Measure to revamp judicial education stalls

first_img March 15, 2017 Gary Blankenship Senior Editor Regular News Measure to revamp judicial education stalls Measure to revamp judicial education stalls Senior Editor A bill to revamp judicial education in Florida and perhaps cut its staffing has been tabled in the Florida House. The sponsor for HB 175 tabled it February 22 in the Justice Appropriations Subcommittee after members from both parties questioned whether it was moving too fast. Rep. Cord Byrd, R-Jacksonville Beach, said he had already agreed to make substantial changes to the bill after meeting with other representatives and the judiciary, but none of the changes were ready for the subcommittee’s review. “Nothing in this bill suggests judges should receive less education. This bill does nothing to cut court education,” Byrd said. “It gives your local judge more input into the education they receive.” He said the goal was to cut waste and improve services. As originally drafted, the bill would remove court education under the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court and place it in a council made up of the chief judges of the 20 circuits and the five district courts of appeal. The council would be located in the Ninth Circuit, although Byrd said he was going to drop that provision and keep education operations in Tallahassee. The bill would also reduce the number of court employees devoted to court education from the current 15 (another two positions are authorized but currently unfilled) to three. Byrd argued that 44 percent of the court education budget, funding by court filing fees, is going to administration, but he said after meeting with other representatives and court officials that many of those other jobs might not be cut. Rep. Kimberly Daniels, D-Jacksonville, asked Byrd if he had determined what staffing level was appropriate. “That determination has not been made. We’re working with them to determine which employees should be under OSCA (the Office of the State Courts Administrator) and which would be under the (court education) trust fund,” Byrd replied. Rep. Eric Eisnaugle, R-Orlando, noted the bill identified employees who work on developing judicial education programs as administrative and who would fall under the bill’s 15 percent limit on administrative expenditures. Byrd replied that he did not consider those employees administrative and that was one of the changes he was working on with help from the courts. Fourth District Court of Appeal Judge Jonathan Gerber said court officials are working with Byrd on the bill, and said they support his goal of improving judicial education. He added the court system is willing to do an internal review of education and welcomed an outside examination from the Legislature or its Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability. But he said that review might take more time than the Legislature has this year. Pressed on whether the judiciary supports or opposes Byrd’s bill, Gerber said, “In its current form, we would oppose the bill. I say so not in a hostile manner but in a constructive manner.” He said the current education program produced eight week-long seminars for judges every year, in addition to judicial college for new judges and “bench books” to help new judges and judges who switch divisions. Noting that the details are still being worked out, Rep. Joseph Abruzzo, D-Boynton Beach, said, “Without knowing the changes. . . this should be put on hold until we see what your compromise is, what your inner workings with the branch are.” Added Rep. Scott Plakon, R-Longwood, “I don’t think you have the votes. I think this has the potential to be good policy. I’m going to ask you to TP [temporarily pass, or table] it. There’s plenty of time to get this bill done.” Byrd agreed and tabled his bill, which puts it on hold at least until the committee meets again in early March, after the Legislative session begins on March 7. While Byrd told the committee that administrative costs might be as high as 44 percent, State Courts Administrator PK Jameson, outside the meeting, released figures which said the actual amount is around 12 percent and the remainder of employee time is devoted to developing or supporting education programs. She said 3.5 full-time positions are devoted to administrative issues and 11.5 positions “work on curriculum development and programming for training and education.” Last year, 3,245 judges and court personnel took courses paid by the Court Education Trust Fund. “The courts approach all expenditures with care. We take very seriously our responsibility to be good stewards of public money. We think the work of the Court Education Trust Fund exemplifies this approach and represents significant effectiveness and efficiency while providing required training and education,” Jameson said. She added, “The courts are always open to ideas to improve operations to best serve the shared interests of taxpayers and citizens and would welcome a study or review of how court education is provided. We are concerned, however, that this proposal as drafted would be harmful to judicial education. Rather than the current practice of providing instruction by Florida judges, much of the education would have to be purchased from third parties including out-of-state providers at a substantially higher cost.”last_img read more

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School News

first_imgRoss SchoolRoss School has established the Courtney Sale Ross Honors Scholarship for high-performing day and boarding students entering grades 7 through 12.This scholarship will make available up to $1 million in merit-based tuition assistance to students whose academic performance, service within the community, and demonstrated passion and creativity align with Ross School’s values. In addition to the scholarship, Ross School continues to award more than $3 million in financial aid and scholarships annually.“We are excited to announce this scholarship, which bears the name of Ross School’s founder, Courtney Sale Ross, and reflects her vision of Ross as a diverse and inclusive learning community,” said Jason Warnick, director of admissions and financial aid. “Ross is committed to opening doors to promising students from all backgrounds, and we hope that this opportunity will allow families to consider a future at Ross School, regardless of their financial circumstances.”The deadline to submit an application is June 15. Interested applicants can visit www.ross.org/scholarship for more information or contact the Ross School Admissions Office at 631-907-5400 or [email protected] HamptonIndependent/Courtesy James StewartEast Hampton High School’s National Art Honor Society and Tri-M Music Honor Society.The National Art Honor Society and Tri-M Music Honor Society held their annual induction ceremony April 11 in the East Hampton High School cafeteria.New National Art Honor Society inductees included Tycho Burwell, Kyle Dias, Will Edwards, Julissa Fajardo, Lauren German, Gianna Gregorio, Noah Gualtieri, Rianna Helier, Lynda Hernandez, Claire Hopkins, Emily Hugo, Yannah Jones, Rebecca Kuperschmid, Sophia Ledda, Rose Littman, Sutton Lynch, Camila Mattiauda, Lizette Maurath, Hannah Mirando, Evelyn Ordonez, Rachel Osborne, Jhonelle Richards, Isabella Swanson, Jennifer Villacis, Emma Wiltshire, Scout Austopchuk, Zachary Barzilay, Cassady Czarnecki, Alexis Dempsey, August Gladstone, Olivia Jarrett, Gabriel Junemann, Raymond Ledda, Zachary Minskoff, Liana Paradiso, and Krystal Santiago.New Tri-M Music Honor Society inductees included Talia Albukrek, Melanie Barros, Claire Belhumeur, Naomi Blowe, Olivia Brauer, Maria Chavez, Kate Estuye, Anthony Genovesi, Malia Guebli, Jillian Hear, Alexandra Lenehan, Kiana Magat, Mary McDonald, Emily Nicholson, and Tori Schmitt.Numerous examples of the students’ artwork were on display for the event. Music was also provided by the high school’s chamber ensemble.Tuckahoe Common School DistrictIndependent/Courtesy Tuckahoe Common School DistrictSouthampton Town Police Officer Eric Breitwieser reads to third graders at the Tuckahoe School.March was Literacy Month at Tuckahoe School. It is a month-long celebration of all the literacy, reading, writing, speaking, and listening the school offers students. It is also one of the many ways the school can help foster a love of reading and literature within the student community.One exciting event hosted during Literacy Month was Community Guest Reader’s Day, on March 29. Community leaders were invited to come in to share one of their favorite pieces of literature with a select group of students.In other news, third-graders at Tuckahoe School collected sheets, towels, food, and many more items, for donation to the Southampton Animal Shelter on April 14.Westhampton Beach School DistrictIndependent/Courtesy Westhampton Beach School DistrictWesthampton Beach High School’s Virtual Enterprise team, Team SPFy, placed 10th in the country on April 17.Westhampton Beach High School’s Virtual Enterprise team, Team SPFy, placed 10th in the country after competing against 600 teams from across America at the Virtual Enterprises International National Business Plan Competition on April 17.Westhampton Beach’s team, made up of Ansley Berman, Bjorn Christensen, Chloe Koonmen, Drew Malabre, Maeve Murphy, and Grace O’Hare, secured their placement at the national level after scoring highly at the Long Island Business Plan Competition Finals in February.Team SPFy’s winning virtual business plan focuses on the development and promotion of organic skincare items. The mission of the company is to educate young people about skin cancer and the harmful effects of melanoma. Sharelast_img read more

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Export body seeks lawyers’ views

first_imgSolicitors have been invited to help shape the government’s effort to promote the UK legal sector at the world’s largest legal conference this autum. Lord Keen of Elie QC, advocate general for Scotland, will represent UK legal services at IBA 2016, the annual conference of the International Bar Association which will take place in Washington DC from 18-23 September.Lord Keen is hosting a webinar at 13:30-14:30 on Wednesday 22 June to discuss opportunities for UK legal services companies to get involved in and shape his visit programme, which is intended to highlight the UK as the premier destination for legal and professional serviceds investors. Joining him on the webinar will be Joe Bell, operations director, International Bar Association, London and Daniel Marks, vice consul, UK Trade & Investment, British Embassy, Washington DC. It will include a Q&A session. Register online here.last_img read more

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Brown completes loan move to Wednesday

first_imgBrown’s loan move is his seventh since joining Chelsea, who signed him from West Bromwich Albion in 2013.He played Premier League football during a loan spell at Brighton, which was cut short by a long-term knee injury.Brown has also been on loan at Leeds, Huddersfield, Rotherham and Dutch club Vitesse Arnhem.He has a year remaining on his contract at Chelsea, who have been considering his options for the coming season.Brown, who is primarily an attacking midfielder but can also operate up front or as a winger, has made one first-team appearance for the Blues – against West Brom.His career so far has been hampered by injury problems.He joined Leeds on a season-long loan while still recovering from the anterior cruciate ligament damage which ended his time at Brighton.Brown made just one league appearance for the West Yorkshire club – as a late substitute against QPR – and managed 17 Championship starts during his season at Luton. Izzy Brown has joined Sheffield Wednesday on a season-long loan from Chelsea.QPR were among clubs interested in the 23-year-old, who spent last season on loan at Luton Town. See also:Chelsea close to deals for Havertz, Chilwell and Silvalast_img read more

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