Sunday, August 19, 2018
Education

Hillsborough school policy changes consider school names, suspended kindergarteners and more

TAMPA — Policy changes proposed for the Hillsborough County school district would affect everything from which children can be suspended to who can have a school named in his or her honor.

The Hillsborough County School Board is scheduled to discuss eight policies Tuesday at 9 a.m. in a workshop.

They will return later in the year at a public hearing before the board takes a final vote.

Among the proposed changes:

• Elevate schools, a label given to schools in greatest need of improvement and support, will continue to be defined as those with at least two D or F grades, with demonstrated deficiencies in behavior, suspension and kindergarten readiness.

Parental involvement would be added to the list of criteria: It must be less than 20 percent. There is also more specific critera for the school’s principal: He or she must have spent at least two years running a high-needs school and an additional year as an assistant principal in a high needs school.

• Children awaiting placement in foster care would no longer be counted among homeless students.

• No student in grades kindergarten through second would be eligible for suspension.

• A new policy would govern lobbying activities in the district. Lobbyists -- defined as people who are working for their clients’ financial gain, whether they are being paid or not -- would have to register, and disclose their lobbying role when interacting with district officials.

• A proposed revision to the district’s policy on travel would cap expenses for the superintendent and board members to $3,500 a year, not including registration fees and tuition.

Administrators below that level can spend up to $2,500 unless they get approval from the superintendent.

Exceptions exist if a trip requires an employee or official to visit more than one city, as is the case with teams who recruit teachers.

The traveler would have to use "the most economical method of travel" for each trip.

• School buildings and facilities would not be named for anyone who is a candidate for public office. And no longer would the district be required to wait 18 months to consider a name change, a policy that delayed the process of renaming Lee Elementary School.

• The board also will consider overhauling the district’s wellness policy with changes that affect physical education, health education, psychological and social services and family engagement.

An afternoon session at 1 p.m. will review the student dress code.

Marlene Sokol can be reached at (813) 226-3356 or msokol@tampabay.com. Follow @marlenesokol

Comments

Epilogue: Tampa’s Mother Teresa, Delia Sanchez, remembered as child welfare champion

Delia P. Sanchez collected things — purses, shoes, newspapers. She hid them away in a storage unit, out of sight from her tidy husband. She had her reasons. And not one of them was selfish. The extra accessories? Those were for the mothers of...
Updated: 9 hours ago
A USF milestone: Three new dorms, more than 6,300 students living on campus

A USF milestone: Three new dorms, more than 6,300 students living on campus

TAMPA — The paint on Pinnacle Hall’s white-and-gold walls still smelled fresh as Lilly Myskey led a parade of parents and bins and bags down the hall toward her new room at the University of South Florida. "Speaking of the building being brand-new, L...
Published: 08/17/18
Florida girl denied school lunch because she was 15 cents short, mother says

Florida girl denied school lunch because she was 15 cents short, mother says

A sophomore at University High School in Volusia County was denied lunch on her first day of school Tuesday because she owed 15 cents, according to WKMG in Orlando.The girl’s mother, Kimberly Aiken, told WKMG a cashier in the school’s lunchroom threw...
Published: 08/16/18
Brooksville pastor challenges longtime principal trying for reelection to Hernando’s District 5 School Board seat

Brooksville pastor challenges longtime principal trying for reelection to Hernando’s District 5 School Board seat

Hernando County School Board District 5 incumbent Susan Duval seconded the motion to fire superintendent Lori Romano on June 12. And that’s why Joe Santerelli said he filed to run against her about a week later.A week after that, the local pastor spo...
Published: 08/15/18
Updated: 08/17/18
Candidates for Hernando’s District 3 School Board seat talk mental health, technical education

Candidates for Hernando’s District 3 School Board seat talk mental health, technical education

As Hernando County School Board member Beth Narverud makes her run for a spot on the County Commission, three hopefuls are running to fill her District 3 seat.One is Jimmy Lodato, a Tampa native and 19-year Hernando resident. Retired from a career in...
Published: 08/15/18
Updated: 08/17/18
Incumbent chairman and newcomer battle for Hernando’s District 1 School Board seat

Incumbent chairman and newcomer battle for Hernando’s District 1 School Board seat

Mark Johnson was elected to the Hernando County School Board in 2014. He said his successful track record, combined with local business savvy, make him the clear choice over Catherine "Kay" Hatch for the District 1 seat."It’s not just an opportunity ...
Published: 08/15/18
Updated: 08/17/18
Corbett Prep marks 50th year with compassionate stories, family love

Corbett Prep marks 50th year with compassionate stories, family love

TAMPA — Sammi Borosh sat Tuesday afternoon in one of those tiny chairs for kindergartners and looked across the table at four of her former teachers — and her eyes misted.Borosh said she loved those four ladies and she loved the school where they tau...
Published: 08/15/18
For this Marjory Stoneman Douglas student, start of school is ‘beginning of the end’

For this Marjory Stoneman Douglas student, start of school is ‘beginning of the end’

Barbara Ojago saw her grandson’s first day back at school as the beginning of the end.Her grandson, Emea, will finish his senior year at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High in Parkland. But Emea returns to a school forever changed by a former student he pe...
Published: 08/15/18
Pinellas plans new arts and gifted magnet schools in north county

Pinellas plans new arts and gifted magnet schools in north county

Next school year, if all goes according to plan, two new programs will expand the slate of options for Pinellas County elementary students — a conservatory for the arts in Clearwater and a gifted center in Palm Harbor.The programs, which will go befo...
Published: 08/15/18
Report card on ousted Hernando schools superintendent shows little change from last year

Report card on ousted Hernando schools superintendent shows little change from last year

BROOKSVILLE — Two months after firing superintendent Lori Romano, the Hernando County School Board on Tuesday reviewed results of a second district-wide survey to evaluate her performance, finding that little changed from last year.Romano’s overall a...
Published: 08/15/18