MAKEOVER: Pinellas middle school principal Cheryl DiCicco, who usually pays more attention to her students than herself, gets a new look -- and the kids notice. (Times photo, Lara Cerri)
NEW FOCUS: Pinellas now has more majority-black schools with its new closer-to-home attendance plan, forcing educators to find fresh ways to improve performance.
WRITING CAMP: A Pasco elementary school makes writing fun during a free after-school camp for fourth-graders.
GO AHEAD AND BRING FIDO: But not to classrooms or eating areas, please. Eckerd College allows students to keep their pets in the dorms.
INTERNS EVERYWHERE: Blanton Elementary brings in seven ESOL interns to help with a growing number of English-language learners.
HOW ABOUT THAT DROPOUT RATE? Instead of bragging about winning grants and bonds for affordable housing, Gov. Charlie Crist should focus on lowering Florida's dropout rate as an economic stimulus strategy, the Gainesville Sun editorializes.
SLEEP ON IT: An ethics panel urges the Miami-Dade School Board to delay approval of Alberto Carvalho's contract to become superintendent, questioning the way Carvalho won the appointment, the Miami Herald reports.
UNIFORMS, AGAIN: The Lake School Board plans to revisit the idea of districtwide uniforms, the Orlando Sentinel reports.
WE'VE GOT SPIRIT [SEND]: Sarasota High students compete with more than 2,000 schools nationally in an online spirit contest, the Herald Tribune reports. It's not real until it's on the Internet, right?
MANATEE ARGUES: The teachers union and administration present their cases over an unfair labor practice claim, the Bradenton Herald reports.
KIPP COMING? Duval could become home to Florida's first KIPP charter school, the Florida Times-Union reports.
BANG! A Palm Beach Gardens high school student brings a gun to school, where it goes off in a class, the Palm Beach Post reports. Two Alachua middle school students are arrested for shooting an airsoft gun at classmates, the Gainesville Sun reports.
Visit the Gradebook at noon for an interview with Education Trust president Kati Haycock.