STUDENT ABUSE: Two Pinellas teachers face child abuse charges for encouraging them to fight, and their principal faces obstruction charges for standing in the way of an arrest. All three are suspended pending the outcome of an investigation.
ANOTHER BUS ACCIDENT: Nineteen children are treated for minor injuries after two buses crash into one another in the parking lot of Frost Elementary in Hillsborough. (Times photo, Skip O'Rourke)
MORE QUESTIONS ABOUT FAMU LAW: The struggling school has hired the wife of an embattled state senator, and she's apparently tied to his troubles. FAMU defends the pick, even as students flee and the school's accreditation is at risk.
"THE PATH TO TYRANNY": The UF student who rudely questioned U.S. Sen. John Kerry might have been a loudmouth, but since when it that a crime?, wonders guest columnist Ron Sachs in an op-ed piece. The police reaction, though, represents a step away from freedom.
TUITION HIKE LOOMS: Lawmakers are considering a 2.5 percent increase to help offset a state revenue shortfall, a move both administrators and students seem to support, the Florida Times-Union reports. If only the governor would sign the bill when it comes his way. And that's if the Board of Governors doesn't wrest control away from lawmakers altogether.
NO LUNCH FOR YOU: Broward's poorest students won't get free school meals after Monday unless their parents re-register them for the federal program, the Sun-Sentinel reports. It seems the feds only reimburse a district for kids who are signed up, and the district has been losing money. Seminole County is doing the a similar thing, the Orlando Sentinel reports.
NO RAISE FOR ME: Florida Atlantic University president Frank Brogan turns down a pay raise, saying it would be bad form to take one as the state endures economic hard times, the Palm Beach Post reports. Surely, it doesn't hurt that he already makes more than $350,000 a year.
CHECK THEM AGAIN: Broward officials might have to reinspect hundreds of new classrooms after learning the contractors hired initially to evaluate the work didn't have proper licenses, the Miami Herald reports.
JUST ONE WORD - SPUTNIK: Fifty years ago, the space satellite launched the United States into the world of scientific competition. Some people argue we need another jolt to jump start an education system that lags behind in almost every international measure, the Philadelphia Inquirer reports.
Visit the Gradebook at noon for an interview with Senate Education Committee chairman Don Gaetz, who talks about education funding, class size and the upcoming super-homestead exemption referendum.