Florida education news: School choice, campus security, teacher protests and more

A roundup of stories from around the state.
Hillsborough High School students staged a walk out in support of teacher pay raises Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017. About 200 students walked out for nearly 15 minutes to protest the Hillsborough school district's decision to deny scheduled pay raises for teachers this year. MONICA HERNDON   |   Times
Hillsborough High School students staged a walk out in support of teacher pay raises Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017. About 200 students walked out for nearly 15 minutes to protest the Hillsborough school district's decision to deny scheduled pay raises for teachers this year. MONICA HERNDON | Times
Published March 5

SCHOLARSHIP PROGRAMS: The Florida Department of Education warns school districts not to try to verify student claims of bullying before offering them a scholarship application to a different school. "Any district that is adding this requirement is in violation of statute and administrative rule and will be dealt with according to law,” chancellor Jacob Oliva told superintendents.

EDUCATION SAVINGS ACCOUNTS: If Florida lawmakers move in the direction of vouchers and portable savings accounts, the founder of the state’s largest scholarship funding organization wants them to remain focused on low-income students. A Koch Network group, meanwhile, launches an ad campaign aimed at convincing the Legislature to go universal with the idea.

SCHOOL SECURITY: The Pasco County school district asks for community ideas on how to make campuses safer. • The Broward County school district explores ways to improve its system of resource officers and guards, the Sun-Sentinel reports. • Wakulla County leaders discuss their efforts to improve school security, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.

TEACHER RALLIES: Monroe County teachers were part of a statewide action of teachers demanding better funding for public education, the Miami Herald reports. Teachers across Florida held protests and rallies, raising concerns that without enough money their profession will decline, the Orlando Sentinel reports. It’s part of a national teacher union campaign, the Florida Phoenix reports. More from WKMG, WINK, Daytona Beach News-Journal.

ON THE HOT SEAT: The battle over Broward superintendent Robert Runcie’s future heads to the School Board, where members are to consider firing him beginning at 11:15 a.m., the Sun-Sentinel reports. More from the Miami Herald.

THAT COLIN KAEPERNICK POSTER: Leaders from the Charlotte County school district and local NAACP reveal few details about their discussions about a teacher being forced to remove his Black History Month classroom display, the Charlotte Sun reports.

CHARTER SCHOOLS: Lake County School Board members hesitate to renew the contract of a low-performing charter school, the Daily Commercial reports. • A Palm Beach County charter school sues the school district for access to revenue from a new local property tax, the Palm Beach Post reports. • A Sarasota County charter school requests permission to expand its enrollment, the Herald-Tribune reports.

MAGNET WOES: Alachua County parents grow frustrated over problems with the school district’s magnet school application and approval system, the Gainesville Sun reports.

TODAY: The Florida Legislature formally begins its 2019 session. The House and Senate convene jointly at 11 a.m., in between committee meetings.

ICYMI: Yesterday’s Florida education news roundup

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