Parkland families will have to share no more than $300,000 in mass shooting lawsuit against school district, court rules
The Florida Supreme Court ruled Thursday that the school district where the Parkland mass shooting took place more than two years ago does not have to pay more than $300,000 in combined damages to the victims’ families.Attorneys for survivors and families of the 17 students and staff killed at the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in February 2018 had asked the court to consider each gunshot as a separate incident, arguing that each plaintiff was entitled to receive $200,000, the South Florida Sun Sentinel reported.But the limit under Florida state law is $300,000, which the court said shou...
New York Daily News
Pandemic scrambles Seattle job market: Despite deep unemployment, some employers still can't hire fast enough
SEATTLE — If you want a sense of what six months of COVID-19 have done to the Seattle-area job market, ask Amy Fenning.Last year, the former college administrator decided she wanted to be an elementary school teacher and is currently finishing her training in the Renton School District.But thanks to the pandemic, Fenning has no idea when or where any teaching jobs will be available. So she’s hedging her bets and keeping the cashier job she took this summer at Target, where work is so plentiful she often has to turn down shifts. “They are always busy and always hiring,” says Fenning. “These are...
The Seattle Times
Cybercriminals strike schools amid pandemic
WASHINGTON — Just days before the Aug. 3 scheduled start of school, officials at the Athens Independent School District in East Texas received a shock.Cybercriminals had attacked the district’s entire computer network, encrypting all the data and demanding $50,000 in ransom for its release. Access to everything from teacher communications to student assignments was blocked.“It was terribly disruptive, to put it mildly,” said Toni Clay, the district’s spokesperson. “We no longer had access to any student information, such as schedules, email addresses, anything that would be stored. Internally,...
Substitute teachers are in high demand for school districts trying to fill vacancies in a pandemic
PHILADELPHIA — Dawn Pittman retired from teaching in 2013 after more than three decades. But Pittman has no plans to give up her passion — even in a pandemic. When Camden resumes in-person learning, possibly in January, she hopes to answer the call as a substitute.“I absolutely love teaching,” said Pittman, 58, of Merchantville, New Jersey.Retired Philadelphia teacher Janice Richardson has already been getting those calls. She says she has turned down lucrative offers from parents and districts — as much as $2,000 a week to substitute-teach, something she hasn’t done since 2016.“I get calls ev...
The Philadelphia Inquirer
More people with felony convictions can vote, but roadblocks remain
WASHINGTON — More than ever, Eric Harris is mindful of the elected officials around him: The school board members deciding whether his children will go back to the classroom, the sheriff influencing how officers interact with people like him, and the U.S. president steering the country’s coronavirus response.This year has given Harris lots of reasons to vote. And this year, he can.With three felonies on his record, the 41-year-old had been barred from voting in Iowa — the last state that had permanently banned people convicted of felonies from voting without the governor’s approval — until an ...
Trump signs order banning oil drilling off Florida's Atlantic coast
FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. — President Donald Trump kicked off the home stretch of the 2020 campaign with a trip to South Florida, where he promoted himself as a champion of the environment and announced a ban on oil drilling off the state’s Atlantic coast.“My administration is proving every day that we can improve our environment while creating millions of high paying jobs,” Trump said. “To my administration, environmental protection is a sacred obligation.”He claimed Democrats would use the environment as an excuse to pursue a socialist agenda. And, Trump said, Democratic presidential nominee Joe...
University of Kansas student group demands campus close amid pandemic, plans Labor Day strike
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A student group at the University of Kansas is calling for a strike as reported coronavirus cases on campus number nearly 550.Jayhawker Liberation Front, a student-run club, is calling on students to stay home from their classes on Monday, which is Labor Day, to demand that the campus move to remote learning.“Our institutions have failed us,” the club leaders tweeted. “(The University of Kansas) has put profits over the people. Enough is enough.”As of Thursday, the university reported 546 cases after testing 22,563 people, which included all students, faculty and staff, ahea...
The Kansas City Star
This school district is starting class in person. Teachers can opt out — with no pay
KANSAS CITY, Mo. — While most area school districts plan to begin class after Labor Day, much of it online only, Independence, Mo., is ready to start Monday, with most students in person.And if teachers don’t like it, they can opt out, with no pay.“I’m afraid to go and afraid to say anything about it,” said one Independence elementary school music teacher who requested anonymity for fear of retaliation from district leaders. “I’m expected to look parents in the eye and tell them everything is fine and that their students will be fine when I know they are not.”Her fellow teachers will speak out...
The Kansas City Star
Mother of arrested Key West, Fla., boy sues city, police officers, teacher and school district
MIAMI — Lawyers for the mother of a now 10-year-old boy who Key West police officers tried to handcuff in 2018 at his elementary school after he was accused of punching a teacher filed a civil rights lawsuit Tuesday in federal court against the school district, the city, the individual officers involved as well as the teacher and two school officials.The video of the incident at Gerald Adams Elementary School in Key West received national attention this week after the attorney for the mother, civil rights lawyer Benjamin Crump, posted it on his Twitter account Monday morning.It outraged police...
Housing company pressured Ga. system to reopen campuses, critics say
ATLANTA — A letter recently posted online is raising questions about whether the University System of Georgia’s reopening plans for the fall semester, which starts Monday on some campuses, is being steered by finances and not the health and safety of its students and employees.The May 29 letter from a vice president at Corvias, a Rhode Island-based company in a public-private partnership with the state system since 2014, urges Georgia officials not to set limits on how many students can live in some campus housing and points out its financial investment in the arrangement.“(W)hile the CDC may ...
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution