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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Today's news

Johnwinn02_2 WINN HAD A FEELING: Last year's third-grade FCAT scores didn't sit well with then-commissioner John Winn, either. He ordered three separate evaluations of the test but turned up nothing. That errors would come to light, as happened this week, was "always my greatest fear."

EDUCATION BUDGET VETOES: Gov. Crist nixes $140-million in college construction projects, including a new USF campus in Lakeland, and rejects a university tuition increase. The governor sent a clear message with his budget vetoes, the editorial board says: Tighten your belts.

FINANCIAL AID OFFICIALS GATHER: No surprise, they talk about the student loan scandal that, like snowbirds, has migrated from the northeast to Florida. Some fret, while others say it's not that big of a deal. Either way, they look for ways to improve their battered profession.

Life is filled with unsolicited advice, and the Times editorial board offers graduates some of its own as they grab their diplomas and move on in life.

SPEAKING OF TIGHT TIMES: The Volusia school district plans to eliminate 200 aides, as its finance team projects having $13-million less next year than the one that's just ending, the Orlando Sentinel reports. Any guesses as to which district cries poor next?

MORE FCAT: The Miami Herald reports that the age of high-stakes testing is here to stay, despite the latest FCAT scoring concerns. The Palm Beach Post tells more about the state Senate probe that the Gradebook reported yesterday.

Hillsbo_lastday180_2A FINAL THOUGHT: School's out for summer. And what a long summer it will be. Thanks to the state mandate that the school year not start earlier than two weeks before Labor Day, kids will get to do what they do for 2-1/2 weeks longer than a year ago. Times reporter Letitia Stein tallied it up. In a nutshell, last summer, vacation lasted 5,961,600 seconds. This summer, it will be 7,516,800 seconds. If you're counting. And you will be. (Times photo, Keri Wiginton)

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:17am]


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