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What might a safe return to school look like?

A roundup of Florida education news from around the state.
Dr. Dakeyan Graham celebrates being named Florida's 2020 Teacher of the Year with Hillsborough County superintendent Jeff Eakins and School Board members Cindy Stuart and Tamara Shamburger. He won't be returning to the district.
Dr. Dakeyan Graham celebrates being named Florida's 2020 Teacher of the Year with Hillsborough County superintendent Jeff Eakins and School Board members Cindy Stuart and Tamara Shamburger. He won't be returning to the district. [ Courtesy of Hillsborough County Schools ]
Published Apr. 28, 2020

Florida has done better than some expected when it comes to controlling the spread of Covid-19. But officials are coming to realize that numbers don’t make everyone comfortable to just start business as usual once again, whether at schools, restaurants or beaches. So now they’re talking about taking it slow. Read on for that and more Florida education news.

Florida’s teacher of the year won’t be heading back to the classroom. Dre Graham has bigger plans to influence the education opportunities for all children.

More food is needed. The Pasco County school district is joining forces with other agencies to collect nonperishables for families in need.

Are we done yet? Gov. Ron DeSantis says Florida will come out of its social distancing efforts in ‘baby steps.’

One-way hallways, masks and classroom lunches. Educators are envisioning ways they might get schools back in session for the fall, the Washington Post reports.

Want more coronavirus news? The Tampa Bay Times is providing all its latest stories about the pandemic online free of charge as a public service. You always could subscribe, too.

Second grader Avayah Sharp works on a lesson with her mom, Janelle, during distance learning. It hasn't been easy, mom says.
Second grader Avayah Sharp works on a lesson with her mom, Janelle, during distance learning. It hasn't been easy, mom says. [ Courtesy of Janelle Sharp ]

They’re logging in. Manatee County schools have seen an increase in student participation for distance learning, the Bradenton Herald reports.

It’s just a different approach. Charlotte County charter and prep schools experienced few problems transitioning to remote instruction, the Port Charlotte Sun reports.

What’s the best way to grade students during this time? The Bay County school district says students should do no worse than their third quarter marks, the Panama City News Herald reports.

These graduations are still scheduled for May. But the Volusia County school district is hedging with alternative dates in July, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reports.

In-person ceremonies remain preferred. The Marion County school district is exploring ways to hold them in line with social distancing mandates, the Ocala Star-Banner reports.

Surprise! South Florida high school principals are taking extra steps to make their seniors feel special, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

Planning for cuts. Florida school district leaders worry that decreasing sales tax revenue will prove a gut punch to their budgets, WTLV reports. And federal stimulus funding won’t help enough, they add, WTVJ reports.

What’s the economic impact of Florida’s school closures? The Florida Council of 100 offered its assessment in a newly released brief.

Ready to go. A new Leon County charter school says it will open in the fall despite hurdles, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.

Before you go ... Some teachers are learning lots of new ways to use technology. They only wish their students would be there with them. Right? Sometimes, a short Tiktok says it all.

Hillsborough County reading teacher Rose Stahl took to Tiktok to illustrate her thoughts about how teaching remotely is going.
Hillsborough County reading teacher Rose Stahl took to Tiktok to illustrate her thoughts about how teaching remotely is going. [ Facebook ]

To keep up on the latest stories from around Florida, visit the Tampa Bay Times Gradebook. Join our daily Facebook conversation to share your views. And be sure to share this roundup with your friends and colleagues. Know someone who might want to sign up for the Gradebook newsletter? Share this link. We want to hear your remote learning survival stories. Send an e-mail to jsolochek@tampabay.com. - Jeff

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