Author

Danielle J. Brown

Danielle J. Brown

Danielle J. Brown is a 2018 graduate of Florida State University, majoring in English with a focus in editing, writing, and media. While at FSU, she served as an editorial intern for International Program’s annual magazine, Nomadic Noles. Last fall, she fulfilled another editorial internship with Rowland Publishing, where she wrote for the Tallahassee Magazine, Emerald Coast Magazine, and 850 Business Magazine. She was born and raised in Tallahassee and reviews community theater productions for the Tallahassee Democrat. She spends her downtime traveling to all corners of Florida and beyond to practice lindy hop.

FL Education Department under federal scrutiny; retains lawyer over cease-and-desist complaint

By: - November 16, 2021

The Florida Board of Education, already in hot water with the federal government, is hoping that the U.S. Department of Education drops a cease-and desist-claim against the state agency, according to a board meeting Tuesday. The state Department of Education retained a lawyer following a federal cease-and-desist-complaint in late October stating that the department has […]

Educators largely absent as lawmakers move to prohibit mask and COVID vaccine mandates in schools

By: and - November 16, 2021

A few weeks ago school districts and state education officials were battling over who has authority to operate schools during the COVID-19 pandemic: the state, local school boards or parents. But during the first day of the special legislative session on mask and COVID vaccine mandates, educators and school officials were largely scarce and few, […]

FL education officials appear to defy feds’ cease and desist complaint regarding state funds

By: - November 12, 2021

Despite warnings from federal education officials, Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran has been defiant against the U.S. Department of Education’s warnings that Florida could be breaking federal law. But Florida education officials believe that the feds are the problem. The State Board of Education has called a meeting Tuesday “to discuss the federal government’s overreach […]

DeSantis pushes starting teacher salaries for 3rd year, but reaching goal of $47,500 is still tough

By: - November 10, 2021

Gov. Ron DeSantis has been boosting starting salaries for Florida public school teachers for two years now, and at a press conference Wednesday in Jacksonville, he announced his third effort to reach his goal of $47,500 for starting teachers. The governor is pushing for another $600 million in the 2022-23 state budget, to “keep the […]

How did a Parents’ Bill of Rights turn into a mask mandate controversy in FL schools?

By: - November 10, 2021

The Parents’ Bill of Rights, sponsored by State Rep. Erin Grall in the 2021 legislative session, was criticized for its vague language and unclear boundaries. But it became a clarion call for parent power as local school boards developed COVID-19 policies impacting students. Gov. Ron DeSantis had signed the legislation this summer and the Parents’ […]

Only three FL school districts of 67 have strict mask mandates following legal battles

By: - November 8, 2021

Just weeks ago, the Florida education system was ablaze in political and legal battles over strict mask mandates, culminating with state education officials taking salaries away from eight local school boards as punishment. But now, several factors have led to only three districts maintaining strict mask policies. Those school districts are Alachua, Broward and Miami-Dade. […]

State takes away $208,800 in monthly salaries from local school board members in eight districts

By: - October 29, 2021

The State Board of Education has withheld $208,800 from eight Florida school boards, targeting the salaries of board members as compensation for their work as elected officials, and depriving them of income. Here’s the breakout of state funds withheld from school board members in October, according to the State Department of Education: /Alachua — $16,786 […]

What is an ‘upright and desirable citizen’?

By: - October 28, 2021

Florida’s K-12 students will soon learn what traits make them an “upright and desirable citizen” in the United States of America. So, what are these qualities? According to a new Department of Education rule, an upright and desirable citizen respects the military and elected officials, and “all those who have defended the blessings of liberty […]

Mask mandates in FL continue to shift as COVID cases decline

By: - October 27, 2021

As COVID cases go down, several school districts that had been strict about mask mandates are now loosening their policies. Eight districts have been at the center of the controversy over requiring masks at public schools. Here’s what these eight districts are doing with their mask policies: Alachua: As of Oct. 19, high school students […]

bus for free college

‘A massive blow to 8 million students’: Biden’s free community college plan on the chopping block?

By: - October 27, 2021

Back in April, President Joe Biden was touting a multi-billion-dollar effort to provide  two years of community college for free as a part of his American Families Plan — “an investment in our kids, our families, and our economic future.” At the time, the president called for “$109 billion for two years of free community […]

FL school board members recount threatening texts, vandalism and other harassment

By: - October 25, 2021

At least five local school board members in Florida have experienced verbal abuse, vandalism, and other forms of intimidation as tensions rise over mask mandates and control over public schools during the pandemic. Four of the board members participated in a Monday Zoom conference hosted by Democratic Agriculture Commissioner Nikki Fried. She also is a […]

Tampa mask mandate protest

Gov. DeSantis could crack down more on school boards, pushing for further authority for parents

By: - October 22, 2021

Protecting Floridians from COVID vaccine mandates from businesses was a major talking point for Gov. Ron DeSantis when he announced his interest Thursday in a special session. But how school districts can or can’t implement COVID mask mandates and firing employees for not getting COVID vaccines, is another major element in the governor’s priorities for […]