October 3, 2022
Education takes central role in Florida's race for governor

Florida Trend Education

Education takes central role in Florida's race for governor

| 9/1/2022

Education takes central role in Florida’s race for governor

The two major party candidates for Florida governor left no question that education looms large over this year’s election politics with their latest moves. Incumbent Gov. Ron DeSantis  has education-themed ads streaming across the internet. U.S. Rep. Charlie Crist, the Democratic challenger, put a spotlight on the issue as he named United Teachers of Dade president Karla Hernández-Mats as his running mate. [Source: Tampa Bay Times]

Florida has ‘critical teacher shortage,’ according to state report

The 2022 school year is open and started, and the Florida Department of Education has areas that still have “critical teacher shortages.” While the state government works on multiple solutions to fill a staff shortage thousands of positions wide, staff salaries and recruitment drives are only part of the effort needed to address statewide education employment concerns. [Source: WFLA]

New Florida laws have schools jittery about handling books

Florida school districts started the 2022-23 school year facing new state laws that mean school libraries, classroom bookshelves and even twice-a-year book fairs face increased scrutiny. The laws created unease among educators and also differing responses as they await more detailed guidance from the Florida Department of Education. Those responses worry those who fear the views of a small group of parents who lobbied for the law are dictating the books available to public school children across the state. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]

Are Florida’s universities too liberal? Here’s what new state survey said.

In the first ever “intellectual freedom and viewpoint diversity” survey taken at Florida’s 12 public universities, 61% of students agreed that their campuses provided an environment for free expression of ideas, opinions and beliefs. Asked to share their political leanings, the 36% of employees who identified as moderates made up the largest single group. And a plurality of students — 45% — said they did not feel intimidated about sharing opinions in front of their professors, compared to 28% who said they did. More from the Tampa Bay Times and Clay Today.

Are Florida’s public universities prepared for monkeypox?

Florida college students are back on campus just as monkeypox is spreading quickly in the state, including among young adults. But while universities are posting information and offering fliers about the disease, few are prepared for a campus outbreak. They have yet to announce how they plan to isolate students with the virus and help them keep up with classes, and few have acquired the Jynneos vaccine being used for people at high risk of monkeypox. [Source: News Service of Florida]

ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› School-based mental health therapy program expands to Manatee County
The Florida Center for Early Childhood has been selected by the Manatee County School District to expand its nationally accredited school-based therapy program to 10 elementary schools with the highest need. An estimated 1 in 10 children is coping with a mental health issue severe enough to impact their lives at home, in school, and in the community, according to the Centers for Disease Control.

› Miami Dade College loses public records fee fight
An appeals court Wednesday rejected an attempt by Miami Dade College to collect more than $200,000 in a dispute about providing public records. A three-judge panel of the 3rd District Court of Appeal upheld a circuit judge’s ruling that the college was not entitled to collect $201,087 in attorney fees and costs from Nader + Museu I, LLLP. The ruling said the college had not provided an estimate or an invoice to the business before producing the public records, contrary to state law and college policies.

› Southeastern Grocers donates $340,000 to aid students and school programs across the Southeast
Southeastern Grocers Inc. (SEG), parent company and home of Fresco y Más, Harveys Supermarket and Winn-Dixie grocery stores, is proud to announce a donation of $340,000 to aid more than 420 public schools throughout the Southeast and support teachers, staff and students during the school year. The three-week community donation program was held in all Fresco y Más, Harveys Supermarket and Winn-Dixie stores and continued SEG’s pledge to foster the education, development and wellness of children, while providing support inside and outside of the classroom.

› Tampa Bay university named a top employer by magazine
The University of South Florida has been named one of the Sunshine State’s best employers in rankings released by Forbes magazine. According to a news release announcing the magazine’s latest America’s Best Employers by State list, USF is No. 21 out of 100 public and private organization in Florida, and No. 2 among the state’s colleges and universities.

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Education Video Pick

As Hillsborough turns schools into shelters, cafeteria workers start cooking
As Hillsborough turns schools into shelters, cafeteria workers start cooking

Hillsborough County Schools are providing more than 60 shelters for the storm, which means lodging and food. Many of those same workers who started prepping meatballs, pizza and popcorn chicken at 5 a.m. on Monday will also stay at their schools during the storm and serve food to people in need.

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