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5 Things Going On Today In Florida: Recess Inside Classrooms


Florida: Schools Can Hold Recess Inside Classrooms

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (AP) — Florida schools can comply with the state’s new recess mandate without having to take children outside.

The Florida Department of Education on Friday told school superintendents that there’s nothing in a new state law that dictates where recess must take place.

State legislators earlier this year passed a law that requires elementary schools to set aside 20 minutes each day for “free-play recess” although charter schools were exempted.

For the past two years mothers of school children pushed for recess, saying children need a break from schoolwork.

Department officials sent a memo to superintendents asking them to report to the state by Sept. 1 whether or not they are complying with the new mandate.

That memo also urged districts to establish weather guidelines to ensure student safety.

Police: Family’s Florida Vacation Ends As Son Shoots Father On I-75

PERRY, Ga. (AP) — The Georgia Bureau of Investigation says an Alabama family was driving back from a Florida vacation when a feud between a father and a son ended in homicide.

GBI Special Agent in Charge J.T. Rickerson told local media the family decided to leave their Orlando vacation early because of the fighting between the father, 40-year-old Daniel Lee Young, and son, 21-year-old Deontae Leqwan Young. There were eight people in the car, including three young children.

Shortly before midnight on Interstate 75, the father told his wife to pull over and he got out to hit his son. Rickerson said Deontae Young fired two shots at his father’s chest and he fell into the highway.

Deontae Young was charged with murder last week. A prosecutor will decide whether it was self-defense.

Florida Man Set For Trial In Pennsylvania Girl’s 1984 Death

DOYLESTOWN, Pa. (AP) — A Florida man is set to stand trial in the rape and slaying of a 14-year-old Pennsylvania girl in 1984.

Bucks County prosecutors contend 56-year-old George Shaw, of Geneva, drugged and suffocated Barbara Rowan inside a Bensalem apartment, then dumped her body along a highway.

He was arrested two years ago along with 53-year-old Robert Sanders. Sanders has since acknowledged helping Shaw transport the girl’s body, and is expected to testify against Shaw. Sanders pleaded guilty in February to hindering Shaw’s apprehension by previously giving police bad information. He’s yet to be sentenced.

Defense attorney Louis Busico says Shaw “strongly maintains his innocence.”

Shaw’s bench trial before Bucks County Judge Wallace H. Bateman Jr. begins Tuesday. He’s charged with criminal homicide, rape and possessing an instrument of crime.

Charges Dropped Against Sabal Trail Pipeline Protesters

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) — Charges have been dropped against 10 protesters accused of trespassing during a demonstration against a natural gas pipeline in north Florida.

Court records show the felony charges were dropped in Gilchrist County on Friday. The protesters had refused plea bargains previously offered by state prosecutors.

A press release sent on the protesters’ behalf said 10 protesters had faced felony trespassing and disorderly conduct charges for their part in the November 2016 protest against construction of the $3.2 billion, 515-mile-long Sabal Trail project.

The pipeline, which has already started operating, transports natural gas through Alabama, Georgia and Florida.

The protesters raised concerns about the leak of hazardous substances into state waters.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission approved the project saying environment dangers were properly minimized.

NASA Communications Satellite Damaged 3 Weeks Before Launch

In a July 13, 2017 photo provided by NASA, the payload fairing for NASA’s Tracking and Data Relay Satellite, TDRS-M, is inspected prior to encapsulating the spacecraft, inside the Astrotech facility in Titusville, Fla. NASA said Monday, July 17, 2017, that one of the antennas on the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite, was damaged last Friday. The mishap could delay what was supposed to be an Aug. 3 liftoff aboard an Atlas V (five) rocket. Photo: Glenn Benson/NASA via AP.

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — NASA’s newest, slickest communications satellite has been damaged, just three weeks before its planned August launch.

NASA said Monday that one of the antennas on the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite, or TDRS-M (T-driss-M), was damaged last Friday. The accident occurred inside a payload processing building near Cape Canaveral, Florida, as the satellite was being packed for launch.

Officials are providing no details. But the mishap could delay what was supposed to be an Aug. 3 liftoff aboard an Atlas V (five) rocket. In a brief statement, NASA says the mission team is assessing the damage and flight schedule.

TDRS-M is the third-generation in this satellite series. The orbiting network links ground controllers with the International Space Station, the Hubble Space Telescope and other spacecraft.