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Saturday, Aug 30, 2014

Dawson, Anastasia

Tribune Staff

Lerner wins record Pinellas school board term

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. PETERSBURG — Linda Lerner opted not to throw a party Tuesday night, instead spending the evening with her husband, son, daughter-in-law and neighbor at her Seminole home, eating g...

Students, Rowdies team up to make fitness fun

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Pinellas County physical education teachers are hoping a workout video made with the Tampa Bay Rowdies will encourage their students to be a bit rowdier in and out of...

Fire destroys Vietnamese church in St. Petersburg

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. PETERSBURG — A fire ripped through a St. Petersburg church Sunday morning, displacing its congregation for the morning services and changing polling locations for the Aug. 26 prim...

In Pinellas, Head Start starts again

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The Head Start program has been around since 1965, but its history in Pinellas County has some gaps. This school year, however, the program is back and hoping to expan...

Pinellas service groups unite to reach local families in need

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— Pinellas County has a plethora of community service organizations, but they have long struggled to work together to reach their full potential.

‘Good beginning’ for St. Pete’s Melrose Elementary

- It’s been a rough few years after its third “F’ grade, but as students headed back to class Monday the only tears seemed to be coming from parents.

Cat fanciers converge on Pinellas Park for annual show

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. PETERSBURG — The No. 1-ranked Bengal cat in the world, a feline from Indiana, drew a crowd at the Skyway Cat Club of Tampa Bay’s 30th annual TICA Cat Show on Sunday. But the ...

Schools open today in Pinellas, Pasco counties

- Students and buses will be back on the road in Bay area counties — except for Hillsborough — and law enforcement will be out in full force to help everyone make it to class safely.

New school year in Pinellas a study in evolution

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Fourteen new principals, new school programs, new standardized tests and new classroom strategies are just a few of the changes at Pinellas County schools as students...

24-year Pinellas District 6 school board member challenged

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Linda Lerner is the longest-serving school board member in Pinellas County history, having put in 24 years, and now she is seeking four more.

Three vie for District 4 school board seat

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— Three candidates, all with education backgrounds, are competing to represent the Tarpon Springs, Palm Harbor and Safety Harbor area on the Pinellas County School Boar...

University professor hopes to best 2-term incumbent

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Kent “Kip” Curtis, a University of South Florida St. Petersburg professor and school volunteer, is hoping to take the District 3 at-large school board s...

Newcomer to test school board incumbent in District 2

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School board member Terry Krassner has spent her life in Pinellas County schools.

Pinellas to discuss policy for English Language Learners

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— Students learning English as a second language will have two years to master their skills before their test scores count in school accountability measures.

Utica College hopes to fill need for nurses

- New York-based Utica College is betting big on its newest venture: a small-scale nursing program in St. Petersburg expected to net only 16 students in its first year.

Libertarian forum draws handful of Pinellas candidates

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— There were quite a few empty seats at the Pinellas County Commissioners candidate forum Sunday afternoon, but those who accepted the invitation from the Libertarian Party...

Low turnout for free dental exams in Pinellas

- Every year, the Pinellas County Health Department has offered free dental exams and X-rays to students heading back to school. But for the past few years, the turnout has been disappointing.

Early learning center set to open in St. Pete

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— It took nearly three years, but with a flurry of singing, dancing and storytelling, the Pinellas County school district’s first early learning center opened it...

Questions reveal rifts among Pinellas school board candidates

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— In a Pinellas County School Board election that has shown few distinctions among candidates, the claws came out Thursday during a Suncoast Tiger Bay Club forum regard...

Homeless kids to gain home, education

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— Homeless students in Pinellas County public schools could get a place to call home and a ticket to college as early as January.

Palm Harbor giving portable classrooms the boot

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— Portable classrooms will soon be a thing of the past at Palm Harbor University High School.

Latin fest showcases growing community in Pinellas

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— The inaugural Pinellas Park Latin Festival featured plenty of eating and dancing — and so much more for long-time residents like Carmen Molinelli.

Pinellas school district asks Crist to stop running ad

- Charlie Crist’s newest advertisement in his attempt to regain the governor’s office takes him through the halls of his Alma Mater, St. Petersburg High School, as he discusses his vision for Florida’s schoo...

Education standards, testing biggest point of contention in Pinellas schools debate

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SEMINOLE — Low-performing schools need to shape up, career programs need to be expanded and charter schools need to be held accountable. Candidates for Pinellas County’s school board agreed on those topics ...

Pinellas eyes single-gender program for at-risk boys

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— Pinellas County school officials are looking at a new state pilot program to help at-risk boys turn their lives around by eliminating daily distractions — main...

Pinellas School Board gives early approval to $1.2 billion budget

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— The Pinellas County School Board gave preliminary approval Tuesday to a $1.2 billion budget after a public hearing that drew little comment from the public.

Pinellas schools budget faces public scrutiny

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— The public will have its first opportunity to weigh-in on the Pinellas County school district’s proposed $1.2 billion budget for 2014-15 after the regular school board...

Pinellas tech centers consider adding ‘college’ to name

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. PETERSBURG — Pinellas County School Board members hope changing the name of Pinellas Technical Education Centers to Pinellas Technical College with boost the school’s enrol...

Pinellas schools rally to boost performance

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— It had a new principal and an almost completely new staff last school year in hopes of boosting student achievement. But when it comes to reading, Melrose Elementary ...

Investigation targets Pinellas school’s FCAT scores

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— Pinellas County school officials have been ordered to investigate Bay Point Elementary School’s FCAT exams for possible cheating.

New federal grant could help Pinellas add programs at five schools

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Battling long waiting lists for their most successful programs and little diversity in struggling schools, Pinellas County officials on Tuesday discussed a long-term plan to a...

Tampa teen beaten in Israel talks about ordeal

- His fat lip has slowly deflated back to normal size and his black eyes have been replaced with dark circles, yet 15-year-old Tariq Abu Khdeir still carries a visible reminder of his altercation with Israeli police earlier t...

West Coast Players festival packs entertainment into one act

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Hidden behind an unassuming strip mall storefront, lawyers, college kids, retirees and children as young as 9 brought their dreams to life Sunday afternoon, performing for their final sold out fundraising show.

FDOT urges upgrades at deadly intersection

- A preliminary report calls for several safety improvements at the Gulf-to-Bay Boulevard and Belcher Road intersection where crossing guard Doug Carey was struck by a car and killed May 20.

Schools are upgrading technological savvy

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The biggest growth challenge facing Pinellas County schools may not be changing curricula, shifting teachers or engaging students.

Mud Wars participants get dirty for charity

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. PETERSBURG — The mud oozing from Spa Beach Park on Sunday was practically inescapable. From the parking lot to the Pier sidewalk, the park was transformed into a pit of sand and d...

Tarpon Springs soldier’s family ‘overwhelmed’ by support

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— It’s a scene that would bring him to tears, if he could open his eyes.

Pinellas program deals meals to needy kids

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— In a whirlwind of yelling, jumping and juice packets that vanished as quickly as they arrived, nearly 30 kids swarmed tiny tables at Pinellas Village Apartments Wedne...

Host families needed for Japanese students

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For decades, St. Petersburg has traded students with its “sister city” in Japan during a two-week summer exchange program, but with only a few weeks unt...

Aquarium nursing young stranded dolphin

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A baby dolphin found stranded on Redington Beach during the holiday weekend is receiving medical care at Clearwater Marine Aquarium, officials there said Monday.

Pinellas superintendent making the grade

- After more than 30 years in education, including assistant superintendent in Hillsborough, Michael Grego says he had found a home in Pinellas.

Pinellas disputes low FCAT scores

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— Students’ scores on this year’s writing portion of the Florida Comprehensive Assessment Test were well below expectations, Pinellas County school offici...

Common Core foes ‘outraged’ over FCAT’s replacement

- Parents, teachers and public school officials are getting their first look at the new Florida Standards Assessment, and some are concerned with what they see.