Advertisement
Marlene Sokol - Hillsborough County schools reporter

Hillsborough County schools reporter

I’ve been a journalist since 1983 at newspapers all over Florida. After 15 years as an editor in the Tampa suburbs I was assigned to cover the Hillsborough public school system, the same one that gave my two children a great education. That last part didn't happen by itself. I was an active volunteer and believe schools should accommodate parents' busy schedules. I’m not a fan of the 3 p.m. parent conference or 10 a.m. PTA meeting! On weekends I play tennis and volunteer at a youth soccer program. Call or email me with your tips about the schools. I use Facebook for family and Twitter for self-promotion. But I prefer my conversations one-on-one.

  1. Harold Fritz, 75, was awarded the nation's highest and rarest honor, the Medal of Honor, for his actions in 1969. The Army lieutenant saved his platoon during an ambush in the Vietnam war. He spoke to students at Farnell Middle School in Tampa.
    Harold Fritz wanted to talk about teachers’ salaries and education. The kids wanted selfies with one of the 71 living recipients of the nation’s highest honor.
  2. A pauper's cemetery was established at the northeast corner of property now occupied by King High School in Tampa, location of the school gymnasium (tall building at top left) and the main parking lot.
    Conflicting versions emerge of where Ridgewood Cemetery was located. One thing is certain: It was ignored or forgotten.
  3. Oct. 21• Gradebook
    Hillsborough High School Senior Anthony Allen with principal Gary Brady, Principal U.S. Deputy Assistant Attorney General Katharine Sullivan, and schools superintendent Jeff Eakins.
    Hillsborough accepts its share of a federal grant.
  4. Hillsborough County Superintendent Jeff Eakins, right, and  school board chair Tammy Shamburger speaks on newly raised concerns of a undiscovered cemetery for indigent African Americans that may be within the vicinity of King High School in Tampa on Friday.
    Much is unclear at this point, say Hillsborough school officials, who promise to be open and transparent with the community,
  5. Hillsborough County School Board member Melissa Snively
    Board member Melissa Snively wanted to honor a community pioneer.
  6. Toby Johnson is the new principal of Martinez Middle School.
    The School Board also suspended former Martinez principal Brent McBrien.
  7. Census forms have to be printed soon. [AP photo by Michelle R. Smith]
    Citizenship controversy could be a psychological barrier.
  8. Shown in 2002, Carolyn Hill, then the principal of Kenly Elementary School in east Tampa, celebrated after 78 of her students improved their state scores and were treated to lunch at The Colonnade Restaurant. Hill, now deceased, might be honored Tuesday as the Hillsborough County School Board considers naming a school for her in the SouthShore area.
    School Board members will select a name on Tuesday
  9. At a bargaining session in late August, Hillsborough Schools Employee Relations Manager Mark West trades contract proposals with officers from the Hillsborough Classroom Teachers Association.
    The higher starting salary of $40,000 falls short of the $47,500 proposed by the governor.
  10. OCTAVIO JONES   |   Times  Areeya Reneau 16, left, helps second-grader Annika Newsome with reading passages read from “A Apple Grows Up” at Bailey Elementary School in Dover. IB students from Strawberry High School spend the first hour of every Tuesday morning tutoring struggling readers from Bailey Elementary.
    A newly released preliminary analysis suggests better reading materials, more equitably distributed, among other possible solutions.