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  1. Pinellas

Pinellas education news: free back-to-school screenings, oil-spill art at USF St. Pete

A collage of the paintings featured in an exhibit on display throughout the summer at USF St. Petersburg’s Nelson Poynter Memorial Library. [Courtesy of Gulf of Mexico Research Initiative/Maggie Dannreuther]
Published Jul. 10

District offers free physicals, other screenings for start of school

Needy students in grades K-12 can get free physicals, vision screenings, hearing screenings and immunizations for school and sports by appointment from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. Monday through Thursday now through Aug. 13. The services are offered at Boca Ciega High, 924 58th St. S in Gulfport, as well as at Northeast, Gibbs, St. Petersburg and Pinellas Park high schools. Registration is required. For more information, call (727) 824-6900, ext. 4.

Some choice programs still have open seats

Many of the Pinellas County school system's magnet, fundamental and career programs still have seats available for the 2019-20 school year. Geographic application area restrictions for several programs have been lifted, allowing students who live in other areas of the county to apply. After parents apply, schools with available seats will contact parents to invite students to attend. Parents can also contact program coordinators to find out the status of their late applications. For information about choice programs visit pcsb.org/choice or contact the Student Assignment office at (727) 588-6210.

At USF St. Pete, an artists' view of the oil-stained gulf

Nine years after the Deepwater Horizon oil spill, three artists and a photographer grapple with the disaster in a pair of exhibits on display throughout the summer at USF St. Petersburg's Nelson Poynter Memorial Library. Their works in After the Oil Spill: Life Below the Surface and Visions of Local Artists blend science and art to highlight research conducted on the largest marine oil disaster in history. Scientists are still collecting and rummaging through data to understand the consequences of the 210 million gallons of oil that gushed into the Gulf of Mexico's marine ecosystem. Among them are researchers at the Center for the Integrated Modeling and Analysis of the Gulf Ecosystems, a consortium hosted by the USF College of Marine Science. "We can publish studies as researchers, but to the general public, that doesn't always mean something," said Ben Prueitt, the center's marketing and communications officer. "Having visual representations of the research through this artwork makes it more relatable." Tampa Bay artists Tessa Wilson, Teresa Navajo and Curtis Whitwam provided original artwork for the exhibit based on major findings by the center's researchers. And photographer Dante Fenolio showcased his photographs of marine life captured during excursions of the gulf by the DEEPEND consortium.

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