Major education bill to create new school voucher and redo teacher bonuses passes Florida House
A far-reaching education bill that creates a new private school voucher and restructures the state’s teacher bonus program is on its way to Gov. Ron DeSantis’ desk, after the Florida House passed it on Tuesday. Senate Bill 7070 achieves a goal that has been sought by Republicans since Jeb Bush was governor: funding a voucher for low-income families to send their children to private schools by using the state pot of per-student funding for public schools. More from the Tampa Bay Times and the Orlando Sentinel.
There's a growing problem on university campuses throughout Northeast Florida and it may not be what you expect, like a tough final exam, or poor study habits. It's student hunger. Frank Castillo, the President and CEO of Feeding Northeast Florida, stopped by First Coast Living to talk about this issue. Read more at First Coast News and watch the video below:
The University of Florida already has impressive graduation rates. Nearly all of its freshman, 97 percent, stick around for a second year, and almost 87 percent finish with a degree within six years. However, in a quest to become a top five university, UF recently launched a data analytics program designed to identify students at risk of dropping out or prolonging their studies. [Source: Ed Tech Magazine]
Florida’s public high schools overall ranked sixth in the nation in U.S. News & World Report’s new 2019 report on the country’s best high schools released this morning. The Sunshine State earned the sixth spot — behind Massachusetts, Maryland, California, Connecticut and New Jersey — based on the percentage of its high schools that placed in the country’s top 25 percent of the more than 17,000 public high schools the magazine ranked. [Source: Orlando Sentinel]
Nova Southeastern University, one of Broward County’s biggest employers, is not immune to layoffs. But a university official says the 101 people laid off on Friday were good employees who lost their jobs due to something beyond their control: Declining enrollment. Many did not see it coming and were stunned by the news. [Source: South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
› As state lawmakers debate arming teachers, gun is accidentally fired at Florida school [South Florida Sun-Sentinel]
As state lawmakers clashed in a heated debate in Tallahassee on whether to arm teachers, a school resource officer accidentally fired a gun at a Pasco County middle school. Democrats in the Florida House used the breaking news alert during an emotional debate Tuesday as part of their efforts to highlight why they think teachers shouldn’t be allowed to carry guns on campus.
› University of South Florida and Tampa Bay Lightning are flourishing together [Forbes]
In a corner by the door to Joe Hice’s office is an autographed stick of former Tampa Bay Lightning great Vinny Lecavalier. The stick is not visible when the University of South Florida marketing director’s door is open, which it always is in a figurative sense and quite often literally. The irony is that the relationship between the university and Lecavalier’s former team, unquestionably two of the Tampa Bay region’s most impactful entities, is becoming more and more visible.
› New College agrees to student demands [Sarasota Herald-Tribune]
New College of Florida President Donal O’Shea said Monday that he would agree to demands submitted by students angered over allegations that the school discriminated against applicants who mentioned mental health struggles in their application essays.
› Dr. David R. Nelson named to top leadership position at University of Florida Health [Florida Trend]
Dr. David R. Nelson has been named senior vice president for health affairs at the University of Florida and president of UF Health, the university’s academic health center, UF President Kent Fuchs announced today. The appointment is effective immediately.