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Briefs: Group of parents to meet to help local failing schools


Parents will meet to help failing schools

When Norma Robinson and other members of the Sulphur Springs Action League Neighborhood Association read about their local school receiving an F grade, they decided to take their children's education into their own hands.

Robinson, the association's treasurer, said the group wasn't sure how much information parents were getting about the education process. So the association is holding an education fair so parents can meet representatives from Sulphur Springs and Cahoon elementaries, Van Buren and Sligh middle schools, and Chamberlain, Middleton and Hillsborough high schools.

"We felt the need for parents to meet educators on a neutral ground so that they would be more comfortable in asking questions," Robinson said in an e-mail. "We want to be sure information gets into their hands."

Both Sulphur Springs Elementary and Middleton High School face closure or conversion to charter schools if they fail to raise their grade to a C or higher and make progress toward federal requirements, the state announced in July. Middleton has five consecutive years with a D, and Sulphur Springs has received a failing grade for the past two years.

Robinson said the association plans to discuss "the importance of parent involvement" and how to give each child a fair chance to succeed in school. The meeting also will inform parents of agencies that offer tutors.

The meeting will be from 6 to 8 p.m. Tuesday at the George Bartholomew Recreation Center, at 8608 N 12th St.


USF learning center has open house for seniors

The University of South Florida Osher Lifelong Learning Institute is having a fall open house for seniors in South Tampa at 9:30 a.m. Tuesday in the USF Downtown Center at 1101 Channelside Drive.

The classes, which include more than 70 arts and science and computer courses, are primarily for older adults, said Ara Rogers, director of the institute, but have no age requirement.

The classes start at the end of September and include writing, literature and humanities courses, as well as basic computer and Internet instructional classes. Rogers said the classes are taught during weekdays and are open to anyone who wants to learn.

The open house is free. For information, call Joseph McAuliffe at 974-5166.


Local songs sought to 'Do the Local Motion'

Healthy Together, a nonprofit coalition, is hoping for a trade-off with local musicians. The coalition would get some free original songs. The musicians would get a little exposure.

The organization is signing bands and musicians to create free downloadable podcasts for a walking fitness program in Tampa called "Do the Local Motion."

President and CEO Sigrid Tidmore said the coalition is looking for original music from local bands that play easy-listening rock, jazz and reggae, classical and New Age, country, or Latin salsa and dance.

She said the music will be used in free podcasts for a six-route walking program in South Tampa that starts Oct. 3.

"We're trying to show Tampa creativity at its best," Tidmore said.

The songs will not be used commercially, she said, and there is no registration fee to submit work. In addition, the performers will be featured on the coalition's Web site.

The songs will serve as a soundtrack of sorts for people who are looking for a way to exercise and explore the community. Tidmore said a map of the walking routes will be released next week, and its Web site should be up shortly after.

Interested parties should call Healthy Together at (813) 849-9355 or e-mail Tidmore at

Know of news in your community? Contact Eric Smithers at or (813) 226-3339.

Briefs: Group of parents to meet to help local failing schools 09/04/08 [Last modified: Thursday, September 4, 2008 4:32am]
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