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Today’s top stories
• The state Department of Education released the 2018-19 school grades yesterday and the news was largely positive for Alachua and Marion counties. Ocala’s Oakcrest Elementary, whose struggles we detailed in a special report last month, failed to earn a C grade or higher and will be taken over by an external operator in the fall. This is one of the best statewide databases to explore the recent and historical grades for schools near you. (Gainesville Sun, Ocala Star-Banner, WUFT News, Tallahassee Democrat)
• The two-year-old storyline of Alachua County commissioners trying to decide what to do with Camp McConnell near Micanopy added another chapter this week, with commissioners opting for a conversation easement that will prevent clearcutting of trees or mining on the 212 acres. Our reporter built a timeline of the key events that could determine the property’s future. (WUFT News)
• A homeowner in Summerfield shot and killed two intruders Wednesday night, says the Marion County Sheriff’s Office, and two others were arrested. (Ocala Star-Banner)
• The Florida Phoenix looks past the controversy over one principal’s words at a Boca Raton high school to ask, “Are FL public schools teaching about the Holocaust or not?” There’s a state law in place requiring it, but the education commissioner wants to find out if it’s being followed.
• The Miami Herald is staying on top of the Jeffrey Epstein story this week in the wake of his arrest. Its reporters write that even more accusers have since come forward.
• A tropical storm’s approach notwithstanding, the Blue Angels are planning to fly this weekend in Pensacola. (Pensacola News Journal)
• Even some of the pine trees that survived Hurricane Michael in Bay County are now suffering from bark beetle damage. (Panama City News Herald)
• The state’s medical marijuana system is unconstitutional, ruled an appeals court judge, and now lawmakers likely have more work to do. (WFSU)
• Three members of the U.S. Women’s National Team are back with their Orlando pro team this weekend, fresh off a World Cup victory. (WMFE)
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