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Florida schools face false threats as Parkland shooter case nears end

A roundup of Florida education news from around the state
 
Lori Alhadeff cries as Assistant State Attorney Mike Satz details the killings in his closing arguments in the penalty phase of the trial of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter Nikolas Cruz at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022.
Lori Alhadeff cries as Assistant State Attorney Mike Satz details the killings in his closing arguments in the penalty phase of the trial of Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School shooter Nikolas Cruz at the Broward County Courthouse in Fort Lauderdale on Tuesday, Oct. 11, 2022. [ AMY BETH BENNETT | South Florida Sun Sentinel ]
Published Oct. 12, 2022

The big story: Several schools across Florida faced scares on the day that attorneys made their closing arguments in the death penalty case of the Parkland school shooter.

Callers called campuses in all parts of the state claiming an active shooter was headed their way. Several went into lockdown while law enforcement investigated.

All turned out to be hoaxes.

Two Pinellas County schools were among those to receive receive the false reports. • Several South Florida schools went into secure mode because of the calls, the Miami Herald reports. • Some Central Florida schools also received hoax threats, the Orlando Sentinel reports. • A Sarasota County high school cleared the campus after a false shooter call, the Herald-Tribune reports.

Hot topics

Book challenges: The Escambia County school district received a request to remove the Bible from schools because its purpose is to “indoctrinate children in Christianity.” Officials said the Bible is an approved textbook permitted by Florida law, NorthEscambia.com reports.

Crowding: The St. Johns County School Board agreed to allow schools to surpass state class size limits, saying the amendment requirements are too onerous for the growing district, WJXT reports.

Hurricane aftermath: Thousands of Florida students remain without classrooms because of Hurricane Ian damage, Florida Phoenix reports. • Central Florida school districts announced their makeup days after missing classes, WKMG reports.

School choice: Some Florida parents are turning to micro-schools to provide their children a more individualized education, Forbes reports.

Student privacy: The Leon County school district is trying to come to grips with the rules for cameras and video recording in schools, the Tallahassee Democrat reports. • The Palm Beach County School Board will discuss what it might want to do about the FHSAA’s optional questions about female student athletes’ menstrual cycles, the Palm Beach Post reports.

Taxes: Some Duval County voters are surprised to learn the schools sales tax they approved in 2020 is helping charter schools pay rent, WJAX reports.

Other school news

The Duval County school district is still coming to grips with a critical grand jury review of its operations. It will hire an outside legal counsel to look into the findings, WJAX reports.

The Bay County school district is joining a class action lawsuit against a vape maker. The trial begins in November, WJHG reports.

From the police blotter ... A 7-year-old was arrested on accusations of bringing a gun to a Miami-Dade County elementary school, WSVN reports. • An active duty student at NAS Pensacola was arrested on accusations of threatening to bomb a Santa Rosa County school, WEAR reports.

Don’t miss a story. Here’s the link to yesterday’s roundup.

Before you go ... For some reason, John Candy was trending on Twitter this week. So, John Candy it is.

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