Teacher absences. Twenty-nine percent of Florida teachers were absent more than 10 days in the 2009-10 school year, according to a new report from the Center for American Progress. High as that sounds, it actually puts Florida below the national average of 36 percent and among the states with the lowest rates of high teacher absences. The report isn’t Florida specific, but it raises issues that don’t get much attention here. Here’s another eye-catching finding: “Teachers are absent from traditional public schools more than 10 times per year at a rate that is 15.2 percentage points higher than in charter schools.” More from Huffington Post.
A lot of new superintendents. From Gradebook.
Amendment 8 lives on. Former state Sen. Dan Gelber in a Florida Voices piece: “So now, how exactly does the Legislature and Scott expect to argue for their ideas when Floridians have rejected them in a statewide ballot? … How does the Legislature pursue its expansion of school vouchers when Floridians defeated Amendment 8 so overwhelmingly?” The Washington Post offered its post-election assessment here: “In Florida, unions knocked down a ballot measure that would have changed the state’s constitution to allow public dollars to go to religious institutions, which would have cleared the way for school vouchers.” (Of course, we already have school vouchers.)
No tattoo artists allowed. A Pinellas school bars a tattoo artist from speaking at this year’s Great American Teach-in, reports ABC Action News (and other outlets all over the place). A similar controversy erupted in Pinellas last year when a Hooter’s waitress spoke at a school for disabled students. (I should know; I had to write about it.)