The big story: Redrawing attendance maps is one of the most difficult tasks to face for school board members.
Families often resist change, and walk away feeling unable to sway a process they can see as decided before they get a say.
Hillsborough County school district leaders are experiencing such a scenario as they launch a community input period for rezoning that superintendent Addison Davis says must take place. Davis also wants parents and other interested parties to understand that, from his perspective, no choices have yet been made.
It’s not an easy sell. “This is a continuation of 400 years of control over people’s lives,” resident Malik Abdullah said at the district’s first town hall session at Middleton High. Read more here.
Book challenges: An Escambia County teacher who is calling for the removal of dozens of books from schools is called racist and homophobic by her students, Popular Information reports.
Election politics: Broward County School Board member-elect Rod Velez, who was not seated by the board as ineligible, has sued Gov. Ron DeSantis for appointing a replacement, Florida Politics reports. Velez is asking to be declared the rightful occupant of the seat.
Gender issues: A federal judge has reopened a lawsuit challenging Florida’s law barring transgender girls from participating on girls’ school sports teams, the News Service of Florida reports.
Intellectual freedom: A federal judge began hearing testimony in a trial over the constitutionality of Florida’s law requiring annual viewpoint surveys of college students and staff, the News Service of Florida reports.
School safety: Leon County will decrease the speed limit in zones around 20 schools, the Tallahassee Democrat reports. • The University of Florida announced vehicle restrictions on campus to improve pedestrian safety, Main Street Daily News reports.
University leadership: U.S. Sen. Ben Sasse officially resigned his seat to become the next University of Florida president, CNN reports. The Nebraska governor will get to appoint a replacement. • New College students say Gov. DeSantis’ appointments of conservatives activists to the school’s board of trustees do not represent what New College stands for, the Herald-Tribune reports.
Other school news
Students at a small private school in Miami showed up for classes after winter break to find the school closed down. Miami-Dade County school district officials said they will find seats for all the students who need one, WTVJ reports.
An Orange County high school had increased law enforcement presence after a shooting in the school parking lot. Parents said they are still worried about student safety, Spectrum 13 reports.
Don’t miss a story. Here’s a link to yesterday’s roundup.
Before you go ... In its newest list of 200 greatest singers of all time, Rolling Stone ranks Aretha Franklin as No. 1. Thoughts?
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