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Last week, Florida's 67 district school superintendents held a mental health summit to address what they'd already considered a crisis before the Parkland tragedy. Led by Broward Superintendent Robert Runcie, the summit drew lawmakers, behavioral health providers and state agency heads to Orlando for what many called an unprecedented gathering.

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The flu has forced one school in Pinellas County to close and others in the Tampa Bay area to send warnings home to parents.

Florida Lawmakers Look To Clear Way For Guns At Churches

Jan 26, 2018

The Florida House and Senate have started moving forward with measures that would allow people with concealed-weapons licenses to carry guns on the grounds of churches and other religious institutions that include schools.

Bay County health officials are offering a two week immunization clinic ahead of students returning to school.  

Democratic Senator Bill Montford of Tallahassee is warning fellow lawmakers that a dramatic spike in workers’ compensation rates isn’t just a business problem.

Florida businesses are up in arms about a hefty workers compensation rate hike, and now lawmakers are worried about the fallout for school districts.

The Autism Society reports a growing number of autism spectrum disorder diagnoses across the country. That's seen an increase in the need for exceptional student education , or ESE, in Florida and elsewhere. Students with autism and other disabilities require special education plans, trained staff, and sensory rooms to help them calm down and deal with the stress of the classroom.

Most Florida schools have already started, and state officials are continuing to prepare school superintendents as well as school personnel on what they can do to inform parents and protect the students from the Zika virus.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

The Florida Department of Health is kicking off a series of events across the state where students can get immunizations needed for school – for free.

In the first of dozens of events statewide hosted by the Florida Department of Health offering free immunizations for students, the third floor of the Orange County School’s administration building was packed Tuesday with dozens of parents and students waiting patiently for their shot in the arm.

It’s a Wednesday morning and the waiting room is already starting to fill up at the North Miami Beach Senior High School clinic.

“Go ahead and have a seat.”

Lottie Watts / WUSF

Most kids are heading back to school in Florida next week.  But before they can sit down in a classroom, many will have to sit down in the doctor's office for required vaccinations or a physical.  

That presents a dilemma for kids from families who are uninsured or underinsured. Lindsey Hernandez and her children have insurance through Medicaid. But that doesn't mean it's easy or convenient to get health care. At a back-to-school health fair last weekend at St. Petersburg College, four of her children got free physicals.  

Right now, schools determine whether to move a student into special education classes.

But a proposed bill in Tallahassee would give parents of children with special needs more power over their education.

Fort Lauderdale sixth-grader Mariah Harris has Down syndrome, and she wants to be a veterinary technician.

“My dream is to go to college with my friends one day,” she told a panel of lawmakers.