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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

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Questionmarks WHO'S NEXT? Clayton Wilcox is so yesterday's news. The moment he announced his retirement, folks inside the Pinellas district and outside began positioning themselves to become the next superintendent. Still no decision on how the search will proceed.

IF USF BUILDS IT ... Well, it's just not a sure thing that students will come to fill up a full-blown campus in Lakeland. Even as university officials push lawmakers to infuse some cash into the project, some doubters have raised questions about the need.

TURNING IT AROUND: Troy Smith is the kind of kid who teachers figured never would make it through school. He's proven them wrong. Now Troy, and dozens of other Pinellas students like him, will be honored for beating the odds. See the list of honorees here.

St. Pete College will open the first orthotics school in the southeastern United States.

A IS FOR ART: Skycrest Elementary School immerses its students in the arts, its staff believing that the well-rounded education helps their school in the state's grading system.

WHAT'S GOING ON IN FLORIDA'S HIGHER ED: It's a power struggle over who controls tuition, having very little to do with the "world-class" education that many leaders espouse, columnist and FSU professor Diane Roberts writes.

FCAT CHANGES: The details are slightly different in the House and Senate versions. But the point is clear - schools are not to abandon the curriculum for the "FCAT frenzy." The test will come later in the year. Social studies will become part of the annual exam. Here's the story in the Orlando Sentinel. More from the AP (via the Herald-Tribune).

GO HIGHER: Florida's community college system wants to help more people get into higher education, chancellor Will Holcombe writes in a guest column for the Daytona Beach News-Journal.

NO CONFIDENCE: The Miami-Dade school police union signals its lack of confidence in its chief, the Miami Herald reports.

LEAVE THE BONUS ALONE: Gov. Charlie Crist has urged lawmakers not to cut bonuses to National Board-certified teachers, but the reduction still looks likely, the AP reports (via Miami Herald).

SORRY, BUT NO: The Collier School Board rejects teacher pleas to give them a better raise, the Naples Daily News reports.

ANTI-BULLYING BILL CLEARS HOUSE: The bill has won House approval for three years. The next stop is the Senate, which has been the place where the bill has died before, the Fort Myers News-Press reports.

E-MAIL BLOCKED: A Brevard School Board member seeking election as county property appraiser sends a campaign e-mail message to all school district employees on their district accounts, succeeding only in getting his campaign e-mail account blocked by the district, Florida Today reports.

Visit the Gradebook at noon for an interview with State Board of Education member Phoebe Raulerson, who talks about career education.

[Last modified: Tuesday, May 25, 2010 9:39am]


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