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Florida schools roundup: Charlie Crist, FLVS, accountability gaming & more

Charter schools. Excel Leadership Academy in West Palm Beach makes its case to stay open before an administrative law judge, reports Extra Credit. The Daytona Beach News Journal looks at a struggling charter in Flagler.

florida roundup logoVirtual schools. The Palm Beach Post looks at the potential financial hit to Florida Virtual School from recent legislative changes. Education Week offers a short write-up on Florida’s online expansion.

School rankings. Take some with a grain of salt, some with a truckload, writes Matt Di Carlo at the Shanker Blog. Three Marion high schools are among the best in U.S. News & World Report, reports the Ocala Star Banner.

School closures. Dozens rally against proposed closures in Brevard. Florida Today.

School spending. Increased funding from the Legislature still may not be enough to get Marion out of a hole, reports the Ocala Star Banner. The school board in financially troubled Manatee takes a closer-than-usual look at contracts and spending, reports the Bradenton Herald.

Teacher evals. The Quick & The Ed offers a legal analysis of the recently filed lawsuit.

Common Core. The state begins checking to see whether districts have the technological capacity for Common Core testing. Gradebook.

Charlie Crist. StateImpact Florida culls the ed references from Charlie Crist’s speech to Democrats over the weekend.

Accountability. A new paper finds some unintended consequences from Florida reform’s early days, when F grades triggered the offer of vouchers. Wall Street Journal takes a brief look here.

Superintendents. New Hernando Superintendent Lori Romano and the school board reach an agreement on salary. Tampa Bay Times.

State colleges. A review by the state inspector general finds a wide range in the salaries of state college presidents. Coverage from Associated Press, South Florida Sun Sentinel, Orlando Sentinel, Florida Times Union, Sarasota Herald Tribune, Tampa Bay Times.

Privatization. Escambia plans to use a private vendor to supply nurses. Pensacola News Journal.

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BY Ron Matus

Ron Matus is director for policy and public affairs at Step Up for Students and a former editor of redefinED. He joined Step Up in February 2012 after 20 years in journalism, including eight years as an education reporter with the Tampa Bay Times (formerly the St. Petersburg Times). Ron can be reached at or (727) 451-9830. Follow him on Twitter @RonMatus1 and on facebook at