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State educators lament fiscal situation in Tallahassee listen

03/16/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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The Florida State Board of Education held a workshop where members heard from a variety of state educators today.

The administrators all acknowledged the tremendous challenges they are facing with reduced funding, but most said they were thinking positively.

Sanford Shugart, president of Valencia Community College, told Board member Roberto Martinez that the resource allocation model in the state has been broken for a long time.

Michael Greco is the superintendant with the Osceola D...

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Teachers Union official on plans to scale back Class Size Amendment listen

02/20/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Earlier this week, WMNF covered a press conference where Congresswoman Kathy Castor announced that over $100 million in federal funds for education would be going directly to her Congressional District, which encompasses most of Hillsborough County, a part of St. Petersburg and a part of Manatee County.

Much of that funding will go to programs like Head Start, Title I Schools and for children with special needs.

WMNF asked Jean Clements, president of the Hillsborough Classroom Teachers ...

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Hillsborough School District makes plans for stimulus funds listen

02/17/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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Some of the education money from the stimulus plan will be distributed through competitive funding.

Jeff Eakins is the Hillsborough County School District’s Director of Federal Programs. WMNF spoke with him after Kathy Castor's news conference today, and asked him about that and other aspects of how the district will spend its new funding.

That’s Jeff Eakins, he’s the Hillsborough County School District’s Director of Federal Programs, speaking about how the district will deal w...

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Castor, Hillsborough Schools officials celebrate windfall listen

02/17/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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As part of the federal stimulus plan signed into law by President Barack Obama, more than $5 billion in education funding is expected to come to Florida.

In Democratic Congresswoman Kathy Castor’s 11th Congressional District which encompasses Hillsborough, Pinellas, and Manatees Counties, $145 million is coming soon.

Castor spoke this morning from Chamberlain High School, her alma matter, where she was joined by dozens of people, including local school board officials, and dozens of...

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Here comes new attempt to scale back Class Size Amendment listen

02/16/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Two weeks before the Florida Legislature convenes for its formal regular session, there is again talk of class-size rules being scaled back because of budget issues.

As mandated by the passage of the 2002 Constitutional amendment, class-size rules are scheduled to be fully implemented by next year.

But according to the state board of education, approximately a quarter to a third of all of the state’s classrooms will be above the cap next year- and it’s expected to cost over $800 mil...

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Florida could get $5B in education funding from stimulus bill listen

02/13/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Public housing provisions total nearly $10 billion. Nearly $15 billion would go to clean-water and environmental protection projects.

And minus the construction money, education programs would receive nearly $100 billion in new funding, including $12 billion for special education, boosting the federal share for education services to the highest level ever, according to the Senate Appropriations Committee.

Arne Duncan is the Secretary of Education. On a conference call with reporters t...

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Huge difference in stimulus bills would hurt Florida schools listen

02/11/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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According to the website ProPublica, Florida's public school districts would miss out on nearly $650 million in construction money, if the final stimulus bill resembles the Senate’s version more than the House version.

Hillsborough County schools would lose nearly $49 million, Pinellas more than $28 million, Pasco more than $12 million, and Sarasota more than $5 million.

Randall Moody is the chief lobbyist for the National Education Association based in Washington. He says the Collin...

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Dropout Prevention Summit held at Belleview Biltmore listen

01/12/09 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Each year, 1 million American high school students drop out of school, according to America's Promise Alliance. This week at Pinellas County’s historic Belleview Biltmore hotel, dozens of educators and public servants are meeting to share strategies on high school dropout prevention.

America’s Promise Alliance was founded by Gen. Colin Powell and forms partnerships “committed to seeing that children experience the fundamental resources they ...

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Ayres visit to FSU campus stirs controversy listen

01/12/09 Mitch E. Perry
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday

Bill Ayers, the 1960s anti-Vietnam War activist, is scheduled to speak tonight at Florida State University, but his appearance is creating controversy.

State Rep. David Rivera, vice chairman of the Education Appropriations Committee, has condemned the invitation to Ayers, calling it "a disgrace." And members with the student organization College Republicans plan to protest.

Ayers is being paid $5,000 for the speech, which will be strictly about education reform, though he will take ques...

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LGBT Scholarship Fundraiser held at USF listen

12/09/08 Lisa Marzilli
WMNF Drive-Time News Tuesday
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As the cost of college education continues to soar, lesbian, gay, bisexual & transgendered youth are particularly vulnerable. As a result, more organizations are establishing scholarship programs aimed specifically at helping LGBT students.

One of those groups is the University of South Florida Alumni Association’s LGBT Society. It held its first fundraising event at USF’s Marshall Center on Friday night (Dec. 5th).

Dr. Karen Berkman is director of the USF Center for Autism and R...

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