In The News: Private School Voucher Expansion, MI Affirmative Action Struck Down, Local Bank Merger, FCAT Test Delays
Voucher expansion proposal revived by Florida Senate – A Senate committee decided to include the expansion of Florida’s main private school voucher program in a bill on Tuesday. Florida’s voucher program currently allows about 60,000 students from low-income families to attend private schools. Tampa Bay Times
Justices approve state bans on affirmative action – The U.S. Supreme Court upheld a decision that would allow Michigan to be one of eight states to ban affirmative action programs in college admissions. Justice Sonia Sotomayor dissented, saying minority enrollment will decline at Michigan’s public universities. USA Today
Alarion Bank and HeritageBank of the South announce merger – HeritageBank of the South and Alarion Bank announced plans to merge on Tuesday morning. HeritageBank, which has three Florida locations in Ocala and Lake City, will acquire all of the common stock of Alarion Bank, which has six branches in Ocala, Gainesville and Alachua, in a transaction of approximately $22.1 million. The Gainesville Sun
FCAT tests delayed over website woes – Thousands of students in Florida were unable to take the online version of the FCAT on Tuesday morning. Students were unable to log in to take the test because of issues with the company’s website. Orlando Sentinel
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Expecting a weekend cold snap, Gainesville homeless shelters like St. Francis House and Grace Marketplace are asking for donations to prepare for a surge of homeless people looking to stay warm.
A video roundup of local, state and national stories for readers in North Central Florida.
Maria Gonzalez of Dunnellon Elementary School and Grisell Santiago of P.K. Yonge Developmental Research School received the Excellence in Education Award earlier this month. The annual award was sponsored by Volunteer Florida, the Florida Department of Education and the Executive Office of the Governor as a part of Hispanic Heritage Month.
University of Florida engineering students hosted a day of science activities on campus for fourth- and fifth-grade students from Idylwild Elementary School on October 30.
Sunlake High School science teachers take advantage of the school’s recent bat infestations and use it as an opportunity to teach their students more about bats.