SOMETHING TO TALK ABOUT: Several key issues have stagnated while the Pinellas School Board has focused all its attention on its proposed student assignment plan. Board members hope the issues, including graduation rates and an upcoming tax referendum, soon will see the light of day. But is the district plan, which will create high-poverty, high-minority schools, one worth approving? Reporter Tom Tobin explores that question in a Perspectives piece.
UPHILL BATTLE: The Florida Taxation and Budget Reform Commission takes a look at former senator John McKay's proposal to eliminate sales tax exemptions and put the revenue into education. Not all welcome the idea.
AT-RISK PROGRAM AT RISK: The Pinellas YMCA might not continue a program for "problem" kids at six middle schools if it doesn't get its federal grant renewed.
HERNANDO CONTRACT APPROVED: Teachers overwhelmingly accept a deal for 6 percent raises.
DAMN THE CRITICS. FULL SPEED AHEAD: The Pasco School Board should move forward with an plan to provide affordable "workforce" housing for district employees, the Times editorializes.
MAKING PERFORMANCE PAY PAY OFF: A plan to provide bonuses to teachers whose students perform well on the FCAT, but without a monitoring system in place to prevent cheating, could lead Florida to paying teachers who cheat the best, Hoover Institution research fellow Liam Julian writes in the Orlando Sentinel.
WEAR YOUR TAGS: Palm Beach schools have asked students to wear ID tags for a few years, as a security measure. Generally, the schools have not required it. But some are making it a mandate, the Palm Beach Post reports.
RATING PRINCIPALS IN LEON: Even parents will get a say in evaluating whether their school leaders, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.
PERKS FOR PRIVATE SCHOOLS: A Port St. Lucie council member suggests offering incentives to get private, for profit schools to come to town to compete with low-performing public schools, the Palm Beach Post reports.
THE MARK OF SUCCESS: Congress is trying to find a way to gauge whether schools are up to snuff without relying solely on standardized tests, the Washington Post reports. Seems like everyone has an idea.