Make us your home page
Instagram

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

After a parent complains, Dunedin High School stops promoting student volunteer opportunity for Obama group

DUNEDIN — The principal at Dunedin High School has stopped promoting a student volunteer opportunity tied to President Barack Obama and the Democratic Party after a parent complained.

Pinellas schools spokeswoman Melanie Marquez said Tuesday that during daily announcements about volunteer opportunities for Bright Futures Scholarships last month, principal Reuben Hepburn mentioned that students could help the group Organizing for America in support of Obama. The announcements began after the Democratic group contacted the school seeking volunteers, Marquez said.

Many organizations that give out scholarships credit students for hours they spend volunteering with political campaigns, Marquez said.

"The mistake there was that (Hepburn) promoted one specific organization that supports one specific candidate," Marquez said. "It's okay to say, 'Hey, you can volunteer for political campaigns.' But it's not a good idea to focus on one organization."

After the parent complained, an area superintendent spoke to Hepburn and explained that the announcements were not appropriate "even if the intent there is to offer the volunteer hours. He understands that that was a mistake," Marquez said.

In a separate situation in Pasco County, Organizing for America volunteers have gone into schools to talk about voter registration. At four schools, the volunteers were allowed in, apparently because school officials thought they were from the Supervisor of Elections Office. Two schools turned them away because they didn't have appointments.

Although most discussions with students concerned the importance of voting, a volunteer who went to Gulf High School made a pro-Obama speech that school officials now say was not appropriate. Officials are investigating.

Times staff writer Jeffrey S. Solochek contributed to this report. Curtis Krueger can be reached at ckrueger@tampabay.com or (727) 893-8232.

After a parent complains, Dunedin High School stops promoting student volunteer opportunity for Obama group 10/02/12 [Last modified: Tuesday, October 2, 2012 10:08pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times

    

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

Loading...
  1. Shakeup on Adam Putnam campaign

    Blogs

    In a sign of unsteadiness for what  had  looked like a strong-out-of-the-gate Adam Putnam campaign, the Republican frontrunner suddenly fired his campaign manager and political director. Hard-charging Campaign manager Kristin Davis and political director Jared Small were two of the three outsiders to join …

    Putnam campaigning in Destin the other day as part of his 22-city bus tour
  2. Rays let early lead get away again in loss to Angels (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG — As pleased as the Rays were to win consecutive series against the contending Red Sox, Indians and Yankees and to get briefly back over .500, there was a lot of talk in the clubhouse before Monday's game against the Angels that it was time to do better.

    Tampa Bay Rays third base coach Charlie Montoyo (25) high fives designated hitter Corey Dickerson (10) as he rounds third on his lead off home run in the first inning of the game between the Tampa Bay Rays and the Los Angeles Angels at Tropicana Field in St. Petersburg, Fla. on Monday, May 22, 2017.
  3. Tampa man arrested for killing man in his USF-area home

    Crime

    TAMPA — A Tampa man was arrested Monday in the death of man found killed at a home in the University of South Florida area last week, according to the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office.

    Kadeem Dareem Archibald, 26, was arrested Monday on a  second degree murder charge in the University Area killing of Khando Kerr. [Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office]
  4. Report: Trump asked intel chiefs to push back against FBI collusion probe after Comey revealed its existence

    National

    President Donald Trump asked two of the nation's top intelligence officials in March to help him push back against an FBI investigation into possible coordination between his campaign and the Russian government, the Washington Post reports, citing current and former officials.

    From  left, CIA Director Mike Pompeo; Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats; and National Security Agency Director Adm. Michael Rogers take their seats on Capitol Hill on May 11 before  testifying before the Senate Intelligence Committee hearing on major threats facing the U.S. [Associated Press]
  5. For Gov. Rick Scott, 'fighting' could mean vetoing entire state budget

    State Roundup

    Every day, Gov. Rick Scott is getting a lot of advice.

    The last time a Florida governor vetoed the education portion of the state budget was in 1983. Gov. Bob Graham blasted fellow Democrats for their “willing acceptance of mediocrity.”