Tuesday, November 13, 2018


Jeffrey S. Solochek, Times Staff Writer

Jeffrey S. Solochek, Times Staff Writer

Jeffrey S. Solochek has reported about Florida's public education system since the first school tried to return recognition funds from Jeb Bush's then-new A-Plus plan. Currently based in Pasco County, he covers state, regional and local education issues for the Tampa Bay Times both in print and online, including weekly podcasts and whatever new formats he can figure out. Follow on Twitter @jeffsolochek.

Hudson Elementary School students arrive for classes on Monday. Families and staff worked to go about their business even as talk swirled that the district might close the school in 2021. JEFFREY S. SOLOCHEK | Times

Losing Hudson and Mittye P. Locke elementaries? Pasco parents, students and teachers push back against proposed school closings

Two west Pasco schools are recommended for closure as officials seek to consolidate students and programs. Reaction to the idea hasn't been overly positive.
Updated: 7 hours ago
Connerton Elementary School principal Edward John Abernathy, 50, of Land O'Lakes, was arrested on Nov. 8, 2018, after deputies said he stole $900 brought to school by a 9-year-old student with a mental disability, according to the Pasco County Sheriff's Office. [Pasco County Sheriff's Office]

Pasco deputies: Elementary principal stole $900 from 9-year-old

LAND O’LAKES — A 50-year-old elementary school principal was arrested Thursday after deputies said he stole money brought to school by a 9-year-old student with a mental disability, according to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office.Connerton...
Published: 11/08/18
Updated: 11/09/18

Six Pasco schools see principal shuffle

The district also has set a 2019-20 calendar to help parents plan.
Published: 11/08/18
The Florida Supreme Court today will hear arguments in a 9-year-old case over whether the state adequately funds public schools. The hearing will begin at 9 a.m. in Tallahassee. [Associated Press]

Today at the Florida Supreme Court: Does the state spend enough on education?

Nine years after filing suit, a coalition of Florida parents is appearing today before Florida Supreme Court to ask that their case challenging the adequacy of public education funding be allowed to move forward.Two lower courts have ruled...
Published: 11/08/18

Pasco school district officials offer more details on proposal to close Lacoochee Elementary

Superintendent Kurt Browning says his goal is to improve the education for children in the low-income community, while better using scarce financial resources.
Published: 11/07/18
Florida Governor Rick Scott addresses a joint session of the Florida Legislature, which this year continued its long-running efforts to expand school choice. Lawmakers approved the

Florida continues to expand school choice with new programs

Florida families continue to take advantage of school choice options in greater numbers, as the variety available to them grows with new programs.
Published: 11/01/18

Pasco students need to separate politics from school time, superintendent says

Superintendent Kurt Browning advises high school principals not to excuse students from instructional time to work on political campaigns.
Published: 10/30/18
Pasco County School Board members heard concerns about transgender student rights and student club participation during an Oct. 17 public meeting. [JEFFREY S. SOLOCHEK   |   Times]

Religious rights group protests Pasco’s treatment of transgender students

A prominent religious rights advocacy group has targeted the Pasco County School District as Florida’s next flashpoint over transgender student rights.In a news release labeled
Updated one month ago
The Pasco County school district will partner with Healthy Schools LLC and the Florida Department of Health to provide free flu shots at clinics across the county later this year. The clinics will begin on Dec. 12. SKIP O'ROURKE   |   Times

Pasco school news: Employees seek raises; Schools to offer free flu shots in December

Saying they believe the district has enough money, representatives for Pasco County teachers and support employees ask for 4.5 percent raises plus bonuses.
Updated one month ago
Ron DeSantis, the Republican nominee for governor, announces his education proposals in front of Franklin Middle Magnet School in Tampa last month. He says he wants to reduce

Ron DeSantis says Florida public schools are wasting money. Are they?

Florida’s school leaders have made plain for years their desire for more money to run their districts. They’ve asked lawmakers for higher per-student funding, and the freedom to spend the money where it’s needed. They’ve requested more...
Updated one month ago