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Education news and notes from Tampa Bay and Florida

Mayor Foster on God and public schools



We've all heard the claim before, but since St. Petersburg Mayor Bill Foster uttered it last night, we thought we'd mark it down for the record: "When we kicked God out of the schools in the 1960s, things started going downhill," he said as a panelist at a forum on Pinellas' black male grad rates.

"You can say that again," said a man in the front row.

Foster offered other insights.

He said Tallahassee was passing down too many mandates to local governments. He said the Doorways scholarship program was a huge success. He said those who care for children before they start school need to be better prepared. He said schools need all the help they can get from community volunteers. "We can't do it alone," he said.

Foster wasn't the only panelist talking about God and public schools. Asked if black males needed to be educated differently or in different settings, Nation of Islam student minister Louis Muhammad said yes, then noted several religious schools in the area.

"Many other churches and religious organizations have schools," he said. "Let's look at the statistics of the behavior, the discipline, the training they get when the God factor is included."

[Last modified: Friday, October 8, 2010 5:49pm]


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