DISTRICTS SEEK ADVICE: Facing budget cuts larger than many have seen before, Tampa area school leaders turn to their employees and comunity members for ideas.
HOME AWAY FROM HOME: St. Petersburg College opens its first residential dorm.
WHERE'S RUDY CREW NOW? Teaching at the University of Southern California, that's where, the Miami Herald reports.
'ABSOLUTE FOOLISHNESS': That's what Lee's superintendent calls one of his board member's request for a state audit of funds, the Naples Daily News reports.
LEARNING BY DOING: A Bonita Springs elementary teacher gets her reluctant readers to improve their skills by reading to preschoolers, the Naples Daily News reports.
FIGHT THE SYSTEM: A small Escambia school that received an F from the state argued that technicalities hurt small schools, pressed for changes and won, the Pensacola News-Journal reports.
FCAT PREP: Manatee teachers take time to make sure their kids know how to take the writing exam, which begins next week, the Bradenton Herald reports. // State education officials, meanwhile, are on the lookout for essays that appear canned, the Miami Herald reports. // Escambia students say they're tired of FCAT prep, the Pensacola News-Journal reports.
BUDGET ROUNDUP: Orange prepares to close or merge 16 elementary schools, the Orlando Sentinel reports. // Leon considers school closures and layoffs while cutting $12 million, the Tallahassee Democrat reports. // Lake hopes its continued enrollment growth will help to absorb some of its losses, the Orlando Sentinel reports.
Visit the Gradebook at noon for an interview with Bill Cook, an organizer of Parents Against Cell Towers at Schools.