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Florida school boards to revisit limits on comments at meetings

A roundup of Florida education news from around the state
Sawyer Rosenheim, 10, of St. Petersburg, stands at a podium while making a public comment during a regular meeting of the Pinellas County school board on Tuesday, Aug. 24, 2021.
Sawyer Rosenheim, 10, of St. Petersburg, stands at a podium while making a public comment during a regular meeting of the Pinellas County school board on Tuesday, Aug. 24, 2021. [ DOUGLAS R. CLIFFORD | Times ]
Published Dec. 2, 2022

The big story: During the pandemic, school boards across Florida heard plenty of criticism during the public comment portion of their meetings.

Some boards changed their commenting rules, cutting back speaking time, moving the section to the end of their sessions, and stopping the practice of livestreaming the speeches.

There’s been pushback ever since. And now boards are reconsidering.

Brevard County’s board chairperson proposed returning speaking time to 3 minutes per person, Space Coast Daily News reports. And Pinellas County board members are talking about turning the cameras back on.

Hot topics

Hurricane makeup days: One of three Treasure Coast school districts plans to add days to its calendar to make up for classes missed because of hurricane closures, TC Palm reports.

Gaming: A Palm Beach County middle school uses Minecraft to help students research and solve real world problems, the Palm Beach Post reports.

Superintendents: The Broward County School Board, with four new members, will revisit the previous board’s decision to fire superintendent Vickie Cartwright, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

University job searches: Florida universities have struggled to find candidates for top administrative jobs. Some observers blame the state’s political environment, Inside Higher Education reports.

Social media: State Sen. Danny Burgess, R-Zephyrhills, has filed the first piece of education legislation for the 2023 session — a measure to require students be taught safe use of social media, Florida Politics reports. • A Polk County private school athletic trainer has become a TikTok sensation with his “lighthearted side to athletics,” WTVT reports.

Student discipline: Brevard County school district officials met with parents to discuss behavior trends and best practices for dealing with misbehaving students, WKMG reports. They said the session had nothing to do with a recent announcement that the district would be cracking down on discipline.

Teacher supplies: The Education Foundation of Palm Beach County is expanding its free teacher supply shop as need grows, WPTV reports.

From the police blotter ... An Indian River County high school student was arrested on accusations of bringing a loaded gun to school, WPBF reports. • A Seminole County school bus driver was arrested on allegations of child abuse against a student with special needs, WKMG reports.

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

Before you go ... How about a new Christmas song from the Old 97s, introduced in the Guardians of the Galaxy holiday special? Here’s the full song with lyrics.

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