Schools of hope: Fifty of 90 eligible low-performing schools have applied to the state for grants through the “schools of hope” provision in the new education law. The law creates financial incentives for charter schools to move into areas with persistently struggling schools. But it also offers as many as 25 of those low-performing schools an extra $2,000 per student for special services such as after-school and counseling programs if they submit turnaround plans that are approved by the state. The Florida Board of Education is expected to choose which schools get the extra money at its Sept. 13 meeting. Sun-Sentinel. Gradebook.
Busing misdirection: Martin County school officials misrepresented why they decided to end busing for 850 students who live within 2 miles of their school, according to a newspaper investigation. Superintendent Laurie Gaylord blamed the state for her decision to end the courtesy busing, saying the provisions of a law made it impossible to prove that the 850 students faced hazardous walking conditions and, therefore, would be eligible for busing. But state Rep. Larry Metz, R-Groveland, who wrote the law, said the intent was to improve busing access to students, not restrict it. “Their letter is completely inaccurate with regard to the effect of the bill,” Metz said of the letter Gaylord sent to parents. TCPalm.
Charter group sues: A charter school group is appealing an administrative judge’s ruling that the state may deny facilities funding to charter schools that receive consecutive D grades. The Florida Association of Independent Public Schools is arguing that the state should use a standard of “satisfactory student achievement” instead of school grades to determine eligibility for capital funding. redefinED.
Solar eclipse: More on what Florida schools districts are doing during this afternoon’s solar eclipse. Florida Times-Union. Orlando Sentinel. Lakeland Ledger. Bradenton Herald. WBBH. Santa Rosa Press Gazette. Northwest Florida Daily News. Belle Glade Sun. WKRG. Fort Myers News-Press. Naples Daily News. Daytona Beach News-Journal. WQAM. Associated Press. Florida Keys Weekly. Daily Commercial. WTSP. This summer, Haile Middle School principal bought 1,300 special glasses so students could view the solar eclipse today. Last week, Manatee County Superintendent Diana Greene decided that all students would be kept inside during the eclipse. Bradenton Herald. As a 10-year-old in 1991, Neil Brown took a quick look at a partial eclipse in Walla Walla, Wash. It damaged his left eye. Now a teacher at Suncoast High School in Riviera Beach, Brown is warning his students about the danger of looking at the eclipse without special glasses. Palm Beach Post.