December 2, 2022
New report shows more than 5,000 student Baker Acts in Florida

Florida Trend Education

New report shows more than 5,000 student Baker Acts in Florida

| 12/1/2022

New report shows more than 5,000 student Baker Acts in Florida

A report ordered in the wake of the Parkland massacre shines a light on the use of the Baker Act on school campuses in Florida. It shows a total of 5,077 incidents last year in which students were involuntarily committed under the mental health law known as the Baker Act. The law allows courts, law enforcement and some medical workers to involuntarily commit someone deemed a threat to themselves or others for up to 72 hours. [Source: First Coast News]

Flipped Florida school boards dump their superintendents

Republican Gov. Ron DeSantis put his weight behind dozens of conservative school board candidates across Florida during the midterms. Now they’re in office — and are purging some educational leaders who enforced Covid-19 mandates. New board members in two GOP-leaning counties essentially sacked their school superintendents over the span of one week. More from Politico and the Tampa Bay Times.

Florida Trend Exclusive
Sky Dreamer drone project gives students opportunity to discover, develop new technologies

Fort Walton Beach-based Hsu Educational Foundation has launched a student-oriented project called Sky Dreamer. The design-develop-fly program is the first of several planned unmanned aircraft systems challenge projects underway at high schools and colleges in Northwest Florida. Under a broad program heading called FieldWerx, students will link with mentors and specialists at Hurlburt Field’s Air Force Research Lab and the 1st Special Operations Wing. The goal of the Sky Dreamer project is to build an electric vertical takeoff and landing drone that will fly some eight miles. [Source: Florida Trend]

Florida Bar launches initiative centered on legal resource education

The Florida Bar announced a new initiative on Tuesday that provides state residents with educational resources on how to hire lawyers, where to find lawyers that meet specific needs, and navigating the legal system. The “Life’s Legal Moments,” initiative will serve as a public education program that aims to help Floridians understand when and how to access legal counsel. The program, spearheaded by Florida Bar President Gary Lesser, is designed to offer public guidance when navigating instances that necessitate retaining counsel to evaluate and help pursue legal work. [Source: Capitolist]

Helios Education Foundation donates $200,000 to the Florida College System Foundation to assist students impacted by Hurricane Ian

The Helios Education Foundation awarded the Florida College System Foundation $200,000 to assist state college students impacted by Hurricane Ian. The generous donation will provide needed support for students attending Southwestern State College, South Florida State College, State College of Florida, Manatee-Sarasota, Daytona State College, Seminole State College and Valencia College. The funds are available for currently enrolled students to use for instructional materials, housing, transportation, childcare, utilities and other urgent needs. [Source: Florida Trend]

ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:

› Pasco school struggling with homelessness turns to basketball for help
John Sosa showed up at Chasco Middle School on a recent Saturday morning to shoot hoops. But he came to the weekend skills camp for more than lessons on how to improve his game. “I’m out here to help the needy,” Sosa said. “My mom always told us to help anyone who needs help.” He and a couple dozen other boys and girls participated in Chasco Middle’s fledgling Hoops for the Hungry — a charitable program designed to support the school’s growing number of homeless students while also providing an opportunity for kids to have organized weekend activities.

› St. Johns teacher salary negotiations back to bargaining table after possible raise voted down
Just in time for the holidays — teachers in St. Johns County could finally see the pay raise they've debated and protested for months. First, they have to get an offer they can agree to — after 77% of all teachers turned down the $1,200 raise the district proposed. It's the first time in St. Johns Education Association history teachers have turned down a raise, with the majority feeling the offer wasn't enough.

› LECOM at Jacksonville University to open as northeast Florida's first four-year medical school
Advancing its position as a leader in cutting-edge healthcare education, Jacksonville University today announced a groundbreaking new partnership with Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine (LECOM), the nation's largest medical college and osteopathic academic health system, to establish LECOM at Jacksonville University. The medical school is supported by long-term clinical agreements with the region's preeminent healthcare providers, including Baptist Health, Flagler Health+, AdventHealth, HCA Florida Memorial Hospital, Brooks Rehabilitation, and others.

› Sarasota County school board allows superintendent to negotiate separation
Brennan Asplen joined Sarasota County Schools as superintendent in 2020. Now, with a few years remaining on his contract, his job is on the line. Emotions ran high during a nearly five-hour Sarasota School Board meeting Tuesday night. Ultimately, the school board members did not vote to terminate Asplen’s contract. Instead, they are giving him the opportunity to resign and negotiate a severance agreement.

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