Links from the Times for Jan. 30
'Teacher should be fired'
In a rare teacher-firing case, a state hearing administrative judge is recommending that Pinellas fire a middle school math teacher for incompetence and insubordination.
- Read the order recommending the firing.
- One expert estimates that 3 to 5 percent of teachers perform poorly and 13 to 20 percent marginally.
- Court records lay out the complaint.
- Court records supporting Brown’s argument.
For states, a failing grade on teacher rentention
States are not doing what it takes to retain good teachers and remove bad ones, according to a study released Thursday by the National Council on Teacher Quality. | Report: Read the national study (PDF)
Read the 12-page report by the state Department of Children and Families on a baby's death in December. Thomas Ludwig, 24, is accused of killing his 2-month-old daughter Diella, who has a twin sister, Shyloh. The girls were born in jail.
Peanut butter recall
New revelations are coming out about the peanut processing plant being linked to the Salmonella poisoning of more than 500 people, and the recall of products using peanut butter from the plant continues to grow. See the list of peanut butter product recalls.
Military skydiver dies after plunge into lake
A skydiver was pulled from a lake near MacDill Air Force Base and taken to Tampa General Hospital early Thursday morning. | Video: Watch footage of the rescue effort
Science proves woman didn't just disappear
Melinda Harder, 20-year-old mother of three, walked to her boyfriend's home in the early hours of July 27, 1980, and was never heard from again. Her disappearance bedeviled investigators and family for nearly three decades. Now, with the help of DNA technology, police have positively identified her body, saying she was murdered and then buried in a St. Petersburg city park. | Previous coverage: 28 years later bones tell a story | Epilogue: Service will remember
Loggerhead turtle rule will hurt gulf's grouper industry
In an effort to protect loggerhead turtles, the Gulf of Mexico Fishery Management Council voted Thursday to banish long-line grouper fishermen to waters at least 300 feet deep for part of the year and to forbid longlining altogether for the rest of the year. Longliners, who catch 60 percent of the gulf's commercial grouper, say the restrictions will put them out of business. Red grouper, the main target of long-liners, rarely venture beyond 300 feet deep. | Previous coverage: Turtles vs. grouper eaters | Interactive: Beach visitors
Judge orders squatters to get out
After nearly eight months of living in Judson Randall's house without paying any rent or utilities, Elizabeth Sewall and Jessica Sewall were ordered Thursday to leave by 5 p.m. today. | Previous coverage: The Safety Harbor squatters.