School threats, investigations, revocations and more

Daycare investigation: A south Florida daycare has been slapped with several violations after a 2-year old dies in a van. Police are treating the death as a manslaughter investigation, though no employees have been charged yet. Miami Herald, Sun Sentinel.

Healthy lunches: As students head back to school here are some tips to make school lunches a healthy success. Florida Today.

New leadership: 16 of Palm Beach County’s 179 schools will begin the year with new principals at the helm. Palm Beach Post.

Teacher salaries: Brevard School Board member Misty Belford discusses her vote on teacher salaries. Florida Today.

Teachers needed: Several bay area school districts are still looking for teachers, school nurses and bus drivers. WFTS.

Click for bee puns: Combee Academy of Design and Engineering has a new behive to help students learn more about bees. The project was funded through a $1,500 grant from the Whole Kids Foundation. Lakeland Ledger.

Teacher supplies and elections: Allison Tant, the first Democrat to throw her hat into the ring for the next governor’s race tries to present herself as a friend to public education by collecting donated school supplies for teachers. WFSU. Leon County schools superintendent endorses Allison Tant for House District 9, says Tant is a “fierce champion for our public school system.” Florida Politics.

Teacher jobs: University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee campus, says students who complete the elementary education program will now be guaranteed a job as a teacher with the Manatee County School District. Bradenton Herald, Herald Tribune.

College scholarship: 2019 Ridgeview High School graduate and Jacksonville Children’s Chorus member received the Kinne Scholarship to Jacksonville University. Florida Times-Union.

Dispute settled: Collier County Public Schools and Mason Classical Academy have settled their dispute. Instead of revoking the schools charter, the district has provided a corrective action plan unanimously agreed upon by both parties. The plan requires the charter school to create several committees, including an audit and finance committee, by October 5th. Naples Daily News.

Revoked: A Duval County English teacher had his state teaching license revoked by the state after he plead “no contest” to sending sexually suggestive comments to students online. Florida Times-Union.

Vaccinations:  Naples Daily News assembled the school-by-school data on vaccination rates. Naples Daily News. Student vaccination exemptions spiked 20 percent last year as parents claim religious exemptions. Student health may be threatened as a result. Last year, 42 of Florida’s 67 counties failed to get 95 percent of students vaccinated. Naples Daily News.

Top school: Pine View Elementary School in Sarasota County is ranked No. 1 in the nation according to Herald Tribune.

Old school: Agnus McReynolds School has been sitting vacant and may be demolished to make way for new homes. Pensacola News Journal.

Delayed start: Pensacola Beach Elementary School will open one day late as the school principal heads court again to block one family from enrolling. According to the charter school, Kelli Moyer, who was also a former teacher, made threats against the school principal in 2018. The school tried to file a restraining order in June after Moyer attempted to enroll her children at the school. An Escambia County judge had initially denied the school’s request to block the parent, but the judge did order the mother to give up her gun. Pensacola News Journal.

School threats: The new school year hasn’t begun and two students are already under investigation for making school shooting threats on social media. Two students made a comment about shooting up a school after one posted a picture of himself with a gun and a caption that read, “let’s see if I can shoot the pistol with my left hand.” Another student commented about shooting up a school and the original poster agreed to join. Tallahassee Democrat. Wakulla High School student is under investigation for making threats on social media. District says there is no reason to believe a shooting will occur at the school. Tallahassee Democrat.

Opinions on schools: Eighty-nine children have died in hot cars since 1998 and the legislature has failed to make changes. The legislature could require alarms to sound for cars or vans picking up children to notify drivers of children still strapped into their seats (the van driving the 2-year old who died had an alarm, though the employee turned it off before retrieving all the students). Editorial, Sun Sentinel. The Florida legislature failed to pass a requirement that daycare vans have alarms to warn drivers of children still in seats, but Palm Beach County made it a requirement (a 2-year old recently died after being left in a hot van. The daycare van driver had turned off the alarm before retrieving the children). Maria Sachs, Sun Sentinel. Orlando Sentinel columnists discuss private schools “discriminating” against children with special needs and whether a Florida Virtual School Board Member had a conflict of interest. Podcast, Orlando Sentinel. After moving to a new home, St Lucie parents are grateful that school choice allowed them to find a great school. Letters to the editor, TC Palm. Stephanie Gilbert embraces the Florida model of educating, riding an 80 mile-a-day whirlwind that takes her children to a public school, two different private schools and back home for homeschool. Patrick Gibbons, redefinED.

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BY Patrick R. Gibbons

Patrick Gibbons is public affairs manager at Step Up for Students and a research fellow for the Friedman Foundation for Educational Choice. A former teacher, he lived in Las Vegas, Nev., for five years, where he worked as an education writer and researcher. He can be reached at (813) 498.1991 or emailed at [email protected]. Follow Patrick on Twitter: at @PatrickRGibbons and @redefinEDonline.