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UF cracks down on indoor protests ahead of vote on next president

A roundup of Florida education news from around the state
 
Bryn Taylor, a UF student works to lead a chant as students protest inside of the President’s Ballroom at the Emerson Alumni Hall at the University of Florida as U.S. Sen Ben Sasse of Nebraska was scheduled to speak. The university announced plans to enforce rules against indoor protests ahead of trustees' meeting to discuss Sasse's candidacy to become the school's next president.
Bryn Taylor, a UF student works to lead a chant as students protest inside of the President’s Ballroom at the Emerson Alumni Hall at the University of Florida as U.S. Sen Ben Sasse of Nebraska was scheduled to speak. The university announced plans to enforce rules against indoor protests ahead of trustees' meeting to discuss Sasse's candidacy to become the school's next president. [ DIRK SHADD | Times ]
Published Oct. 25, 2022|Updated Oct. 25, 2022

The big story: UF’s president search remains the highlight, with trustees poised to consider the lone finalist when they gather in early November.

Current president Kent Fuchs is making preparations for that meeting, in light of the activities that took place when candidate U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse visited campus. He’s reinstituted the ban on protests inside buildings.

“We have not enforced this policy in recent years because in the rare cases that protesters entered buildings, they were respectful of others and their rights to speak and to hear,” Fuchs wrote in an email message to the university community.

Meanwhile, the United Faculty of Florida demanded better transparency about the search that led to Sasse’s nomination. The group filed a freedom of information request for the full list of applicants and more details about the final 12 candidates for the post, along with selected meeting records.

If it doesn’t get the materials, the union has threatened to take legal action to compel the release and delay the hiring of the next president. More from Florida Phoenix.

The faculty also is considering a no-confidence vote on Sasse before trustees consider his nomination, the Lincoln Journal Star reports.

Hot topics

Testing: The “Nation’s Report Card” had historic declines on the bi-annual reading and math tests. Florida and Hillsborough County fared better than most, despite the backward slide. • Miami-Dade County schools slipped in their latest NAEP scores, the Miami Herald reports. • Duval County’s scores dipped less than those in other large districts, the Florida Times-Union reports.

Taxes: Palm Beach County educators are asking voters to extend the school district’s local option property tax to continue support of choice programs, teacher bonuses and school safety measures, WPTV reports. • Teachers and other public service workers could get a property tax break if voters approve Amendment 3 in November, Fresh Take Florida reports.

Small schools: A South Florida educator who runs a private micro-school is a finalist for a grant that could help her grow the model throughout the region, reimaginED reports.

Leadership: Broward County’s superintendent and board attorney are on the hot seat to keep their jobs at today’s School Board meeting, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

Hurricane recovery: The Alachua County school district announced it will extend some school days by a few minutes to make up for time lost during Hurricane Ian, WCJB reports.

Education politics: In a debate between Florida’s two leading candidates for governor, Democratic hopeful U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist blasted Republican incumbent Ron DeSantis as “the shutdown guy,” while DeSantis asserted “We did it right.”

From the police blotter ... A Leon County student was arrested on accusations of having a gun on campus, the Tallahassee Democrat reports. • A Broward County high school teacher was arrested on allegations of having sex with a student, WTVJ reports. • A Levy County teacher was arrested on accusations of having a gun in her car at school, WGFL reports.

Don’t miss a story. Yesterday’s roundup is just a click away.

Before you go ... The Spanish band Broken Peach made its splash with its 2015 cover of This is Halloween. Each year it releases another Halloween single. Its newest is here.

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