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Thursday's Afternoon Update

What a school grade really means

Florida’s system of giving schools grades from A-to-F has been in the spotlight this summer. Florida pioneered the A thru F school grade system in 1999. But now, even supporters are saying it’s time to revisit the formula. Read more from StateImpact Florida:

» What A School Grade Means To Parents
» Is Florida’s School Grading System Too Complicated?

Tropical Storm Erin forms in Atlantic

Tropical Storm Erin has formed in the eastern Atlantic, southwest of the Cape Verde Islands. The storm's maximum sustained winds early Thursday are near 40 mph with additional strengthening forecast during the next few days. More at the AP, the Tampa Bay Times and the Orlando Sentinel.

Norwegian plans to build Belize cruise destination

Business Profile

The Renaissance Man

kevin marchetti
In 10 years as metalsmith, artist and owner of The Renaissance Man, Kevin Marchetti has designed and built a Gulf Breeze community statue, provided historical restoration at a Key West cemetery and created trim work for dozens of residences.

His latest project is creating underwater insignia aboard a fishing barge converted into a dedicated reef for the longtime Joe Patti seafood business.

» Full story

Norwegian Cruise Line announced Wednesday it has purchased approximately 75 acres in Southern Belize for the planned development of an eco-friendly cruise destination. The land, called Harvest Caye, is made up of two adjoining islands in the Stann Creek and Toledo districts that had previously been approved for a resort development with an air strip. More at the South Florida Sun-Sentinel.

Harris Corp. gets $150M contract to turn FAA controls digital

Harris Corp. has been awarded a seven-year, $150 million contract with the Federal Aviation Administration to transition U.S. air traffic control from analog to digital. Harris (NYSE: HRS), the Melbourne-based communications and information technology company, said the upgrades are “significantly increasing the efficiency and safety of the nation’s air traffic control system." More at the Orlando Business Journal.

Depressed Europe trims visits to Miami

Depressed economies in France, Spain, Portugal and Italy caused tourism business from Western Europe to fall during the first half of this year. Visitors from Western Europe generated more than $932 million for the local economy last year, according to information from the Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau. More at Miami Today.

Tech Trends
Game developer, tourism officials join forces

solar flux hdAs players of a new video game travel through space in a virtual attempt to save dying stars, local tourism officials hope the game also will do its part to help attract tourists to the Space Coast. The game, “Solar Flux HD,” scheduled to go on the market Thursday, is being promoted in conjunction with the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex and the Space Coast Office of Tourism.

» Full story from Florida Today

» Solar Flux Facebook page