Education

Voters Approve Property Tax To Give Broward Teachers Six Percent Raise

Aug 29, 2018
Sun Sentinel

Broward voters put aside their concerns about school district financial management and approved a new property tax earmarked for teachers, school security officers and student mental health care.

The tax is expected to raise $93 million a year, most of which will be used to give teachers a 6 percent raise. The higher pay will last for four years and would have to be renewed by voters in 2022 to continue.

Caitie Switalski / WLRN

Two parents of Parkland shooting victims have launched formidable campaigns for the Broward County school board, and their efforts to overhaul the leadership of the nation's sixth-largest school district could be seen as a referendum on its superintendent.

Five of the district's nine school board seats are on the Aug. 28 ballot. Currently, a majority of board members in Broward support superintendent Robert Runcie. But these elections could change that.

Emily Michot / Miami Herald

Gov. Rick Scott is asking state lawmakers to redirect most of the money they allocated for arming and training school staff, since many districts didn’t want to use it.

The Legislature included $67 million in this year’s state budget for the Coach Aaron Feis Guardian Program, which would allow for trained armed guards at schools. Named for a victim of the shooting at Majory Stoneman Douglas High School, the provision was the most controversial aspect of a larger, $400 million package passed quickly in response to the Feb. 14 massacre.

A long-running lawsuit over whether the state is properly funding its public schools is now before the Florida Supreme Court.  Oral arguments have been scheduled for November 8th.

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN

For the first time in the 61-year history of the Miami-Dade County school district police department, no cops were absent on the first day of school.

C.M. GUERRERO / Miami Herald

A Leon County circuit judge Monday knocked a proposed education constitutional amendment off the November ballot, saying the wording failed to inform voters of its impact on the creation of charter schools.

The proposed amendment, placed on the ballot by the Constitution Revision Commission, would impose eight-year term limits on school board members and would require the promotion of “civic literacy” in public schools.

According to the state's largest teacher's union, educators vote at a higher rate than the average Floridian.

Several dozen Pinellas County teachers gathered in downtown St. Petersburg Sunday for a "Get Out The Vote" rally. Like their counterparts across the country, the teachers wore the color red as a sign of solidarity. 

David Santiago / Miami Herald

A new book will feature writing, photography and art from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School students and teachers.

The book — called “Parkland Speaks” — will include first-person accounts of the Feb. 14 shooting and perspectives from students and teachers about finding healing and hope in its aftermath. It will be published in January of 2019 by Random House, according to English teacher and yearbook adviser Sarah Lerner, who is the book's editor.

Carl Juste / Miami Herald

A student pulled a fire alarm on the second day back at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School, prompting panicked feelings among survivors still recovering from the trauma of February’s fatal shooting.

The League of Women Voters of Florida is hoping to persuade a Leon County Circuit judge today to strip a constitutional amendment proposal off the November ballot. The amendment in question is number eight, which combines several issues into one proposal like term limits for local school board, mandating civics be taught. But  the part the league takes issue with the section that deals with approving new charter schools.

In a move it said was to address the large cost of entering a career in medicine, New York University's School of Medicine said Thursday that it will offer full scholarships to all current and future students in its doctor of medicine program.

NYU said it was the "only top 10-ranked" medical school in the U.S. to offer such a generous package.

Emily Michot / Miami Herald

About a quarter of Florida's nearly $90 billion state budget pays for public schools. The Democrats running for governor say that's not enough.

"We can never spend enough," former Miami Beach mayor Philip Levine said during the first gubernatorial primary debate in April. His opponents for the Democratic nomination largely agree.

On the Republican side, the candidates have focused more on career training as their education priority.

Robert Runcie
Caitie Switalski / WLRN

Summer is just about over for students and teachers in South Florida. Schools reopened in Palm Beach County on Monday. On Wednesday, they reopened in Monroe and Broward Counties.

David Santiago / Miami Herald

Six months to the day after the shooting that left 17 people dead at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School — and coming shortly after the Broward County school district’s controversial reversal of a plan to install metal detectors at the Parkland school — a consultant tasked with providing a security assessment recommended against using the devices.

Jessica Bakeman / WLRN News

At Camp Shine, the counselors are actually counselors — and not just in the typical summer camp way. They're therapists.

Pages