1. Gradebook

Florida education news: Superintendent search, banned books, corporal punishment and more

A roundup of education news from around the state.

PODCAST: Step Up for Students president Doug Tuthill talks vouchers with Tampa Bay Timesreporter Jeff Solochek.

CLEARED: State ethics investigators clear Hillsborough County School Board member Susan Valdes, the Tampa Bay Timesreports.

SUPERINTENDENT SEARCH: The Hillsborough County School Board decides to enlist a search firm to find superintendent Jeff Eakins’ replacement, the Tampa Bay Times reports.

STRUGGLING SCHOOL: A look from WUFT inside a young teacher’s classroom at Oakcrest Elementary, a Marion County school threatened with shutdown after six years of failing test scores.

TAXES: A community poll shows about 75 percent of Duval County voters support a half-cent sales tax to benefit schools, the Times-Unionreports. More from News4Jax.

CORPORAL PUNISHMENT:Nineteen of Florida’s 67 school districts used corporal punishment in 2017/18, the Florida Phoenixreports. The practice continues despite some lawmakers’ push to end it.

NEW NAME:Florida International University renames think tank after billionaire real estate developer Jorge Pérez after he gave the school $1 million, the Miami Heraldreports.

SCHOOL SAFETY: Collier County commissioners agree to fund school security officers for another year, the Naples Daily News reports.

PARENT QUESTIONS: Weeks after a Polk County private school closed when its headmaster was arrested, parents are unable to get students’ records, the Ledger reports.

BOOK BAN: A committee for Marion County public schools has deemed nine books inappropriate for middle school students, but all will remain in high school libraries, the the Star-Banner reports.

BAD ACTS: A teacher in Lake County faces firing after officials say she sprayed water at a nonverbal autistic student in her classroom, the Daily Commercial reports.

MONEY MOVES: The Martin County School Board made another payment on a former newspaper building set to become the district’s training site and public meeting location, TC Palmreports.

RAISES: Charlotte County schools superintendent scored a $13,000 raise this week despite mixed reviews from the community, the Port Charlotte Sunreports.

LEGISLATIVE PRIORITIES: Charlotte County schools officials pick seven legislative priorities for 2020, including mental health, technical education and addressing the teacher shortage, the Port Charlotte Sunreports.

ICYMI: Yesterday’s Florida education news roundup