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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Judge will rehear evidence in Florida third-grade retention lawsuit



Floridians won't be getting a ruling on parents' lawsuit challenging the state's third-grade retention law this week, as anticipated.

Leon Circuit Court judge Karen Gievers has ordered a new evidentiary hearing for 10:30 a.m. Monday.

"Several defendants requested time to submit responses or other motions," Gievers wrote in her order, which came out late Tuesday.

The school districts weren't served with the suit until Tuesday morning.

"Some defendant asked that the service be perfected," Gievers added. She noted she was "otherwise fully advised" before holding the initial hearing on the injunction request.

By the time the new hearing takes place, all the children who were required to repeat third grade will have begun classes. The parents had sought to stop the retention, saying their children were held back because they didn't take the state reading test, and not because they performed poorly in class.

They have noted not all districts treated third graders the same, and said their children are not being treated fairly.

The Pasco School Board, which is a defendant in the case, on Tuesday adopted a legislative platform that calls for clarifications on third grade retention standards. District lobbyist Spencer Pylant said superintendents across the state are looking into proposing multiple measures for making the promotion decision, rather than relying primarily on a child's reading test score.

[Last modified: Wednesday, August 17, 2016 7:11am]


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