1. News
  2. /
  3. Education

College scholarships, Discovery Nights and other Pinellas education news

News and notes about K-12 schools and colleges in Pinellas County.
A bird's-eye view of USF St. Petersburg, which this week announced a new member of the Campus Board. She is Melissa Seixas, a Duke Energy executive who earned her master's degree at USF.
A bird's-eye view of USF St. Petersburg, which this week announced a new member of the Campus Board. She is Melissa Seixas, a Duke Energy executive who earned her master's degree at USF.
Published Dec. 4, 2019

Deadline is Friday to apply for ‘Take Stock’ scholarships

Friday, Dec. 6, is the deadline to apply for scholarships offered by the Pinellas Education Foundation as part of its Take Stock in Children program. The scholarships are awarded to Pinellas County public school students in grades 6-9 with demonstrated financial need. In addition to scholarships, Take Stock in Children provides students with volunteer mentors starting in middle school, continuing through high school and into the college transition. To apply, parents visit the Take Stock in Children website.

More Discovery Nights this week

The Pinellas County school system will continue its schedule of open house events for choice programs, inviting families to explore their options for 2020-21. During the week of Dec. 9-13, eight choice programs at five schools will hold the events, called Discovery Nights. They start at 6 p.m., unless otherwise noted, and typically last one to two hours. After this week, one more week of Discovery Nights are scheduled before the winter break. For a full list and more information about school choice options, visit or call the school district’s Student Assignment office at (727) 588–6210. Also consult the Tampa Bay Times’ annual School Search guide Choice applications will be accepted online Jan. 8–17. This week’s Discovery Night schedule:


Academy of Engineering, East Lake High


Academy for Aquatic Management Systems & Environmental Technology, Lakewood High

Cambridge Pre-Advanced International Certificate of Education program, Pinellas Park Middle (5:30 p.m.)

Center for Advanced Technology, Lakewood High

Center for Communications, Journalism & Multimedia, John Hopkins High

Center for Communications, Journalism & Multimedia, Lakewood High

Center for International Studies in the Arts, John Hopkins Middle


Business Economics Technology Academy, Gibbs High

SPC ‘rally’ urges students to register for spring classes

St. Petersburg College this week is hosting “Rally to Register,” a series of events designed to encourage and help students to sign up for Spring Term classes. Advisors will be available to answer questions and help with course selection, registration, financial aid, student support services and more. Several SPC campuses are hosting rally events, including one offering pizza from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Friday at the St. Petersburg/Gibbs campus. SPC also is registering students for its Winter Session, which last from Dec. 16 to Jan. 10. Find more information, including course offerings, at

New Campus Board member at USF St. Petersburg

Melissa Seixas. [Courtesy of USF St. Petersburg]

The University of South Florida Board of Trustees this week appointed Melissa Seixas to the USF St. Petersburg Campus Board. Seixas, who will serve a four-year term, is Vice President of Government and Community Relations for Duke Energy Florida. She earned her master’s degree in history from USF and served as co-chair for the university’s 50th anniversary celebration in 2015-16. She also served as a member of the USF Consolidation Study Planning & Implementation Task Force last year. “We are delighted to welcome Melissa Seixas to our board,” said Stephanie Goforth, chair of the USF St. Petersburg Campus Board and a USF trustee. “Her deep ties to USF St. Petersburg as well as her demonstrated commitment to the Tampa Bay community make her a very valuable addition to our team.” Seixas also has served on the boards of other local organizations, including the Clearwater Marine Aquarium, Ruth Eckerd Hall, Pasco County Economic Development Council and the Pinellas County Urban League. She is the current board chair of the St. Petersburg Downtown Partnership.

Elementary school lunches

Monday: Cheeseburger or hamburger, cheese sticks and toasted ravioli boat, fruit and yogurt plate, deli meat and cheese sandwich, marinara cup, Tater Tots, fresh veggie dippers.

Tuesday: Beef or pork tacos, cheese pizza crunchers, chicken caesar salad, Jamwich Kit, refried beans, romaine side salad.

Wednesday: Mandarin Orange Chicken Bowl, macaroni and cheese, yogurt and fruit parfait, ham and cheese croissant, steamed broccoli, sliced cucumbers.

Thursday: Student Choice Menu — students choose the hot entrees and vegetable options. Additional options: Apple-a-Day Salad, chicken caesar wrap, mixed side salad.

Friday: Pizza variety, chicken and waffle, chef salad, turkey and cheese hoagie or sandwich, mixed vegetables, fresh veggie dippers.

Find more Pinellas County Schools menus at the district’s Food and Nutrition Department site.


  1. State Rep. Wyman Duggan, a Jacksonville Republican, presents his bill to create a "do not hire" list for any school employee who has been terminated, or resigned in lieu of termination, from employment as a result of sexual misconduct with a student. [The Florida Channel]
    The measure would apply to district, charter and private schools.
  2. Students grieve at Pine Trails Park, near the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla., one month to the day since 17 students and staff were shot dead there, March 14, 2018. [SAUL MARTINEZ  |  New York Times]
    A roundup of stories from around the state.
  3. Addison Davis, the superintendent of Clay County District Schools, was chosen Tuesday as the new Hillsborough County school superintendent. [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
    The School Board’s vote is unanimous for Davis, who calls himself “an accelerator.”
  4. Rep. Anthony Sabatini presents his bill to create school board term limits to the Florida House PreK-12 Innovation subcommittee on Jan. 21, 2020. [The Florida Channel]
    The idea would require a three-fifths vote in each chamber before it could appear on the ballot.
  5. Children participate in a sorting exercise during activities in a pre-K  class in Tampa.
    A roundup of stories from around the state.
  6. A photo of the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. sits on a pedestal at the Carter G. Woodson African American Museum on Sunday, Jan. 19, 2020  in St. Petersburg. Guests enjoyed music, spoken word, dance and musical performances and concluded with a candle light vigil and song.  [LUIS SANTANA   |   TIMES  |  Tampa Bay Times]
    A roundup of stories from around the state.
  7. From left, Don Haddad, Peter Licata and Addison Davis, all finalists for the job of Hillsborough County school superintendent, met Thursday with community members at Rampello K-8 School. The School Board will choose among the three on Tuesday. [MARLENE SOKOL  |  Times]
    Addison Davis, Don Haddad and Peter Licata outline their plans for the first 90 days.
  8. Check for the latest breaking news and updates. [Times]
    A man university police believe was target shooting near campus was not located, the university said.
  9. Former state senator John Legg has not ruled out a run for Pasco County schools superintendent. The district is the nation's largest to elect its chief executive.
    Short answer: Maybe.
  10. But the competition isn’t who many people expected it to be.