Florida roundup: Rick Scott, charter schools, Stand Your Ground & more

Charter schools. A new charter school began readying a building for use before checking with the city of Lauderdale Lakes, which doesn’t want a school on the site and is in the process of rezoning it. South Florida Sun SentinelLet’s strive for good schools, charter or traditional, and either improve or shut down those that aren’t cutting it, writes charter school supporter Tom Watkins in the Miami Herald. The principal of a district-run charter in Miami-Dade strongly denies a former employee’s allegations of cheating. Miami Herald. A new charter school in Fort Myers will focus on career education. Fort Myers News Press.

florida roundup logoRick Scott. Rep. Karen Castor Dentel, D-Maitland, tells the governor he should take the Republican Party of Florida to task for using teachers – who were praising him – in a political video without their permission. The Buzz.

Stand Your Ground. South Florida Sun Sentinel: “A middle school student who got into a fistfight with a girl on a Broward County school bus should have been allowed to use the Stand Your Ground law to defend his actions, an appeals court ruled Wednesday.”

School grades. ExtraCredit catches up on the DOE simulation showing falling grades. Too-frequent changes are taking their toll. Tallahassee Democrat. The state Board of Education decision was a battle over competing hoaxes. Palm Beach Post.

Teacher conduct. Newsome High School teacher in Tampa is charged with 20 counts of possession of child pornography. Tampa Tribune. From the Sarasota Herald Tribune: “Four school administrators facing allegations of failure to report child abuse and a football coach who has been accused of groping a teenager could face further scrutiny — regardless of whether law enforcement chooses to prosecute them.” More from the Bradenton Herald.

Teachers. Half of the 160 Marion teachers laid off in the spring have been rehired to full-time positions. Ocala Star Banner.

Common Core. Are Florida Republicans taking on Jeb Bush? Answer Sheet.

Privatization. Marion will continue outsourcing custodial services. Ocala Star Banner.

Summer learning loss. A new Volusia program aims to stem it for incoming kindergartners. Daytona Beach News Journal.

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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.