Politics does not disrupt all school board careers in Florida

The big story: Across Florida, campaigns for school board seats have become increasingly political activities despite the seats not being partisan by law. In parts of south Florida, for example, some conservative candidates are seeking support for gun shows, the Sun-Sentinel reports.

Hillsborough County, the state’s third largest district, appears to be an exception.

While many of the candidates had informed perspectives on many of the hot issues, they took steps to avoid saying too many controversial things. One of the biggest points of difference between them is centered on the district’s property tax referendum in support of employee salaries. Read more here.

Hot topics

Intellectual freedom: State officials are trying to do this so that former Florida education commissioner Richard Corcoran, who now sits on the Board of Governors of the State University System, does not have to testify in a lawsuit challenging the law of state in 2021 about diversity of perspective, the Florida News Service reports.

Race lessons: Despite its campaign against “wake culture,” the DeSantis administration paid thousands of dollars to an education firm that promotes racial inclusivity, Politico Florida reports. The Florida Department of Education criticized the report.

Student services: The Duval County School Board has unanimously agreed to change its rules about notifying parents of changes in their children’s support services, WTLV reports. That includes a child’s request to be called by another name or pronoun.

School board services: After months of discussion, the Brevard County charter review commission decided to propose a recall provision for school board members, Florida Today reports.

School grades: Jefferson County High School is adjusting its faculty to counter its poor performance, WTXL reports. The school regained local control after five years under a charter operator. • The fate of a long-struggling Escambia County middle school depends on scoring a late-delivered box of exams, the Pensacola News-Journal reports. • The Citrus County school district saw its grade drop to a C for the first time since 2010, the Citrus County Chronicle reports. Officials said they already have a response in place.

Textbook adoption: The Collier County School Board approved the use of the new math books despite criticism from some residents on the content, WBBH reports.

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To teachers

School districts across Florida continue to face teacher shortages. Among them, Lee County schools will have to fill nearly 300 teacher vacancies four weeks before classes can resume, WFTX reports. • The Broward County school district is looking to hire about 500 teachers, less than a year ago, WFOR reports. • Florida education commissioner Manny Diaz Jr. said. that his department is taking initiatives to bring more teachers into classrooms, The Capitolist reports. • Bay County school district officials say the lack of affordable housing poses their biggest hurdle, the WMBB reports.

Florida’s controversial civics practice continues. The reaction was mixed among educators, WINK reports.

The Orange County school district offered teachers a raise after lengthy negotiations. Some teachers in Orange County are advocating against the district’s proposal, saying it’s not good enough because of inflation, the Orlando Sentinel reports.

Don’t miss a story. Here is the link to yesterday’s roundup.

Before you leave … Argyle, the pizza guy in the Netflix series “Stranger Things,” is pretty popular these days. Some people even tried to call him from the number on the side of his delivery van on television. You should give it a try.


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