WE'RE NO. 10: Education Week ranks Florida 10th among all states in educational quality, up from 31st just three years ago. Some leaders cheer, while others worry about how pending budget cuts will affect future quality. (Times photo illustration)
SPEAKING OF CUTS: Lawmakers unveil a budget balancing plan that relies heavily on reducing education funding. Still, Pasco officials say this round of cuts isn't as bad as it could be. They're more worried about what will happen in the spring. Orlando area school leaders share those views, as do key lawmakers, the Orlando Sentinel reports. Hernando, meanwhile, frets about how it will handle the situation as its finance director resigns.
MORE BUDGET NEWS: Lawmakers signal a willingness to consider letting districts use new textbook money to pay their bills, the Florida Times-Union reports. Some senators say class size will have to take a back seat for a little bit longer, the Herald-Tribune reports. Duval considers 30 possible cuts to save millions, including a wage freeze and a reduction in specialty teachers, the Florida Times-Union reports. Lee projects the need to cut 400 jobs, the Fort Myers News-Press reports. Manatee leaders say they can handle the proposals coming out of Tallahassee without more drastic cuts, the Bradenton Herald reports.
DOES IT COUNT AS A CLASS IF NO ONE IS THERE? The University of Florida will operate as usual Friday despite students' plans to watch their football team play in the national championship and then party afterward Thursday, the Florida Times-Union reports.
NO APPEAL: Gov. Crist's administration decides not to challenge a court decision that deemed the Florida Schools of Excellence Commission unconstitutional. The Wall Street Journal deems Crist's decision a bad one.
EARLY START: Brevard schools won't have to put off the first day of school until two weeks before Labor Day because of the district's continued strong performance, Florida Today reports.
AROUND THE NATION: A Virginia 6-year-old boy who missed his school bus jumps in the car and tries to drive himself to school, the AP reports. The ACLU sues a North Carolina school district for barring a peace activist from talking to students about alternatives to military service, USA Today reports. Texas universities consider budget cuts as their endowment portfolios shrink, the Dallas Morning News reports.