Florida schools roundup: Vouchers, private schools, choice & more

Sherri Ackerman

Florida Virtual School. Longtime leader Julie Young is retiring. redefinED, Orlando Business Journal. Jeb Bush says she has “earned the rare title of visionary.” Foundation for Excellence in Education.

Vouchers: House Speaker Will Weatherford wants to make Florida’s biggest source of tax dollars — the sales tax — available for private school vouchers next year. Palm Beach Post.

florida-roundup-logoPrivate schools: StateImpact Florida looks at why a Florida private school helps its staff stay high-tech.

Charter schools. The Lee County School District is attempting to recoup about $100,000 from a charter school network that shut down more than a year ago. Fort Myers News Press.

Catholic schools: About 30 students at St. Lawrence, a K-8 Catholic school near North Miami Beach, chant “No place for hate,” as they gear up for a schoolwide anti-bullying campaign. Miami Herald.

School choice: Giving students ‘full choice’ could reduce low-income families’ disadvantages, writes the Palm Beach Post.

School grades. Education Commissioner Pam Stewart wants a simpler formula. Florida Current. More from the Tallahassee Democrat.

Science: Despite a huge public investment aimed at creating a high-tech economy, Florida continues to lag the nation in many measures of scientific prowess, says the National Science Foundation. Palm Beach Post.

Testing: As Florida changes from one testing and accountability model to the next, parents could be left in the lurch when it comes to understanding how their children are performing. Tampa Bay Times.

Summer programs: Pinellas County Schools is getting ready for its second Summer Bridge, a six-week program designed to curb summer learning losses, particularly among the district’s struggling students. Tampa Bay Times.

School boards: School Board Vice Chairman Frank Barbieri lambasts Superintendent Wayne Gent over how much the district spent to beautify a local elementary school in anticipation of Gov. Rick Scott’s visit to announce his proposed state education budget. Palm Beach Post.

Conduct: A student who disrupted class at a Pinellas County elementary school is beaten with a belt by the school’s front office clerk in the nurse’s clinic, according to school system documents. Tampa Bay Times. Don’t shy away from exceptional student education, says a former Hillsborough County teacher two days after losing her job with the district. Tampa Bay Times. A former Venice High teacher arrested for reportedly selling Adderall to an undercover police officer is banned from teaching in Florida public schools for two years. Sarasota Herald-Tribune.

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