Florida high schoolers will need to nail personal finance to graduate

The big story: Sometimes ideas fly through the Florida Legislature in no time. Other times it seems like they might never cross the finish line no matter how hard people try.

Put the request to require students to take a personal finance course in high school in that last pile.

It took more than a decade for several legislators to move this proposal from a suggestion to a bill and, this year, to a law. And you know who couldn’t be happier?

Bankruptcy lawyers and judges, who led the lobbying effort alongside educators. “We would like people in Florida to be educated as we no longer have jobs,” said Catherine McEwen, federal bankruptcy judge for the Central District of Florida. Read on for this story.

Another effort that spanned years was to end the use of isolation and restraints on students with special needs whom school staff struggled to physically control. Lawmakers acted in 2021 after nearly 15 years of trying, and this year further reduced the use of restraintslike Florida politics reports.

Hot topics

School books: Governor Ron DeSantis signed into law a measure adding more steps for schools to follow when choosing books for their classrooms and libraries. The law also set term limits for school board members, starting with those elected in November 2022. Critics worried about both parts of the legislation. More of the Tallahassee Democrat.

Lessons on gender: State Senator Shevrin Jones, an openly gay lawmaker, said Florida could lose teachers if DeSantis signs a bill that restricts classes on sexual orientation and gender identity in schools, Florida Phoenix reports. • Many LGBTQ youth continue to denounce the legislation, reports WUSF, saying sponsors are trying to downplay the potential effect. • Bill was the butt of jokes at Sunday night’s Oscars, reports the AP.

Relations with the Board of Directors: Flagler County Superintendent Cathy Mittlestadt told school board members to stick to politics and leave the day-to-day operations to its administration, Live flagging reports. She mentioned the actions of two council members in particular.

Race relations: The Lee County chapter of the NAACP wants to work with school officials to promote unity and discipline students who engage in racist actions, Fort Myers News Press reports. A recent incident at Cypress Lake High School sparked discussion.

Other school news

The University of South Florida has a new $42 million research facility. It is still waiting for tenants.

Polk County School Board member Lynn Wilson will not seek a third term. Some residents encouraged him to run againthe register reports.

The reading performance of Duval County students has dropped over the years. Several groups have launched a reading community initiative to trigger a reversal, the Florida Times-Union reports.

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The Palm Beach County School District will move a school bus stop away from where a fatal accident took place. A student died in the accidentand another was left in critical condition, the palm beach post reports.

Florida Gulf Coast University has four new administrators. One of them is school choice attorney Erika Donaldsthe wife of U.S. Representative Byron Donalds and a former member of the Collier County School Board, Florida politics reports.

Police blotter… A Lee County middle school student was arrested on allegations of making a threat of violence against a school, reports WFTX. • Volusia County teenager faces felony charges on charges of shoot a school employee with an Orbeez ball gun, reports WKMG.

Before you leave … It’s time for a fun animal video!

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