Florida roundup: Tax-credit scholarships, charter schools, testing and more

 Tax credit scholarships. The bill expanding the program is likely headed to the House floor. More from the Scripps/Tribune. Times/Herald. News Service of Florida. The state should mandate that scholarship students take the state’s standardized science test too. Bridge to Tomorrow. Education activist Rita Solnet tears into the program on the Huffington Post, which is also picked up by the Answer Sheet. The legislation is controversial. Sun-Sentinel.


Charter schools. The Sarasota County school board renews a charter contract after a contentious debate. Sarasota Herald-Tribune.

Magnet schools. Two new Pinellas County programs are flooded with applications. Tampa Bay Times.

Testing. The first priority in choosing the state’s next assessment was having it ready for next year, Education Commissioner Pam Stewart said Tuesday. Gradebook. Field tests from Utah can inform officials about how the new tests will work. WFSU. The new test should be an improvement from the FCAT, the Sun-Sentinel editorializes. South Florida schools tweak their testing calendars to accommodate Passover. Miami Herald.

Funding. The House’s budget proposal would boost spending on public schools. Times/Herald.

Administration. Alachua County finds eight semifinalists for superintendent. Gainesville Sun. Hillsborough officials spar over transportation issues. Tampa Tribune. Tampa Bay Times.

School safety. Bill aims to make it safer for kids walking to school. Gradebook. Hillsborough Schools hire a new security chief. Tampa Bay Times.

Homework. The load isn’t all that heavy for most students, a Brookings Institution report says. Orlando Sentinel.

Employee conduct. A former Manatee High School assistant principal is in a legal fight for his job. Bradenton Herald. A Brevard County high school teacher is on paid administrative leave after showing students a nude picture, in what was apparently an accident. Florida Today.

School facilities. A rural elementary school re-opens after mold problems. Florida Times-Union. More from the Independent Florida Alligator.

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BY Travis Pillow

Travis Pillow is Director of Thought Leadership at Step Up For Students and editor of NextSteps. He lives in Sanford, Fla. with his wife and two children. A former Tallahassee statehouse reporter, he most recently worked at the Center on Reinventing Public Education, a research organization at Arizona State University, where he studied community-led learning innovation and school systems' responses to the Covid-19 pandemic. He can be reached at tpillow (at) sufs.org.