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Florida education news: Sex education, Parkland details, teachers with guns and more

A roundup of stories from around the state.
Students walk past a memorial garden to the 17 slain in Parkland.
Students walk past a memorial garden to the 17 slain in Parkland.
Published Sep. 10

ON PRONOUNS: Pasco County school district officials say they won’t use new sex education curriculum that employs gender-neutral language as a way to make people of all genders feel included. The district has faced conservative criticism for allowing students to select restrooms and locker rooms based on the gender they identify with.

POST PARKLAND: Parent activist Andrew Pollack, whose daughter died in the 2018 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High shooting massacre, publishes a new book on the rampage — including information from defense attorneys that has not even been entered into court evidence.

GUNS ON CAMPUS: A Pinellas County teen faces felony charges after law enforcement finds a BB gun in his bag at school. • Most Florida school districts decide against allowing teachers to carry guns as guardians, the Wall Street Journal reports.

SUPERINTENDENT SEARCH: The Hillsborough County school district asks parents and residents for input on the characteristics to look for in the system’s next CEO.

TEACHER PAY: The United School Employees of Pasco blasts its school district’s pay raise proposal, saying in unnecessarily pits elementary vs. secondary teachers.

HEALTH NEEDS: Two Florida lawmakers file legislation to require schools provide feminine hygiene products in restrooms, Florida Politics reports.

EVACUEES: Palm Beach County schools welcome students from the Bahamas fleeing the wreckage of Hurricane Dorian, WPEC reports. More from the Palm Beach Post.

GETTING THERE: A Pasco County family wants answers why their 5-year-old was allowed to fall asleep on the school bus headed to an after-school program and end up in the bus garage, WFLA reports.

SPENDING: The Charlotte County School Board prepares to approve its 2019-20 budget, including added revenue from a recently approved tax referendum, the Charlotte Sun reports.

SPECIAL VISITOR: A Bay County middle school reminds parents that bringing a bearded dragon to school in a backpack might not be the best idea, the Panama City News Herald reports.

SCHOOL THREATS: A Lee County teen faces felony charges after posting items relating to a school threat on social media, the Fort Myers News-Press reports.

SECURITY: Four Seminole County schools begin a pilot program requiring ID badges for all students, WKMG reports.

BAD ACTS: A teacher at a Palm Beach County alternative school faces termination after accusations she threw a chair at misbehaving students, the Palm Beach Post reports. • Three Duval County school district employees are suspended without pay for unprofessional conduct, the Florida Times-Union reports.

ICYMI: Yesterday’s Florida education news roundup

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. Representatives from the Pasco County school district and the United School Employees of Pasco discuss salary and benefits during negotiations on Sept. 18, 2019. [JEFFREY SOLOCHEK  |  Times Staff Writer]
    The School Board will consider a $2.2 million package at its Dec. 17 meeting.
  2. Osceola Middle School civics teacher Mike Rivera of Largo does his vampire act to teach his seventh-grade students about the Bill of Rights recently.
    A roundup of stories from around the state.
  3. USF St. Petersburg graduates await their turn to walk the stage during the May 2019 commencement at Mahaffey Theater. This year's fall commencement is set for Sunday, when some 450 USFSP graduates will be receiving degrees. [LUIS SANTANA  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    News and notes about K-12 schools and colleges in Pinellas County.
  4. Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis raises his hands after being asked about his relationship with two Ukrainian businessmen during an announcement at a Palm Harbor Walmart Monday, Nov. 4, 2019. DeSantis refused to answer questions about the two men. [CHRIS URSO  |  Times]
    During a news conference in Naples, DeSantis launched into a long-winded discussion of American history, which he said young people need to know better.
  5. Jarrod Haneline, shown when he was named principal of Jackson Elementary School in 2018, has left that position. [MARLENE SOKOL  |  Times staff]
    Jarrod Haneline left the position in recent weeks.
  6. Yesterday• Gradebook
    Alan Black, outgoing principal of Burney Elementary School, in an image on the school website. [HSPS  |  Handout]
    School leaders will trade jobs in the new year.
  7. Pasco School District headquarters in Land O' Lakes
    The sides have not set a new date for negotiations.
  8. Tony Pirotta, right, meets with his Armwood High Ought to be a Law student club and state Rep. Susan Valdes to talk strategy for the group's latest legislative proposal. They presented their bill to state senators on Dec. 9. [JEFFREY SOLOCHEK  |  Times Staff Writer]
    A roundup of stories from around the state.
  9. Florida's Baker Act was written in 1971 by Maxine Baker, a 65-year-old grandmother and a freshman Florida legislator from Miami-Dade County, seen here in a 1965 photo. [Associated Press]
    The law was written in 1971 by Maxine Baker, a legislator from Miami-Dade County who pushed for the rights of people with mental illness.
  10. Sarah Henderson with her son, Braden, who was committed under the Baker Act after a joking remark at school. [JOHN PENDYGRAFT  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    A cop car comes. A child is handcuffed and taken to a mental health facility. The scene is all too frequent at public schools across the state.
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