Florida teachers and education groups sued over a change in state law that enables districts to tie evaluations to student performance. A federal judge says the state’s way of evaluating teachers is constitutional.
The law was passed in 2011. It allows some teachers to be evaluated based on test scores of students who aren’t in their class. They can also be judged based on test results in subject areas they don't even teach.
Tallahassee is full of lobbyists, and they’re in high gear at the Capitol for the final week of the legislative session.
A lobbyist is someone who is hired by a company or organization to convince lawmakers to pass legislation benefiting their clients.
Long-time lobbyist Jack Cory doesn’t stop moving much during the session. His firm’s two-dozen clients include the Florida Alliance of Boys & Girls Clubs, Florida Citrus Sports, and the Florida and National Greyhound Associations.
A report by government watchdog Integrity Florida examines how the state's four largest utility companies are able to yield considerable political power.
The findings conclude that the Florida Legislature sets its agenda and policy outcomes based on the needs of large political donors rather than the public interest. In the last five elections, the report says Florida utility companies were among the largest donors to state-level campaigns.
Red-light cameras appear to be safe for another year in Florida. A bid to get rid of them crept to a halt this week in the Florida Legislature.
Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Jeff Brandes, R-St. Petersburg, knew his bill was in trouble, so he suggested changes. He proposed an amendment that would prevent cameras from ticketing drivers who make right turns on red “if the vehicle is traveling less than 15 miles per hour, is not involved in a crash, and no pedestrians are in the crosswalk.”
Changes to the Florida Department of Children and Families are on the way. Lawmakers are considering legislation after a Miami Herald investigation chronicled the deaths of hundreds of children under the state's watch.