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Polk County Schools

Kathleen Middle School will remain closed until next week as workers continue to clean up damage spawned by a tornado from Tropical Storm Nestor over the weekend.

Nine county school boards, including Polk County, are going to the Florida Supreme Court in a battle about the constitutionality of a controversial 2017 law that sought to bolster charter schools.

Polk County School Bus Attendant Juanita Tippin
Polk County Sheriff's Office

The Polk County Sheriff's office has arrested a school bus attendant for abusing children and adults in her charge. 

Hillsborough County Public Schools

Polk County public school officials say more than 80 schools have been cleared after a recent round of tests looking for lead in drinking water.

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The news that 17 people, including young teenagers, had been gunned down in Parkland while going about their school day on Valentine’s Day this year sent shocks of outrage, anguish and calls to do something to prevent such a tragedy from happening again.

One result is a new law that says schools must have someone carrying a gun, sometimes called a school resource officer, who could respond in the event of a shooter on campus.

This week on Florida Matters, we're talking with Tampa Bay area officials about how their school districts are complying with a new state law that requires there to be at least one armed security guard in every school. 

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The Florida Department of Education has released test scores for the state's third grade reading exam and the Florida Standards Assessment results are a mixed bag for Tampa Bay area school districts.

Central Florida Schools Beefing Up Security

May 22, 2018

With schools almost out for summer, some school districts aren’t waiting to ramp up security. Brevard Schools said even before the Texas school shooting last week it’s adding security fencing, cameras and remote-controlled entry locks.

Leona Rosado / Land O' Lakes student

While thousands of students were in Tallahassee Wednesday to push for stronger gun laws after last week’s shooting in a high school in Parkland, teenagers across Florida walked out of class in a show of solidarity.

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The School Boards in Miami-Dade and Palm Beach counties have voted to authorize legal action to challenge a controversial new education bill.

Tampa Bay area school districts are still deciding whether to join them.

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The Florida Department of Education has released school grades for the 2016-17 school year.

2017 Teacher Of The Year From Polk County

Jul 15, 2016

A third grade math teacher from Polk County is 2017’s Florida Teacher of the Year.

Florida First Lady Ann Scott and Gov. Rick Scott made the announcement Thursday night at the annual awards ceremony in Orlando.

Jessica Solano is an educator at Highlands Grove Elementary School in Lakeland.

Florida Releases School Grades For 2016

Jul 8, 2016
Florida’s retail industry is gearing up for this year’s back-to-school sales tax “holiday” on clothes, classroom supplies and computer equipment, with the state offering the tax break for five days .
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Florida has released its annual report card for the state’s public schools.

The number of F-rated schools in the state dropped but there were also fewer A-rated schools.

Robin Sussingham / WUSF

Polk County School Superintendent Kathryn LeRoy spoke Tuesday to a group of parents and teachers in Lakeland who are rallying for more recess in schools.

Superintendent LeRoy told the crowd  that she's in favor of recess. She said that other school districts are making resolutions in favor of bringing back recess, but she wants to make policy.

LeRoy said she's forming a county-wide committee to quickly study the issue and bring recommendations back to the school board by the beginning of December.