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May 26, 2017
Are online courses turning Florida's schools into diploma mills?

Photo: Tampa Bay Times

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Are online courses turning Florida's schools into diploma mills?

| 5/25/2017

Are online courses turning Florida's schools into diploma mills?

Nearly a decade ago, state officials decreed that, starting in 2009, graduation data would factor into the letter grades assigned to individual public schools. The stakes were high and one solution with the anodyne name of "online credit recovery" promised a radical turnaround in student performance. But is it selling students short? [Source: Slate]

See also:
» Why bad online courses are still taught in schools

What are Floridians telling Rick Scott now about the schools bill? It’s mixed.

Floridians continue to inundate Republican Gov. Rick Scott with input on whether he should sign or veto a controversial K-12 schools bill known as House Bill 7069. But new data just in shows Floridians are split on what the Governor should do. In the past week, school choice groups have aggressively defended the legislation, which heavily benefits charter schools through additional funding and less regulation. As of Wednesday evening, the amount of emails, letters, phone calls and petition signatures Scott’s office had received were roughly even. [Source: Times/Herald]

See also:
» Battle over sweeping education bill heats up
» Adam Putnam: Too much of education bill was done 'behind closed doors'
» Florida community colleges beg Governor Rick Scott to veto 'unfair' budge cuts
» While Miami Dade, Broward colleges take a budget hit -- public universities get more
» If Rick Scott vetoes public school budget, here's what happens
» Commentary: Florida school bill is a jam-packed scam

Florida prekindergarten access among nation's best, but funding among worst

When Florida began its voluntary prekindergarten program, the criticisms began that it aimed to serve many youngsters but with little quality. It's been 15 years since voters put the system in place, and the reviews have yet to change. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]

Do charter schools serve special needs kids? The jury is out

The debate is growing over whether charter schools in Florida and other states properly serve students with special needs. The debate over inclusion of special needs students is likely to intensify with Trump and his education secretary, Betsy DeVos, seeking to expand access to charter as well as private schools. [Source: AP]

Virtual Reality Education Conference to be held in Florida

The conference, which is free to attend and open to the public, will bring together researchers, technology developers and educators interested in using virtual reality in higher education, and particularly in education pertaining to Science, Technology, Engineering and Math, of STEM. [Source: ]

ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› Florida 3rd grade reading scores jumped up in 2017
Florida's third graders are scoring better this year on a key state test that helps determine whether or not they get promoted.

› Florida Tech to offer forensic accounting degree
The Florida Institute of Technology and their Nathan Bisk College of Business announced on Wednesday a new Master of Science in Accounting and Financial Forensics degree.

› Jeb Bush tells school reformers to be bigger and bolder
Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush called upon school choice reformers meeting in Indianapolis to be bigger and bolder this year, saying access to quality education was the “great civil rights issue of our time.”

› Pinellas School Board approves plan that aims to close achievement gap
After months of behind-the-scenes negotiations, the Pinellas County School Board on Tuesday unanimously approved a plan that aims to tackle the achievement gap in 10 years and settles a long-running lawsuit over the education of black students.

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