Florida education news: School prayer, teacher experience, third-grade retention and more
RELIGION IN SCHOOL: Hillsborough district officials remind school administrators that it's not okay to pray with students.
TURNAROUNDS: Students in five low-performing Pinellas elementary schools were more likely to be taught by inexperienced teachers than were children at other schools.
DISCIPLINE: Hernando district investigators determine that former leaders of Moton Elementary School failed to properly discipline students, among other violations.
RETENTION: A Leon Circuit judge hears more than eight hours of testimony in Florida's third-grade retention lawsuit but doesn't issue a ruling on the injunction or venue disputes, the News Service of Florida reports. More from the Orlando Sentinel, Politico Florida.
ZIKA: Miami-Dade students return to classes armed with bug spray, the Miami Herald reports.
COMFORTABLE CLASSROOM: A Lee second grade teacher replaces the standard school furniture for more comfort in an effort to create a better learning environment, the Fort Myers News-Press reports.
LEADERSHIP: The new principal of a Palm Beach high school plans to get tough as he seeks to get the school back to an A rating, the Palm Beach Post reports.
DRESS CODE: At least three Highlands elementary schools require children to wear solid colors for the new school year, Highlands Today reports.
ATTENDANCE: Volusia schools launch a new initiative aimed at reducing chronic absenteeism, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reports.
CIVICS LESSON: A Seminole high school teacher schedules a School Board candidate debate for his students, only to have it canceled because of a political activity ban at school, the Orlando Sentinel reports.
CAMPAIGN TRAIL: Political action committees pour money into a Sarasota School Board race that features the immediate past president of the state school boards association, the Herald-Tribune reports. * The Polk School Board loses a lawsuit seeking to decide for itself when to hold a local tax referendum, the Ledger reports.
STATE FUNDS: An Orlando private school recently stripped of its state scholarship money is again receiving the funds, WFTV reports.