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Florida education news: Schools of Hope, rezoning, accountability and more

A roundup of stories from around the state.
Chairman Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Land O' Lakes, was a primary backer of the Schools of Hope legislation.
Chairman Rep. Richard Corcoran, R-Land O' Lakes, was a primary backer of the Schools of Hope legislation.
Published Dec. 19, 2017

SCHOOLS OF HOPE: Florida lawmakers established a new program in the spring, allowing charter school operators with successful past efforts to open new ventures near struggling district schools. The actual procedure to get these state-backed "Schools of Hope" up and running still doesn't exist. The Department of Education now has issued a proposed rule to kick start the program.

ATTENDANCE ZONES: A court ruling on a challenge to Pasco County's year-old west-side school boundary revisions is due in early January.

BAD ACTS: A Pasco County elementary school teacher is arrested on child abuse charges not related to her job.

FEDERAL ACCOUNTABILITY: Another review dings Florida's Every Student Succeeds Act plan as insufficient in areas of equity, Education Week reports.

TERM LIMITS: A state lawmaker files legislation to hold a referendum that would set school board member term limits, similar to the proposal before the Constitution Revision Commission, the News Service of Florida reports.

MENTAL HEALTH: A Lake County high school holds a suicide-prevention community meeting after three area students take their lives, the Orlando Sentinel reports.

LEGAL COUNSEL: The Sarasota County School Board hires an Orlando lawyer to look into discrimination allegations by an employee who once accused the superintendent of harassment, the Herald-Tribune reports.

SCHOOL CHOICE: The Leon County school district streamlines and simplifies its choice application process, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.

LABOR NEWS: The Okeechobee County teachers union declares impasse in contract talks, the Okeechobee News reports.

OPEN MEETINGS: A Florida Sunshine Law expert questions the Lake County School Board's practice of having the superintendent meet individually with members about the board agenda, the Daily Commercial reports.