1. News
  2. /
  3. Gradebook

More Hillsborough policies will be discussed on Tuesday

Meeting without cameras, the School Board will discuss everything from teacher incentives to community schools.
Hillsborough County School Board members conduct the early part of their board meeting in a workshop format, without cameras. [MARLENE SOKOL | Times]
Hillsborough County School Board members conduct the early part of their board meeting in a workshop format, without cameras. [MARLENE SOKOL | Times]
Published Aug. 19, 2019
Updated Aug. 19, 2019

Hillsborough County School Board members are considering a policy changes that would give higher pay to teachers at high-needs schools.

They also might formalize the idea of “community schools.”

But they do not plan to televise the conversation planned for 10 a.m. on Tuesday. Instead, the workshop - which is open to the public under the state’s open meetings laws - will take place in a second floor conference room. The workshop will also include Superintendent Jeff Eakins’ “suspended agenda,” or update on key issues in the district.

Member Lynn Gray proposed the teacher pay policy, and it states that the superintendent will “financially incentivize those teachers who serve three or more years in a high-needs school.”

Incentive pay is an issue of wide interest to many teachers this year, as the district has worked to steer much of its available money to its 50 “Achievement” schools. Teachers there receive bonuses in three tiers, depending on the severity of the schools’s problems. But the district also has many so-called “Renaissance" schools in low-income communities that are not a part of the Achievement group because they have earned better state grades.

In a late addition to the agenda, member Cindy Stuart wants to put the practice of community schools into policy.

Stuart was instrumental in bringing outside charities and social service providers into Mort Elementary, a large school just north of the University of South Florida that serves many immigrant families.

The idea she is proposing would use schools as community hubs in a strategy that “leverages the power created when a broad representation of stakeholders coalesce around the welfare of children.”

Key players would include a districtwide community schools task force and, at the schools, community school resources teachers who can be employed either by the district or by partner agencies.

These teachers, sometimes called community school coordinators, would work alongside school-based committees that would include families, teachers, staff and students. The idea behind community schools is that children are better able to learn if their parents are assisted with issues such as housing, job training, medical care and food insecurity. School curriculum is also adjusted, with students getting access to culturally relevant materials.

Other policy changes that could be taken up Tuesday concern charter schools, which are operated by management groups outside the district.

Gray would like all charter school applications to include the location of the proposed school, a factor that is sometimes left vague. And she wants charter schools to have to post on their websites their original application and contract with their annual report, audit, budget and school grade.

These next proposed policy changes, suggested by chairwoman Tamara Shamburger, would affect school lunch:

Procedures to ensure that students who have reached their charge limit are not denied a regular meal; and a plan to make surplus food from the lunch program available to hungry families.


  1. From left, Don Haddad, Peter Licata and Addison Davis, all finalists for the job of Hillsborough County school superintendent, met Thursday with community members at Rampello K-8 School. The School Board will choose among the three on Tuesday. [MARLENE SOKOL  |  Times]
    Addison Davis, Don Haddad and Peter Licata outline their plans for the first 90 days.
  2. Check for the latest breaking news and updates. [Times]
    A man university police believe was target shooting near campus was not located, the university said.
  3. Former state senator John Legg has not ruled out a run for Pasco County schools superintendent. The district is the nation's largest to elect its chief executive.
    Short answer: Maybe.
  4. But the competition isn’t who many people expected it to be.
  5. (AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File) [MARK LENNIHAN  |  AP]
    A roundup of stories from around the state.
  6. A point tally ranking the three finalists to be Hillsborough County's next school superintendent shows up on a screen in the School Board meeting room Thursday after a meeting that lasted most of the day. [MARLENE SOKOL  |  Times]
    The last round of interviews is set for Jan. 21.
  7. Rep. Stan McClain, an Ocala Republican, presents a bill that would allow Florida public colleges and universities to sponsor charter schools, during a January 2020 meeting of the House PreK-12 Innovation subcommittee. [The Florida Channel]
    Alternative authorizers have been found unconstitutional in the past. But that isn’t stopping the effort.
  8. Thousands rallied and marched from the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center to the Florida Historic Capitol to demand more money for public schools Monday, Jan. 13, 2020. Thousands of school workers from around the state thronged Florida's Capitol on Monday to press Gov. Ron DeSantis and the Legislature to more than double the nearly $1 billion the governor is proposing for teacher raises and bonuses.  (Tori Lynn Schneider/Tallahassee Democrat via AP) [TORI LYNN SCHNEIDER  |  AP]
    The PreK-12 Appropriations subcommittee cutting exercise would come in nearly 25 percent below Gov. Ron DeSantis’ proposal.
  9. Cocoa Police Department video shows A.J. Plonsky being taken to a mental health facility under the Florida Baker Act on his first day of middle school, August 10, 2018.  [JOHN PENDYGRAFT  |  Times]
    Never intended to be used on children, the 1970s law in increasingly applied in schools.
  10. Assisted by the Ray and Associates search firm, the Hillsborough County School Board is hiring a new superintendent. [MARLENE SOKOL  |  Times staff]
    A roundup of stories from around the state.