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Florida education news: Teacher certification, public comment, school security and more

A roundup of stories from around the state.
Thirty-five kindergarten students pack the rug for a story and lesson as teachers Ann Renee Evans, center back, and Cassandra Hinson, right, lead the way at Connerton Elementary. Times | 2013
Thirty-five kindergarten students pack the rug for a story and lesson as teachers Ann Renee Evans, center back, and Cassandra Hinson, right, lead the way at Connerton Elementary. Times | 2013
Published Jan. 30, 2019|Updated Jan. 30, 2019

TEACHER CERTIFICATION: The numbers told the story: Florida had a 55 percent decrease in processed teacher certification applications and renewals, with a backlog of thousands. “These unreasonable wait times for our school teachers are unacceptable, and this stops today,” education commissioner Richard Corcoran announced. More from WFTS.

PUBLIC COMMENT: Pasco County School Board members might change their public comment procedures during meetings, to ensure that people with issues imminently set for a decision get heard before turning to more general items not appearing on any agenda.

IN COURT: Two former East Lake High School students sue the Pinellas County school district, alleging they were hazed and harassed on the school baseball team and their coaches did nothing to stop it.

SECURITY: Gov. Ron DeSantis says he plans to ask for more money for school safety, including armed employees, in his budget proposal, the News Service of Florida reports.

HEALTHY HEARTS: Some Florida school districts consider requiring heart exams for all student athletes, WKMG reports.

LIFE LESSONS: Some Manatee County school district employees participate in a weekend activity to learn about the obstacles facing families in poverty, the Bradenton Herald reports.

FINANCES: Indian River County school district leaders say they might need to cut spending to boost reserves, TC Palm reports. • A state audit raises questions about the Sarasota County school district’s construction expenses, the Herald-Tribune reports.

‘HOPE’ SCHOLARSHIPS: Alachua County School Board members debate the district’s role in substantiating claims that students were bullied as part of their request to receive a state scholarship to a private school, the Gainesville Sun reports. The law establishing the program did not require proof.

FREE MEALS: All Bay County school district students will receive free breakfast and lunch through the end of the school year, the Panama City News Herald reports.

PRIVATE SESSIONS: Broward County superintendent Robert Runcie’s on again, off again meetings with Parkland parents are on again, but they will be closed to everyone but the parents, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

SCHOOL THREATS: An Okaloosa County middle school student is arrested on allegations she made a threat to shoot up her school, the Northwest Florida Daily News reports.

ICYMI: Yesterday’s Florida education news roundup

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