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Florida education news: Civics, start times, turnarounds and more

A roundup of stories from around the state.
Seventh graders pore over issues in a newspaper during civics class at Gulf Middle School in New Port Richey.  [Times | 2012]
Seventh graders pore over issues in a newspaper during civics class at Gulf Middle School in New Port Richey. [Times | 2012]
Published Feb. 2, 2018|Updated Feb. 2, 2018

CIVIC LITERACY: Calling civics a foundational value to good citizenship, a  Florida Constitution Revision Commission committee advances a proposal to enshrine in the state constitution the idea of teaching it in public schools. "Understanding your rights and obligations as a citizen is a core value which I think should be a permanent part of our constitution to be sure it doesn't get swept to the side when the Legislature comes up with some new idea," sponsor Don Gaetz said.

START TIMES: Pinellas County high schools are slated to start classes 20 minutes later each day next fall. Some experts say that's not enough time to make a difference.

TURNAROUNDS: Hillsborough County School Board members criticize the administration for not working fast enough to assist the district's most struggling schools.

SURPRISED? University of South Florida president Judy Genshaft has known about plans to consolidate the school's independent campuses for several months.

LABOR NEWS: Pasco County teachers and support personnel ratify their 2017-18 contracts. • The Hernando County School Board approves raises for all district employees.

SCHOOL SAFETY: Two Hillsborough County high school students are arrested in separate gun-related incidents.

BUS RIDES: Manatee County school buses are getting students home as much as an hour late as the district deals with a driver shortage, the Bradenton Herald reports.

MATH LESSONS: A Martin County teacher creates lessons to help her students' parents understand the math the kids are learning in class, WPBF reports.

CLASSROOM TECHNOLOGY: Bay County schools begin distributing Chromebooks to all students as a way to eliminate lack of access to devices as a reason for not getting their work done, the Panama City News Herald reports.

TAXES: The Lee County School Board calls a special meeting to reconsider holding a special election for a sales tax referendum, the Pine Island Eagle reports. • A Manatee County civic group aims to generate support for the school district's approaching property tax referendum, the Bradenton Herald reports.

RESPECT: A Broward County student teaches classmates about her culture on World Hijab Day, WPLG reports.

POLITICS? A Leon County School Board member files an unspecified complaint against an assistant principal whose brother-in-law has filed to run for the member's board seat, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.

POSTPONED: A lack of funding forces the Sarasota County school district to halt plans to create joint-use sports fields with the county at a local middle school, the Herald-Tribune reports.

BAD ACTS: A Brevard County teacher who made headlines for biting  a student is allowed to return to the classroom, the Brevard Times reports.

TODAY IN TALLAHASSEE: Florida Constitution Revision Commission Local Government Committee, 9 a.m., will discuss a proposal to allow high performing school districts to have charter status.