taxes, security and more

Florida education news: Scholarships, taxes, security and more

SCHOLARSHIPS: Several weeks into the school year, Florida's newest student scholarships are getting closer to reality. More than 2,700 children have applied for a Reading Scholarship, while car dealers will be allowed to start offering tax credi...
Published: 09/24/18
ICYMI: Florida education news in review, week of Sept. 16, 2018

ICYMI: Florida education news in review, week of Sept. 16, 2018

Florida’s race for governor is officially on, and the topic of education promises to be a key issue as the candidates seek support. The major party hopefuls focused on their policy priorities over the past week, and they differ is most every wa...
Published: 09/22/18