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Gov. Rick Scott talks to parents and teachers about improving education at an A-rated school in Pinellas listen

09/13/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Governor Rick Scott is going straight to the source to find a better way to educate Florida’s children. He’s calling it a listening tour and is asking students’ moms and dads and their teachers. During one hour question and answer sessions Wednesday afternoon at Madeira Beach Fundamental School, teachers told the Governor they were frustrated with things like high stakes testing, teacher evaluations and shrinking salaries. Scott said he wants to hear about those problems so he can rummage ...

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In Seminole Obama says voters have a choice to make listen

09/10/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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At an impassioned grassroots speaking event, President Barack Obama told voters they have an obvious choice to make. Speaking to a crowd of thousands at the St. Pete College Seminole campus on Saturday, the president wooed the crowd with a combination of wit and optimism.

Hot on the heels of his Democratic nomination acceptance speech in Charlotte, Obama reiterated some of his priorities in office. In sync with the day’s venue, Obama criticized Republicans for wanting to “gut” education....

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Hillsborough County to get new schools listen

09/05/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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A coalition of Hillsborough governments heard plans to build some new schools in the county over the next decade. Lorraine Duffy Suarez, general manager of growth management and planning for Hillsborough County Schools said at a Council of Governments meeting today that the schools will go up where there is the most need.

“On a quarterly basis I meet with staffs from all four governments and the planning commission. We discuss our enrollment trends, we discuss development trends, where ...

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Outside Republican convention, Jeb Bush and Michelle Rhee use film to push parent trigger education policy listen

08/31/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Medium

Former Florida Governor Jeb Bush used the Republican National Convention as a platform to garner support for so-called parent trigger legislation. During a panel discussion at the Straz Center for the Arts Tuesday, Bush said states need massive overhauls to their education systems.

“We have a third of our kids that are college or career ready despite spending more per student than any country in the world. We can say, ‘U.S.A. number one’, we can be proud that we won all these medals and...

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Hillsborough School Board member April Griffin criticizes high-stakes testing

07/18/12 Seán Kinane
Last Call Wednesday
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Medium

Today on Last Call we talked about education with Hillsborough School Board member April Griffin.

There are four School board races on next month’s primary ballot, incumbents Susan Valdes, Jack Lamb, Doretha Edgecomb and Carol Kurdell face opposition.

We spoke about how the expected low turnout of a primary election might affect those races.

Griffin has been critical of high-stakes testing like the FCAT.

On Tuesday the board took shots at the way grades are passed out to schools ...

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Students in south St. Pete learn about healthy eating while growing their own food listen

05/09/12 Seán Kinane
WMNF Drive-Time News Wednesday
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Students at two south St. Petersburg schools are learning about healthy eating by growing their own food. Organizers hope the knowledge the kids get will help them continue to make smart food choices as they grow up.

An organization called The Edible Peace Patch has helped to create gardens at Lakewood Elementary and Sanderlin IB World School in areas of south St. Petersburg facing economic challenges. The gardens manager, Erin Mattick, says students don’t normally get a chance to grow the...

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Documentary about teachers affected by low pay is tear jerker, conversation starter listen

04/27/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Friday
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Funding for public education nationwide is taking a hit. In Florida, educators saw $1.3 billion in cuts last year; $1 billion were restored this year. The shrinking budgets mean fewer teachers with lower pay. At a screening of a film in Tampa last night that documents how low salaries affect teachers nationwide, a panel of professionals answered the question, ‘why is paying teachers more so important?’

American Teacher, a documentary featuring several current and former teachers natio...

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Democrat Rick Kriseman not running for re-election in Florida House; undecided on future in politics listen

04/26/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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Democratic State Representative Rick Kriseman announced this week that he will not seek another term in the Florida House of Representatives. Despite speculation that he may be considering a bid for mayor of St. Petersburg, the 12-year politician says he’s not making any decisions yet.

Kriseman said this past legislative session was the first time his family really expressed their distaste at his leaving for an extended trip to Tallahassee. Running for mayor would alleviate that, but Kris...

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Community Stepping Stones offers classes for at risk teens listen

04/16/12 Andrea Lypka
WMNF Drive-Time News Monday
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Recent budget cuts have prompted some nonprofit organizations in Tampa Bay to scale back on their programs. But one organization in the Sulphur Springs neighborhood of Tampa instead offers more classes and extends their urban arts program to youth and adults.

Until the recent budget cuts at Hillsborough County public schools, for the past 15 years, artist Terry Klaaren has been transforming the walls of public schools into community mural projects.

"And the schools had better budgets a...

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U.S. Rep. Kathy Castor to the GOP: when education funding opportunity knocks, they won't answer listen

04/12/12 Janelle Irwin
WMNF Drive-Time News Thursday
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The United States House of Representatives passed a budget that slashes spending while giving tax breaks to the wealthy. Education expenditures are on the long list of cuts in Wisconsin Republican Paul Ryan’s plan. U.S. Representative Kathy Castor vowed to fight against it today at a press conference at Hillsborough Community College in Tampa.

It’s safe to say Kathy Castor isn’t happy with some of her colleagues.

“When opportunity knocks, the GOP is not going to answer.”

But even ...

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