Teacher arrested after allegedly injuring student

Caribbean K-8 Center teacher Toni Renee Gillespie-Boykin was arrested for child abuse after she was accused of hurting an 8-year-old student.

Miami-Dade Schools Police detectives investigated Gillespie-Boykin after the alleged Thursday attack in the school’s cafeteria at 11990 SW 200th St., in Southwest Miami-Dade.

Miami-Dade County Public Schools spokesman John Schuster said they had initiated the process to fire Gillespie-Boykin.  

“The alleged actions are reprehensible and unacceptable,” Schuster said in a statement. “Our decision to terminate, even as the criminal proceedings evolve, is guided by our highest priority — the protection and welfare of our students.”

Local 10 News’ Melissa Alvarez contributed to this report. 

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Ann Coulter is not letting Berkeley off easy for calling off speech

The showdown continued Thursday between the University of California, Berkeley, and Ann Coulter over if and when the conservative firebrand will speak at the famously progressive school.

Citing safety concerns, administrators on Wednesday postponed Coulter’s scheduled April 27 appearance, saying it needed more time to find a “suitable venue.”

But Coulter was not having it. In a Twitter rampage and a Fox News appearance, she accused the school of canceling the event and vowed to speak as planned.

Her threat to come “regardless” of Berkeley’s wishes forced the school to act fast and reschedule the appearance for May 2, said Dan Mogulof, assistant vice chancellor for public affairs.

Police have very specific intelligence of threats to Coulter, attendees and protesters, UC Police Dept. Captain Alex Yao told CNN. They expect a repeat of violence that pre-empted former Breitbart news editor Milo Yiannopoulos’ appearance at the school in February.

Again, it seems Coulter will not play ball.

“I’m speaking at Berkeley on April 27, as I was invited to do and have a contract to do,” she said on Twitter after Berkeley announced the May 2 date.

“GOOD NEWS FOR CA TAXPAYER! You won’t be required to pay $$$$ to compensate me & my crew for rebooked airfare & hotels. I’m speaking on 4/27.”

Coulter said the school attached a series of conditions to her April 27 appearance: She had to deliver her speech in the afternoon, only students could attend and the speech location would not be announced until close to the event.

She said she accepted the terms but the school called off the event anyway. In a letter to Berkeley Campus Republicans, administrators said the school was taking extra precautions after Yiannopoulos’ appearance as well as recent riots in the city of Berkeley.

“Unfortunately, UCPD determined that, given currently active security threats, it is not possible to assure that the event could be held successfully — or that the safety of Ms. Coulter, the event sponsors, audience, and bystanders could be adequately protected — at any of the campus venues available on April 27,” the letter said.

“We realize that this is disappointing news, but the good news is that UCPD and Student Affairs remain firmly committed to working with you to find an alternative time and date for Ms. Coulter to come speak here at Berkeley. We expect most Mondays and Tuesdays in September during the day should work, though we will of course need to work through the details.”

But Coulter told her 1.47 million Twitter followers not to “fall” for Berkeley’s version of events. In her view, they just keep adding more “burdensome” conditions on her “constitutional rights.”

Your move, Berkeley.

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South Florida teacher wanted on child porn charges killed himself, FBI confirms

A South Florida teacher wanted by the FBI on federal child pornography charges fled to Tennessee, where he committed suicide, the FBI confirmed Wednesday.

Corey Perry, 33, of West Palm Beach, was found Friday at a Nashville hotel, FBI Special Agent Michael Leverock said.

As FBI agents approached his hotel room, Perry shot himself and later died, Leverock said.

Perry was a teacher at Howell L. Watkins Middle School in Palm Beach Gardens. Leverock said Perry was found at the Nashville hotel near where his relatives live after a multi-state manhunt.

Leverock said the FBI located Perry using undisclosed “sophisticated investigative techniques.”

The FBI is investigating whether Perry received any assistance while he was a fugitive.

Leverock said numerous victims have been identified, but court documents related to the investigation remain sealed.

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Lynn University student found dead behind Mizner Park restaurant

A body found behind a Mizner Park restaurant Saturday has been identified as that of a Lynn University student, Boca Raton police said Monday.

Police were called about 6:15 a.m. Saturday after a cleaning crew found a body on the ground behind a restaurant.

Boca Raton police Officer Sandra Boonenberg said detectives identified the victim as Lynn University student Shayan Mortazavi. Boonenberg said investigators determined that Mortazavi suffered “injuries consistent with a fall.”

Mortazavi was an 18-year-old freshman from Franklin Lakes, New Jersey, Lynn University said in a statement.

“He was an undecided major who expressed interest in film and multimedia journalism,” the statement said. “Our deepest sympathies go out to his family, friends and loved ones.”

Lynn University has counseling available for any student or employee affected by the death and is cooperating with the Boca Raton Police Department as the investigation continues.

Police are asking anyone who might have seen Mortazavi  on Friday or Saturday to call Detective Tim Kurdys at 561-338-1377 or Palm Beach County Crime Stoppers at 800-458-TIPS.

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Scientists worry crack in Greenland glacier could point to sea-level rise

Researchers with the NASA’s Operation IceBridge mission released photos of a crack in the Petermann Glacier, Greenland’s biggest glacier. 

Stef Lhermitte, a Delft University of Technology professor, first noticed the crack in the middle of the glacier in satellite images. He told The Washington Post that “it is difficult to already say anything about what exactly caused the crack on this unusual spot.”

The large glacier connects the Greenland ice sheet to the Arctic Ocean. Researchers are looking into the possibility that the crack could affect sea-level rise estimates. 

“It is unusual to see cracks forming from the center. They usually form on the sides,” NASA’s Eric Rignot, a University of California-Irvine researcher, told the Washington Post. “This could indicate that the ice shelf has gotten too thin in the middle.”

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New report says tech companies spy on students in school

Kids aren’t the only ones learning in the classroom. Turns out, tech companies have access to a lot of student data that makes parents and teachers increasingly uncomfortable.

Tech companies spy on students through data collection, and many educational technology firms don’t have proper protections in place to ensure privacy, according to a new report from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF).

Laptops, tablets and wearable devices collect information on individual students — from birth dates to what they look at online.

The EFF investigated 152 tech services currently used in classrooms and found they “were lacking in encryption, data retention and data sharing policies.”

“We are hoping by documenting these concerns, we can drive home the point that these are concerns to be taken seriously,” EFF researcher Gennie Gebhart told CNNTech.

The organization surveyed over 1,000 people around the country, and while the report is not a comprehensive representation of school systems, it shows that parents, teachers and students are concerned about the state of privacy.

A main concern, the report found, is parents aren’t always aware of what apps their kids are using, or what information they collect.

Internet users are already tracked through the news they read, the stuff they buy and the videos they watch. That data is used to create personalized ads that are targeted at each individual user. Parents are concerned that edtech companies might use their kids’ emails, personal information or interests in similar ways.

For instance, fitness trackers are used in schools to track kids’ PE performance. Educational fitness firm IHT (which isn’t mentioned in the EFF report) partners with Adidas and monitors student activity like heart rate and fitness level. Its privacy policy says it makes some personal information available to third-parties “or that help IHT market to customers.”

Schools rely too much on “privacy by policy” to protect student information, the report found. While many edtech companies have policies in place to say they won’t sell or share data, historically, those policies have failed.

In 2014, 20 million student records from the college and job planning platform ConnectEDU were sold to other companies without first alerting users, violating its own data use policy.

“In security, if you are trusting someone not to break the rules, you’re not really defending or protecting anything,” said Jessy Irwin, a security educator unaffiliated with the report who advocates for more privacy in the classroom.

There are federal privacy laws that regulate student data, but critics say they haven’t evolved with technology. Some states have enacted their own rules about student data. California, Colorado and Connecticut, for instance, prohibit companies from using student data for targeted advertising.

When it comes to using a new website or app, Gebhart said teachers frequently have free rein to use things on the internet. Many parents who responded to the survey said they’re not made aware, or have little say, over what schools are using.

“Education is always 10 to 15 years behind technologically,” Irwin said. “But we’re seeing a lot of businesses get embarrassed by not having solid security practices, and schools are going to have to figure that out, too.”

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