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Florida rejects Hillsborough Schools’ plan to start school online-only for first month of school year

TAMPA, Fla. — Florida has rejected Hillsborough County Public Schools’ addendum to go online-only for the first month of the school year.

Superintendent Addison Davis said the Department of Education made it clear that any plan outside of the executive order would result in a negative financial impact.

All students will begin school virtually on August 24. One week later on August 31, students will transition to brick-and-motar for those parents who want that option.

“Let me be clear, our School Board made an informal decision substantiated after hearing from our local public health authorities,” Davis said.

Davis also said the reduction in state funds would be “detrimental to students’ learning and their organization.

The school board voted originally to start the first four weeks of classes online only and not via brick-and-mortar education.

In a letter sent last week to Superintendent Addison Davis and school board chair Melissa Snively, Florida Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran says it gives him “grave concerns” when the district takes away the families’ abilities to choose the brick-and-mortar learning options.

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Corcoran says making the classes online only goes against the proposal that Hillsborough County originally submitted to the state and the state had approved.

Superintendent Addison Davis will hold a news conference at 1:30 p.m. to update parents on their options.

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