Florida Education Association speaks out about state education issues and a bill that would reduce child labor protections

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Bank of computers at Sheehy Elementary School. By Pamela Robinson/WMNF News (2022).

The Florida Legislature is in session and we look at the wide-ranging topic of education in Florida.

Our guest for much of Tuesday Cafe was Andrew Spar, the President of the Florida Education Association. FEA is the statewide teachers’ union.

The FEA put forward a list of about a dozen ideas it wants to be implemented by the legislature.

For example, the FEA asking for funding for “full-day PreK programs in ‘opportunity zones’ of high poverty” and it wants state statutes revised regarding the “Required Local Effort to maintain current taxation rates.”

A Florida bill to weaken child labor laws

The FEA has spoken out against a bill in the Florida Legislature that would weaken child labor protections for some teens (16- and 17-year-olds). HB 49 is sponsored by Linda Chaney, a Republican from St. Pete Beach. She said, “These are youth workers that are driving automobiles. They are not children.”

The bill would increase the number of hours that 16- and 17-year-olds are allowed to work during the school year above 30 hours. It also gets rid of a requirement that minors get 30-minute breaks every four hours.

Listen to the whole show here:

Watch this interview here:

Also on Tuesday Cafe (January 16) – Florida’s Kamala Harris Truth in Slavery Act

This month, Florida State Senator Blaise Ingoglia, a Republican from Spring Hill and Representative Kiyan Michael, a Republican from Jacksonville, filed a bill that they are calling the Kamala Harris Truth in Slavery Teaching Act.

In a press release about the bill, the two say they called out the Vice President because in a recent speech in Florida, Harris talked about the importance of learning about slavery, but she didn’t mention that it was the Democratic Party that supported it in the 1850s.

To dig a little deeper into this, Tuesday Cafe spoke with Joshua Taylor, Ph.D., who teaches US History at East Lake High School in Pinellas County and teaches dual enrollment through St. Pete College.

WMNF’s Tuesday Café

Tuesday Café airs weekly on WMNF beginning at 10:06 a.m. ET.

You can listen live on 88.5 FM in Tampa Bay, on wmnf.org or on the WMNF Community Radio app.

You can watch replays on TBAE Network Channels at 8:00 a.m. and 2:00 p.m. Tuesdays on Spectrum 636, Frontier 34 and watch.tbae.net. Or on demand.

You can listen anytime on demand on wmnf.org or by subscribing to the Tuesday Café podcast on your favorite podcast platform.

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