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Florida education news: Legislative plans, school leadership, board meetings and more

A roundup of stories from around the state.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, right, addresses a joint session of the Florida Legislature in Tallahassee on March 5.  (SCOTT KEELER   |   Times)
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, right, addresses a joint session of the Florida Legislature in Tallahassee on March 5. (SCOTT KEELER | Times)
Published May 24, 2019

7 PERCENT TO GO: Gov. Ron DeSantis got 93 percent of his education agenda through the Florida Legislature this year, leading commissioner Richard Corcoran to call the session “amazing.”

NOT GUILTY PLEA: A Pinellas County teacher who was arrested and fired after law enforcement found she had a loaded gun and other weapons in her backpack pleads not guilty to misdemeanor charges of carrying a concealed weapon at school.

SCHOOL LEADERSHIP: Two veteran Pasco County school principals announce their retirements as the academic year ends.

AFTER-MEETINGS: The Lee County School Board discontinues its post-meeting meetings, which had been criticized for their lack of transparency, the Fort Myers News-Press reports.

TURNAROUNDS: The Duval County school district’s plans for improving several long-struggling schools come under attack by the state, the Florida Times-Union reports.

WALKING HOME: Some Hillsborough County parents complain about an anti-abortion activist confronting their children outside a middle school as they walk home, WFTS reports.

TEST SCORES: Florida State University officials say new SAT adversity scores helped diversify the school’s next class of students, Florida Daily reports.

MISSION ACCOMPLISHED: Outgoing Indian River County superintendent Mark Rendell says he met his goals in the job, even if people don’t know it, TC Palm reports.

SECURITY: The cost of school security in Marion County rises to $4.6 million a year, the Ocala Star-Banner reports.

TAXES: An oversight committee continues to debate how revenue from a Manatee County school district property tax can be spent, the Bradenton Herald reports.

THREE FOR THREE: All three siblings of a Coral Gables family graduate as their class valedictorian and head to Stanford University, the Miami Herald reports.

FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE: A Flagler County School Board member agrees to pay a $500 fine for minor violations on her financial disclosure form, Flagler Live reports.

BAD ACTS: A Lake County high school coach is arrested on charges of possessing child pornography, the Orlando Sentinel reports. • A Broward County special education assistant, recently removed from a classroom amid accusations of berating students with autism, had a record of striking students as discipline, the Miami Herald reports.

ICYMI: Yesterday’s Florida education news roundup


  1. From left, Don Haddad, Peter Licata and Addison Davis, all finalists for the job of Hillsborough County school superintendent, met Thursday with community members at Rampello K-8 School. The School Board will choose among the three on Tuesday. [MARLENE SOKOL  |  Times]
    Addison Davis, Don Haddad and Peter Licata outline their plans for the first 90 days.
  2. Check for the latest breaking news and updates. [Times]
    A man university police believe was target shooting near campus was not located, the university said.
  3. Former state senator John Legg has not ruled out a run for Pasco County schools superintendent. The district is the nation's largest to elect its chief executive.
    Short answer: Maybe.
  4. But the competition isn’t who many people expected it to be.
  5. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File) [MARK LENNIHAN  |  AP]
    A roundup of stories from around the state.
  6. A point tally ranking the three finalists to be Hillsborough County's next school superintendent shows up on a screen in the School Board meeting room Thursday after a meeting that lasted most of the day. [MARLENE SOKOL  |  Times]
    The last round of interviews is set for Jan. 21.
  7. Rep. Stan McClain, an Ocala Republican, presents a bill that would allow Florida public colleges and universities to sponsor charter schools, during a January 2020 meeting of the House PreK-12 Innovation subcommittee. [The Florida Channel]
    Alternative authorizers have been found unconstitutional in the past. But that isn’t stopping the effort.
  8. Thousands rallied and marched from the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center to the Florida Historic Capitol to demand more money for public schools Monday, Jan. 13, 2020. Thousands of school workers from around the state thronged Florida's Capitol on Monday to press Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Legislature to more than double the nearly $1 billion the governor is proposing for teacher raises and bonuses.  (Tori Lynn Schneider/Tallahassee Democrat via AP) [TORI LYNN SCHNEIDER  |  AP]
    The PreK-12 Appropriations subcommittee cutting exercise would come in nearly 25 percent below Gov. Ron DeSantis’ proposal.
  9. Cocoa Police Department video shows A.J. Plonsky being taken to a mental health facility under the Florida Baker Act on his first day of middle school, August 10, 2018.  [JOHN PENDYGRAFT  |  Times]
    Never intended to be used on children, the 1970s law in increasingly applied in schools.
  10. Assisted by the Ray and Associates search firm, the Hillsborough County School Board is hiring a new superintendent. [MARLENE SOKOL  |  Times staff]
    A roundup of stories from around the state.