Florida education news: virtual school leader, another look at state testing, Parkland fallout and more

A roundup of stories from around the state.
A Florida Virtual School session in 2012. State officials selected a new leader for the school on Monday. [CHRIS URSO   |   Times]
A Florida Virtual School session in 2012. State officials selected a new leader for the school on Monday. [CHRIS URSO | Times]
Published July 2

VIRTUAL SCHOOL: The State Board of Education appoints Louis Algaze, a former Miami-Dade County school administrator, to be the next leader of the Florida Virtual School, according to reports in the Orlando Sentinel and Florida Phoenix.


* Test scores slipped this year at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in what is being called a first glimpse at how last year’s shooting at the school may have affected students, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel reports, citing numbers released Friday by the Florida Department of Education.

* Setbacks suffered from Hurricane Michael appear not to have hampered Bay County students, according to the Panama City News Herald. Fifty-seven percent of third- through 10th-grade students produced satisfactory scores on the state English language arts test in the spring, up from 53 percent last year

* A majority of School Board members in Marion County say they are pleased with this year’s state results, the Ocala Star-Banner reports. Marion students improved by 1.5 percentage points on average in each of the eight tested grade levels.

* The Naples Daily News and the News-Press break down state test scores for students in Collier and Lee counties.

* Brevard County students outperformed the state average in nearly all subjects, Florida Today reports.

* The South Florida Sun-Sentinel publishes a database showing school-by-school test results in English language arts and math for students in Broward, Palm Beach and Miami-Dade counties.

* Students in Indian River County showed improvement in English language arts and math this year while students in Martin County bested last year’s scores in math and science, TCPalm reports.

USF LISTENING TOUR: Steven Currall, the new president of the University of South Florida, visited USF Sarasota-Manatee on Monday, the Bradenton Herald reports. It was the third leg of a “listening tour” that earlier on Monday included USF Tampa and USF St. Petersurg, as reported by the Tampa Bay Times. “One of my key priorities is thinking about how all three campuses work together in a synergistic way,” Currall said while on the Manatee campus.

PARKLAND FALLOUT: The Commission for Florida Law Enforcement Accreditation has revoked the accreditation of the Broward County Sheriff’s Office, citing in part its handling of the Parkland school shooting last year, the Miami Herald reports.

WLRN IN MIAMI: The Miami-Dade County School Board, which owns the broadcasting license to WLRN radio and TV, is seeking bids from nonprofit groups interested in managing the stations, according to reports from the Miami Herald and WLRN.

NEW PRESIDENT: Brent Chrite took the helm Monday as Bethune-Cookman University’s seventh president, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reports.

HEALTH CARE: The Marion County School Board makes changes to its health insurance plan but none of the district’s nearly 6,000 employees will see their premiums increased, the Ocala Star-Banner reports.

NO INVESTIGATION: The Florida Department of Education’s Office of Professional Practices Services will not be investigating a suspended high school football coach in Sarasota after allegations that he falsified grades, the Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports.

ACCREDITED: The Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business has extended accreditation to Florida Southern College’s business degree programs, the Lakeland Ledger reports.

FSU NURSING LEADER: Florida State University has appointed long-time faculty member Laurie Grubbs as interim dean of the College of Nursing, the Tallahassee Democrat reports. The school will conduct a national search for a permanent dean in the fall.

NEW DIGS: Burns Science and Technology Charter School in Volusia County is building a 19,000-square-foot facility with gym and eight classrooms, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reports.