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Florida education news: Anti-bullying voucher, board battles, enrollment and more

ANOTHER CHOICE: Suggesting that bullied children shouldn’t have to remain in the schools where they’ve been victimized, Florida House Republican leaders propose a new tax credit scholarship to allow those students to transfer to another public or private school of their choice. “When you put a kid in a good, safe learning environment, good results happen,” Speaker Richard Corcoran said. Early reaction to the idea was mixed, with backers praising the expansion of options and critics wondering why not punish the bully rather than encourage the victim to leave. Senate leaders said they were open to the proposal, the Times-Herald Tallahassee Bureau reports.


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INFIGHTING: A lack of trust surfaces among Hillsborough County School Board members during a training session on listening and respect.

WHO’S RESPONSIBLE? Palm Beach County School Board members take issue with a legal defense strategy that contended third graders might have borne responsibility for sexual abuse by their teacher, the Sun-Sentinel reports. “I don’t think a child can ever consent to being sexually abused,” member Frank Barbieri said.

ENROLLMENT IN FLUX: Florida lawmakers wonder how to best count and fund students in schools with the comings and goings caused by hurricanes, the News Service of Florida reports. More from Politico Florida.

POST-IRMA RELIEF: Contributions continue to flow into Monroe County schools to support employees, students and families who suffered losses during the storm, the Keynoter reports.

TESTING: The Clay County School Board refuses to adopt the superintendent’s testing calendar, Clay Today reports.

CLOSER LOOK: A Brevard County School Board member who was cleared after a sexual harassment investigation announces he will seek reelection and wants to scrutinize the district’s investigation practices, Florida Today reports.

TAKE A KNEE: Manatee County activists prompt the School Board to reopen discussion about how to deal with students who silently protest the national anthem or pledge of allegiance, the Bradenton Herald reports.

SUPPORT GROUPS: The Bay County School Board will exempt booster clubs and parent organizations from needing insurance to use district facilities, the Panama City News Herald reports.

FINANCIAL ADVICE: The Polk County School Board overrules a committee’s recommendation for financial adviser, the Ledger reports.

GRADE FIXING? A Palm Beach County district administrator is removed during an investigation into whether as principal he allowed an A-student to take a low level course for no grade to protect the student’s GPA, the Palm Beach Post reports.

SUPERINTENDENT EVALUATIONS: The Volusia County School Board debates the best way to review their superintendent’s performance, the Daytona Beach News-Journal reports.

CHARTER SCHOOLS: Two charter school operators will seek to become local education agencies with greater control over federal funding, Redefined reports. • A struggling Leon County charter school has its improvement plan approved, the Tallahassee Democrat reports.

ACHIEVEMENT GAP: The Alachua County school district hires its first equity director to find ways to overcome the racial achievement gap among students, the Gainesville Sun reports.

TODAY IN TALLAHASSEE: House Higher Education Appropriations, 8 a.m. • House PreK-12 Quality, 8 a.m. 

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