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U.S. Humanitarian Parole Program; Florida’s Israel flights; schoolbook reviews

Lynne Sladky

U.S. Humanitarian Parole Program 

A year ago this week, the Biden administration launched a new Humanitarian Parole Program for migrants.

More than a quarter of a million people have received parole as of September. People from four countries are eligible — Cuba, Haiti, Nicaragua and Venezuela — and thousands have come to Florida thanks to the diaspora communities.

Immigration is an important political and economic issue. With more than one in four people working in Florida born outside the country, Florida’s economy has a higher proportion of workers not born in America compared to the country as a whole.

Meantime, the border issue — as some call it — is a dividing line for politics. How does this effort by the Biden administration affect Florida’s efforts to crack down on undocumented migrants?


  • Luis Miranda, principal deputy assistant secretary for communications at the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. 

Florida’s Israel flights 

This week marks two full weeks of the war between Israel and Hamas. This weekend, some University of Florida students may be headed back home as they’ve been called to serve back home in Israel. Ailee Shanes brings us their story from our partner station in Gainesville, WUFT.

Last week, Gov. Ron DeSantis declared a state of emergency in Florida because of the war between Israel and Hamas, citing Floridians in Israel wanting to come home. That emergency declaration helped open the way for the state to pay for flights to Israel to pick up Americans. Project Dynamo, a nonprofit organization from Tampa, led the first flight. What do we know about the state role in the rescue flights?


  • Ana Ceballos, politics and policy reporter for the Miami Herald. 

Schoolbook reviews 

Florida’s Parental Rights in Education law bans classroom instruction on sexual orientation and gender identity in kindergarten through third grade. That was later expanded to all grades.

The removal of some school library books in Charlotte County that district leaders believe is needed to avoid breaking the law has led to frustration and fear. From WGCU in Fort Myers, Sandra Viktorova reports.

The Pasco School Board is defending one book, but not because it came under scrutiny over sexuality and gender, but over interest rates and inflation. Students there will be using Dave Ramsey’s Foundations in Personal Finance book for a new financial literacy requirement. The state Board of Education approved the book last year.

But with its biblical references, the book has its critics. Kerry Sheridan from our partner station WUSF in Tampa attended a hearing asking the board to reconsider its decision.