Florida still needs 9,000 teachers before students return
Florida school districts are facing a staffing crisis, with thousands of teacher vacancies still open and less than two weeks left until school starts. According to the Florida Education Association, districts across the state are still looking to hire a total of about 9,000 teachers with the first day of school scheduled for August 10 in most districts. More from WTVT and WTSP.
$6 billion loan settlement could spare grads of Florida Coastal School of Law, business schools
Former Florida Coastal School of Law students have been hurrying to request forgiveness of sometimes staggering student loan debts ahead of a court order that could cancel $6 billion in obligations haunting people who attended for-profit schools nationwide. “My time is now or never,” said Natacha Ciezki, who said that including interest she owes about $500,000 for the law degree she earned in Jacksonville in 2014. [Source: First Coast News]
Veterans can now teach in Florida with no degree. School leaders say it 'lowers the bar'
A potential solution to a statewide teacher shortage issue has education leaders feeling as though Gov. Ron DeSantis' administration is undermining the qualifications of classroom instructors. Last week, the Florida Department of Education announced that military veterans, as well as their spouses, would receive a five-year voucher that allows them to teach in the classroom despite not receiving a degree to do so. It's a move tied to the $8.6 million the state announced would be used to expand career and workforce training opportunities for military veterans and their spouses. [Source: USA Today]
A Florida law professor breaks down the state's battle with the federal government over Title IX
Florida's education commissioner is telling school districts not to comply with federal guidelines concerning gender and sexual orientation. WUSF's Cathy Carter recently spoke with Stetson University law professor Louis Virelli, about the state and federal showdown over the interpretation of Title IX, which prohibits discrimination in education. More from WUSFand Education Week.
New Florida charter school law expands approval powers to state, not just school districts, sparking concerns
They’re now considered the most popular school choice for parents in Florida. Over the past five years, the number of charter schools have increased 5% across the state, with student enrollment up by more than 20% according to Florida’s Department of Education (FDOE). Now a quietly signed new state law is expected to put that grown on an even faster track in Florida by expanding who can approve charter school applications not just to local school boards but to a statewide commission. [Source: WFTX]
ALSO AROUND FLORIDA:
› Exoplanet discovered by University of Florida researchers gives new insight into the formation of planets [UF News]
Astronomers have identified one of the youngest exoplanets ever discovered, hidden in the swirl of gas around a newly born star 390 light-years from Earth. The Jupiter-sized world offers two key opportunities to scientists studying how all planets, including those in our own solar system, develop. A mere 1.5-million-year-old infant compared to its probable lifespan of billions of years, the planet is so young it can still provide clues about its birth.
› How Florida A&M University aims to fill the gap during nationwide nurse shortage [Tallahassee Democrat]
The nation’s nursing shortage is hitting close to home in Florida. With the overwhelming demand for nurse candidates, Florida A&M University is responding by expanding its nursing program with three new degree tracks. FAMU President Larry Robinson announced last week the university will be adding Nursing Informatics, Nursing Leadership and Nursing Education degree options to its Master of Science in Nursing (MSN) program. The new specializations will begin in January.
› Pinellas schools review dozens of books, prompted by new Florida laws [Tampa Bay Times]
With the start of classes fast approaching and a single goal in mind, 19 Pinellas County school librarians hunkered down over a stack of books for nearly nine hours over two days last week. They aimed to recommend to their peers and principals how to best use the 94 titles, in light of new Florida laws governing the selection of books and the instruction of race, sex and gender issues. State guidelines on how to review the materials won’t arrive for months, but few expect the challenges to wait.
› Outdated Florida DOE policy forces TCC to postpone opening date of STEM charter school [Tallahassee Democrat]
Tallahassee Community College President Jim Murdaugh had a clear goal of opening a charter school on TCC’s campus by August, but plans took a different turn. The charter school’s doors will open in August 2023 instead, and the reason behind the delay goes beyond the college’s control.