Today's news -- April 21, 2017

 

 

 

 

House moves closer to Senate on changes to testing

The Florida House took steps Thursday to bring its proposal for testing reform closer to the measure moving through the Senate. Rep. Manny Diaz, sponsor of the "Fewer Better Tests Act," tied several of the ideas from that bill into a separate effort to allow parents and others to see certain state tests after students take them. The Diaz amendment would, among other things:

  • Eliminate the state Algebra II end-of-course exam.
  • Require paper-based state language arts and math tests for third- through sixth-grade.
  • Move the state testing window to later in the spring, and shrink it to a shorter time frame.
  • Change the value-added model of evaluating teachers.

Diaz also moved to relabel a Level 3 score on the Florida Standards Assessments as "grade level" instead of the current "satisfactory." That provision was removed at the request of Rep. Shevrin Jones, the committee's ranking Democrat. It also did not make it through the Senate Rules Committee when proposed Wednesday as an add-on to SB 926, the Senate's testing bill. With the changes, the House bill gets closer to SB 926, which would eliminate more end-of-course exams, extend paper testing to more grades and detach VAM from teacher evaluations. Speakers from the public largely praised the committee for taking the steps. Vern Crawford, lobbyist for several districts, noted "politics is the art of compromise" and took heart that some testing changes might emerge from a session where it appeared the discussion might not yield much. One speaker criticized the committee for creating a "train" that was little more than "a wide-ranging patchwork of poorly articulated ideas." Chairman Michael Bileca observed that SB 926, which the speaker supported, had become "the ultimate train bill going on in the Senate."

http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/gradebook/florida-house-moves-closer-to-senate-on-changes-to-state-testing-system/2321008

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/state--regional-govt--politics/recess-teacher-bonus-amendments-added-school-testing-bill/CTtNe5FU8YCURjgea3252L/

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics-government/state-politics/article145793299.html

 

Our obsession with standardized testing is inhumane

https://dianeravitch.net/2017/04/20/james-kirylo-our-obsession-with-standardized-testing-is-inhumane/

 

Living in Miami on a teacher’s salary? Good luck.
Miami is one of the toughest places in the country for teachers to find housing they can afford. That’s according to a new report from Apartment List, an online apartment marketplace that compared median rent prices on its site to teacher salaries in cities across the United States. Miami ranked near the bottom — 47 out of 50, below other pricey places like Washington D.C., Boston and Los Angeles. For Miami-Dade teachers, the finding hardly comes as a surprise. Take Kelly Hobby and her husband Jeffrey, former Miami-Dade teachers who moved to Marietta, Ga., last summer after struggling for years as their salaries failed to keep pace with skyrocketing rent prices. Kelly, 34, has a master’s degree and more than ten years of teaching experience, but only made around $45,000 a year as a Miami-Dade public school teacher. Her husband, 36, taught math at a charter school where he earned even less. Although they didn’t have car payments, student loans or credit card debt, Kelly and Jeffrey both had to get a second job after they had a child. The final straw was a letter from their West Kendall apartment building hiking the rent from $1,200 to $1,400 a month.  “It’s ridiculous. If you’re a teacher you cannot survive in Miami,” Kelly said. “It broke our hearts to move. It was devastating leaving. And it was something we thought about for a really long time. We were happy in our careers, but it literally just became quality of life.” The Hobbys left their families behind when they moved to Georgia, but with the lower cost of living they were able to buy their own home. Kelly also got a $20,000 salary bump when she took a teaching job in Marietta because of her master’s degree. When she learned that she was going to make more than $64,000 a year, Kelly said, she burst into tears.  The Hobbys’ experience is just one example of the struggle teachers face in expensive coastal cities. In close to a third of the largest U.S. cities, the Apartment List analysis found, teachers have to spend more than a third of their income on rent. San Francisco is the least affordable place for teachers, followed by New York, Seattle and Miami. And the more years a teacher spends on the job, the worse the problem becomes. One of the reasons is that while teachers in other cities get higher raises as they accrue experience, a teacher’s base salary in Miami stays relatively flat, the report found. A New York City teacher could go from making around $52,000 a year to $77,000 after ten years, according to the analysts, who looked at baseline salaries and factored in some additional salary bumps for master’s degrees and other certifications. In Miami, the analysts assumed teachers were making $40,800 as a starting salary and just over $46,000 after ten years. The United Teachers of Dade, which began its annual contract negotiations with the school district on Wednesday, cited insufficient state funding for education to explain teacher salary woes. Florida ranks near the bottom of the country when it comes to the amount of state funding allocated per student. “Unfortunately we have a leadership in the state Legislature that continues to underfund education thereby impacting teacher salaries,” said UTD President Karla Hernandez-Mats. “Instead of giving teachers really quantifiable salary raises they put up little gimmicks like Best and Brightest we have repeatedly said we don’t want,” she said, referring to the controversial teacher bonus program that rewards educators based in part on their own SAT scores. Some Miami-Dade teachers even apply for food stamps to supplement their salaries, Hernandez-Mats said. And a bill under consideration in the Legislature (SB 856/HB 373) that would impact how easily teachers on annual contracts are rehired could exacerbate the problem, giving teachers less job security and therefore making it harder for them to invest in homes, Hernandez-Mats said.

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/education/article145688984.html#emlnl=Afternoon_Update

 

Charter giveaway at odds with public schools

http://www.pnj.com/story/news/education/2017/04/20/house-bill-education-charter-school/100624062/

 

Florida may make it easier to get rid of school textbooks

http://www.sun-sentinel.com/news/sns-bc-fl-xgr--school-textbooks-20170420-story.html

 

Obama's former Education secretary tells how Trump is changing the department

http://www.latimes.com/local/education/la-essential-education-updates-southern-an-itemized-list-of-how-the-trump-1492638935-htmlstory.html

 

Ohio town’s schools hope to be “more than a line item” in the federal budget (Randi Weingarten quoted)
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/20/us/politics/betsy-devos-randi-weingarten-education-ohio.html?emc=edit_cn_20170421&nl=first-draft&nl_art=&nlid=3179832&ref=headline&te=1

 

Public education is foundation of our democracy (by Randi Weingarten)
http://timesbulletin.com/Content/News/Opinion/Article/Public-education-is-foundation-of-our-democracy/2/1169/209343

 

Group ranks UF third nationally in moving ideas from lab to real world

http://news.ufl.edu/articles/2017/04/milken-institute-ranks-uf-third-nationally-in-moving-ideas-from-lab-to-real-world.php

 

Could a union be in the cards for USF's part-time teachers?

http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/gradebook/could-a-union-be-in-the-cards-for-usfs-part-time-teachers/2321085

 

Appropriations chiefs sound hopeful as clock ticks on budget negotiations

http://floridapolitics.com/archives/236523-budget-negotiations

 

Controversy over Artiles’ racial slur engulfs Legislature

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/politics-government/article145861569.html

http://www.heraldtribune.com/news/20170420/no-inoffensive-way-to-say-n-word-florida-senator-learns

http://floridapolitics.com/archives/236519-david-simmons-condemns-frank-artiles-comments-calls-due-process-suggests-ptsd-might-factor

 

Bondi: Artiles should consider resigning over racial slur

http://www.politico.com/states/florida/story/2017/04/20/bondi-artiles-must-resign-from-state-senate-111401

http://www.tallahassee.com/story/opinion/editorials/2017/04/20/his-choice-vote-sen-frank-artiles-must-go-racial-comments/100709578/

 

Lawyer: Florida senator's slurs are protected free speech

https://apnews.com/6e52dbb77dd546408d8c2ced442bc547

 

Artiles asks Negron and Senate's counsel to recuse themselves from investigation

http://miamiherald.typepad.com/nakedpolitics/2017/04/artiles-asks-negron-and-senates-general-counsel-to-recuse-themselves-from-his-investigation.html

 

Kendall protesters call for “bully” Artiles to resign

http://floridapolitics.com/archives/236516-kendall-protesters-call-bully-frank-artiles-resign

 

Florida’s NAACP joins those calling for Artiles’ resignation

http://floridapolitics.com/archives/236500-naacp-frank-artiles-resignation

 

Tallahassee pastors lambaste Artiles

http://www.tallahassee.com/story/news/2017/04/20/tallahassee-pastors-lambaste-artiles/100713780/

 

Legislative Jewish Caucus urges Senate to expel Artiles

http://floridapolitics.com/archives/236522-legislative-jewish-caucus-artiles

 

What damage could follow as Artiles’ rant reverberates

http://saintpetersblog.com/joe-henderson-damage-follow-frank-artiles-rant-reverberates-around-globe/

 

What you’re seeing is the good ol’ Republican Cuban Boys Club in action

http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/news-columns-blogs/fabiola-santiago/article145851569.html

 

Supreme Court OKs gambling control, felon voting rights amendments

http://saintpetersblog.com/supreme-court-oks-amendments/

http://www.tampabay.com/blogs/the-buzz-florida-politics/voter-restoration-amendment-clears-legal-hurdle-at-high-court/2321032?utm_source=TBT_email&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=DAILY%20BUZZ%20042017&utm_email=6575d82b873cf5ef9faac9fbc241bd1f

http://www.orlandosentinel.com/news/politics/political-pulse/os-florida-ex-felon-voting-rights-decision-20170420-story.html

http://www.tbo.com/news/florida/florida-voters-may-get-a-say-over-casino-gambling-ap_florida666bc6ba03214244a2ec77d2f014834e

http://www.palmbeachpost.com/news/state--regional-govt--politics/felon-rights-gambling-ballot-issues-pass-first-supreme-court-hurdle/n144N0y7FdBrxwJmYPhm5M/

 

Florida residents pay sixth lowest state taxes

http://watchdog.org/293007/florida-residents-pay-6th-lowest-state-taxes-say-burden-can-still-lowered/

 

Legislature thwarts people's will and Constitution in refusing to fund Florida Forever

http://www.tbo.com/news/column-the-legislature-is-thwarting-the-peoples-will-and-the-state-constitution-in-refusing-to-fund-florida-forever-20170420/

 

Average millennial makes less than average baby boomer did in 1975

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/wonk/wp/2017/04/20/census-young-men-are-making-much-less-than-they-did-in-1975/?tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.9cd77f79be09

 

Justice official leading Trump-Russia probe to step down

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/04/20/top-doj-cyber-official-to-leave-post-next-month-237427

 

Justice Department weighs charges against Assange

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/20/us/politics/justice-department-weighs-charges-against-julian-assange.html?emc=edit_tnt_20170420&nlid=3179832&tntemail0=y

https://www.theguardian.com/media/2017/apr/21/arresting-julian-assange-is-a-priority-says-us-attorney-general-jeff-sessions?utm_source=esp&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=GU+Today+USA+-+Collections+2017&utm_term=222636&subid=7590566&CMP=GT_US_collection

http://www.cnn.com/2017/04/20/politics/julian-assange-wikileaks-us-charges/

 

Sessions wants to put people “in jail” for leaks

http://www.politico.com/blogs/under-the-radar/2017/04/20/jeff-sessions-leaks-secrecy-237425

 

GOP makes new bid on Obamacare repeal

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/04/20/obamacare-repeal-republicans-new-deal-237397

 

White House plans Obamacare showdown next week

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/20/us/politics/affordable-care-act-house-republicans-trump.html?emc=edit_tnt_20170420&nlid=3179832&tntemail0=y

https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/gop-leaders-downplay-revisions-to-health-care-bill-offered-by-house-moderate/2017/04/20/3890a8f8-25d7-11e7-bb9d-8cd6118e1409_story.html?utm_term=.d5f0cbee146a&wpisrc=nl_politics&wpmm=1

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/04/20/obamacare-repeal-republicans-new-deal-237397

 

Trumpcare 2.0 would make premiums spike for people with pre-existing conditions

https://thinkprogress.org/trumpcare-2-0-would-make-premiums-spike-for-people-with-pre-existing-conditions-ba9741670d68

 

GOP’s biggest health care achievement has been making Obamacare more popular

http://www.vox.com/obamacare/2017/4/20/15373092/republicans-made-obamacare-more-popular

 

The GOP’s latest health-care plan is comically bad

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-gops-latest-health-care-plan-is-comically-bad/2017/04/20/0627b162-2600-11e7-a1b3-faff0034e2de_story.html?utm_term=.98f252d16cb0&wpisrc=nl_opinions&wpmm=1

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/21/opinion/the-balloon-the-box-and-health-care.html?emc=edit_th_20170421&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=3179832

 

The GOP’s attacks on the poor are about to get stealthier

https://www.thenation.com/article/the-gops-attacks-on-the-poor-are-about-to-get-stealthier/

 

Sessions dismisses Hawaii as “an island in the Pacific”

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/20/us/politics/jeff-sessions-judge-hawaii-pacific-island.html?emc=edit_cn_20170421&nl=first-draft&nl_art=&nlid=3179832&ref=headline&te=1

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/the-fix/wp/2017/04/20/jeff-sessions-doesnt-think-a-judge-in-hawaii-a-k-a-an-island-in-the-pacific-should-overrule-trump/?tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.73c3612e6231

 

Hawaiians to Sessions: “We’re not just some island”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2017/04/21/hawaiians-to-jeff-sessions-were-not-just-some-island/?tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.982a080e99f3

http://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/mazie-hirono-brian-schatz-criticize-jeff-sessions-island-in-pacific-comment?utm_content=buffere82fa&utm_medium=social&utm_source=twitter.com&utm_campaign=buffer

https://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-partisan/wp/2017/04/20/jeff-sessionss-dismissal-of-hawaii-as-an-island-in-the-pacific-is-peak-colonialism/?utm_term=.30d392a70cef&wpisrc=nl_opinions&wpmm=1

 

Torn from their families for no good reason

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/21/opinion/torn-from-their-families-for-no-good-reason.html?em_pos=small&emc=edit_ty_20170421&nl=opinion-today&nl_art=1&nlid=3179832&ref=headline&te=1

https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2017/apr/21/immigration-families-deportation-crackdown-donald-trump?utm_source=esp&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=GU+Today+USA+-+Collections+2017&utm_term=222636&subid=7590566&CMP=GT_US_collection

 

The Trump administration may be deporting “the good ones”

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-trump-administration-may-be-deporting-the-good-ones/2017/04/20/1feb4a6c-25e4-11e7-bb9d-8cd6118e1409_story.html?utm_term=.4ed4235ab8d0&wpisrc=nl_opinions&wpmm=1

 

Judge attacked by Trump to oversee “Dreamer” deportation lawsuit

http://www.politico.com/story/2017/04/20/gonzalo-curiel-trump-dreamer-case-237399

 

Fearmongering at Homeland Security

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/21/opinion/fearmongering-at-homeland-security.html?em_pos=small&emc=edit_ty_20170421&nl=opinion-today&nl_art=0&nlid=3179832&ref=headline&te=1

 

White House could provoke a showdown over funding for border wall

https://www.washingtonpost.com/powerpost/white-house-could-provoke-a-spending-showdown-over-funding-for-border-wall/2017/04/20/88ccc940-2614-11e7-a1b3-faff0034e2de_story.html?utm_term=.ec7ad97dac3b&wpisrc=nl_politics&wpmm=1

 

Trump’s “extreme” budget is just Ryan’s old bad plan with a comb-over

https://www.thenation.com/article/trumps-extreme-budget-is-just-paul-ryans-old-bad-plan-with-a-combover/?utm_source=twitter&utm_medium=socialflow

 

Trump unleashes the generals. They don’t always see the big picture.

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/20/world/asia/harry-harris-pacific-command-carl-vinson.html?emc=edit_cn_20170421&nl=first-draft&nl_art=&nlid=3179832&ref=headline&te=1

 

Bold, unpredictable foreign policy lifts Trump, but has risks

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/04/20/us/politics/trump-foreign-policy.html?emc=edit_cn_20170421&nl=first-draft&nl_art=&nlid=3179832&ref=headline&te=1

 

Americans prefer how Obama handled foreign policy to how Trump does

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2017/04/20/americans-prefer-how-obama-handled-foreign-policy-to-how-trump-does/?utm_term=.94bed8c1a234&wpisrc=nl_politics&wpmm=1

 

Trump’s pick for rules czar would hand more power to Trump

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/trumps-pick-for-rules-czar-is-expected-to-hand-over-more-power-to-trump/2017/04/19/8b33b176-206f-11e7-a0a7-8b2a45e3dc84_story.html?tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.32107cb7a2ed

 

PolitiFact's guide to fake news websites and what they peddle

http://www.politifact.com/punditfact/article/2017/apr/20/politifacts-guide-fake-news-websites-and-what-they/?utm_source=All+Poynter+Subscribers&utm_campaign=82213270fc-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2017_04_21&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_5372046825-82213270fc-196862717

 

Why scientists are marching on Washington and more than 400 other cities

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2017/04/20/why-scientists-are-marching-on-washington-and-more-than-400-other-cities/?utm_term=.3844bc4c2c67&wpisrc=nl_headlines&wpmm=1

 

The March for Science could break stubborn stereotypes about scientists

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/speaking-of-science/wp/2017/04/20/the-march-for-science-could-break-stubborn-stereotypes-about-scientists/?tid=sm_tw&utm_term=.951a0e28bc51

 

Floridians ready to march for science

http://www.publicnewsservice.org/2017-04-21/environment/floridians-ready-to-march-for-science/a57378-1

 

Will the March for Science backfire by politicizing science?

https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/monkey-cage/wp/2017/04/21/the-march-for-science-could-backfire-by-politicizing-science-this-might-help/?utm_term=.d707c46d184b&wpisrc=nl_politics&wpmm=1

 

 

 

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