SHARE THE PAIN: Tampa-area school board members say they'd gladly give back part of their salary as they look at every option to save money. State lawmakers are poised to insert that option into law. (Image from Don't Mess With Taxes blog)
PINELLAS WILL CLOSE SCHOOLS: The Pinellas board unanimously votes to shut seven schools and cancel busing for thousands to help balance the budget, with more cuts on the way. Parents in other counties are luckier, as St. Lucie squashes rumors that it will merge schools (Port St. Lucie Tribune) and Duval rejects a proposal to close two schools (Florida Times-Union).
BREACH OF CONTRACT? A former Hernando board member says superintendent Wayne Alexander never informed the board that he would be looking for a new job, even though his contract requires such notification.
INSPIRED: Parents at Pride Elementary in New Tampa decide to fight against a cell tower on their campus after seeing Coleman Middle back down on a tower in the face of community pressure.
LET HER RUN: State Rep. Rick Kriseman urges Kenneth City officials to give voters the final say over whether a teacher can be mayor despite a charter rule barring public employees from holding the job.
THEY CAN'T AFFORD IT: Pasco leads an effort to convince lawmakers to delay a requirement to have online courses available for kindergarten through eighth grade by August.
TOP OF THE CLASS: Pasco High's Navy Junior ROTC air rifle team prepares for next round; Pasco student leads can drive to benefit cancer center (Times photo, Michele Miller)
TOO MUCH HOMEWORK? Broward takes a look at a how much time it wants kids to spend on schoolwork after school, the Miami Herald reports.
'KITE RUNNER' STAYS ON SHELVES: Okaloosa rejects a parent request to remove "The Kite Runner" from its high school curriculum, the Northwest Florida Daily News reports.
BUDGET ROUNDUP: Miami-Dade parents and students plan a rally to protest the state's cuts to education funding, the Miami Herald reports. Florida lawmakers must find new revenue to avoid eroding the quality of our schools, the Bradenton Herald editorializes. Lawmakers shouldn't make hasty decisions about FCAT just to save money during the special session, the Herald-Tribune editorializes. Sarasota looks for ways to cut millions without hurting education, the Herald-Tribune reports. Escambia freezes hiring, the Pensacola News Journal reports.
ANOTHER P.E. SOLUTION: Willis Elementary in Manatee introduces flag rugby to its students, the Bradenton Herald reports.
SEEKING ANSWERS: Leon leaders gather to discuss ways to improve performance at their struggling south side schools, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.
AROUND THE NATION: A Washington State court rules that it's OK for teachers to have sex with 18-year-old students, the AP reports. Los Angeles plans to lay off 2,300 teachers if no alternatives emerge, the LA Times reports. The IRS plans to take a closer look at whether colleges and universities are using their nonprofit status to avoid paying taxes, the NY Times reports.