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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

School board will discuss outside visitors



olson.jpgWe're two hours away from the Hillsborough County School Board workshop on outside visitors.

At least that's how it's advertised. How to enforce the Jessica Lunsford Act, which is supposed to keep sex offenders and other dangerous types off school grounds. How to use volunteers from SERVE to screen classroom guests, tutors and chaperones.

Of course we all know the back-story.

Critics have lined up at four recent school board meetings to talk about the Council on American-Islamic Relations, which sent a speaker to a high school world history class. Some take issue with CAIR specifically; others fear Islamic influence in general.

At Tuesday's meeting, school board members did not respond at all to the 21 who spoke.

Conservative activists David Caton and Terry Kemple have not been that restrained this week. Caton offered a cash award to anyone who tips him off to another CAIR visit to the high school. Kemple, in an email, re-stated his belief that CAIR is as objectionable as an organization that defends pedophelia.

A lawyer for the American Civil Liberties Union has already voiced an objection to a policy proposed by Superintendent MaryEllen Elia, which would ask teachers not to invite representatives of any advocacy groups.

The public will not be able to speak at today's 2 p.m. meeting, but people can sit in the audience. Technology permitting, we will file live dispatches.


[Last modified: Friday, March 30, 2012 11:44am]


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