USF consolidation plan needs more work | Editorial

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The preliminary plan for the merger of three campuses is tilted toward Tampa. The University of South Florida St. Petersburg deserves better.

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University of South Florida president Steve Currall describes a preliminary consolidation plan for the university’s three campuses as a work in progress. That’s good, because it needs more work if it is going to benefit all USF students and the St. Petersburg campus in particular. The architect of the state law requiring this merger, future Florida House Speaker Chris Sprowls of Palm Harbor, should remain engaged and ensure his vision of a fully integrated preeminent university benefiting all of Tampa Bay is carried out.

The still-evolving plan for a unified USF with campuses in Tampa, St. Petersburg and Sarasota is awfully tilted toward the main campus in Tampa. It neuters the regional chancellors who have been in charge of the St. Petersburg and Sarasota campuses, leaving them with no power over academics and focused on fundraising, community outreach and nonacademic staff. The real authority over academics, from faculty hiring to budgeting to courses, would flow through the deans of the colleges of arts and sciences, education and other colleges based in Tampa and reporting to USF provost Ralph Wilcox in Tampa. Currall suggests the chancellors at the branch campuses will have ‘a voice,’ but it’s uncertain that voice would be heard.


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While you’re here, how about this:

To Lawmakers, Florida’s First All-Charter School District Is ‘A Success Story.’ But Is It Really?

To state leaders who support charter schools, rural Jefferson County was a poster child for public school failure.

By the summer of 2016, the small Panhandle school district had racked up a decade of Ds and Fs under Florida’s high-stakes system for rating school performance. More than half of its middle/high school students had been held back at least twice. At the hands of a dysfunctional local government, the district had devolved into one of the worst in Florida.

Read the full investigation at Chartered: Florida’s First Private Takeover Of A Public School System

Reference: Visit Source

Sunburn ‘ The morning read of what’s hot in Florida politics ‘ 8.13.19

The Florida Chamber of Commerce Military, Defense and Veterans Opportunities Summit starts today in Jacksonville.

State Rep. Mel Ponder will kick off the event followed by Florida Chamber head Mark Wilson, who will outline the summit’s theme: ‘preparing for disruption and tomorrow’s opportunities and ensuring competitiveness, prosperity and resiliency.’

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Scheduled to deliver the keynote is retired Major General’Michael D. Jones, who served in the U.S. Army for 34 years, including deployments to Bosnia and Iraq, where he was responsible for combat operations and forming and training Iraqi security forces in Baghdad.

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