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Florida School Accountability Bill Clears Senate Committee

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TALLAHASSEE (CBSMiami/NSF) – A bill that would carry out Gov. Ron DeSantis’ plan to end the Florida Standards Assessments received unanimous approval Tuesday in its first Senate committee.

The Senate Education Committee approved the bill (SB 1048), sponsored by Sen. Manny Diaz Jr. from Hialeah.

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The measure seeks to replace the current standardized testing system with what Diaz described as a “computer-based coordinated screening and progress monitoring program” starting in the 2022-2023 school year.

Under the proposal, students in grades 3 through 10 would take progress-monitoring tests for English-language arts at the beginning, middle, and end of the year. Students in grades 3 through 8 would follow the same schedule with progress-monitoring tests in math.

The final tests of the year, Diaz said, “will be used as the tool for school accountability purposes.”

DeSantis rolled out the plan to end the current standardized tests in September, touting the progress monitoring proposal as “short, individualized check-in assessments” that “will take hours, not days” to administer. The governor also said it is a way to keep educators and parents informed of student progress.

Teachers would be provided with results within one week of the students taking the tests, and parents would get results within two weeks, the bill said.

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“This will lead to meaningful feedback for parents and teachers and will reduce the amount of time dedicated to testing, leaving more time for learning,” the governor said during his State of the State address to kick off the legislative session Tuesday.

But Cathy Boehme, a lobbyist for the Florida Education Association, expressed concern about the bill being vague regarding how much time students will be required to spend on the tests.

“It’s hard to see how testing time decreases based on the language of the bill,” Boehme said.

The measure has received early bipartisan backing, largely because Democrats have long decried high-stakes testing as an arbitrary system that puts too much pressure on students and takes away from learning time.

“I will tell you as a former teacher, we were overtesting our children,” said Sen. Shevrin Jones from West Park. “We can’t test our way out of this, we have to get teachers back to teaching and giving them the educational freedom that they need.”

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(©2022 CBS Local Media. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The News Service of Florida contributed to this report.)

CBSMiami.com Team

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Florida police officer injured in crash

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A Florida police officer was hospitalized Monday evening after a crash with two other vehicles, according to authorities.

At around 5:15 p.m., a crash involving an Ocala officer was reported outside of a residential area at the intersection of West Silver Springs Boulevard and Southwest 23rd Avenue, Ocala Police Department said.

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The officer was listed as a “trauma alert” but is expected to be okay, OPD said.

No other serious injuries were reported.

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Ocala police are investigating the crash.

Jpedersen@orlandosentinel.com

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Brr! Orlando wakes up to coldest temperatures of the year

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Orlando residents woke up to a chilly start Tuesday morning, with temperatures projected to stay cold today.

Temperatures before sunrise were 42 degrees in the City Beautiful, which should later see temperature highs increase to 64 as skies are forecast to remain sunny, according to Maureen McCann From Spectrum of the News 13 weather team.

Tuesday’s low will fall back down to 45 in the evening.

“Future cast has us with sunshine for our Tuesday and clear skies tonight, but tomorrow a southeasterly wind will start to develop during the afternoon, and that is going to promote some warmer temperatures,” McCann said.

Sunshine is forecast for the rest of the week, with chances of showers re-emerging into skies by Friday with a 30% chance of rain.

Jpedersen@orlandosentinel.com

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1 dead, 4 injured after man opens fire outside Chicagoan Bar in NW Miami-Dade

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NORTHWEST MIAMI-DADE, FLA. (WSVN) – One person has died and four others were injured following a shooting outside a bar in Northwest Miami-Dade.

The shooting happened at the Chicagoan Bar, located at 10702 NW 7th Ave, at around midnight on Tuesday.

The deceased individual was reportedly drinking at the bar and refused to pay his bill.

Security eventually removed him from the bar.

He then drove away, returned to the bar, stopped in the middle of the street then began firing several rounds at the bar’s security, according to police.

Another security guard came from inside the bar and returned fire, killing the patron.

One of the security guards was shot and taken to a local hospital.

Three women were also caught in the crossfire — two of them were transported to the hospital while the third was treated on the scene after being grazed.

All victims taken to the hospital are in stable condition.

Several homicide detectives continue to investigate.

Those who frequent the area are advised to seek alternative routes until the scene has cleared.

Copyright 2021 Sunbeam Television Corp. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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