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Education

We're dedicated to telling you stories about policy and public spending, and how they affect students in Florida schools. Our WUSF News reporters team up with our public media partners across Florida to bring you a more comprehensive look at learning.

To see coverage from our prior StateImpact Florida project, visit here.

 

It’s a rainy Saturday afternoon in Miami, and a couple dozen teenage soccer players are on the field behind Edison high school, in Little Haiti, trying to run a scrimmage in the mud.

Courtesy Melinda Hohman

A state appeals court has overturned a ruling concerning school testing in Florida.

The judgment is a major setback for the “Opt-Out” movement.

Florida schools should teach their students how to save, invest, and otherwise understand personal finances. That’s according to members of the Florida Financial Literacy summit. Now lawmakers are considering a bill that would make it a graduation requirement. Mark Anderson is with the Florida council on economic education.

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Beginning this fall, Florida students can go to any public school in the state. Seen as a victory for proponents of school choice, the new law was signed by Gov. Rick Scott last year. It allows students to cross county borders as long as a school has room, and parents provide their own transportation. 

Parents could soon be able to see how much the school district is spending on their child’s education.


When most children in the foster care system turn 18, they’re on their own…Today, we’ll hear from a young man in a Miami supportive housing program called Casa Valentina, where young people get counseling and academic support and learn about building a life and career. Deon Richards is 22 now. WLRN's Rowan Moore Gerety  spoke with him  about what it was like becoming an adult as a ward of the state.

 

We're all familiar with the term "hidden in plain sight." Well, there may be no better way to describe the nation's 6,900 charter schools.

These publicly-funded, privately-run schools have been around since the first one opened in St. Paul, Minn., in 1992. Today, they enroll about 3.1 million students in 43 states, so you'd think Americans should know quite a bit about them by now. But you'd be wrong.

Everything from mandatory recess to testing schedules is up for debate during the state legislative session that begins next week.

Rep. Tracie Davis, D-Jacksonville, and Sen. Aaron Bean, R-Fernandina Beach, laid out their education agendas to members of Duval County’s Parent Teacher Association Tuesday.


John Legend Encourages Tampa Bay Students Of Color

Feb 27, 2017
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John Legend is known for his music, but he came to the Tampa Convention Center last week as an advocate for students of color. He told students and educators there that poverty and racism often stand in their way.

Alex Proimos / Wikimedia Commons

The Federal Trade Commission says around one-third of financial exploitation complaints last year came from seniors. One of the top complaint reported to the Senate Aging Committee Fraud Hotline includes what's called grandparent scams.

Leading members of the House and Senate unveiled legislation Wednesday that they said could help reduce the amount of time Florida public school students spend on standardized tests during the school year.

But lawmakers admitted that the proposal (HB 773, SB 926), dubbed the “Fewer, Better Tests” legislation, would not explicitly do away with any exams.

The proposal would require the state's language arts and math tests to be administered in the last three weeks of a school year, with the exception of the 3rd-grade reading exam.

Florida’s community colleges, now called state colleges, can offer more than an associate’s degree: students don’t necessarily have to transfer to complete a bachelor's degree. However, one bill lawmakers will debate this session—SB 374—introduced by Dorothy Hukill, R-Brevard-Volusia, would limit upper-level courses at state colleges.

Lee Demorris

It’s family game night at Davis Elementary School in Clearwater, but there's not a Monopoly board or a Jenga block in sight. Instead, kids and parents are playing math games.

Quincy Walters

A federal judge is recommending dismissal of a lawsuit brought against the Florida High School Athletic Association by a private school in Tampa.

Cambridge Christian School says the state sports association violated the Florida and U.S. Constitutions when it denied the use of a public-address system for a pre-game prayer at Orlando's Camping World Stadium.

The school made the request before a state championship football game in 2015.

Florida State Sen. Bill Montford, R-Tallahasee, wants to encourage college students to make a career in education. He's proposing creating a scholarship to help pay for teacher certification.

A controversial teacher bonus program could be up for changes this year. Teachers have complained the Best and Brightest program is unfair—it awards bonuses partly based on standardized test scores—disadvantaging older and minority educators.

A Senate plan for changes to the state’s public colleges and universities sailed smoothly through its first panel hearing Monday. Questions mostly centered on how schools could implement block tuition and use a four-year graduation rate as part of the state’s higher ed accountability system.

The Duval County School district wants more non-Hispanic students to join its dual-language program.

The program teaches students core subjects in English and Spanish, and most of the students come from Hispanic families.


The future could get a little brighter for some Florida college students. There’s a growing consensus to increase awards for some of the state’s highest academic performers. Legislative and state leaders seem to be in agreement when it comes to lowering the cost of higher ed.

Cathy Carter/WUSF

A St. Petersburg teacher was surprised with an award and a $25,000 prize during an all-school assembly Thursday.

Lukas Hefty, a science and math coordinator at Douglas Jamerson Jr. Elementary School, is Florida's only recipient of the national Milken Educator Awards. Its aim is to encourage early to mid-career education professionals.

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