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Florida education news: Armed teachers, charter schools, reading lessons and more

A roundup of stories from around the state.

ARMED TEACHERS: After seven hours of emotional debate over two days, the Florida House approves a wide-ranging bill to adopt recommendations from the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High Public Safety Commission. Almost all the discussion focuses on one aspect — allowing teachers to participate in the state’s armed guardian program, if their school boards allow it. The Clay County school district says it will stick with a new police force rather than let teachers carry guns, Clay Today reports. • With the most sweeping and controversial education bills handled, the Legislature still has a few others available for consideration in the final days.

CHARTER SCHOOLS: The troubled Plato Academy charter school group asks the Pasco County school district to terminate its contract for a second school. • A newly approved Martin County charter school wins approval for its planned site, but a temporary location raises traffic concerns, TC Palm reports. • The St. Lucie County School Board approves a new vocational-technical charter high school, TC Palm reports.

READING LESSONS: The Hillsborough County school district looks to hire an outside consultant to help improve student reading performance.

SUPERINTENDENTS: Hillsborough County School Board members give superintendent Jeff Eakins an evaluation that includes their expectations and requirements. • Indian River County School Board members want to have a replacement superintendent on board before students end classes for the summer, TC Palm reports. • The Manatee County superintendent wins a state award for providing opportunities to Latino children, the Herald-Tribune reports.

TAXES: The Florida Senate does not include in its tax bill a proposal to require school districts to share local-option property tax revenue with charter schools, the News Service of Florida reports.

UNDER INVESTIGATION: The Lee County school district comes under federal scrutiny amid allegations of misspent funds, Fox 4 reports.

FUNDING: Palm Beach County teachers hold protests over state education funding priorities for a second day, WPEC reports.

SOFTWARE WOES: The Manatee County school district considers a $100,000 short-term fix to its lengthy troubles implementing a new software system, the Bradenton Herald reports.

TEACHER PAY: The Charlotte County School Board approves a 17 percent increase in beginning teacher salaries as part of a larger contract agreement, the Charlotte Sun reports.

AUDIT: The Broward County school district does not have to repay $20 million in questioned developer fees, as the state Auditor General’s Office does not conclude the funds were misused despite a preliminary finding otherwise, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

IN COURT: A family sues a Broward County charter school, alleging it failed to protect their daughter from sexual abuse by a substitute teacher, WTVJ reports.

SCHOOL THREATS: Liberty County law enforcement investigate a threat of violence made against a local high school, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.

TODAY: Senate session, 10 a.m. (On special order: SB 770 workforce education, SB 1412 taxation) • House session, noon

ICYMI: Yesterday’s Florida education news roundup

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