March 1, 2024
Student scores are down due to COVID, but Florida schools see silver lining

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Student scores are down due to COVID, but Florida schools see silver lining

| 10/27/2022

Student scores are down due to COVID, but Florida schools see silver lining

While educators across the U.S. lamented students’ historically poor performance on the first national tests since the pandemic, Florida officials found a silver lining — even as the state’s reading and math scores declined. They noted that Florida students outpaced their peers in other states on average scores reported Monday from the National Assessment of Educational Progress, known as “the nation’s report card.” More from the Tampa Bay Times and Axios.

Helios Education Foundation provides $625K for Hurricane Ian reliefv

The Helios Education Foundation is donating $625,000 for Hurricane Ian relief efforts, its board of directors announced Wednesday. Of that, $525,000 will go to education-related organizations that work directly with students and children. The other $100,000 will go toward United Way of Florida to support its United 4 Florida Disaster Recovery Fund. “This intense storm has forever impacted the lives of countless families across the state,” Helios Education Foundation Founding Chairman Vince Roig said. [Source: Florida Politics]

Judge refuses to block education law

A federal judge has refused to block school districts from carrying out a new state law that restricts instruction on gender identity and sexual orientation in classrooms, rejecting arguments by parents, students and a non-profit organization. The ruling Thursday by U.S. District Judge Wendy Berger was the second time in less than a month that a federal judge has turned down a challenge to the law. U.S. District Judge Allen Winsor on Sept. 29 dismissed a separate case, though he said plaintiffs could file a revised version. [Source: News Service of Florida]

10 Florida universities among best in the world: U.S. News

The University of Florida in Gainesville and Florida State University in Tallahassee are among Florida schools included on this year’s list of the best global universities in the world, according to a new ranking by U.S. News & World Report released Tuesday. The publication’s 2023 Best Global Universities list ranks more than 2,000 schools in dozens of countries based on academic research and reputation. [Source: Patch]

Districts miss deadline on teacher pay plans

After Florida lawmakers set aside $800 million this year to help raise educators’ salaries, 41 school districts have not submitted plans to distribute the money, according to the state Department of Education. Districts faced an Oct. 1 deadline to submit plans that also were required to address raising salaries for charter-school teachers. As of Thursday, 19 districts had completed their plans, with teachers either getting paid or scheduled to have their pay raised. [Source: News Service of Florida]

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› New College Challenge launches with eye toward sustainability and resilience
New College of Florida students, faculty and staff are joining elected officials, business leaders, community advocates and higher education professionals to launch The New College Challenge. The launch event spotlighted the new initiative, which focuses on coastal, economic and social resilience in higher education and beyond.

› Florida faculty union presses UF on presidential search with 1 finalist
The statewide faculty union is calling on the University of Florida to release the names of the 12 people who were interviewed for the president’s job before a search committee announced that Nebraska Sen. Ben Sasse was the only finalist. The group is also pushing the school to release the age, race and gender of the 700 people that the search committee made contact with during its search. It called on UF to delay the hiring process until the information is released, and threatened legal action if it does not.

› University of Miami accelerates path to medical specialties
The University of Miami’s Miller School of Medicine NextGenMD Program is accelerating the path for students to get hands-on in their desired specialized medical field with dual degrees and sub-degree concentrations, a method other medical schools are implementing nationwide. UM’s NextGenMD is a medical scientist training program (MSTP) that aims to graduate students with a scholarly concentration, such as biomedical engineering, business of medicine and patient safety, diagnostic pathology and laboratory medicine, and global health and surgery.

› Alachua County teachers get hands-on science education experience at Florida Museum of Natural History
Eight Alachua County Public Schools K-12 teachers participated in the two-day “Chewing on Change” workshop last week to better understand science education standards through a deep dive into horse fossils Sunday. Educators toured fossil exhibits at the Florida Museum of Natural History alongside mammal paleontologists. Afterward, teachers made posters charting the horse’s evolution using what they learned, experiencing a lesson plan from the seat of a student.

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Trailblazing teacher at Bethune-Cookman University turned her struggle into inspiration
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