Florida schools roundup: parent trigger, merit pay, mentors & more

Parent trigger. Joe Henderson from the Tampa Tribune on parent trigger: “In my opinion, it started from the flawed premise that it’s always the institution’s fault when a school fails.” Tallahassee Democrat: “What we don’t need is to have for-profit corporations lobbying parents to shut down or privatize a public school.” The Foundation for Florida’s Future isn’t giving up, reports StateImpact Florida.

florida roundup logoBad teachers. Language regarding student placement with unsatisfactory teachers, which had been part of the parent trigger bill, is approved as part of a charter school bill. Times/Herald.

Teacher evals. Lawmakers tweak the new system to ensure teachers are only rated on students they teach. Gradebook.

Teacher merit pay. In a setback for the FEA, a circuit court judge rules that SB736 does not violate collective bargaining rights. Orlando Sentinel, Associated Press, News Service of Florida.

Superintendents. The Palm Beach County School Board should quit worrying about former Superintendent Art Johnson, editorializes the Palm Beach Post.

Mentors. The Sarasota Herald Tribune writes up the mentors who helped Take Stock in Children scholars in Manatee: “A mentor is a mirror. A guide to the big picture. Someone who has walked in someone’s shoes and gotten to where they want to be.”

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BY Ron Matus

Ron Matus is director for policy and public affairs at Step Up for Students and a former editor of redefinED. He joined Step Up in February 2012 after 20 years in journalism, including eight years as an education reporter with the Tampa Bay Times (formerly the St. Petersburg Times). Ron can be reached at rmatus@stepupforstudents.org or (727) 451-9830. Follow him on Twitter @RonMatus1 and on facebook at facebook.com/redefinedonline.