Pinellas education news: Discovery Nights, Teacher of the Year finalists, student hunger and more

News and notes about K-12 schools and colleges in Pinellas County.
Discovery Nights like this one at Clearwater High allow students and their families to get a close-up look at choice programs. Pinellas County will resume its schedule of Discovery Nights next week, with most of them starting at 6 p.m. [Times (2014)]
Discovery Nights like this one at Clearwater High allow students and their families to get a close-up look at choice programs. Pinellas County will resume its schedule of Discovery Nights next week, with most of them starting at 6 p.m. [Times (2014)]
Published November 23 2018

Discovery Nights resume for choice programs

The Pinellas County school system resumes its schedule of Discovery Nights next week, offering families a chance to get a close-up look at choice programs. The events start at 6 p.m. and typically last one to two hours. Applications will be accepted online Jan. 9-18. For more information, visit or call the school district’s Student Assignment office at (727) 588-6210. Also consult the Times’ annual School Search guide.

Nov. 26

Cambridge program, Tarpon Springs High

Jacobson Culinary Arts Academy, Tarpon Springs High

Leadership Conservatory for the Arts, Tarpon Springs High

Veterinary Science Academy, Tarpon Springs High

Nov. 27

Bay Vista Fundamental Elementary

International Studies Middle Years Programme, Largo Middle

Center for Wellness and Medical Professions, Palm Harbor University High

IB program, Palm Harbor University High

Nov. 28

Mildred Helms Elementary IB World School

Center for Advancement of the Sciences and Technology, Bay Point Middle (Starts at 5:30 p.m.)

Academy of Architecture, Robotics and Construction, Dunedin High

Fundamental school-within-a-school, Dunedin High

Nov. 29

Center for Journalism and Multimedia Studies, Melrose Elementary

Tarpon Springs Fundamental Elementary

Clearwater Fundamental Middle

Cambridge program, Dixie Hollins High

Center for Culinary Arts, Dixie Hollins High

Academy of Entertainment Arts, Dixie Hollins High

Pinellas names Teacher of the Year finalists

Pinellas County school officials have named the 10 finalists for 2018-19 Teacher of the Year. They were chosen from 130 nominees who were scored by a panel of judges using multiple criteria. A different panel of judges will interview the finalists and name a winner, who will be announced Jan. 28 at Ruth Eckerd Hall. The finalists are Andrea Anderson, St. Petersburg High; Karen Bulino, Seminole Middle; Michelle Hajian, High Point Elementary; Lauren Iovino, Boca Ciega High; Angela Johnson-Drummond, McMullen Booth Elementary; Nicole Kenngott, Plumb Elementary; Autumn Lunin, Safety Harbor Middle; Emily Maker, North Shore Elementary; Candace Reed, Azalea Elementary; and Wendy Stryker, Safety Harbor Elementary.

At USFSP, a proposed food pantry aims to ease student hunger

A student-driven initiative to establish a food pantry at the University of South Florida St. Petersburg could help fend off hunger for students living with food insecurity on and off campus. The effort, led by undergraduates in Ingrid Brendenberg’s Leading Diverse Teams class, would be similar to Feed-A-Bull, the USF Tampa food pantry that has distributed more than 24,000 pounds of food to students in need. Up to half of all undergrad students experience food insecurity, according to a 2017 study. This year researchers found that nearly 30 percent of college students are hungry nationwide. “Students who are suffering from food insecurity find it more difficult to focus on the academic challenges that they face in college,” said Dwayne Isaacs, Director of Student Life and Engagement. The proposal will go before university leadership for approval before seeking possible funding routes and a location.

Eckerd College hosts a 'Transgender Day of Remembrance'

The Eckerd College Women's Resources Center will host "Transgender Day of Remembrance: An Evening With Dani Shay," at 7 p.m. Monday in the Dan and Mary Miller Auditorium on campus. Shay is a singer-songwriter and actor who is non-binary, which refers to a person who is not exclusively masculine or feminine. After getting a start on YouTube, America’s Got Talent and The Glee Project, Shay has since released multiple albums and is now starring in a new musical, The Civility of Albert Cashier, based on the true story of a transgender Union soldier in the Civil War. At Eckerd, Shay will perform and discuss songs from Shay’s new album, which cover timely and controversial topics and aim to tell human stories from a non-binary perspective — from relationships and heartbreak to activism and gun violence. The Eckerd campus is at 4200 54th Ave. S in St. Petersburg.

Elementary school lunches

Monday: Chicken and waffle, cheesy bread, fruit and yogurt plate, bologna and cheese sandwich, sweet green peas, marinara cup, fresh veggie dippers.

Tuesday: Stuffed-crust cheese pizza, corn dog, Farmers’ Salad or Apple-A-Day Salad, PBJ Jamwich Kit, country baked beans, romaine side salad.

Wednesday: Chicken drumstick with hush puppy, pasta with meatballs and sauce, yogurt and fruit parfait, ham and cheese croissant, steamed broccoli florets, sliced cucumbers.

Thursday: Beef Rib-B-Q sandwich, cheese stick and toasted ravioli boat, chef salad, chicken caesar wrap, marinara cup, sweet potato waffle fries, side salad.

Friday: Pizza, fish nuggets with roll, chicken caesar salad, turkey and cheese ciabatta sandwich, mashed potatoes, fresh veggie dippers.