Posts By: Joni Branch

Teachers’ union president: Do state lawmakers want Florida’s kids to fail?

FEA President Fedrick Ingram asks: Do state lawmakers want Florida’s kids to fail? They say they don’t. This year we’ve heard lots of nice words from politicians about “ensuring every child has a world-class education,” “family empowerment” and providing students with “opportunity, regardless of their ZIP code or status.” But actions speak louder than talking… Read more »

In the works: A major expansion of charter schools in FL?

While educators, lobbyists, and media outlets have closely watched the debate over vouchers for kids to attend private schools with public money, a less-noticed initiative has gotten steam in the Legislature: A potential expansion of charter schools. … A school district “shall” enter into a performance-based agreement to open charter schools “to serve students from… Read more »

District predicts 100 teacher layoffs for next year

Bay County Schools Superintendent Bill Husfelt announced on Friday that the Florida House and Senate have agreed to support the district with $12.4 million in operational cost assistance to help divert staff layoffs. Although the decision won’t be official until Governor DeSantis has signed off on the bill, Husfelt is confident in his approval. “I want… Read more »

Florida school districts are rejecting armed teachers. Lawmakers say that’s okay.

Throughout the debate over teacher participation in Florida’s armed school guardian program, proponents have made one thing clear: No one is attempting to require teachers to carry guns. That includes some of the 25 districts that already accept guardian funding, but have chosen employees to serve solely as guards rather than have others take on the… Read more »

Thousands stand up for neighborhood public schools, students and educators

Who says Florida’s neighborhood public schools need better funding? The people do. Time and again, this state’s electorate has demonstrated broad, bipartisan consensus on the need to invest in our neighborhood public schools, our students and educators. But to make improved funding happen, the Legislature must act. On April 23, the Florida Education Association (FEA)… Read more »

Robbing Pinellas teachers and kids to subsidize charter schools

Pinellas voters should pay particular attention to the Florida Legislature over the next two weeks. Lawmakers are poised to cut every classroom teacher’s pay in Pinellas County by $325. They are positioned to cut funding for the school district’s art, music, reading and technology programs by more than a half-million dollars. They are prepared to defy… Read more »

Keep Common Core school standards, many teachers tell state in survey

Gov. Ron DeSantis wants to eliminate Common Core from Florida’s public schools, but the academic standards seem to have a sizeable fan base among the state’s teachers. “We do NOT need new standards,” wrote a Volusia County teacher on the Florida Department of Education’s survey about Common Core. “Nothing concerns me about the current standards… Read more »