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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Today's news



HILLSBOROUGH'S ONGOING HOLIDAY STRUGGLE: School officials are still clinging to the notion that Good Friday with classes will be Good Friday with high absenteeism and little learning. These concerns don't seem to bother other districts that have classes on that holiday. Meanwhile, members of the Jewish community are complaining that it's just not fair to include just one religion's holiday in the school calendar while ignoring all the others. The School Board grapples with the issue tonight.

SPEAKING ABOUT RELIGION IN SCHOOL ... A New Jersey high school junior is fighting his school district over a teacher who told his class that if the students didn't believe Jesus died for their sins, they belong in Hell, the New York Times reports.  Since reporting the harassment, the student claims district officials have treated him like the problem.

MAYBE THEY SHOULD TRUST THEIR INSTINCTS: Florida state education officials had their doubts about granting Kevin L. Jefferson a teaching certificate, given his background of assault arrests. He got the license and got a job in Hillsborough County schools. Now he's in the county jail on a charge of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon (not on school grounds).

DIDN'T THEY ALREADY SAY NO? Despite opposition by Gov. Charlie Crist, a lawmaker has filed a bill to let the University of Florida charge a fee of $500 per semester  to help pay for more professors and advisers.

WHEN P.E. LOOKS LIKE A VIDEO ARCADE: Kids love what experts are now calling "exergames" - Dance Dance Revolution and the like. So they're showing up in schools as a way to keep them fit, the San Francisco Chronicle reports. Will they get bored after a few rounds? Or will this work? University of South Florida physical education professor Stephen Sanders tells the Chronicle that more research is needed.

LATEST STAR BATTLE: It's in Palm Beach County, where a special magistrate will soon be assigned to mediate the dispute between teachers and the School Board, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

IT'S OK TO BE SMART: Sadly, it's a lesson that many young black children must learn. Some Washington D.C.-area parents are working hard to teach it, the Washington Post reports, in an effort to prove that the achievement gap doesn't have to exist.

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:14am]


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