2018 CSCMP EDGE Conference Report

CSCMP Notebook
Here’s our roundup of events at the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals’ annual CSCMP EDGE 2018 conference held in October in Nashville, Tennessee.

With its focus on cutting-edge technologies, leadership development, and industry disruptors, the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals’ annual conference lived up to its name: CSCMP EDGE. Attendees at the event, held in Nashville, Tennessee, USA, in October, represented all facets of the supply chain. They came to gain a glimpse of the future of the discipline and celebrate the fact that, as CSCMP President and CEO Rick Blasgen said, “Supply chain professionals are perfectly positioned to contribute as change agents, making a difference in people’s lives and elevating the standard of living worldwide with what we do.”

While there, attendees enjoyed three days of educational seminars, the annual Academic Research Symposium, site visits, networking receptions, and the Supply Chain Exchange exposition, which showcased supply chain technologies, equipment, and services.

Not able to attend the conference this year or unable to sample everything that was offered? This roundup of the conference’s sessions will help you fill in some of the gaps. (More articles and videos from the conference can be found at www.supplychainquarterly.com.)

CSCMP session sampler

With 20 tracks, three keynote presentations, and over 100 educational sessions, CSCMP EDGE 2018 attendees had a wide variety of educational opportunities to choose from. Here are highlights of just a few that sparked interest at the conference.

Customer obsession. During the opening keynote, executives from Amazon, IBM, and Nike stressed how the customer must now be central to the supply chain. David Bozeman, vice president of transportation services for Amazon, talked about how the e-commerce giant’s culture of “customer obsession” has seeped into its supply chain. Joanne Wright, vice president of enterprise operations, and services for IBM, said her company has also transformed itself so that its key focus is on the customer experience. “Our enterprise clients want the same one-click experience that they receive from Amazon,” she said. Nike even sees its supply chain sustainability efforts as part of the company’s overall mission to serve athletes. “After all, it’s not possible to go for a run if you live in a super-polluted city with poor water quality,” said Mike Brewer, vice president of global sourcing and manufacturing for Nike.

No longer the last mile, now the “last yard.” For years supply chain has been obsessed with the last mile. Now it’s time to focus on the last yard, according to the 23rd annual “Third Party Logistics” study, which was released at the conference. The last yard refers to the status of a shipment once it is delivered to a customer or consumer, and how the shipment, once in the end user’s possession, is routed to the specific location. There are several last-yard logistics issues that may occur at delivery locations, such as delayed, damaged, and lost deliveries. Shippers can help matters by improving their internal processes for delivering items to point of use or by relying on 3PLs to take greater responsibility for shippers’ last-yard services.

High demand for tech skills. Back in the day, employees who couldn’t cut it in manufacturing went into supply chain, but that’s not true anymore.

“Supply chain’s cool now,” says Mike Orr, the senior vice president for operations and logistics at Genuine Parts Co., during a breakout session. “Now that supply chain managers are getting a chance to recruit the best young graduates, they must turn their attention to a new challenge: training the latest wave of supply chain pros to be techno-savvy the day they arrive on the job, with the ability to handle tasks and technologies such as optimization, network analysis, robotics, and the digital supply chain.

Keller Rinaudo, Zipline’s chief executive officer and founder, speaks during the EDGE Tuesday, October 2 keynote. Photo courtesy of Robb Cohen Photography & Video

Emerging technology saves lives. In a keynote session, Keller Rinaudo, Zipline’s chief executive officer and founder of drone delivery company Zipline, shared how the company uses aerial vehicles to deliver blood to remote areas in Rwanda. The company uses 40-pound autonomous aircraft to deliver blood to hospitals, bypassing the country’s poor road system. The aircraft are launched from a catapult-like structure on top of Zipline’s distribution center (DC). They then fly at 30 feet across a varied landscape and through all types of weather before dropping paper parachutes carrying boxed blood to hospitals across rural Rwanda. The aircraft then return to the DC, where they are caught by a combination of guide wires attached to poles and an inflatable landing pad. It now takes five minutes from when the hospital orders the blood to when it is received. Zipline has succeeded in reducing blood waste to zero, while increasing access by 170 percent, said Rinaudo.

How to improve supply chain risk. More and more companies are recognizing the need to have a robust supply chain risk management program. During a breakout session, Shawn Winn of Supply Chain Visionsrecommended that companies think both in terms of mitigation—steps to reduce a risk from happening—and preparedness—a plan for what to do once the risk has occurred. Other tips included:

  • Put risk compliance under the supply chain management function. This will help create a more collaborative relationship between risk compliance managers and supply chain managers.
  • Make risk management part of your company’s culture. Review your top four risks as a part of your regular supply chain planning meetings.
  • Design risk responses that fit with the overall culture of your organization. If your company is naturally aggressive, develop fast responses to risk. If your culture is less aggressive, have a risk response that takes more of a wait-and-see approach.

Capacity improvements lie with shippers. Truck capacity in the U.S. could increase by up to 5 percent just by shippers improving their internal processes to enable drivers to pick up, transport, and deliver freight more efficiently. Derek J. Leathers, president and CEO of truckload and logistics companyWerner Enterprises Inc., explained during a breakout session that the impact of the year-long rise in freight rates could be mitigated if shippers examined how their freight flows between themselves and their carriers. Truck rates have escalated since the fourth quarter of last year, as capacity has tightened while demand has picked up. Part of the blame falls on the shortage of qualified drivers. But Leathers said responsibility also lies with the lack of consistency in how, when, and where freight gets moved. Improving those processes will keep drivers more productive, and capacity more available, he added.

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Worcester Votes 2018

Voters in Worcester County on Tuesday, Nov. 6 have the opportunity to head to the polls for the midterm elections. Early voting in Massachusetts, which ends Friday, Nov. 2, allowed voters statewide to cast ballots ahead of time. For those who are waiting for Election Day, Worcester Magazine interviewed candidates in local races for District Attorney, 17th Worcester District State Rep., Registry of Deeds, 2nd Congressional, Governor’s Council and Clerk of Courts. All candidates in these races were invited to take part. (Note: Jen Caissie, incumbent Republican member of the Governor’s Council, and Paul Fullen, Republican candidate for 17th Worcester state representative, did not participate.) Find out about the candidates as part of our election coverage: Worcester Votes 2018.

DISTRICT ATTORNEY

DA Joe Early Jr. running for fourth term

For much of the year, the Alli Bibaud case dominated news headlines, and incumbent District Attorney Joe Early Jr. was smack in the middle of a controversy over the changing of her arrest report. He has denied calling for the report to be altered, even when an investigation by the state Attorney General’s Office appeared to suggest, if not directly, Early nudged former State Police Col. Rich McKeon in that direction.

“Col. McKeon did not say [I told him to alter the report],” Early said recently, adding earlier reports that he had said police reports are routinely changed were inaccurate. “We impound documents, redact documents. It’s done as a matter of course to preserve the defendant’s right to a fair trial. We have an obligation to do just that.”

Alli Bibaud is the daughter of Dudley District Court Judge Tim Bibaud. She was arrested by State Police last year for operating under the influence. Her arrest report included comments she allegedly made of a sexual nature during her arrest. Early was referred to the state Ethics Commission as a result of the investigation and is the current subject of a lawsuit related to the Bibaud matter.

The 61-year-old Early, married with five children, faces a challenge in the Nov. 6 election from independent candidate Blake Rubin, a local attorney who once worked for him.

Early, a Democrat, said he came into office 11 years ago on a platform of preventing crime. He said he has made good on that promise.

“Eleven years ago, I said I was going to focus on crime reduction,” he said. “Eleven years ago, I said I’ll do more in juvenile court. We’ve done that. Eleven years ago, I said I’ll take the best and brightest prosecutors and put them in juvenile court, working with community partners … we’ve done that. Our juvenile crime is down 57 percent since I’ve gotten in.”

Violent crime is down, he said, noting there were no homicides by firearm in Worcester last year.

Early ticked off accomplishments such as establishing the first-ever nationally-accredited child advocacy center in Worcester County, the creation of an opioid task force, diversion programs aimed at offering alternatives to jail for some offenders, an unresolved homicide unit and a gang unit working to get “impact players” off the street.

While statistics show a rise in opioid-related deaths in Worcester County, Early said his task force has made inroads through public forums and educational programs in schools. He cited a Memorial Wall bearing photos and names of victims of opioid addiction that was added to the DA’s website “to show this disease has no boundaries.” He also touted grants that have led to pilot programs and the acquisition of Narcan for first-responders to help revive overdose victims.

Early talked about the importance of diversion programs for victims of drug addiction.

“At the end of the day,” he said, “one of the biggest things here is the stigma associated with the opioid issue … We’re looking to get treatment that’s not jail cells. Respect and dignity, not shame, humiliation and embarrassment.”

Early said his office is tough on violent crime, despite his opponent’s claims to the contrary. He addressed the case of Jorge Zambrano, a career criminal who was placed on probation and ended up murdering Auburn Police Officer Ron Tarentino Jr. in 2016.

“One of my young ADAs put him on probation. He violated probation four or four times. He could have been sentenced to jail for any one of those,” Early said. “I think we’re very, very tough on violent offenders, repeat offenders. I’ve made that a focus.”

– Walter Bird Jr.

Blake Rubin says it’s time for Joe to go

It has been his chief slogan on the campaign trail and in commercials in his first-time bid for the district attorney’s office: “It’s time for Joe to go.” Blake Rubin has taken direct aim at incumbent District Attorney Joe Early Jr. on a number of issues, perhaps most notably the latter’s involvement in the altering of an arrest report for the daughter of a local judge. Just don’t call him a one-issue challenger.

“Far from it,” the 52-year-old Rubin, a Worcester defense attorney who resides in Holden with his wife and three children, said.

Rubin said he is running because of what he sees as the politicalization of the DA’s office. The case of Alli Bibaud is the most egregious example, according to Rubin. Bibaud, the daughter of Dudley District Court Judge Tim Bibaud, was arrested by State Police last year on charges of operating under the influence. Her arrest report was subsequently ordered changed, and Early’s role in that, most notably through conversations with then-State Police Col. Rich McKeon, has been widely scrutinized. While he was cleared of criminal wrongdoing, he was referred to the Ethics Commission.

The case, said Rubin, who once worked for Early, has led to the erosion of trust in the DA’s office.

“I’m specifically referring to what I would characterize as unethical conduct, specifically his role in ordering the change to a police report of a young lady arrested for drunk driving, and for the attorney general finding that [Early] unethically acted in ordering the change of her police report, which he has not done for anyone else in 12 years. It is an example of unethical conduct, of special treatment,” Rubin said.

Early has consistently denied calling for Bibaud’s arrest report to be altered, which was almost immediately impounded from public view.

Another key issue, Rubin said, is his belief that the DA should have real experience in the courtroom. He said Early has tried very few cases, and that if elected he would continue to prosecute cases himself.

Third, Rubin said the DA’s office should focus on serious, violent crimes, and that offenders of less serious crimes should not be put on bail or sentenced to jail. Early, he said, has not been tough enough on repeat, violent offenders.

Rubin cited the case of Jorge Zambrano, who shot and killed Auburn Police Officer Ron Tarentino Jr. in May 2016. Zambrano, who had a lengthy criminal record, had appeared in court in February that year, and reportedly could have been jailed for violating probation because of another incident. He was not held. Rubin has seized on earlier comments by Early that jail was not working for Zambrano, although Early has since said an assistant district attorney should have asked for Zambrano to be held in custody prior to Tarentino’s murder. Zambrano was shot and killed by police not long after the shooting.

“If somebody’s committing violent crimes and they’ve been in prison, you know where they’re going? Back to prison,” Rubin said. “I take extreme issue with [Early’s] theory of prosecution.”

Rubin also says Early was slow in addressing the ongoing opioid crisis.The DA started a county-wide task force a few years ago, but his challenger cites statistics showing, while the statewide rate of opioid-related deaths has declined by 4 percent, Worcester County’s has increased by just as much.

“I think [Early] was asleep at the wheel as this crisis was beginning,” Rubin said, stressing he would pursue continued treatment of drug users, while prosecuting drug dealers. “He didn’t form [the task force] until around 2015. That was way too late to get involved in the opioid epidemic. The damage had already begun.”

– Walter Bird Jr.

REGISTER OF DEEDS

Kate Campanale eyes move from Statehouse to Registry of Deeds

Republican state Rep. Kate Campanale, 32, of Leicester, wants to modernize the Registry of Deeds and make it easier to navigate for customers while at the same time protecting home buyers against growing security problems like deed fraud.

One key improvement she has in mind is expanding the usability of the registry’s e-recording system by making it more easily searchable and including a mapping component using GIS technology. The mapping component, she said, would allow people to search for information kept in the registry the same way they would look up an address on Google Maps. That technology could be shared with cities and towns, allowing them access to the system as a form of local aid. By example, the town of Sutton has strong GIS mapping technology already, but other towns don’t have it at all. The registry could work with the state’s information technology staff to expand and streamline the technology for everyone.

The registry, she said, is a government service that should be working for the people, but too often, she said, the information is not easy enough to find.

“In the Legislature, we live and die by constituent services,” the current 17th Worcester District state representative said. “If we’re not servicing you we’re not going to get reelected. Government is there to help you and not the other way around.”

Campanale said she’s proud of her accomplishments in her four years as a state rep. As a member of the House Ways and Means Committee, she has had an active role in overseeing the state budget and how it’s allocated. Before her foray into public life, she worked as a business development coordinator for a Framingham-based construction company, managing million-dollar contracts and budgets.

Combined, the two experiences have given her experience in both managing an office and providing customer service, two important components of the register job.

Her opponent, Democrat and real estate lawyer Katie Toomey, has branded herself in the campaign as the most experienced and qualified candidate for the job, but Campanale contests that claim.

“This isn’t a courtroom,” she said. “[Toomey] has been talking about her experience as an attorney, and I think that’s a red herring. It’s not about being a customer at the registry, it’s about being on the other side and actually managing the office.”

The Registry of Deeds is a large office, at about 100 employees. If elected, Campanale said she understands that taking over an operation like that requires some tact.

A good manager knows that you’re not going in there to make all these changes overnight,” she said. “You go in, see what’s working and what isn’t.”

Along with expanding the online services the registry offers, Campanale would work to expand educational services for first-time homebuyers and about security problems like reverse mortgages and deed fraud. Senior citizens, she said, are particularly vulnerable to those crimes, and she said she’d focus on outreach in those communities. Campanale said she also wants to expand services for active military service members and veterans. She said she ran into a veteran on the campaign trail who lost his home in a foreclosure while actively serving overseas and had no idea where to turn.

“I think a big part of that is education and getting into the community so people know what the registry is there to do,” she said.

At the core, Campanale said she wants the job to help the registry respond to the ever-changing technological landscape of the 21st century.

“The registry is a very big responsibility. It has an enormous wealth of information and history there,” she said. “I really want to make sure that comes alive.”

– Bill Shaner

Kathryn Toomey eyes accessibility in run for election

One of the first people Kathryn Toomey spoke with after pulling papers to run for register of deeds in Worcester County — after her husband, of course — was At-Large Councilor Kate Toomey .

“I said, ‘Head’s up. I’m going to try to collect signatures,’” the 44-year-old attorney said. “She laughed and said, ‘Everybody’s been asking me if I’m going to run for register of deeds. I know what the office is, but I’m not a lawyer and I’m not in real estate.’”

Indeed, Kathryn Toomey and Kate Toomey are not one and the same, but voters can be forgiven if they get confused. Kate Toomey is a longtime city councilor whose name is easily recognizable in Worcester. Kathryn, or Katie, Toomey is a real estate lawyer with her own practice, who dabbles in stained glass as a personal hobby with husband Stephen Chad. She kept her maiden name because she had been practicing law for eight years before she got married.

To help ease potential confusion, Katie Toomey uses different colors on her campaign signs than Kate Toomey.

“I joke with Kate Toomey, I keep telling people we’re not the same,” Katie Toomey said. “A lot of people think I’m her daughter, so that makes things interesting.”

Katie Toomey, a Democrat, is running against Republican Kate Campanale – yes, another Kate – who had served as 17th Worcester District state representative. No matter who wins, the Registry of Deeds, which keeps real estate records for 55 cities and towns, is guaranteed to be run by a woman. The current registrar, Tom Vigliotti, has served since 1972.

For Katie Toomey, who resides in Worcester’s Quinsigamond Village, running for registrar is a way to continue her family’s legacy of public service. Her father, Dan Toomey, was a judge. She also believes she is the most qualified to serve, and said she believe it is necessary for the registrar to be a lawyer.

“I looked at the other two people who had announced their candidacy, and their credentials weren’t there,” Katie Toomey said of Campanale and Kevin Kuros, who Campanale defeated in the Democratic Primary. “I don’t necessarily want to practice law in Worcester County if the Registry of Deeds is going to tank. It’s important. I’m there three to four days a week. I know the nuts and bolts. To me, it just seems logical.”

Katie Toomey said she would focus on technology and accessibility as registrar.

“My goal would be to hold office hours and/or to have terminals in the bigger places around the county, where people could visit,” she said. “Once a month, for example, I’ll go to Gardner and hold office hours.”

She said she would work to educate people on issues such as deed fraud, which can happen when someone steals your identity.

While she said the registry has kept up with changing technology, Katie Toomey said she would work with to make the registry’s website more user-friendly. She suggested a pop-up chat box on the site during office hours to help engage directly with users.

Preferring to talk about her own qualifications, Katie Toomey, who said she has not yet decided what to do with her law practice should she win election, but said register would be her full-time job, acknowledged she does not understand why her opponent is running.

“She doesn’t have my qualifications,” Katie Toomey said. “I feel a job of this magnitude, overseeing [an office that deals with] documents, deeds, real estate properties, relationships with assessors’ offices, the overall handling of everything, should be with somebody with more qualifications … but I also think you need some life and work experience with management of all those things. That’s why I feel I’m more qualified.”

– Walter Bird Jr.

GOVERNOR’S COUNCIL

Paul DePalo: ‘Judges matter’

There hasn’t been a moment in recent memory, at least since the 1990s, when the judicial appointment process has been under such intense scrutiny. The Brett Kavanaugh Supreme Court Senate hearings divided the nation and left trust in the process, and in the Senate, in peril.

But still, despite the focus, not much is known of the process by which state judges come into power, and while the Supreme Court takes on the biggest issues of the land, like abortion and corporate influence in elections, the State Supreme Judicial Court is no insignificant body. The court is largely the reason why the millionaire’s tax ballot question proposal, sometimes called the fair share amendment, died before it could come before voters. The judges on that court, as well as every other court in the state, are appointed by the Governor’s Council, an eight-person, elected body that vets judges appointed by the governor, as well as several other administrative positions.

It’s an important, but often-overlooked body in state politics. That’s why a big component of Paul DePalo’s campaign for a seal on the council has been voter education. Judges play a part in fixing systemic issues like the school to prison pipeline if the right judges are appointed, he said.

“Common sense and compassion, that’s what we need in our courts,” he said.

DePalo is running against incumbent Jen Caissie, a Southbridge lawyer and conservative Republican. DePalo, running as a Democrat, aims to bring a progressive view to the council, seeking out judges strong on criminal justice reform and human rights. DePalo is a former public school teacher, an education lawyer and worked to build alternative programs for at-risk teens.

DePalo is particularly focused on appointing judges with strong records on the issue of juvenile criminal justice reform.

“My big thing is that, having worked with kids caught up with the courts, I see what happens. It’s overwhelmingly disadvantaged kids, it’s kids who experienced very significant trauma in their childhood, it’s kids in our foster system who end up in our court system, and once you’re in there the consequences run up for kind of innocuous behavior,” he said. “It’s costing us a lot money, it’s destroying communities and families, and it’s setting up cycles of poverty.”

By contrast, DePalo feels his opponent supports a hardline view on crime.

“I’m a staunch believer in criminal justice reform, and the positions advocated by the incumbent ever since she was elected have been directly contrary to criminal justice reform – tough on crime, harsh sentencing, things like that,” he said.

He also criticized Caissie for practicing law in front of judges she voted to appoint, something DePalo said she routinely does. It raises a serious good governance issue, he said, and he vowed that, if elected, he would not practice law in front of judges he helped to appoint.

Caissie declined to be interviewed for our pre-election coverage.

DePalo points out that, amid a colossal shift on the U.S. Supreme Court toward a conservative majority, five of the seven Supreme Judicial Court members are Gov. Charlie Baker appointees, and if he wins another term, at least six will be, as one of the justices is scheduled for a mandatory retirement.

“Judges matter. Exclamation mark,” he said. “Judges matter on important issues. We see there’s big changes that just happened on the supreme court and that’s going tobe changes in U.S. jurisprudence, so on the state level we need to make sure we’re maintaining rights that the federal government may be turning its back on.”

– Bill Shaner

17TH WORCESTER DISTRICT STATE REPRESENTATIVE

LeBoeuf ‘focused on issues’ in state rep bid

David LeBoeuf, the Worcester man running as a staunch progressive in the 17th Worcester state rep. district, has focused his campaign on concrete issues and possible solutions.

Some of those problems, he said, are the education funding formula shortchanging Worcester and Leicester schools, the soaring price of health care costs and the struggle small businesses in the district have in succeeding. Through reform, the state Legislature can address all of that, he said.

Some of the policies he’s advocating for are universal pre-kindergarten services, legislation that protects consumers against rising insurance costs, and putting an end to the practice of large subsidies for large corporations, instead investing that money directly into communities.

All of those changes, LeBoeuf said, would directly benefit people in the district, comprised of Leicester and south Worcester. He’s chosen to focus on those tangible benefits, and not on partisan politics.

His opponent, Republican Paul Fullen of Leicester, has attacked LeBouef on multiple occasions, framing him as someone with dangerous, far-left ideas. The state Republican Committee has also entered the fray, sending out mailers of LeBoeuf holding a photoshopped sign reading “criminal illegal aliens welcome.”

Fullen declined to participate in Worcester Magazine’s election coverage.

“My campaign has been about listening to people,” he said. “We haven’t gone into the gutter, using tactics to divide people. We’ve focused on issues.”

There is one point, however, on which LeBoeuf is willing to criticize his opponent. By his count, Fullen has skipped five candidates forums and debates since participating in one before the state Primary Elections.

“I debated an empty chair last week,” he said of a forum held at the Worcester Youth Center which Fullen did not show up to.

LeBoeuf grew up in Worcester, went to school in Boston, and worked in Houston and Puerto Rico before returning to Worcester.

“I grew up here,” he said, “and I was told you’ll never amount to anything if you don’t leave the city, and I didn’t buy that.”

If elected, LeBoeuf’s first priority would be collaborating to address the school funding formula, which shortchanges Worcester to the tune of about $70 million annually and forces Leicester to pass budget overrides. The formula is damaging for both large urban school systems and rural ones.

“It’s not fair to us because we’re on a different side of the highway than people in Boston.”

Another top priority is a health care issue called the “Medicare cliff,” a quirk in the law that can drastically increase the cost of prescription drugs for people once they hit a certain age. Le-Boeuf would push for a small state investment that would allow access to more federal money to alleviate the problem.

On the small business development front, LeBoeuf wants to see a central online resource for small business owners to help them navigate government and stay in compliance. He would also work to secure more storefront improvement grants for the district, to help businesses make capital investments in property aesthetic they wouldn’t be able to otherwise.

“I would rather support a Barrows Hardware any day over a [General Electric],” he said.

Fullen and others have framed LeBoeuf’s candidacy as a tax-and-spend approach to government. But LeBoeuf feels that’s not accurate.

“It’s not about taxing and spending, it’s about allocating our priorities in a way that affects working people,” he said. “I would rather be investing my time in increasing small business technical services than investing in large tech companies.”

– Bill Shaner

CLERK OF COURTS

Dennis McManus vies for third term

The clerk of courts is not necessarily the race that’s going to bring people out on election day, and incumbent Dennis McManus is the first to admit it.

“It’s a down ballot race, is how I would describe it,” he said. “Not too many people know about this position, and that’s sort of how it’s always been.”

He likened the position to that of an offensive lineman in football.

“The only time you hear about an offensive lineman is when they get a penalty. That’s when you’re going to hear their name,” said McManus, a Democrat who faces a challenge this year from Republican Joanne Powell. “So if you mess up, you’re going to hear about them. I’m proud to say our office hasn’t messed up, so you haven’t been hearing about us.”

It’s an office, he said, where messing up can have huge ramifications, especially on the criminal side. Botched record keeping could affect the outcome of cases for serious crimes, like rape or murder. Partly, that’s why McManus is running for re-election. He sees himself as a manager who has guided the office with a steady hand.

But in the two six-year terms he has served in the office, McManus is proud of what he has accomplished. The office has expanded from running five courtrooms to seven, implemented a system to digitally track cases and assign them by priority and improved office diversity. The office was 10 percent people of color when he took over. Now, he said, it’s closer to 25 percent.

He’s proud of the people he has hired and he believes his office has a great rapport with the local attorneys who often frequent the front desk, he said. His office received an “A” rating from Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly.

In short, he said, things are going well. The sentiment is reflected in the large billboard ads he’s taken out along Route 146 and elsewhere reading “Keep Calm and Vote McManus.”

McManus, a Suffolk University Law School graduate, previously worked as an assistant district attorney in Worcester County and ran his own law office, practicing in superior court.

If elected, McManus is eyeing several improvements over the next term. The balance between automation of court records and interpersonal relationships with attorneys will be a tough one to strike. He wants to see more of the office processes automated and put online, but there are considerations of security with people’s private information that must be taken to account, so he would like to see any push toward automation done carefully and deliberately.

He also wants to keep hiring to build a strong, diverse office. His last three hires were strong women with 60-plus years of combined legal experience, and before that, two who weren’t attorneys but worked their way up through the office for 20 years.

“I think that’s an important mix to have in an office,” he said, “people who have worked their way up and people coming from the outside in.”

Given his experience, McManus believes he is the right person to continue setting the course for the office.

“I have a track record of running a great office and I want to continue doing that,” he said. “I did practice law before taking the position. I’m a former assistant district attorney, I had cases throughout Worcester County. I know what it’s like, I’ve been there.”

– Bill Shaner

Joanne Powell stresses technology

Joanne Powell wants to be part of history in this election.

There is a chance, the married mother of five from Charlton said, for women to hold four of the six county-wide offices after the Nov. 6 election. At least one of the positions, register of deeds, is guaranteed to have a woman in charge, with Democrat Katie Toomey and Republican Kate Campanale on the ballot. There is already a woman, Stephanie Fattman, serving as register of probate, and Jen Caissie, who has a challenger this year in Paul DePalo, is the incumbent seventh district representative on the Governor’s Council.

“I think it’s a really critical year,” said Powell, who is currently the head administrative assistant in Probate and Family Court. “There are a lot of strong women. We’ll be making history.”

Powell, a Republican, is challenging incumbent Democratic Clerk of Courts Dennis McManus, who was first elected in 2006 after serving on the Governor’s Council. She said she wants to make use of new technology in the clerk’s office.

“There’s not even a basic website,” she said, adding while Trial Court is the umbrella for all employees in Massachusetts courts, the individual courts have latitude in how they’re run.

“Boston has all these tools you can use to make things quicker, more efficient and up to date,” Powell said. “I will make sure those are all brought to Worcester to get cases processed quicker.”

She said she would emphasize tracking time, noting state law requires cases be completed within 18 months.

“Many cases [in Worcester] have gone on a good three, four, to five years,” Powell said. “I would address that. It’s up to the clerk to keep everything moving. That’s what you’ve got to do.”

Among the improvements in technology she said she would make involve scanners.

“Right now,” Powell said, “you can have a trial, and scan the evidence right then, and it’s up on a screen for trial. We have it in one courtroom, and we have four criminal trial courts going on at any one time. So that should be in every courtroom.”

Without mentioning specifics, she said it was “my understanding the evidence room could be updated” as well.

While in Probate and Family Court, Powell said she helped digitalize the payroll process, which she said was being done manually by an employee earning more than $100,000 a year. According to Powell, the change reduced the amount of time devoted to that task from 25-30 hours a week to “a couple hours a week.”

Powell, a former Dudley-Charlton School Committee member who has previously worked in the district attorney’s office, serves on the DA’s opioid task force and was a tax examiner for the state Department of Revenue, said Probate and Family Court was able to return more than $2 million of $3 million belonging to more than 400 families that had been in escrow accounts.

“We’re working on getting rid of that down to nothing,” Powell said.

A self-described “extremely hands-on manager and campaigner” whose advertisements can be seen on Worcester Regional Transit Authority buses, Powell said she believes she is the best choice for clerk of courts.

“I know the court system better than any other candidate,” she said. “It’s all under Trial Court, it’s the same system. There’ll be no learning curve, just different types of cases. Obviously, these are major cases I’ll be going to, so a little more in-depth, things like that. It’s managing people. It’s non-political. You just want folks to do the job. I will be going to work every day.”

– Walter Bird Jr.

2ND CONGRESSIONAL DISTRICT

Tracy Lovvorn says she will reach across aisle in Congress

It’s been a while since Congressman Jim McGovern had a challenger in the general election. You have to go back nearly a decade, to 2010, before the seat was redistricted from District 3 to District 2, to find his last challenger. Before that, his last opponent came in 2004. McGovern has held the congressional seat for a long time, over 20 years, with little opposition. The opposition he has faced, he has crushed. In his closest election as an incumbent, he took 56.6 percent of the vote.

Now, in comes Tracy Lovvorn, a Grafton Republican running on the need for term limits and the damage that entrenched political in-fighting in Washington D.C. has wrought on the rest of the country. At debates and public appearances, she has needled McGovern as being among the more hyper partisan Democrats in Congress, and blamed him for the dysfunction that has prevented meaningful action on health care or immigration issues.

“McGovern talks so much about issues that are very important, which stir a lot of passion talking about equality and ending hunger and health care, a lot about immigration. But look at his record, he’s never initiated anything on those topics,” said Lovvorn, a 46-year-old married mother of two boys.

The owner of a small business, Evolution Physical Therapy in Grafton, Lovvorn often points to the number of bills McGovern authored that have passed into law. Only eight, she said, and six are renaming federal buildings.

Instead, she said she will reach across the aisle and work with representatives willing to cast aside party lines to get things done.

Lately, her campaign has headed into conspiratorial territory. In a post to her official campaign Facebook page, Lovvorn called on supporters to report McGovern to the FBI for possible ties to the migrant caravan making its way through South and Central America. McGovern visited Honduras and El Salvador in August, she said, so McGovern either didn’t know about the caravan, which proved “irresponsible negligence,” or did know and didn’t stop it, which proves “something far worse.” She also said in the post the timing of the caravan ahead of the midterm elections was no a coincidence.

In an interview with Worcester Magazine after the post, Lovvorn doubled down on the charges that McGovern may have been involved and the caravan could be a tool of the Democratic party to damage the GOP ahead of the midterm elections.

“If they make it to the border and all of a sudden we have to have a military blockade against women and children and poor refugees, that is going to be a terrible narrative against our current administration,” she said. “If it’s a coincidence, it’s a coincidence, but I don’t see it.”

On the issue of immigration, Lovvorn wants to see reform that makes the legal process easier while tamping down on illegal immigration. She wants to end the visa lottery system, replacing it with a merit-based system, and end the policy sometimes called “chain migration,” which allows family members an easier path to joining loved ones in the United States.

But her top priority if elected would be childhood health and safety. The nation, she said, is faced with increasing suicide rates, anxiety, obesity and drug addictions among youth.

“They are shooting each other with guns, they are shooting themselves up with heroin,” she said.

Lovvorn is calling on Congress to take efficient and effective action to help children. Part of that is health care. She wants to see action taken to lower health care costs, but forcing insurance companies to compete for customers across state lines, expand the use of health savings accounts and expanding tax deductions for private health care plans.

– Bill Shaner

McGovern seeks 12th term in U.S. Congress

Jim McGovern has been accused of heading a crime family in Worcester. The 11-term US congressman wears an incredulous look when it is brought up.

“I don’t even know what that means,” the Worcester Democrat said of the “McGovern Crime Family” label slapped on him by some critics. “People call you names because they think you’re effective. I’ve been in this business long enough to know I’m not universally loved. There are some people who don’t like my politics, and they’re frustrated I got elected and I continue to get elected. It is what it is. It’s part of this business. I’ve been called worse.”

Like his critics, McGovern, a vocal and unabashed opponent of President Donald Trump who leans decidedly left in his politics, is also frustrated, if for different reasons. The 58-year-old married father of two sees a country divided and, if he doesn’t hold him solely accountable, clearly points a finger in Trump’s direction.

“I’ve never in my life seen a president as polarizing as Donald Trump,” McGovern said. “He’s appealing to the worst instincts in people, which I find to be terribly troubling.”

McGovern who took office in 1997, faces a challenge in the Nov. 6 election from Republican Tracy Lovvorn. Having run unopposed in the last three elections, McGovern said he welcomes the challenge.

“I remember last time somebody criticized me on the radio for not having a challenger,” he said. “I said, ‘It’s really not my job to go out and find an opponent.’ But people deserve choices. I commend my opponent in this race for running. I think if she feels strongly, she ought to run.”

McGovern has gained strong support among liberals for his advocacy of causes such as income and racial equality, food security and the environment. Ranked as one of the most liberal members of Congress, he has weathered criticism from the right who, among other things, disagree with his stances on immigration, healthcare and other social issues.

“I feel very strongly about my beliefs,” McGovern said. “I believe everybody should have good-quality healthcare, that everybody who wants to go to college should have the means to go. I believe we ought to protect our environment. I feel we ought to end hunger in America. I believe in dynamic and efficient government, not wasteful government, but I think government can help lift people up. I don’t shy away from that.”

With a chance for Democrats to win back the House in the election, McGovern said decency needs to be returned to government.

“I said to our leadership before we left for recess, ‘If we’re lucky enough to win the House back, chances are there will still be a Republican Senate and Trump will be in the White House. We’ll be limited in what we can do. But one thing we can do is we can run this place like professionals and restore some integrity to the institution of Congress,’” McGovern said.

Locally, while some have accused US Sen. Liz Warren of ignoring Massachusetts and focusing on a likely 2020 presidential campaign, McGovern’s fingerprints are all over Worcester. From Union Station, to the growth of Gateway Park, the revitalization of the Gardner, Kilby and Hammond streets area of Main South, the resurgence of the Worcester Regional Airport and more, McGovern has been credited for pumping federal money into a city now gaining statewide and national recognition.

“I am proud of the progress we’ve made here,” he said. “We’re not finished. We’ve got a lot more to do, but when you walk around this city today there’s lots of excitement. I feel very strongly that success breeds success, and that attitude, and whether people believe in what’s possible, I think that’s an important factor as well.”

– Walter Bird Jr.

School Search: Pasco’s choice options include STEM, IB, Cambridge, career academies

The Pasco County school system offers an array of choice programs for families who want to venture beyond their zoned school, with options that include STEM magnet schools, the academically rigorous International Baccalaureate and Cambridge programs, and a variety of career academies.

Online applications for the 2019-20 academic year will be accepted in December for middle and high school programs, and in January for elementary school programs.

For more information on these programs, visit the school district’s school choice page at pasco.k12.fl.us/ed_choice. And check there in December for information on how to complete an online application.

Here is a look at the programs:

AP Capstone

This diploma program from the College Board is based on two year-long Advanced Placement courses: AP Seminar and AP Research. Rather than teaching subject-specific content, these courses develop students’ skills in research, analysis, evidence-based arguments, collaboration, writing, and presenting. Students who complete the two-year program can earn one of two different AP Capstone awards, which are valued by colleges across the United States and around the world. The program can help students stand out on college applications, become more confident and independent thinkers and receive college credit.

AP Capstone is available at the following Pasco County high schools: Sunlake, Mitchell, Wiregrass Ranch, River Ridge and Wesley Chapel.

* * *

AVID (Advancement Via Individual Determination)

This program is dedicated to closing the achievement gap by preparing students for college and other postsecondary opportunities. It teaches skills and behaviors for academic success, provides intensive support with tutorials and strong student/teacher relationships, creates a positive peer group for students, and develops a sense of hope for personal achievement gained through hard work and determination. AVID transforms students into hard working, college-ready candidates who confront challenges head-on. In secondary schools, the AVID elective targets students with the desire to go to college and the willingness to work hard.

AVID is available at four elementary schools, five middle schools and five high schools. For a list and more information, visit pasco.k12.fl.us/ed_choice.

* * *

Cambridge program

For more than 170 years, the University of Cambridge in England has been setting worldwide curriculum standards through their examinations. The Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE) is an innovative and accelerated method of academic study offered solely through the University of Cambridge International Examinations (CIE). The program offers an advanced, rigorous, hands-on curriculum that gives students the opportunity to graduate with college credit. The program, available at five schools, seeks students with A and B averages as well as good attendance and behavior.

• San Antonio Elementary

32416 Darby Road, Dade City

saes.pasco.k12.fl.us

(352) 524-5300

Applicants will be contacted by the school with more information regarding the writing sample that must be completed. All kindergarten students participate in the Cambridge program, but incoming kindergarten students who live outside of the school’s attendance boundary must apply using the Pasco Pathways Application.

• Pasco Middle

13925 14th St., Dade City

pms.pasco.k12.fl.us

(352)-524-8400

• Paul R. Smith Middle

1410 Sweetbriar Drive, Holiday

prsms.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 246-3200

• Anclote High

1540 Sweetbriar Dr., Holiday

ahs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 246-3000

• Pasco High

36850 State Road 52, Dade City

phs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(352) 524-5500

* * *

Career programs

These schools within schools, part of Pasco’s Career Pathways program, offer students a chance to gain knowledge and skills that could improve their employability after graduation. Students who want to attend a career academy that is not at their zoned school must contact that program and apply there. After that, they must file a school choice application in December. Some academies may be at capacity and not able to take on more students. For academies marked with an asterisk (*), contact the school for program details.

• Anclote High

1540 Sweetbriar Dr., Holiday

ahs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 246-3000

Academy of Health: Prepares students for initial employment or post-secondary training in the health care field. Students receive industry certifications and participate in clinical training opportunities. Course topics include anatomy, physiology, health science foundations and nursing assistant.

• Cypress Creek Middle High

8701 Old Pasco Road, Wesley Chapel

ccmhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 346-4400

Academy of Business Management*

Academy of Criminal Justice*

Academy of Engineering*

• Fivay High

12115 Chicago Ave., Hudson

fhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 246-4000

Academy of Health and Emergency Services: Prepares students for initial employment or post-secondary training in the health occupations field. Participating students receive industry certifications, participate in clinical training opportunities.

Academy of Criminal Justice: Teaches skills needed to prepare for further education and careers in the law, public safety and security.

• Gulf High

5355 School Road, New Port Richey

ghs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 774-3300

Academy of Health: Prepares students for initial employment or post-secondary training in the health occupations field. Students receive industry certifications and participate in clinical training opportunities.

Academy of Gaming, Simulation and Design: Working with the latest technologies, students will encounter the fast-paced world of computer games, 3D and animation, designing and developing game concepts and assets. A production-focused environment brings theory and practice together, with students able to use their ideas to develop working games and prototypes.

• Hudson High

14410 Cobra Way, Hudson

hhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 774-4200

Academy of Aeronautics-Aviation: The academy’s mission is to create a strong, rigorous, seamless aerospace and aviation learning continuum aligned to higher education and the workforce.

Academy of Veterinary Assisting: The academy’s mission is to educate students with the knowledge and skills necessary for a career in the animal industry. Students may be eligible for Gold Seal/Bright Futures scholarships.

• Land O’ Lakes High

20325 Gator Lane, Land O’ Lakes

lolhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 794-9400

Academy of Culinary Arts: Students develop career skills in basic food preparation, personal productivity, safety and sanitary work procedures, commercial tools and equipment, nutrition and work ethic.

Academy of Agritechnology: Prepares students for further education and careers in agriculture, food and natural resources.

• J.W. Mitchell High

2323 Little Road, New Port Richey

jwmhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 774-9200

Academy of Business Management: Program of study includes business administration and technology courses. Emphasis is placed on developing leadership qualities, management strategies, critical thinking skills and effective communication skills.

Academy for the Medical Arts: Prepares students for employment or post-secondary training in the health care field. Students receive industry certifications and participate in clinical training opportunities.

• Pasco High

36850 State Road 52, Dade City

phs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(352) 524-5500

Academy of Health: Prepares students for initial employment or post-secondary training in the health care field. Students receive industry certifications and participate in clinical training opportunities.

Academy of Building Construction Technology: Builds a collaborative environment for students through partnerships with employers, the community and higher education. Students study technical design and electricity.

• River Ridge High

11646 Town Center Road, New Port Richey

rrhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 774-7200

Academy of New Media and Communication: Offers an advanced look at how social networking, mobile communications, interactive media and multimedia reporting can be most effectively used in news organizations. Students also learn the logistics of reporting for electronic media and receive extensive experience in the technical side of video production, photography and digital publishing.

Academy of Engineering: Introduces students to the scope, rigor and field of engineering. They explore engineering technology systems and learn how engineers use math, science and technology to benefit people. Students who complete the program are eligible for Gold Seal/Bright Futures scholarships.

Academy of Teaching*

Academy of Business Management and Analysis*

Fine Arts and Musical Entertainment Academy*

• River Ridge Middle

11646 Town Center Road, New Port Richey

rrms.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 774-7000

Academy of Engineering: Provides an advanced rigorous and relevant curriculum in science, technology, engineering and math.

• Sunlake High

3023 Sunlake Blvd., Land O’Lakes

slhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 346-1000

Academy of Aeronautics and Aviation: Provides a rigorous, aerospace and aviation learning continuum aligned to higher education and the workforce.

Academy of Finance: Introduces students to the broad career opportunities in the financial services industry. Students receive a well-rounded education in general business and finance principles, employability skills, and on-the-job training.

Academy of Robotics: The study of robotics captures all four legs of STEM while a competitive environment increases motivation and desire to succeed. Students study areas including foundations of robotics, robotics design essentials and robotics systems.

Academy of Health: Prepares students for initial employment or post-secondary training in the health care field. Students receive industry certifications and participate in clinical training opportunities.

• Wesley Chapel High

30651 Wells Road, Wesley Chapel

wchs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 794-8700

Academy of Digital Video Production: Students learn practical skills in recording and editing video.

Academy of Automotive Technology: Prepares students for further education and careers in automotive technology and consists of four required areas of study for program certification: suspension and steering, brakes, electrical/electronic systems, and engine performance. Students who complete the program are eligible for Gold Seal/Bright Futures scholarships.

• Wiregrass Ranch High

2909 Mansfield Blvd., Wesley Chapel

wrhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 346-6000

Academy of Medical Professions: Prepares students for initial employment or post-secondary training in the health care field. Students receive industry certifications and participate in clinical training opportunities.

• Zephyrhills High

6335 12th St., Zephyrhills

zhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 794-6100

Academy of Aeronautics/Aviation: Provides a rigorous, seamless aerospace and aviation learning continuum aligned to higher education and the workforce.

Academy of Criminal Justice*

Academy of Health: Prepares students for initial employment or post-secondary training in the health care field. Students receive industry certifications and participate in clinical training opportunities.

Academy of Building Construction Technology*

* * *

International Baccalaureate programs

The IB program focuses on developing students’ strengths academically and as caring global citizens. Students are encouraged to think independently and drive their own learning. Many who graduate with IB diplomas go onto do well in college. The program is available in different levels at four schools.

• Pine View Elementary

5333 Parkway Blvd., Land O’Lakes

Pves.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 794-0600.

The Primary Years Programme offered through the IB Organization provides an engaging and challenging curriculum for students in kindergarten through grade 5, including Spanish instruction. All students who live in the attendance boundary for Pine View Elementary participate in the program.

• Pine View Middle School

5334 Parkway Blvd., Land O’Lakes

Pvms.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 794-4800

All students who live in the attendance boundary for Pine View Middle participate in the IB Middle Years Programme. Students from outside of the boundary who want to attend must complete the Pasco Pathways Application.

• Gulf High

5355 School Road, New Port Richey

ghs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 774-3300

• Land O’ Lakes High

20325 Gator Lane, Land O’ Lakes

lolhs.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 794-9400

The IB program at Gulf and Land O’ Lakes high schools offers high-achieving, high-performing students an opportunity to pursue a rigorous program of study that can earn them college credit and result in a full Florida Bright Futures scholarship. Separately, the IB career-related program at Gulf High can lead to apprenticeships or employment after high school. Students must apply using the Pasco Pathways Application. Requirements include Algebra 1 completion in middle school, a 3.0 GPA, proficiency on writing and math samples, above-average performance in core classes and state tests, and a clear school behavior and citizenship history. Applicants will be reviewed holistically, so an applicant who doesn’t meet all criteria should not be discouraged from applying.

* * *

Infinity Academy

Teachers and students work together to create an educational plan tailored to each student’s needs and areas of interest. Students can work individually, in pairs or in larger groups, or with teachers. Each student is a part of a house with a leadership team and mentors, and each will receive his or her own laptop computer to take home. Students have the freedom to work ahead and explore topics of interest. But they will also follow a pacing guide and meet individually with teachers weekly to discuss progress. The ideal Infinity Academy candidate is motivated, independent and ready to learn.

• R. B. Stewart Middle School

38505 Tenth Ave., Zephyrhills

rbsms.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 794-6500

• Paul R. Smith Middle School

1410 Sweetbriar Drive, Holiday

prsms.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 246-3200

* * *

Pasco eSchool

Available to all students in grades K-12. For students in grades K-5, Pasco eSchool offers free enrollment in a full-year program that features innovative curricula. Students and learning guides receive instruction from teachers who use the latest technology. Students from sixth through 12th grades may enroll part- or full-time. Any public school, private school, charter school, or home education student located in Pasco County is eligible to apply.

15144 Shady Hills Road, Spring Hill

eschool.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 346.1900

* * *

STEM programs (Science, technology, engineering and mathematics)

The program at Bayonet Point and Centennial middle schools is designed for inquisitive students who enjoy exploring and learning. It integrates an advanced STEM curriculum to ensure that students develop a strong, diverse foundation. Teachers provide a variety of learning activities, including whole­ group and small group lessons, and activities in which students will engage in individually, in pairs, and in groups. Some activities will involve computers, others will not. Teachers act as facilitators of learning, tracking each student’s progress to ensure they receive what they need. All Bayonet Point and Centennial students who live in the schools’ attendance boundaries participate in the magnet theme. Those who live outside the boundaries must apply using the Pasco Pathways Application process.

• Bayonet Point Middle

11125 Little Road, New Port Richey

bpms.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 774-7400

• Centennial Middle

38505 Centennial Road, Dade City

cenms.pasco.k12.fl.us

(352) 524-9700

* * *

STEAM programs (Science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics)

This program at Sanders Memorial Elementary adds an “A” for the arts to the STEM magnet, ensuring that students develop the creativity and critical thinking skills necessary to flourish in all fields. In addition to the arts, the program integrates STEM subjects into the entire curriculum to ensure a strong, diverse foundation for students. Students must apply through the Pasco Pathways application process.

• Sanders Memorial Elementary

5126 School Road, Land O’Lakes

smes.pasco.k12.fl.us

(813) 794-1500

* * *

Technical education

Wendell Krinn Technical High, along with Marchman Technical College, provides students in West Pasco access to 14 technical education programs, including auto collision/repair, biomedical sciences, commercial art, computer systems, cosmetology, culinary arts, cybersecurity, digital cinema, electricity, HVAC, marine service, robotics and welding. In addition, Wendell Krinn students have access to more dual enrollment courses on campus through Pasco-Hernando State College than any other high school in Pasco County. Students must meet eligibility criteria and must apply through the Pasco Pathways application process.

• Wendell Krinn Technical High School

7650 Orchid Lake Road, New Port Richey

wkths.pasco.k12.fl.us

(727) 774-3900

School Search 2018: Pinellas options include magnets, academies, fundamentals

The Pinellas County school system offers nearly 80 special programs for families who want to venture beyond their zoned school, with options that include magnets, fundamental schools and high school career academies. The complete list for the 2019-20 school year is below.

Programs marked with an asterisk have entrance criteria; call the schools for details. Discovery Nights, which offer a chance for students and parents to see the school and meet the staff, begin at 6 p.m. and typically last one to two hours.

For more information, including details on application areas, school bus service and entrance criteria, visit pcsb.org/choice.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

The arts

Center for the Arts and International Studies

Students at Perkins explore other cultures through vocal and instrumental music, theater, art and dance. All students have Spanish courses and the facilities include three visual arts classrooms, four music rooms, a 250-seat theater and a dance studio. Students given priority when applying to the arts magnet at John Hopkins Middle. (Applications from South of Ulmerton Road only.)

• Perkins Elementary, 2205 18th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/perkins-es; (727) 893-2659

Discovery Night: Dec. 11

Center for Cultural Arts

Students participate in a creative, integrated art-themed K-5 program that connects academic curriculum with the visual and performing arts. A vibrant local arts culture provides opportunities for a variety of field trips. Students receive two art classes, two music classes, and a creative makerspace experience each week. Students in the cultural arts program also have access to the gifted teaching strategies used in a separate gifted magnet at Midtown Academy. In addition, they will be given priority when applying to the Center for the Arts, Journalism and Multimedia at John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted from South County only.)

• Midtown Academy, 1701 10th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/midtown; (727) 893-1358

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Conservatory for the Arts (New)

Students receive 60 minutes of daily arts instruction. Music, theater, storytelling, dance, movement and the visual arts deepen understanding, critical thinking and problem solving. The arts also allow students to make interdisciplinary curriculum connections and demonstrate knowledge. Community partnerships include Ruth Eckerd Hall, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Dunedin Fine Arts Center, Artz4Life and Clearwater Arts Alliance. Students given priority when applying to Tarpon Springs Middle.

• Sandy Lane Elementary, 1360 Sandy Lane, Clearwater; pcsb.org/sandylane-es; (727) 469-5974

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Fundamental schools

Fundamental schools provide a structured environment and a “back-to-basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. There is daily homework and a dress code that exceeds that of the school district. Parents are required to attend conferences, monthly meetings and certain school activities as determined by the principal. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Bay Vista Fundamental Elementary, 5900 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/bayvista-es; (727) 893-2335

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

• Curtis Fundamental Elementary, 531 Beltrees St., Dunedin; pcsb.org/curtis-es; (727) 738-6483

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

• Lakeview Fundamental Elementary, 2229 25th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakeview-es; (727) 893-2139

Discovery Night: Nov. 7

• Madeira Beach Fundamental Elementary (K-5), 591 Tom Stuart Causeway, Madeira Beach; pcsb.org/mb-ms; (727) 547-7838

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

• Pasadena Fundamental Elementary, 95 72nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/pasadena-es

(727) 893-2646

Discovery Night: Dec. 13

• Tarpon Springs Fundamental Elementary, 400 E Harrison St., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarponfund-es; (727) 943-5508

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

* * *

Gifted programs

The Centers for Gifted Studies offer full-time gifted services to eligible students in grades 1-5. Advanced, integrated, accelerated gifted curriculum will be used daily with the Florida Gifted Frameworks as the foundation to provide daily gifted services. Special focus is placed on critical and creative thinking as well as social-emotional development. To be eligible, parents need to provide a copy of the qualifying IQ scores and a copy of the psychological report or a copy of their active Educational Plan to the school by Jan. 25. Students who meet the eligibility criteria after the deadline may submit a late application.

• Ridgecrest Elementary,* 1901 119th St. N, Largo; pcsb.org/ridgecrest-es; (727) 588-3580

Ridgecrest has been deemed a School of Excellence by Magnet Schools of America. It’s teachers have presented at state, national and international gifted conferences. Ridgecrest students are given priority when applying to Morgan Fitzgerald Middle. (Applications from the mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

• Midtown Academy,* 1701 10th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/midtown; (727) 893-1358

Students are a part of the cultural arts theme at Midtown Academy and experience two art, two music, and creative makerspace classes each week. Student are given priority when applying to Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle. (Applications from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

• North County Center for Gifted Studies* (New), 415 15th St., Palm Harbor; (727) 588-6088

Students at the North County Center for Gifted Studies will experience the schoolwide enrichment model where they will work weekly in interest-based groups with their peers to create original products. They are given priority when applying to Dunedin Highland Middle. (Applications from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 18

* * *

International studies

International Baccalaureate Primary Years program

This program is offered at James B. Sanderlin PK-8 and Mildred Helms IB World Schools. Its transdisciplinary approach focuses on stimulating curiosity and inquiry as students use a conceptual lens to build deeper understanding of real-world issues. Internationally-minded citizens are developed through the 10 attributes of the IB learner profile. Spanish, art, and PE further develop imagination, communication, creativity and original thinking as students become lifelong learners.

• James Sanderlin PK-8 IB World School, 2350 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/sanderlinib; (727) 552-1700

Students are given priority when applying to the Sanderlin Middle Years program and John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

• Mildred Helms Elementary IB World School

561 S Clearwater-Largo Road, Largo; pcsb.org/mildred-es; (727) 588-3569

Students are given priority when applying to Largo Middle. (Applications accepted from mid- and north county areas.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

* * *

Journalism

Center for Journalism and Multimedia Studies

This program equips students with life skills that will serve them no matter what they pursue in the future. Students learn about the world by becoming confident writers, trained photographers, effective communicators and informed, involved citizens. Young journalists explore all aspects of the evolving media, including digital technology, and build confidence through seeing their work in print (four newspapers a year), on a daily TV show and on other platforms. Students are given priority when applying to John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Melrose Elementary, 1752 13th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/melrose-es; (727) 893-2175

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

* * *

Montessori

Montessori Academy

Children explore through hands-on learning materials and understanding beyond memorization. Grace and courtesy lessons teach children to treat each other with respect. The program seeks to build character and a sense of responsibility to the school. Students are given priority when applying to John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted from the South County area only.)

• Gulfport Elementary, 2014 52nd St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/gulfport-es; (727) 893-2643

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Center for Advancement of the Sciences and Technology

This program seeks to increase student achievement and interest in science, technology and math. The program emphasizes hands-on activities in the school’s computer, science and Spanish labs, as well as in the on-site pond and gardens. Students are given priority when applying to Bay Point Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Bay Point Elementary, 5800 22nd St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/baypoint-es; (727) 552-1449

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

Centers for Innovation and Digital Learning

The Centers for Innovation and Digital Learning program is offered at Gulf Beaches and Kings Highway elementary schools. The programs deliver a technology-rich environment with personalized learning and project-based approaches using SMART Boards, iPads, Mac laptops and Dell tablets. Students are engaged in interactive online activities and face-to-face lessons that encourage critical thinking. Families play an important role in their children’s learning and the use of technology in the school and at home. Students at both schools are given priority when applying to Tyrone Middle. (For information on transportation and who can apply, see the District Application Programs Guide at pcsb.org/choice.)

• Gulf Beaches Elementary, 8600 Boca Ciega Drive, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/beaches-es; (727) 893-2630

Discovery Night: Dec. 20

• Kings Highway Elementary, 1715 Kings Highway, Clearwater; pcsb.org/kings-es; (727) 223-8949

Discovery Night: Nov. 6

Center for Mathematics and Engineering

This award-winning program offers a unique curriculum created by teachers. Students are provided opportunities to work in diverse teams completing design challenges and hands-on activities, which integrate math, science, reading, writing and social studies. Students conduct research, design solutions, construct models, test effectiveness, analyze results and communicate solutions. The STEAM focus is infused through a strong music and art program as well as a partnership with the Dali Museum. Students are given priority when applying to Azalea and Bay Point middle schools. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. Elementary, 1200 37th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/jamerson-es.; (727) 552-1703

Discovery Night: Nov. 13

MIDDLE SCHOOL

The arts and journalism

Center for International Studies in the Arts and Multimedia Journalism*

Students can focus on one of six areas – visual art, dance, instrumental music, theater, vocal music and multimedia journalism – or, if they live in the south county attendance area, they may apply to the school’s International Baccalaureate Middle Years program. Students participate in advanced or accelerated math, science, social studies or language arts courses, in addition to required elective courses which may include technology, world language, or the arts. Those in the arts receive instruction in their focus areas, while journalism students receive hands-on experience in producing news by exploring all aspects of evolving media, including digital technology. Students who attend the Center for the Arts and International Studies at Perkins Elementary or the Center for Journalism and Multimedia Studies at Melrose Elementary will be given priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• John Hopkins Middle, 701 16th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/hopkins-ms; (727) 893-2400

Discovery Night: Oct. 30

Leadership Conservatory for the Arts*

This program encourages students to develop character and leadership skills in a high-level performing and visual arts program. The rigorous core academics are from the Pre-Advanced International Certificate of Education program developed by the University of Cambridge. Students from Sandy Lane Elementary are given priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

• Tarpon Springs Middle, 501 N Florida Ave., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-ms; (727) 943-5511

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Fundamental schools

Fundamental programs provide a structured environment and a “back-to-basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. There is daily homework and a dress code that exceeds that of the school district. Parents are required to attend conferences, monthly meetings and certain school activities as determined by the principal. Unlike other fundamental middle schools, Thurgood Marshall offers arterial bus service. Check with the school for more details. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Clearwater Fundamental Middle, 1660 Palmetto St., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwaterfund-ms; (727) 298-1609

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

• Madeira Beach Fundamental Middle, 591 Tom Stuart Causeway, Madeira Beach; pcsb.org/mb-ms; (727) 547-7697

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

• Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle, 3901 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/marshall-ms; (727) 552-1737

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

Gifted programs

Middle School Centers for Gifted Studies*

All three middle school gifted centers are designed to deliver a challenging and detailed curriculum that promotes creativity, critical and complex thinking. Applicants must meet all state requirements for gifted placement and provide a copy of their individual educational plan upon request. Documentation of eligibility must be submitted to the schools before the application deadline. Students who meet eligibility criteria after the deadline may submit a late application.

• Dunedin Highland Middle, 70 Patricia Ave., Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-ms; (727) 469-4112

Students from North County elementary schools will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

• Morgan Fitzgerald Middle, 6410 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/fitzgerald-ms; (727) 547-4526

Students from Ridgecrest Elementary will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the mid-county application area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

• Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle, 3901 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/marshall-ms; (727) 552-1737

Students from Midtown Academy will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

International studies

Cambridge Pre-Advanced International Certificate of Education*

This rigorous program is designed for academically talented students in grades 6-8. The curriculum is written and administered by the University of Cambridge in England. (Applications accepted from the midcounty area only.)

• Pinellas Park Middle, 6940 70th Ave. N, Pinellas Park; pcsb.org/pp-ms; (727) 545-6400

(Applications from mid-county area only)

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

• Tarpon Springs Middle, 501 N Florida Ave., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-ms; (727) 943-5511

(Applications from North County area only)

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program*

Provides an intellectually challenging environment that encourages critical thinking. Through the 10 attributes of the IB learner profile, the program reflects real life by encouraging learning beyond traditional subjects with meaningful, in-depth inquiries into global issues. Students in the school’s Primary Years program get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• James B. Sanderlin PK-8 IB World School, 2350 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/sanderlinib; (727) 552-1700

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program Candidate Schools*

John Hopkins and Largo middle schools are candidates for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) and are pursuing authorization as an IB World School. The program provides an intellectually challenging environment in which students are encouraged to become critical and reflective thinkers in preparation for success in college, careers and citizenship. Its interdisciplinary approach builds connections between subjects, and its global focus fosters the development of communication skills, intercultural understanding and leadership essentials.

• John Hopkins Middle, 701 16th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/hopkins-ms; (727) 893-2400

(Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Oct. 30

• Largo Middle, 155 Eighth Ave. SE, Largo; pcsb.org/largo-ms; (727) 588-4600

(Applications accepted from north and mid-county areas only)

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Academy of Engineering

This program, offered at Azalea and East Lake middle schools, provides students with a curriculum from Project Lead the Way, which is designed to challenge and engage students’ natural curiosity through hands-on experiences and exciting units of study. Students use design process to creatively and critically explore real-world issues and solve problems.

• Azalea Middle, 7855 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/azalea-ms; (727) 893-2606

Students from Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. Elementary get priority when applying to the Azalea program. (Applications accepted from the south and mid-county areas only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

• East Lake Middle School Academy of Engineering, 1200 Silver Eagle Drive, East Lake; pcsb.org/eastlake-ms; (727) 940-7624

(Applications accepted from the North County area only)

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

Center for Advancement of the Sciences and Technology*

CAST offers a rigorous academic program in which engineering is integrated through advanced math, science, world languages and technology classes. Many students participate in science, math and technology competitions. Students who attend Bay Point and Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. elementary schools get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Bay Point Middle, 2151 62nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/baypoint-ms; (727) 893-1153

Discovery Night: Nov. 28 (begins at 5:30 p.m.)

Center for Innovation and Digital Learning

The center focuses on gearing lessons to each student’s needs through project-based lessons, interactive online activities and face-to face lessons that encourage critical thinking. All students learn using electronic devices, and families play an important role in the use of technology both in the school and at home. Students who attend Gulf Beaches and Kings Highway elementary schools get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Tyrone Middle, 6421 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/tyrone-ms; (727) 893-1819

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

HIGH SCHOOL

The arts

Leadership Conservatory for the Arts*

This four-year program creates a discovery zone for developing musicians, dancers and artists, with a course of study that combines leadership skills, performing arts, rigorous academics and technology. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

Pinellas County Center for the Arts (PCCA)*

Students choose a focus on dance, technical production, instrumental music, musical theater, performance theater, visual arts or vocal music. Applicants must complete an audition. Through individual instruction, performances and exhibitions, students are trained to pursue an arts profession and/or continue their studies in college. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Gibbs High, 850 34th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/gibbs-hs; (727) 893-5452

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

Academy of Entertainment Arts

This career and college preparatory academy is designed for students with an interest in the creative fields of cinematography, photography, graphic design, 3D animation, gaming production and digital music development. Courses are taught by instructors who have worked in the creative field. The students will produce real-world work while using industry standard equipment and may earn industry certifications in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, Premiere, InDesign, Dreamweaver, and Flash. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876, ext. 2097

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

Commercial and digital arts

This program is for creative, career-oriented students interested in taking their existing artistic skills to the next level. Tech High provides a working design studio environment for students to study the entire spectrum of digital art and graphic design. This includes use of Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign software as well as studying many facets of advertising, illustration, art history, typography, branding and package design, outdoor ads, color theory, logos, posters, billboards, t-shirt design, illustration and more. Students will also create a digital portfolio and have multiple industry certification and internship opportunities. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Automotive

Automotive Manufacturing Technology Center

This program offers two tracks: automotive service technology and manufacturing and production. Academic and technical studies are integrated into all courses. The service technology track prepares students to work in the automotive repair industry, while the manufacturing and production track prepares them for careers in manufacturing industries. Students learn analytical, critical and creative thinking and use the latest technological resources. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

* * *

Construction

Academy of Architecture, Robotics and Construction

Provides students with opportunities to develop real-world skills that can be applied to jobs in architecture, robotics and construction. In architectural design, students receive instruction in computer-assisted drawing and major design concepts. The robotics program gives students hands-on instruction in robots that perform a variety of functions. The construction program focuses on all aspects of building, including masonry, plumbing, carpentry and electrical operations. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Dunedin High, 1651 Pinehurst Road, Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-hs; (727) 469-4100

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

Center for Construction Technologies

Students in grades 9 and 10 explore five aspects of the construction field in a hands-on environment – masonry, carpentry, plumbing, electrical and HVAC. Students in grades 11 and 12 choose a construction major and spend part of their school day attending building construction classes at Pinellas Technical College St. Petersburg, where they can earn certification and pre-apprenticeship hours. (Applications accepted in the South County area only.)

• St. Petersburg High, 2501 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/stpete-hs; (727) 893-1842

Discovery Night: Dec. 11

Construction technology / electrical

The building and construction technology program lets students explore potential careers in construction, entrepreneurships and carpentry. Upon completion, students can enter the construction industry as carpentry helpers or first-year construction workers. Topics also include drywall work, plumbing, blueprints and masonry. The electricity program covers the basics of electricity and circuit wiring. Students will solve problems and develop projects while engaging in hands-on learning. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Culinary arts

The programs at Northeast and Dixie Hollins high schools provide students with hands-on training in the culinary arts and hospitality industry. Students will explore and study worldwide cultures while developing specialized skills in food identification, selection, purchasing and preparation. They also can get certified in culinary work.

Academy of Culinary Arts

(Applications accepted in the South County area only.)

• Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Center for Culinary Arts

(Applications accepted in the mid-county area only.)

• Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876, ext. 2097

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

Jacobson Culinary Arts Academy

In addition to preparing food, students learn about nutrition, marketing, the hospitality industry, restaurant designing, catering, and management. The program features an 11,600-square-foot facility with two teaching kitchens, 48 student cooking stations, a 50-seat teaching kitchen-auditorium, and a 100-seat dining room-restaurant. Upon graduation, students are prepared to pursue advanced culinary training or start careers in the field of food preparation and restaurant management. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

• Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

* * *

Education

Exploring Careers & Education in Leadership (ExCEL)

This program focuses on leadership development and career exploration through hands-on learning that students can later apply to real-world situations. Students learn through projects, career shadowing and other opportunities outside the classroom. They participate in honors or Advanced Placement courses in math, science, social studies or language arts, plus electives. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Largo High, 410 Missouri Ave., Largo; excel.pcsb.org; (727) 588-4622

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

Center for Education and Leadership

This program promotes teacher training opportunities and academic rigor by preparing students for academic and career areas requiring postsecondary education. Students will take teaching assisting courses for all four years of high school to explore and develop instructional delivery. They also will spend a minimum of 150 observation hours and participate in focused learning activities. Students may earn college credits as part of the program. (Applications accepted from the mid-county area only.)

• Seminole High, 8401 131st St. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/seminole-hs; (727) 547-7536

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

* * *

Environmental

Academy for Aquatic Management Systems and Environmental Technology

Geared to students with a strong personal commitment to the study of environmental and marine sciences. Offers special training in ecology, environmental sciences, marine biology, agroponics, aquaculture and water resource conservation. The program features an on-campus, 2-acre outdoor classroom. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

* * *

Finance

Academy of Finance

Introduces students to the financial services industry, offering college preparatory courses in computers, economics, finance, insurance, accounting, banking and financial planning. Students work with mentors from the business community in job shadowing and internships, and they staff the on-campus Viking Branch, a real credit union sponsored by Achieva Credit Union. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

* * *

Fundamental programs`

Fundamental programs provide a structured environment and a “back to basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. Parents are required to attend meetings each month and have regular communication with teachers. The curriculum is heavy on homework and there are high expectations for student behavior and cooperation. The dress code is more strict than at other high schools, and a system of demerits requires students to stay on task. (Applications for all three high school fundamental programs are accepted countywide. For details on transportation, visit pcsb.org/choice.

• Boca Ciega High (School-within-a-school program), 924 58th St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/bocaciega-hs; (727) 893-2780

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

• Dunedin High (School-within-a-school program), 1651 Pinehurst Road, Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-hs; (727) 469-4100

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

• Osceola Fundamental High (Schoolwide program), 9751 98th St. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/osceola-hs; (727) 547-7717

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

International studies

Cambridge Program – Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE)*

Developed by Cambridge University, the AICE program offers a curriculum with a global perspective, preparing high school students for further education while offering them the opportunity to tailor their studies to their interests, skills and goals. College credit may be available for students who complete the program.

• Clearwater High, 540 S Hercules Ave., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwater-hs; (727) 298-1620. (Applications accepted from mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Oct. 29

• Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876. (Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

• Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900. (Applications accepted from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

International Baccalaureate (IB) program*

The IB program provides a rigorous college preparatory, liberal arts curriculum. There are six areas of study – language (English), second language (Spanish or French), individuals and societies, experimental sciences, math and the arts. The core of the program is the Theory of Knowledge class, the Extended Essay and a community service component. College credit may be available for students who complete the program.

• Largo High, 410 Missouri Ave., Largo; pcsb.org/largo-hs

(727) 588-3758. (Applications accepted from the mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 7

• Palm Harbor University High, 1900 Omaha St., Palm Harbor

Phuhs.org; (727) 669-1131. (Applications accepted from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

• St. Petersburg High, 2501 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/stpete-hs; (727) 893-1842. (Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 3

Career Academy for International Culture & Commerce

Introduces students to international business with an emphasis on global studies and cultural diversity. Offers courses in information technology, business software applications, accounting, international finance and law. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Clearwater High, 540 S Hercules Ave., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwater-hs; (727) 298-1620

Discovery Night: Oct. 29

* * *

Journalism

Center for Journalism and Multimedia

This program, known as CJAM, is designed for students with an interest in journalism and communications. Students focus on real-life journalism experiences, building skills in writing, photography, videography and design. Their work is published in the Spartan News Network newspaper and website. In 2018, SNN received the Silver Crown Award from the Columbia University Scholastic Press Association. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave.S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

* * *

Marine mechanics

The program is designed to prepare students for entry-level employment as marine mechanics and is aligned to meet current industry needs. Students will learn skills in outboard, inboard and personal watercraft service as they navigate the marine repair industry. A marine electrical certification is available. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Medicine, public safety & law

Center for Wellness and Medical Professions*

Prepares students for careers in the medical field and helps them develop a commitment to personal wellness and the prevention of disease. Students have the opportunity to prepare for college or pursue entry-level medical and wellness jobs after high school. (See the District Application Programs Guide at pcsb.org/choice for information on how your home address affects which program you apply to.)

• Boca Ciega High, 924 58th St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/bocaciega-hs; (727) 893-2780

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

• Palm Harbor University High, 1900 Omaha St., Palm Harbor; pcsb.org/phuhs; (727) 669-1131

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

Criminal Justice Academy*

This four-year program is for students focused on careers in law, law enforcement and related fields. Students learn about police operations, court and corrections procedures, civil law and crime scene investigations. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Pinellas Park High, 6305 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/CJA; (727) 538-7410

Discovery Night: Nov. 13

First Responders: National Guard Center for Emergency Management*

Instruction in this four-year program focuses on broad, transferable skills in the first responder fields. Students can earn certification in first aid, CPR, the use of automatic external defibrillators, Homeland Security and the National Incident Management System. After graduation, they will be ready to enter college or the workforce or continue their technical training. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Pinellas Park High, 6305 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/pp-hs; (727) 538-7410

Discovery Night: Dec. 10

Nursing

This program provides hands-on, real-world training and 40 clinical hours that can be applied to the 600 clinical hours required in the Licensed Practical Nursing program. Students can go on to nursing programs at Pinellas Technical College, St. Petersburg College and the University of South Florida. Topics include anatomy and physiology, disease prevention, basic patient care and proper use of medical equipment. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Academy of Engineering

The format for this four-year program is provided by Project Lead the Way through Rochester Institute of Technology. It offers an introduction to engineering, aeronautical engineering, computer-integrated manufacturing, digital electronics, principles of biotechnology engineering, civil architecture, and engineering design and development. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• East Lake High, 1300 Silver Eagle Drive, East Lake; pcsb.org/eastlake-hs; (727) 942-5419

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

Academy of Information Technology

Students will develop skills on how to use Microsoft Office, build a computer, program computers, and use Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Pro. Students apply image and web design principles and use the principles of cybersecurity with ethical hacking. There are 2 tracks: digital media technology, where students learn all the principles and basics of digital storytelling and work on the school TV program, and music technology and sound engineering, which gives students the opportunity to learn acoustics and develop skills in critical listening, recording and audio editing. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Business Economics Technology Academy (BETA)*

This program blends business and technological skills with a hands-on curriculum that encourages critical thinking. Students can earn industry certification in their chosen pathway, including business supervision and management, digital media technology, digital design and programming for game simulation. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Gibbs High, 850 34th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/gibbs-hs; (727) 893-5452

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

Center for Advanced Technologies (CAT)*

This college preparatory program prepares students for entry into engineering, medicine, science, multimedia, communications and computer science careers. Students experience hands-on projects with robotics, satellite communications and multimedia technologies. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

Gaming simulation and programming

This program is project-based and focuses on game design, storyboarding, the business side of gaming, programming for single- and multi-user environments, and collaboration. Students will create several games, make digital career portfolios and enjoy classroom visits from industry professionals. Microsoft Tech Associate certifications are available. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

Institute for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (ISTEM)*

This program offers a technological and a scholar track, based on student academic profiles. The technological track prepares students for college majors in the IT field. Students focus on one of four strands: computer systems and information technology, game and simulation, web design or digital design. The scholar track integrates STEM into all academic courses, and students focus on one of three fields: cybersecurity, biotechnology or engineering technology. Students in either track have opportunities to earn college credit or industry certifications. (Applications from the North County area only.)

• Countryside High, 3000 State Road 580, Clearwater; pcsb.org/countryside-hs; (727) 725-7956

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

Veterinary Science Academy

Prepares students for careers in veterinary medicine, veterinary day care, grooming and agility, and veterinary technology. Students operate a doggy day care, groom animals and serve as surgical assistants to veterinarians during surgery in the on-campus surgical suite. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

Veterinary sciences

Students work with live animals in a hands-on environment. This course also stresses understanding and demonstration of the following elements of the veterinary assisting industry: planning, management, finance, technical and production skills, underlying principles of technology, labor issues, community issues and health, safety and environmental issues. Students who complete the program can sit for the Certified Veterinary Assistant test through the Florida Veterinary Medical Association. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

Faculty and Staff Notables

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College of Health Professions

Dr. Daniel Dale, clinical assistant professor of physical therapy, presented on two occasions at the American Physical Therapy Association’s Education Leadership Conference Oct. 12-14 in Jacksonville, Florida. Dr. Dale presented findings from a collaborative study with Georgia Baptist College of Nursing colleagues Fran Kamp, clinical associate professor of nursing, and Suzanne Applegate, clinical assistant professor of nursing, on “Assessing Collaboration, Communication, and Role Recognition in an Interprofessional Education Event in the ICU and Acute Care Environments.” Dr. Dale also presented “Engaging, Inspiring and Developing Physical Therapist Students into Leaders: A Call to Action.”

Dr. Deborah Wendland, associate professor of physical therapy, Dr. David Taylor, clinical assistant professor of physical therapy, and Dr. Jeannette Anderson, clinical associate professor of physical therapy, presented Oct. 12-14 at the American Physical Therapy Association’s Education Leadership Conference in Jacksonville, Florida. In partnership with physical therapists from the Piedmont Atlanta Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center, they co-presented “From Take-off to Landing: Developing Future Practitioners for the Area of Integumentary Physical Therapy Practice through Collaborative Academic and Clinical Leadership.”

College of Education

Dr. William Lacefield, professor of mathematics education, Dr. Tonya Clarke, coordinator of mathematics for Clayton County Public Schools, and Sarah Gray, a graduate student at Mercer, presented “Fascinating Numbers: Using Enjoyment to Strengthen Number Sense and Confidence” at the annual conference of the Georgia Council of Teachers of Mathematics held Oct. 17-19 at Rock Eagle Conference Center in Eatonton.

College of Liberal Arts

Dr. Jonathan Addleton, adjunct professor of international and global studies, published a recollection on Afghanistan, titled “Bloody Week in Afghanistan Brings Back Memories of Never-Ending War,” Oct. 19 in Global Atlanta. Dr. Addleton also had an interview with Peter Bittner on Star TV as part of the ongoing weekly series “Talk to Me” posted Oct. 15 in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia.

Dr. Peter Brown, professor emeritus of philosophy, presented “Living Toward Death” at the Aging With Grace conference sponsored by the Seaside Institute Oct. 18-19 in Seaside, Florida. A copy of this presentation is posted on www.seasideinstitute.org.

Dr. David A. Davis, associate professor of English, received the Eudora Welty Prize for his book World War I and Southern Modernism.

Dr. John Marson Dunaway, professor emeritus of French and interdisciplinary studies, organized the 10th biennial Beloved Community Paired Clergy Unity Service Oct. 9 at Mt. Moriah Missionary Baptist Church.

Dr. Sarah E. Gardner, Distinguished University Professor of History, participated on a panel on “Undead Histories: Spectral Anxiety, Fabricated Narratives, and Flesh-and-Blood Violence in the Nineteenth-Century South” at the British American Nineteenth Century History Conference at the University of Cambridge in Cambridge, United Kingdom. Dr. Gardner also edited a series on recent fiction about slavery and the Civil War for the Journal of the Civil War Era’s blog “Muster.”

Dr. Jonathan Glance, professor and chair of English, presented a paper, titled “Calibrating the Scoundrels: Industries of Adaptation and Huston’s The Man Who Would Be King,” Sept. 27–28 at the annual conference of the Association of Adaptation Studies held in Amsterdam.

Dr. Joseph Keene, assistant professor of chemistry, presented “What Calorimetry Can Teach Us About Quantum Dots: A Tale of ITC” at the 2018 Gordon Research Conference on Colloidal Semiconductor Nanocrystals July 16-17 at Bryant University in Smithfield, Rhode Island.

Dr. Sheng-Chiang “John” Lee, associate professor and chair of physics, conducted a QEP project that involved physics education in the Bibb County School District. He helped to develop a physics lab curriculum for high school physics courses using smartphones instead of expensive conventional lab equipment. Dr. Lee gave a presentation at Central High School to school district leaders and physics teachers in the county’s public high schools.

Dr. Matt Marone, associate professor of physics, presented “Ionic Liquid Facilitated Recovery of Metals and Oxygen from Regolith” at the Georgia Regional Astronomy Meeting Oct. 27 at Emory University. Dr. Marone also presented “Experiments in Ancient Chinese Science” at the South Atlantic Coast Sectional Meeting of the American Association of Physics Teachers meeting Oct. 13 at Clemson University.

Dr. Frank McNally, assistant professor of physics, successfully applied for Mercer’s membership in the IceCube Collaboration Sept. 24-29 in Stockholm. IceCube is a multi-messenger astronomy project located at the South Pole designed to detect high-energy neutrinos, near-massless and neutral particles coming from space. In 2013, IceCube became the first experiment ever to detect extrasolar neutrinos, opening up a new field of astronomy. As a member of the collaboration, Mercer joins more than 50 institutions in 12 countries, including Georgia Tech, MIT, UC Berkeley, UW-Madison and Yale. Dr. McNally’s research focuses on the study of charged particles from space (cosmic rays) as they hit the earth’s atmosphere, and his research students will now have access to collaboration resources, including many terabytes of data and simulation as well as computing clusters at UW-Madison and Georgia Tech.

Marian Zielinski, professor emerita of communication studies and theatre, won the second place award in the Fine Art – Fiber category at the Georgia National Fair in October for her piece, titled “Celestial Dwelling.” Another of her works, “Griffith and Broadway,” won a Georgia Artists for Art Fine Art Merit Award.

College of Pharmacy

Dr. Clint Canal, assistant professor, was named a grant reviewer for the Department of Defense Congressionally Directed Medical Research Programs (CDMRP) for Sept. 27-Nov. 8. Dr. Canal was also named a reviewer for Frontiers in Neurology for September and the Journal of Psychopharmacology for September and October.

Dr. Martin D’Souza, professor, was named guest editor for “Microparticles-based Vaccines,” a special edition of Vaccines, an international peer-reviewed open-access journal published quarterly online by MDPI in Basel, Switzerland. Dr. D’Souza also served as a grant reviewer for the CSR/SSI Anonymization Study with the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for October, the NIH Cancer Immunopathology and Immunotherapy (CII), Cancer Biomarkers (CBSS) and Chemo/Dietary Prevention (CDP) study sections for October, the NIH National Cancer Institute Clinical and Translational Omnibus, Special Emphasis Panel/Scientific Review Group for October and the NIH Center for Scientific Review (CSR), Social Solutions International for September.

Dr. Nader Moniri, professor, and Dr. Kathryn Momary, associate professor, co-authored “Statin-associated Achilles tendon rupture and reproducible bilateral tendinopathy upon repeated exposure” in Mayo Clinic Proceedings.

Dr. Kathryn Momary, associate professor, was named a grant reviewer for the American Association of Colleges of Pharmacy’s New Investigator Award for September-October 2018.

Dr. Pamela Moye-Dickerson, clinical associate professor, was co-author of the committee report of the 2017-2018 Strategic Engagement Standing Committee published in the American Journal of Pharmaceutical Education.

Dr. Kevin Murnane, assistant professor, and Dr. Ajay Banga, professor, were co-authors of “Formulation and evaluation of 4-benzylpiperidine drug-in-adhesive matrix type transdermal patch” in the International Journal of Pharmaceutics.

Penfield College

Dr. Awatef A. Ben Ramadan, assistant professor of mathematics, science and informatics, was the first author of two published original articles in two peer-reviewed health informatics journals. The first article is titled “Estimates of Female Breast Cancer Mortality-to-Incidence Ratio (MIR) of the Counties and the Senatorial Districts Grouped to County Boundaries (SDGCs) in Missouri 2008 – 2012,” published in the Journal of Health Disparities Research and Practice. The second article is titled “Improving Visualization of Female Breast Cancer Survival Estimates: Analysis Using Interactive Mapping Reports,” published in the Journal of Medicine Internet and Research – Public Health and Surveillance (JMIR-PH).

Dr. Caroline Brackette, associate professor of counseling, was featured as the scholar of the week for the Diversity Scholars Network (DSN) by the National Center for Institutional Diversity at the University of Michigan. The network was founded in 2008 and is an interdisciplinary, multi-institutional community of scholars committed to advancing understandings of historical and contemporary social issues related to identity, difference, culture, representation, power, oppression and inequality as they occur and affect individuals, groups, communities and institutions.

Dr. Hani Q. Khoury, professor and coordinator of mathematics, presented “Citizenship through Mathematics and Science Education” Oct. 6 at the American University of Madaba in Jordan and “A Journey with Disability – A Personal Perspective” Oct. 10 at An-Najah National University in Nablus, Palestine. Dr. Khoury was invited by both institutions to deliver his talks. During his visit, Dr. Khoury was honored by various civic and educational institutions for his contributions to education and for his professional achievements as a person with disability.

Dr. David Purnell, professor of liberal studies, submitted “When friends are separated by miles: Using technology as a bridge over troubled times” in the International Review of Qualitative Research with an expected publication date of summer 2019. He submitted “Finding Our Fathers” in Qualitative Inquiry with an expected publication date of spring 2019. Dr. Purnell also submitted “Public Parks: Third Places or Places Eliciting Moral Panic?” in Qualitative Inquiry with an expected publication date of this winter. Dr. Purnell will serve as keynote speaker at the Phi Theta Kappa Leadership Conference on Nov 3.

School of Business and Economics

Jody Blanke, Ernest L. Baskin Jr. Distinguished Professor of Computer Science and Law, wrote “Top Ten Reasons to Be Optimistic About Privacy,” which was accepted for publication by the Idaho Law Review in the spring. Blanke was an invited panelist at Indiana University’s Ostrom Workshop on Smart Cities: Security, Privacy, and Governance Best Practice, where he spoke on a panel called “Governments, Data, and Society.” He was invited to become an external affiliate of Indiana University Bloomington’s Ostrom Workshops on both Data Management and Information Governance, and Cybersecurity and Internet Governance.

Dr. Elizabeth Chapman, associate professor of management, co-authored a blog post based on one of her papers that appeared on the London School of Economics website beginning Oct. 23. The post is about personal characteristics that impact happiness during and after retirement.

Dr. Antonio Saravia, associate professor of economics, was accepted to serve as associate editor for The Social Science Journal, a Q2 journal with a 1.00 ISI impact factor.

Dr. Briana Stenard, assistant professor of management and entrepreneurship, organized and presented a session, called “Love at First Sight: First Day of Class and First Impressions,” at the Academy of Management Teaching and Learning Conference Aug. 12 in Chicago. Dr. Stenard was accepted to, earned a scholarship and completed the Experiential Classroom Certification in Entrepreneurship Teaching from Sept. 20-23 at the University of Tampa. Dr. Stenard interviewed Becky Blalock Oct. 18 for Women’s Entrepreneurship Week. She also discussed her research for a webinar Oct. 19 for the Mistletoe Foundation, an organization that connects university scientists with startups. The webinar was titled “Scientists, Mismatch and Entrepreneurship: Surprise and Opportunity.” Macon-based economics faculty initiated a new colloquium series that brings together academics, business leaders and students to discuss topics of mutual interest. The first speaker was Derek Yonai, associate professor of economics and director of the Koch Center for Leadership and Ethics in the Barney Barnett School of Business and Free Enterprise at Florida Southern College, who spoke about his view of free enterprise education. The colloquium also includes Dr. Antonio Saravia, associate professor of economics, Dr. Robi Ragan, associate professor of economics, and Dr. Andres Marroquin, visiting associate professor of economics, as well as Macon business leaders Roy Fickling, Marsh Butler and Robbo Hatcher, and students Simran Khoja, Sachin Khurana and Christian Watson.

School of Engineering

Dr. Jennifer Goode, instructor of technical communication, presented an invited webinar for the Society for Technical Communication’s Instructional Design and Learning Special Interest Group. The webinar, “Can You Hear Me Now? Podcasts as teaching (and communication) tools,” reflected on research from a classroom project that was supported by a grant from the Research That Reaches Out Office.

School of Law

Karen J. Sneddon, professor of law, presented “Effective Motion and Brief Writing” Oct. 5 at the Workers’ Compensation Institute on Jekyll Island.

Lindsey R. Stewart, assistant director of career services, was promoted to director of admissions and financial aid, effective Nov. 1. Stewart has worked for Mercer for two years and is a double Bear, with degrees from the College of Liberal Arts in 2006 and the School of Law in 2009.

School of Medicine

Dr. Michael Brooks, adjunct professor, joined the faculty to participate in the tutoring program this fall. His background includes 40 years of practice in otolaryngology/head and neck surgery, with a heavy emphasis in the treatment of cancer of the head and neck, and allergy.

Dr. James Colquitt, assistant professor of medicine, recently earned his credential as a Certified Healthcare Simulation Educator (CHSE) through the Society for Simulation in Healthcare. This accomplishment helps advance the growth of simulation-based education in the School of Medicine and supports the efforts of Mercer to build high-fidelity experience-based simulation centers on all of its campuses.

Dr. Hemant Goyal, assistant professor of medicine and assistant program director of internal medicine residency, served as senior author of “The Healthcare Burden of Bradyarrhythmias and Their Impact on the Outcomes of 11,553 Lipidoses-related Hospitalizations: A Nationwide Inpatient Contemplation,” published in Clinical Cardiology. He also served as a co-author of “Incidence, Admission Rates, and Economic Burden of Adult Emergency Visits for Chronic Pancreatitis: Data From the National Emergency Department Sample, 2006 to 2012,” published in the Journal of Clinical Gastroenterology.

Dr. Jennifer Li, associate professor of histology, co-published an article, titled “Structural basis of the lipid transfer mechanism of phospholipid transfer protein (PLTP),” in the Journal of Biochimica et Biophysica Acta Molecular and Cell Biology of Lipids. Dr. Li also co-authored “A novel monitoring approach of antibody-peptide binding using ‘bending’ capillary electrophoresis” in the International Journal of Biological Macromolecules.

Dr. Eric K. Shaw, associate professor and community medicine research coordinator, authored a chapter, titled “Ontology and epistemology, methodology and method, and research paradigms,” in How To Do Primary Care Research.

School of Music

Dr. Douglas Hill, professor of music and director of instrumental ensembles adjudicated at the ninth annual Grovetown Warrior Invitational Marching Festival and Contest on Oct. 13 in Grovetown. High school marching bands from Harlem, Thomson, Burke County, Evans, Greenbrier and Oconee County schools participated.

School of Theology

Dr. William Loyd Allen, Sylvan Hills Professor of Baptist Heritage and Spiritual Formation, delivered on Oct. 5-6 the 2018 Richard Brogan Lecture Series on the topic “Protestant Spirituality” at Northside Baptist Church in Clinton, Mississippi.

Dr. Nancy L. deClaissé-Walford, Carolyn Ward Professor of Old Testament and Biblical Languages, presented the Lund Old Testament Lectures at Northpark Theological Seminary on Sept. 26 in Chicago. The lectures were titled “Let the Floods Clap Their Hands: An Ecological/Feminist Reading of the Enthronement Psalms” and “The Embodied Praise of God in the Songs of Ascents.” She also participated in a symposium on human violence at Northpark on Sept. 27-29 and presented a paper on “Human Violence in the Imprecatory Psalms.”

Staff and Administration

Vince Broccolo, Mercer Police officer, retired after 18 years of service to the department.

David Chambers, Mercer Police officer, retired after 26 years of service to the department.

Marc Jolley, director of Mercer University Press, presented a paper, titled “Seven Deadly Sins and Life-giving Virtue,” on Oct. 25-27 at Teaching the Christian Intellectual Tradition: Teaching Dante held at Samford University.

Meredith E. Keating, assistant director of campus life and student involvement, presented at the National Association of Campus Activities (NACA) South Conference Sept. 29 on “Let’s Learn Together: Advising a Student Programming Board as a New Professionals.”

Matt McCranie, Mercer Police corporal, was promoted to sergeant.

Gary Mills, Mercer Police officer, was promoted to administrative lieutenant.

Bobby Mobini, information technology support technician, attained CompTIA A+ certification. This certification is an industry standard for IT professionals and is a qualifying credential indicating an understanding of operating systems, computer hardware, networking and security.

Edward T. Roney, Mercer Police sergeant, retired after 38 years of service to the department.

University Libraries

Arlene F. Desselles, health, engineering and sciences librarian at the Swilley Library, was inducted into the Georgia Baptist College of Nursing Hall of Honor in recognition of her excellence in mentoring. She is not a nurse, but for years has been an outstanding mentor for faculty and for students in all College of Nursing degree programs. She was also instrumental in the library orientation process for all new faculty and students.

Lee Olson and Gail Morton, research services librarians, presented a poster, titled “ALL Aboard! Destined for Promotion,” Oct. 5 at the Georgia Libraries Conference in Columbus. They were joined virtually by Kristen Bailey, research services librarian, for the presentation.

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The opportunities and challenges of data analytics in health care – Brookings Institution

Data analytics tools have the potential to transform health care in many different ways. In the near future, routine doctor’s visits may be replaced by regularly monitoring one’s health status and remote consultations. The inpatient setting will be improved by more sophisticated quality metrics drawn from an ecosystem of interconnected digital health tools. The care patients receive may be decided in consultation with decision support software that is informed not only by expert judgments but also by algorithms that draw on information from patients around the world, some of whom will differ from the “typical” patient. Support may be customized for an individual’s personal genetic information, and doctors and nurses will be skilled interpreters of advanced ways to diagnose, track, and treat illnesses. In a number of different ways, policymakers are likely to have new tools that provide valuable insights into complicated health, treatment, and spending trends.

Authors

Caitlin Brandt

Assistant Director and Senior Research Analyst – Center for Health Policy, Brookings

Abigail Durak

Center Coordinator – Center for Health Policy, Brookings

However, recent developments in data analytics also suggest barriers to change that might be more substantial in the health care field than in other parts of the economy. Despite the immense promise of health analytics, the industry lags behind other major sectors in taking advantage of cutting-edge tools. Most health care organizations, for example, have yet to devise a clear approach for integrating data analytics into their regular operations. One study even showed that 56 percent of hospitals have no strategies for data governance or analytics.

Compared to other industries, the slow pace of innovation reflects challenges that are unique to health care in implementing and applying “big data” tools. These barriers include the nature of health care decisions, problematic data conventions, institutionalized practices in care delivery, and the misaligned incentives of various actors in the industry. To address these barriers, federal policy should emphasize interoperability of health data and prioritize payment reforms that will encourage providers to develop data analytics capabilities.

Despite the immense promise of health analytics, the industry lags behind other major sectors in taking advantage of cutting-edge tools.

Sensitivity of care decisions

A major barrier to the widespread application of data analytics in health care is the nature of the decisions and the data themselves. Unlike many other industries, health care decisions deal with hugely sensitive information, require timely information and action, and sometimes have life or death consequences. Each of these features creates a barrier to the pervasive use of data analytics.

The immediacy of health care decisions requires regular monitoring of data and extensive staffing and infrastructure to collect and tabulate information. The nature of health care decisions are more immediate and intrinsic than those made in other settings, creating a hesitancy about overhauling any major aspect of care provision. Health care decisions must take into account patient preferences, which at times differ from expert recommendations.

The importance and complexity of these decisions means physicians and patients insist on very high standards for data-analytics tools in health care. That has proven very challenging to designers of these tools, as health providers are more accustomed to dealing with either broad knowledge or narrow choices rather than complex predictions that require careful identification of decisions and calibration of predictions. As a result, clinical decision support software has struggled to make better insights than physicians. Even one of the most advanced systems, IBM’s Watson, made a series of “unsafe and incorrect treatment recommendations” because it was calibrated based on synthetic cases rather than real patient data. There is risk even when training software uses real patient data because decision support software may overfit its models and thereby make less useful suggestions, such as prescribing an inappropriate treatment plan. Sometimes, the clinically best medical decision is not always what a patient wants to pursue.

The sensitive nature of health care decisions and data furthermore creates major concerns about privacy. Patients are rightfully concerned about the security of their data and concerned about it being used in ways that are detrimental to them, damage their reputations, or disadvantage them in the rating and marketing decisions of insurers. This isn’t limited to medical record data. Recent news coverage of the capture of the Golden State Killer, for example, has raised new questions about the privacy of direct-to-consumer genetic testing. And while the growth of “wearables” such as FitBit and Nike+ FuelBand have made health status monitoring accessible to patients, these data are not subjected to federal patient privacy laws, allowing these companies to design their own internal privacy policies and share information with third-parties.

Problematic data conventions

Several data conventions in health care hinder the widespread use of data analytics. Currently, health care data are split among different entities and have different formats such that building an insightful, granular database is next to impossible. These qualities greatly increase the cost of using data to provide value, even when all the relevant information has been recorded in some form. Furthermore, even well-structured data are often not available to researchers or providers who could use them in useful ways.

Several data conventions in health care hinder the widespread use of data analytics. Currently, health care data are split among different entities and have different formats such that building an insightful, granular database is next to impossible.

In general, the health care industry has been resistant to making information available as open data commons, which are up-to-date data provided in accessible format and available to all. That resistance comes in part from fear of violating privacy, even though existing strategies for protecting confidentiality greatly mitigate that risk. A larger reason is that data commons are a public good and will naturally be undersupplied by the market. A third data challenge is data quality. For analysis or predictions to have any value, they must be based on good data. One of the most hyped applications of big data in epidemiology, Google Flu Trends, turned out to underperform far more basic models, despite analyzing far more data, because its analysts were extrapolating from the behavior of Google users—an unrepresentative group of people. The experience illustrated that the success of data analytics in health care is dependent upon the availability and utilization of quality data.

Institutional practices

Entrenched practices in the delivery of health care also create several barriers to the full adoption of data analytics. One clear illustration of the challenge is in one of the most promising areas of data analytics: clinical decision support. While data analytics could greatly improve the clinical decision-making process, the development of decision support tools hasn’t paid sufficient attention to how decisions are actually made and the related workflows supporting those decisions. The tools often assume that putting the right information on a single person’s dashboard can induce them to make the right decision, but in reality, most difficult clinical decisions involve many actors and often follow institutional guidelines designed by committees. Data tools that do not fit into existing work and decision-making structures add burdens to physicians and are much less effective than they could be. For example, many attempts to bring data analytics or other information technology into health care have created a large data entry burden for physicians. This had led to high-profile mistakes, physician burnout, and general dissatisfaction with the tools.

As a consequence, most of the major reasons physicians cite for their resistance to adoption of new data tools are related to workflow disruption. For data analytics to truly transform care, the designers of tools need to cognizant of the context their tools will be used in and health care organizations must be willing to reorganize some elements of their practice to empower patients and providers to use data-driven care.

Misaligned incentives

Arguably the largest barrier to the implementation and application of data analytics in health care is the splintered landscape of the industry, with separate components having their own incentives that diverge from what might be best for the entire system. At the moment, physicians or delivery systems may not know that their patients have visited emergency rooms, for example, unless told by the insurer—because claims data are held by the payer. Meanwhile, care providers may hold clinical data that could help insurers better manage their patient’s costs. The responsibility for managing any given patient is split between their insurer and various providers, each with different incentives and needs and neither functioning as an ideal agent for the patient.

Insurers have incentives to invest in better health for their covered population, but these incentives are mitigated by annual contracts with employers or individuals and employee turnover, which moves many enrollees to a different insurer before the payer’s investments in their health pay off. There are also serious concerns with expecting insurers to take the lead on data analytics in health care. First, data tools designed for insurers are likely to center on costs, which may leave some quality-enhancing insights unexplored. Second, insurer data analytics may impose an externality on hospitals and physicians, which have to bear the administrative costs of complying with the data practices of various insurers. Third, insurers may not conduct their data analytics on a clinically useful timetable. Unless they feed data to providers continuously, it may not be timely enough to affect how patients receive care. The limited degree to which insurers provide claims data to providers that they contract with may reflect the expense of doing so, limitations in their legacy IT systems, or a desire to retain more of the care management responsibility.

The responsibility for managing any given patient is split between their insurer and various providers, each with different incentives and needs and neither functioning as an ideal agent for the patient.

Health care providers have their own particular incentives. Under the most common payment schemes, providers typically have little incentive to control patient costs. However, they likely do care about quality of care, even if they are hesitant to change their institutional practices and norms. Despite seeming like a more logical locus for data decisions, hospitals are often unwilling to undertake the costs of developing data capabilities or the disruption of implementing their use into regular practice. Hospitals also have an incentive to slow health information exchange standards because the lack of interoperability binds physicians into referral patterns favorable to them. Similarly, vendors of health information technology often don’t want standardization of data tools and practices because differentiation of their products and high costs for providers that switch vendors create substantial monopoly power for vendors. Finally, patients themselves often don’t support data practices that can improve care for all. The fear of data breaches or misuse leads patients to oppose data sharing arrangements that may have widespread positive externalities. In short, no individual actor in the health care space has the incentives or means to fully embrace the most revolutionary data analytics practices.

Policy recommendations

Because of the systemic challenges described above, we need policy changes that diminish the barriers to health analytics. While there is potential for radical overhaul, the initial priority should be making sure all hospitals can record, use, and share patient data in useful ways. One critical component of that agenda is ensuring interoperability of Electronic Medical Records (EMRs). Federal policy has contributed a great deal to the adoption of EMRs and other health IT practices through incentives under the Medicare program, but providers still struggle with sharing that data. As discussed above, neither hospitals nor EMR vendors have a strong incentive to standardize health information exchanges, despite the fact that interoperable EMRs can improve care and save money. The 2009 Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (HITECH) Act included health information exchange as one of the required capabilities for certified EMR systems. However, this requirement was included at a later implementation stage, allowing EMR systems to be designed and integrated into health systems without these capabilities, making interoperability even more difficult. In 2016, the 21st Century Cures Act increased incentives and penalties specifically promoting EMR interoperability.

These incentives need not aim to establish one universal EMR. Applications that can access and transfer health data from different kinds of EMRs can achieve interoperability, but they are not used as widely or thoroughly as possible, risking a situation where the applications meant to bridge different EMRs themselves fail to adopt uniform data conventions. Federal policy could standardize the way EMR data are accessed and transferred by applications, like Fast Healthcare Interoperability Resources (FHIR), that exist to facilitate interoperability. It could also revise HITECH and the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) to allow fees for data exchange, thus creating incentives to improve data exchange that could potentially counteract the existing disincentives. Federal support for best practices in data management and use would go a long way in helping the industry develop its own capabilities.

The federal government can also indirectly support the development of health data analytics by continuing to encourage payment based on the value of care, typically through the Medicare program, encouraging alternative payment approaches, and by working to align quality measures and payment approaches with private insurers. Under value-based care models, providers are typically paid some amount per beneficiary based on the package of care they are expected to deliver, with payment at least partially tied to quality-of-care metrics. These models aim to create the incentive for providers to provide high-quality care at lower costs, which often involves closer coordination of care and careful revision of many practices. All these features make hospitals operating under value-based care models better loci for data-backed decisions. Kaiser Permanente has demonstrated the power of a well-integrated data strategy aimed at managing costs and quality. Conversely, improved data analytics capabilities may be precisely what health care providers need to better coordinate and improve value of care. Medicare could improve the usability of its data for a wider audience with a varying degree of analytic capabilities to help more of these providers successfully implement these new health care models. Coupling these systemic health care reforms can allow them to complement each other and reduce administrative confusion.

Federal support for best practices in data management and use would go a long way in helping the industry develop its own capabilities.

One factor that is holding back progress toward value-based payment is risk adjustment—varying the payment on the basis of how challenging one provider’s patients are in comparison to other providers. Much of the energy in improving risk adjustment has focused on contracts between purchasers and insurers—for example, between the Medicare program and Medicare Advantage plans. But the risk adjustment challenges for contracts between insurers and providers are distinct from these and, if ignored, pose grave challenges to some of the best providers, who inevitably attract patients with the most challenging conditions.

Despite the disruptions to conventional practices, all actors in health care should be excited about the possibilities that new data tools will bring. But obtaining this enormous potential is not around the corner and will require overcoming challenges by all of the relevant components of the health care system.

School Search 2018: Pinellas options include magnets, academies, fundamentals – TBO.com

The Pinellas County school system offers nearly 80 special programs for families who want to venture beyond their zoned school, with options that include magnets, fundamental schools and high school career academies. The complete list for the 2019-20 school year is below.

Programs marked with an asterisk have entrance criteria; call the schools for details. Discovery Nights, which offer a chance for students and parents to see the school and meet the staff, begin at 6 p.m. and typically last one to two hours.

For more information, including details on application areas, school bus service and entrance criteria, visit pcsb.org/choice.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

The arts

Center for the Arts and International Studies

Students at Perkins explore other cultures through vocal and instrumental music, theater, art and dance. All students have Spanish courses and the facilities include three visual arts classrooms, four music rooms, a 250-seat theater and a dance studio. Students given priority when applying to the arts magnet at John Hopkins Middle. (Applications from South of Ulmerton Road only.)

. Perkins Elementary, 2205 18th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/perkins-es; (727) 893-2659

Discovery Night: Dec. 11

Center for Cultural Arts

Students participate in a creative, integrated art-themed K-5 program that connects academic curriculum with the visual and performing arts. A vibrant local arts culture provides opportunities for a variety of field trips. Students receive two art classes, two music classes, and a creative makerspace experience each week. Students in the cultural arts program also have access to the gifted teaching strategies used in a separate gifted magnet at Midtown Academy. In addition, they will be given priority when applying to the Center for the Arts, Journalism and Multimedia at John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted from South County only.)

. Midtown Academy, 1701 10th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/midtown; (727) 893-1358

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Conservatory for the Arts (New)

Students receive 60 minutes of daily arts instruction. Music, theater, storytelling, dance, movement and the visual arts deepen understanding, critical thinking and problem solving. The arts also allow students to make interdisciplinary curriculum connections and demonstrate knowledge. Community partnerships include Ruth Eckerd Hall, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Dunedin Fine Arts Center, Artz4Life and Clearwater Arts Alliance. Students given priority when applying to Tarpon Springs Middle. (Applications accepted from North of Ulmerton Road)

. Sandy Lane Elementary, 1360 Sandy Lane, Clearwater; pcsb.org/sandylane-es; (727) 469-5974

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Fundamental schools

Fundamental schools provide a structured environment and a “back-to-basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. There is daily homework and a dress code that exceeds that of the school district. Parents are required to attend conferences, monthly meetings and certain school activities as determined by the principal. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Bay Vista Fundamental Elementary, 5900 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/bayvista-es; (727) 893-2335

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

. Curtis Fundamental Elementary, 531 Beltrees St., Dunedin; pcsb.org/curtis-es; (727) 738-6483

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

. Lakeview Fundamental Elementary, 2229 25th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakeview-es; (727) 893-2139

Discovery Night: Nov. 7

. Madeira Beach Fundamental Elementary (K-5), 591 Tom Stuart Causeway, Madeira Beach; pcsb.org/mb-ms; (727) 547-7838

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

. Pasadena Fundamental Elementary, 95 72nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/pasadena-es

(727) 893-2646

Discovery Night: Dec. 13

. Tarpon Springs Fundamental Elementary, 400 E Harrison St., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarponfund-es; (727) 943-5508

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

* * *

Gifted programs

The Centers for Gifted Studies offer full-time gifted services to eligible students in grades 1-5. Advanced, integrated, accelerated gifted curriculum will be used daily with the Florida Gifted Frameworks as the foundation to provide daily gifted services. Special focus is placed on critical and creative thinking as well as social-emotional development. To be eligible, parents need to provide a copy of the qualifying IQ scores and a copy of the psychological report or a copy of their active Educational Plan to the school by Jan. 25. Students who meet the eligibility criteria after the deadline may submit a late application.

. Ridgecrest Elementary,* 1901 119th St. N, Largo; pcsb.org/ridgecrest-es; (727) 588-3580

Ridgecrest has been deemed a School of Excellence by Magnet Schools of America. It’s teachers have presented at state, national and international gifted conferences. Ridgecrest students are given priority when applying to Morgan Fitzgerald Middle. (Applications from the mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

. Midtown Academy,* 1701 10th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/midtown; (727) 893-1358

Students are a part of the cultural arts theme at Midtown Academy and experience two art, two music, and creative makerspace classes each week. Student are given priority when applying to Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle. (Applications from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

. North County Center for Gifted Studies* (New), 415 15th St., Palm Harbor; (727) 588-6088

Students at the North County Center for Gifted Studies will experience the schoolwide enrichment model where they will work weekly in interest-based groups with their peers to create original products. They are given priority when applying to Dunedin Highland Middle. (Applications from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 18

* * *

International studies

International Baccalaureate Primary Years program

This program is offered at James B. Sanderlin PK-8 and Mildred Helms IB World Schools. Its transdisciplinary approach focuses on stimulating curiosity and inquiry as students use a conceptual lens to build deeper understanding of real-world issues. Internationally-minded citizens are developed through the 10 attributes of the IB learner profile. Spanish, art, and PE further develop imagination, communication, creativity and original thinking as students become lifelong learners.

. James Sanderlin PK-8 IB World School, 2350 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/sanderlinib; (727) 552-1700

Students are given priority when applying to the Sanderlin Middle Years program and John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

. Mildred Helms Elementary IB World School

561 S Clearwater-Largo Road, Largo; pcsb.org/mildred-es; (727) 588-3569

Students are given priority when applying to Largo Middle. (Applications accepted from mid- and north county areas.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

* * *

Journalism

Center for Journalism and Multimedia Studies

This program equips students with life skills that will serve them no matter what they pursue in the future. Students learn about the world by becoming confident writers, trained photographers, effective communicators and informed, involved citizens. Young journalists explore all aspects of the evolving media, including digital technology, and build confidence through seeing their work in print (four newspapers a year), on a daily TV show and on other platforms. Students are given priority when applying to John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Melrose Elementary, 1752 13th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/melrose-es; (727) 893-2175

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

* * *

Montessori

Montessori Academy

Children explore through hands-on learning materials and understanding beyond memorization. Grace and courtesy lessons teach children to treat each other with respect. The program seeks to build character and a sense of responsibility to the school. Students are given priority when applying to John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted from the South County area only.)

. Gulfport Elementary, 2014 52nd St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/gulfport-es; (727) 893-2643

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Center for Advancement of the Sciences and Technology

This program seeks to increase student achievement and interest in science, technology and math. The program emphasizes hands-on activities in the school’s computer, science and Spanish labs, as well as in the on-site pond and gardens. Students are given priority when applying to Bay Point Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Bay Point Elementary, 5800 22nd St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/baypoint-es; (727) 552-1449

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

Centers for Innovation and Digital Learning

The Centers for Innovation and Digital Learning program is offered at Gulf Beaches and Kings Highway elementary schools. The programs deliver a technology-rich environment with personalized learning and project-based approaches using SMART Boards, iPads, Mac laptops and Dell tablets. Students are engaged in interactive online activities and face-to-face lessons that encourage critical thinking. Families play an important role in their children’s learning and the use of technology in the school and at home. Students at both schools are given priority when applying to Tyrone Middle. (For information on transportation and who can apply, see the District Application Programs Guide at pcsb.org/choice.)

. Gulf Beaches Elementary, 8600 Boca Ciega Drive, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/beaches-es; (727) 893-2630

Discovery Night: Dec. 20

. Kings Highway Elementary, 1715 Kings Highway, Clearwater; pcsb.org/kings-es; (727) 223-8949

Discovery Night: Nov. 6

Center for Mathematics and Engineering

This award-winning program offers a unique curriculum created by teachers. Students are provided opportunities to work in diverse teams completing design challenges and hands-on activities, which integrate math, science, reading, writing and social studies. Students conduct research, design solutions, construct models, test effectiveness, analyze results and communicate solutions. The STEAM focus is infused through a strong music and art program as well as a partnership with the Dali Museum. Students are given priority when applying to Azalea and Bay Point middle schools. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. Elementary, 1200 37th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/jamerson-es.; (727) 552-1703

Discovery Night: Nov. 13

MIDDLE SCHOOL

The arts and journalism

Center for International Studies in the Arts and Multimedia Journalism*

Students can focus on one of six areas – visual art, dance, instrumental music, theater, vocal music and multimedia journalism – or, if they live in the south county attendance area, they may apply to the school’s International Baccalaureate Middle Years program. Students participate in advanced or accelerated math, science, social studies or language arts courses, in addition to required elective courses which may include technology, world language, or the arts. Those in the arts receive instruction in their focus areas, while journalism students receive hands-on experience in producing news by exploring all aspects of evolving media, including digital technology. Students who attend the Center for the Arts and International Studies at Perkins Elementary or the Center for Journalism and Multimedia Studies at Melrose Elementary will be given priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. John Hopkins Middle, 701 16th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/hopkins-ms; (727) 893-2400

Discovery Night: Oct. 30

Leadership Conservatory for the Arts*

This program encourages students to develop character and leadership skills in a high-level performing and visual arts program. The rigorous core academics are from the Pre-Advanced International Certificate of Education program developed by the University of Cambridge. Students from Sandy Lane Elementary are given priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

. Tarpon Springs Middle, 501 N Florida Ave., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-ms; (727) 943-5511

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Fundamental schools

Fundamental programs provide a structured environment and a “back-to-basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. There is daily homework and a dress code that exceeds that of the school district. Parents are required to attend conferences, monthly meetings and certain school activities as determined by the principal. Unlike other fundamental middle schools, Thurgood Marshall offers arterial bus service. Check with the school for more details. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Clearwater Fundamental Middle, 1660 Palmetto St., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwaterfund-ms; (727) 298-1609

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

. Madeira Beach Fundamental Middle, 591 Tom Stuart Causeway, Madeira Beach; pcsb.org/mb-ms; (727) 547-7697

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

. Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle, 3901 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/marshall-ms; (727) 552-1737

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

Gifted programs

Middle School Centers for Gifted Studies*

All three middle school gifted centers are designed to deliver a challenging and detailed curriculum that promotes creativity, critical and complex thinking. Applicants must meet all state requirements for gifted placement and provide a copy of their individual educational plan upon request. Documentation of eligibility must be submitted to the schools before the application deadline. Students who meet eligibility criteria after the deadline may submit a late application.

. Dunedin Highland Middle, 70 Patricia Ave., Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-ms; (727) 469-4112

Students from North County elementary schools will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

. Morgan Fitzgerald Middle, 6410 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/fitzgerald-ms; (727) 547-4526

Students from Ridgecrest Elementary will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the mid-county application area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

. Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle, 3901 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/marshall-ms; (727) 552-1737

Students from Midtown Academy will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

International studies

Cambridge Pre-Advanced International Certificate of Education*

This rigorous program is designed for academically talented students in grades 6-8. The curriculum is written and administered by the University of Cambridge in England. (Applications accepted from the midcounty area only.)

. Pinellas Park Middle, 6940 70th Ave. N, Pinellas Park; pcsb.org/pp-ms; (727) 545-6400

(Applications from mid-county area only)

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

. Tarpon Springs Middle, 501 N Florida Ave., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-ms; (727) 943-5511

(Applications from North County area only)

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program*

Provides an intellectually challenging environment that encourages critical thinking. Through the 10 attributes of the IB learner profile, the program reflects real life by encouraging learning beyond traditional subjects with meaningful, in-depth inquiries into global issues. Students in the school’s Primary Years program get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. James B. Sanderlin PK-8 IB World School, 2350 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/sanderlinib; (727) 552-1700

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program Candidate Schools*

John Hopkins and Largo middle schools are candidates for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) and are pursuing authorization as an IB World School. The program provides an intellectually challenging environment in which students are encouraged to become critical and reflective thinkers in preparation for success in college, careers and citizenship. Its interdisciplinary approach builds connections between subjects, and its global focus fosters the development of communication skills, intercultural understanding and leadership essentials.

. John Hopkins Middle, 701 16th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/hopkins-ms; (727) 893-2400

(Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Oct. 30

. Largo Middle, 155 Eighth Ave. SE, Largo; pcsb.org/largo-ms; (727) 588-4600

(Applications accepted from north and mid-county areas only)

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Academy of Engineering

This program, offered at Azalea and East Lake middle schools, provides students with a curriculum from Project Lead the Way, which is designed to challenge and engage students’ natural curiosity through hands-on experiences and exciting units of study. Students use design process to creatively and critically explore real-world issues and solve problems.

. Azalea Middle, 7855 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/azalea-ms; (727) 893-2606

Students from Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. Elementary get priority when applying to the Azalea program. (Applications accepted from the south and mid-county areas only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

. East Lake Middle School Academy of Engineering, 1200 Silver Eagle Drive, East Lake; pcsb.org/eastlake-ms; (727) 940-7624

(Applications accepted from the North County area only)

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

Center for Advancement of the Sciences and Technology*

CAST offers a rigorous academic program in which engineering is integrated through advanced math, science, world languages and technology classes. Many students participate in science, math and technology competitions. Students who attend Bay Point and Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. elementary schools get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Bay Point Middle, 2151 62nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/baypoint-ms; (727) 893-1153

Discovery Night: Nov. 28 (begins at 5:30 p.m.)

Center for Innovation and Digital Learning

The center focuses on gearing lessons to each student’s needs through project-based lessons, interactive online activities and face-to face lessons that encourage critical thinking. All students learn using electronic devices, and families play an important role in the use of technology both in the school and at home. Students who attend Gulf Beaches and Kings Highway elementary schools get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Tyrone Middle, 6421 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/tyrone-ms; (727) 893-1819

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

HIGH SCHOOL

The arts

Leadership Conservatory for the Arts*

This four-year program creates a discovery zone for developing musicians, dancers and artists, with a course of study that combines leadership skills, performing arts, rigorous academics and technology. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

Pinellas County Center for the Arts (PCCA)*

Students choose a focus on dance, technical production, instrumental music, musical theater, performance theater, visual arts or vocal music. Applicants must complete an audition. Through individual instruction, performances and exhibitions, students are trained to pursue an arts profession and/or continue their studies in college. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Gibbs High, 850 34th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/gibbs-hs; (727) 893-5452

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

Academy of Entertainment Arts

This career and college preparatory academy is designed for students with an interest in the creative fields of cinematography, photography, graphic design, 3D animation, gaming production and digital music development. Courses are taught by instructors who have worked in the creative field. The students will produce real-world work while using industry standard equipment and may earn industry certifications in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, Premiere, InDesign, Dreamweaver, and Flash. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876, ext. 2097

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

Commercial and digital arts

This program is for creative, career-oriented students interested in taking their existing artistic skills to the next level. Tech High provides a working design studio environment for students to study the entire spectrum of digital art and graphic design. This includes use of Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign software as well as studying many facets of advertising, illustration, art history, typography, branding and package design, outdoor ads, color theory, logos, posters, billboards, t-shirt design, illustration and more. Students will also create a digital portfolio and have multiple industry certification and internship opportunities. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

. Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Automotive

Automotive Manufacturing Technology Center

This program offers two tracks: automotive service technology and manufacturing and production. Academic and technical studies are integrated into all courses. The service technology track prepares students to work in the automotive repair industry, while the manufacturing and production track prepares them for careers in manufacturing industries. Students learn analytical, critical and creative thinking and use the latest technological resources. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

* * *

Construction

Academy of Architecture, Robotics and Construction

Provides students with opportunities to develop real-world skills that can be applied to jobs in architecture, robotics and construction. In architectural design, students receive instruction in computer-assisted drawing and major design concepts. The robotics program gives students hands-on instruction in robots that perform a variety of functions. The construction program focuses on all aspects of building, including masonry, plumbing, carpentry and electrical operations. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Dunedin High, 1651 Pinehurst Road, Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-hs; (727) 469-4100

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

Center for Construction Technologies

Students in grades 9 and 10 explore five aspects of the construction field in a hands-on environment – masonry, carpentry, plumbing, electrical and HVAC. Students in grades 11 and 12 choose a construction major and spend part of their school day attending building construction classes at Pinellas Technical College St. Petersburg, where they can earn certification and pre-apprenticeship hours. (Applications accepted in the South County area only.)

. St. Petersburg High, 2501 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/stpete-hs; (727) 893-1842

Discovery Night: Dec. 11

Construction technology / electrical

The building and construction technology program lets students explore potential careers in construction, entrepreneurships and carpentry. Upon completion, students can enter the construction industry as carpentry helpers or first-year construction workers. Topics also include drywall work, plumbing, blueprints and masonry. The electricity program covers the basics of electricity and circuit wiring. Students will solve problems and develop projects while engaging in hands-on learning. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

. Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Culinary arts

The programs at Northeast and Dixie Hollins high schools provide students with hands-on training in the culinary arts and hospitality industry. Students will explore and study worldwide cultures while developing specialized skills in food identification, selection, purchasing and preparation. They also can get certified in culinary work.

Academy of Culinary Arts

(Applications accepted in the South County area only.)

. Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Center for Culinary Arts

(Applications accepted in the mid-county area only.)

. Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876, ext. 2097

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

Jacobson Culinary Arts Academy

In addition to preparing food, students learn about nutrition, marketing, the hospitality industry, restaurant designing, catering, and management. The program features an 11,600-square-foot facility with two teaching kitchens, 48 student cooking stations, a 50-seat teaching kitchen-auditorium, and a 100-seat dining room-restaurant. Upon graduation, students are prepared to pursue advanced culinary training or start careers in the field of food preparation and restaurant management. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

. Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

* * *

Education

Exploring Careers & Education in Leadership (ExCEL)

This program focuses on leadership development and career exploration through hands-on learning that students can later apply to real-world situations. Students learn through projects, career shadowing and other opportunities outside the classroom. They participate in honors or Advanced Placement courses in math, science, social studies or language arts, plus electives. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Largo High, 410 Missouri Ave., Largo; excel.pcsb.org; (727) 588-4622

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

Center for Education and Leadership

This program promotes teacher training opportunities and academic rigor by preparing students for academic and career areas requiring postsecondary education. Students will take teaching assisting courses for all four years of high school to explore and develop instructional delivery. They also will spend a minimum of 150 observation hours and participate in focused learning activities. Students may earn college credits as part of the program. (Applications accepted from the mid-county area only.)

. Seminole High, 8401 131st St. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/seminole-hs; (727) 547-7536

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

* * *

Environmental

Academy for Aquatic Management Systems and Environmental Technology

Geared to students with a strong personal commitment to the study of environmental and marine sciences. Offers special training in ecology, environmental sciences, marine biology, agroponics, aquaculture and water resource conservation. The program features an on-campus, 2-acre outdoor classroom. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

* * *

Finance

Academy of Finance

Introduces students to the financial services industry, offering college preparatory courses in computers, economics, finance, insurance, accounting, banking and financial planning. Students work with mentors from the business community in job shadowing and internships, and they staff the on-campus Viking Branch, a real credit union sponsored by Achieva Credit Union. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

* * *

Fundamental programs`

Fundamental programs provide a structured environment and a “back to basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. Parents are required to attend meetings each month and have regular communication with teachers. The curriculum is heavy on homework and there are high expectations for student behavior and cooperation. The dress code is more strict than at other high schools, and a system of demerits requires students to stay on task. (Applications for all three high school fundamental programs are accepted countywide. For details on transportation, visit pcsb.org/choice.

. Boca Ciega High (School-within-a-school program), 924 58th St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/bocaciega-hs; (727) 893-2780

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

. Dunedin High (School-within-a-school program), 1651 Pinehurst Road, Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-hs; (727) 469-4100

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

. Osceola Fundamental High (Schoolwide program), 9751 98th St. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/osceola-hs; (727) 547-7717

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

International studies

Cambridge Program – Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE)*

Developed by Cambridge University, the AICE program offers a curriculum with a global perspective, preparing high school students for further education while offering them the opportunity to tailor their studies to their interests, skills and goals. College credit may be available for students who complete the program.

. Clearwater High, 540 S Hercules Ave., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwater-hs; (727) 298-1620. (Applications accepted from mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Oct. 29

. Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876. (Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

. Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900. (Applications accepted from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

International Baccalaureate (IB) program*

The IB program provides a rigorous college preparatory, liberal arts curriculum. There are six areas of study – language (English), second language (Spanish or French), individuals and societies, experimental sciences, math and the arts. The core of the program is the Theory of Knowledge class, the Extended Essay and a community service component. College credit may be available for students who complete the program.

. Largo High, 410 Missouri Ave., Largo; pcsb.org/largo-hs

(727) 588-3758. (Applications accepted from the mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 7

. Palm Harbor University High, 1900 Omaha St., Palm Harbor

Phuhs.org; (727) 669-1131. (Applications accepted from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

. St. Petersburg High, 2501 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/stpete-hs; (727) 893-1842. (Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 3

Career Academy for International Culture & Commerce

Introduces students to international business with an emphasis on global studies and cultural diversity. Offers courses in information technology, business software applications, accounting, international finance and law. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Clearwater High, 540 S Hercules Ave., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwater-hs; (727) 298-1620

Discovery Night: Oct. 29

* * *

Journalism

Center for Journalism and Multimedia

This program, known as CJAM, is designed for students with an interest in journalism and communications. Students focus on real-life journalism experiences, building skills in writing, photography, videography and design. Their work is published in the Spartan News Network newspaper and website. In 2018, SNN received the Silver Crown Award from the Columbia University Scholastic Press Association. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave.S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

* * *

Marine mechanics

The program is designed to prepare students for entry-level employment as marine mechanics and is aligned to meet current industry needs. Students will learn skills in outboard, inboard and personal watercraft service as they navigate the marine repair industry. A marine electrical certification is available. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

. Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Medicine, public safety & law

Center for Wellness and Medical Professions*

Prepares students for careers in the medical field and helps them develop a commitment to personal wellness and the prevention of disease. Students have the opportunity to prepare for college or pursue entry-level medical and wellness jobs after high school. (See the District Application Programs Guide at pcsb.org/choice for information on how your home address affects which program you apply to.)

. Boca Ciega High, 924 58th St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/bocaciega-hs; (727) 893-2780

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

. Palm Harbor University High, 1900 Omaha St., Palm Harbor; pcsb.org/phuhs; (727) 669-1131

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

Criminal Justice Academy*

This four-year program is for students focused on careers in law, law enforcement and related fields. Students learn about police operations, court and corrections procedures, civil law and crime scene investigations. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Pinellas Park High, 6305 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/CJA; (727) 538-7410

Discovery Night: Nov. 13

First Responders: National Guard Center for Emergency Management*

Instruction in this four-year program focuses on broad, transferable skills in the first responder fields. Students can earn certification in first aid, CPR, the use of automatic external defibrillators, Homeland Security and the National Incident Management System. After graduation, they will be ready to enter college or the workforce or continue their technical training. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Pinellas Park High, 6305 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/pp-hs; (727) 538-7410

Discovery Night: Dec. 10

Nursing

This program provides hands-on, real-world training and 40 clinical hours that can be applied to the 600 clinical hours required in the Licensed Practical Nursing program. Students can go on to nursing programs at Pinellas Technical College, St. Petersburg College and the University of South Florida. Topics include anatomy and physiology, disease prevention, basic patient care and proper use of medical equipment. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

. Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Academy of Engineering

The format for this four-year program is provided by Project Lead the Way through Rochester Institute of Technology. It offers an introduction to engineering, aeronautical engineering, computer-integrated manufacturing, digital electronics, principles of biotechnology engineering, civil architecture, and engineering design and development. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. East Lake High, 1300 Silver Eagle Drive, East Lake; pcsb.org/eastlake-hs; (727) 942-5419

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

Academy of Information Technology

Students will develop skills on how to use Microsoft Office, build a computer, program computers, and use Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Pro. Students apply image and web design principles and use the principles of cybersecurity with ethical hacking. There are 2 tracks: digital media technology, where students learn all the principles and basics of digital storytelling and work on the school TV program, and music technology and sound engineering, which gives students the opportunity to learn acoustics and develop skills in critical listening, recording and audio editing. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Business Economics Technology Academy (BETA)*

This program blends business and technological skills with a hands-on curriculum that encourages critical thinking. Students can earn industry certification in their chosen pathway, including business supervision and management, digital media technology, digital design and programming for game simulation. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Gibbs High, 850 34th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/gibbs-hs; (727) 893-5452

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

Center for Advanced Technologies (CAT)*

This college preparatory program prepares students for entry into engineering, medicine, science, multimedia, communications and computer science careers. Students experience hands-on projects with robotics, satellite communications and multimedia technologies. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

Gaming simulation and programming

This program is project-based and focuses on game design, storyboarding, the business side of gaming, programming for single- and multi-user environments, and collaboration. Students will create several games, make digital career portfolios and enjoy classroom visits from industry professionals. Microsoft Tech Associate certifications are available. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

. Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

Institute for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (ISTEM)*

This program offers a technological and a scholar track, based on student academic profiles. The technological track prepares students for college majors in the IT field. Students focus on one of four strands: computer systems and information technology, game and simulation, web design or digital design. The scholar track integrates STEM into all academic courses, and students focus on one of three fields: cybersecurity, biotechnology or engineering technology. Students in either track have opportunities to earn college credit or industry certifications. (Applications from the North County area only.)

. Countryside High, 3000 State Road 580, Clearwater; pcsb.org/countryside-hs; (727) 725-7956

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

Veterinary Science Academy

Prepares students for careers in veterinary medicine, veterinary day care, grooming and agility, and veterinary technology. Students operate a doggy day care, groom animals and serve as surgical assistants to veterinarians during surgery in the on-campus surgical suite. (Applications accepted countywide.)

. Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

Veterinary sciences

Students work with live animals in a hands-on environment. This course also stresses understanding and demonstration of the following elements of the veterinary assisting industry: planning, management, finance, technical and production skills, underlying principles of technology, labor issues, community issues and health, safety and environmental issues. Students who complete the program can sit for the Certified Veterinary Assistant test through the Florida Veterinary Medical Association. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

. Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

School Search 2018: Pinellas options include magnets, academies, fundamentals – Tampa Bay Times

The Pinellas County school system offers nearly 80 special programs for families who want to venture beyond their zoned school, with options that include magnets, fundamental schools and high school career academies. The complete list for the 2019-20 school year is below.

Programs marked with an asterisk have entrance criteria; call the schools for details. Discovery Nights, which offer a chance for students and parents to see the school and meet the staff, begin at 6 p.m. and typically last one to two hours.

For more information, including details on application areas, school bus service and entrance criteria, visit pcsb.org/choice.

ELEMENTARY SCHOOL

The arts

Center for the Arts and International Studies

Students at Perkins explore other cultures through vocal and instrumental music, theater, art and dance. All students have Spanish courses and the facilities include three visual arts classrooms, four music rooms, a 250-seat theater and a dance studio. Students given priority when applying to the arts magnet at John Hopkins Middle. (Applications from South of Ulmerton Road only.)

• Perkins Elementary, 2205 18th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/perkins-es; (727) 893-2659

Discovery Night: Dec. 11

Center for Cultural Arts

Students participate in a creative, integrated art-themed K-5 program that connects academic curriculum with the visual and performing arts. A vibrant local arts culture provides opportunities for a variety of field trips. Students receive two art classes, two music classes, and a creative makerspace experience each week. Students in the cultural arts program also have access to the gifted teaching strategies used in a separate gifted magnet at Midtown Academy. In addition, they will be given priority when applying to the Center for the Arts, Journalism and Multimedia at John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted from South County only.)

• Midtown Academy, 1701 10th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/midtown; (727) 893-1358

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Conservatory for the Arts (New)

Students receive 60 minutes of daily arts instruction. Music, theater, storytelling, dance, movement and the visual arts deepen understanding, critical thinking and problem solving. The arts also allow students to make interdisciplinary curriculum connections and demonstrate knowledge. Community partnerships include Ruth Eckerd Hall, Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, Dunedin Fine Arts Center, Artz4Life and Clearwater Arts Alliance. Students given priority when applying to Tarpon Springs Middle. (Applications accepted from North of Ulmerton Road)

• Sandy Lane Elementary, 1360 Sandy Lane, Clearwater; pcsb.org/sandylane-es; (727) 469-5974

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Fundamental schools

Fundamental schools provide a structured environment and a “back-to-basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. There is daily homework and a dress code that exceeds that of the school district. Parents are required to attend conferences, monthly meetings and certain school activities as determined by the principal. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Bay Vista Fundamental Elementary, 5900 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/bayvista-es; (727) 893-2335

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

• Curtis Fundamental Elementary, 531 Beltrees St., Dunedin; pcsb.org/curtis-es; (727) 738-6483

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

• Lakeview Fundamental Elementary, 2229 25th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakeview-es; (727) 893-2139

Discovery Night: Nov. 7

• Madeira Beach Fundamental Elementary (K-5), 591 Tom Stuart Causeway, Madeira Beach; pcsb.org/mb-ms; (727) 547-7838

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

• Pasadena Fundamental Elementary, 95 72nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/pasadena-es

(727) 893-2646

Discovery Night: Dec. 13

• Tarpon Springs Fundamental Elementary, 400 E Harrison St., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarponfund-es; (727) 943-5508

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

* * *

Gifted programs

The Centers for Gifted Studies offer full-time gifted services to eligible students in grades 1-5. Advanced, integrated, accelerated gifted curriculum will be used daily with the Florida Gifted Frameworks as the foundation to provide daily gifted services. Special focus is placed on critical and creative thinking as well as social-emotional development. To be eligible, parents need to provide a copy of the qualifying IQ scores and a copy of the psychological report or a copy of their active Educational Plan to the school by Jan. 25. Students who meet the eligibility criteria after the deadline may submit a late application.

• Ridgecrest Elementary,* 1901 119th St. N, Largo; pcsb.org/ridgecrest-es; (727) 588-3580

Ridgecrest has been deemed a School of Excellence by Magnet Schools of America. It’s teachers have presented at state, national and international gifted conferences. Ridgecrest students are given priority when applying to Morgan Fitzgerald Middle. (Applications from the mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

• Midtown Academy,* 1701 10th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/midtown; (727) 893-1358

Students are a part of the cultural arts theme at Midtown Academy and experience two art, two music, and creative makerspace classes each week. Student are given priority when applying to Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle. (Applications from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

• North County Center for Gifted Studies* (New), 415 15th St., Palm Harbor; (727) 588-6088

Students at the North County Center for Gifted Studies will experience the schoolwide enrichment model where they will work weekly in interest-based groups with their peers to create original products. They are given priority when applying to Dunedin Highland Middle. (Applications from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 18

* * *

International studies

International Baccalaureate Primary Years program

This program is offered at James B. Sanderlin PK-8 and Mildred Helms IB World Schools. Its transdisciplinary approach focuses on stimulating curiosity and inquiry as students use a conceptual lens to build deeper understanding of real-world issues. Internationally-minded citizens are developed through the 10 attributes of the IB learner profile. Spanish, art, and PE further develop imagination, communication, creativity and original thinking as students become lifelong learners.

• James Sanderlin PK-8 IB World School, 2350 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/sanderlinib; (727) 552-1700

Students are given priority when applying to the Sanderlin Middle Years program and John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

• Mildred Helms Elementary IB World School

561 S Clearwater-Largo Road, Largo; pcsb.org/mildred-es; (727) 588-3569

Students are given priority when applying to Largo Middle. (Applications accepted from mid- and north county areas.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

* * *

Journalism

Center for Journalism and Multimedia Studies

This program equips students with life skills that will serve them no matter what they pursue in the future. Students learn about the world by becoming confident writers, trained photographers, effective communicators and informed, involved citizens. Young journalists explore all aspects of the evolving media, including digital technology, and build confidence through seeing their work in print (four newspapers a year), on a daily TV show and on other platforms. Students are given priority when applying to John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Melrose Elementary, 1752 13th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/melrose-es; (727) 893-2175

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

* * *

Montessori

Montessori Academy

Children explore through hands-on learning materials and understanding beyond memorization. Grace and courtesy lessons teach children to treat each other with respect. The program seeks to build character and a sense of responsibility to the school. Students are given priority when applying to John Hopkins Middle. (Applications accepted from the South County area only.)

• Gulfport Elementary, 2014 52nd St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/gulfport-es; (727) 893-2643

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Center for Advancement of the Sciences and Technology

This program seeks to increase student achievement and interest in science, technology and math. The program emphasizes hands-on activities in the school’s computer, science and Spanish labs, as well as in the on-site pond and gardens. Students are given priority when applying to Bay Point Middle. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Bay Point Elementary, 5800 22nd St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/baypoint-es; (727) 552-1449

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

Centers for Innovation and Digital Learning

The Centers for Innovation and Digital Learning program is offered at Gulf Beaches and Kings Highway elementary schools. The programs deliver a technology-rich environment with personalized learning and project-based approaches using SMART Boards, iPads, Mac laptops and Dell tablets. Students are engaged in interactive online activities and face-to-face lessons that encourage critical thinking. Families play an important role in their children’s learning and the use of technology in the school and at home. Students at both schools are given priority when applying to Tyrone Middle. (For information on transportation and who can apply, see the District Application Programs Guide at pcsb.org/choice.)

• Gulf Beaches Elementary, 8600 Boca Ciega Drive, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/beaches-es; (727) 893-2630

Discovery Night: Dec. 20

• Kings Highway Elementary, 1715 Kings Highway, Clearwater; pcsb.org/kings-es; (727) 223-8949

Discovery Night: Nov. 6

Center for Mathematics and Engineering

This award-winning program offers a unique curriculum created by teachers. Students are provided opportunities to work in diverse teams completing design challenges and hands-on activities, which integrate math, science, reading, writing and social studies. Students conduct research, design solutions, construct models, test effectiveness, analyze results and communicate solutions. The STEAM focus is infused through a strong music and art program as well as a partnership with the Dali Museum. Students are given priority when applying to Azalea and Bay Point middle schools. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. Elementary, 1200 37th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/jamerson-es.; (727) 552-1703

Discovery Night: Nov. 13

MIDDLE SCHOOL

The arts and journalism

Center for International Studies in the Arts and Multimedia Journalism*

Students can focus on one of six areas – visual art, dance, instrumental music, theater, vocal music and multimedia journalism – or, if they live in the south county attendance area, they may apply to the school’s International Baccalaureate Middle Years program. Students participate in advanced or accelerated math, science, social studies or language arts courses, in addition to required elective courses which may include technology, world language, or the arts. Those in the arts receive instruction in their focus areas, while journalism students receive hands-on experience in producing news by exploring all aspects of evolving media, including digital technology. Students who attend the Center for the Arts and International Studies at Perkins Elementary or the Center for Journalism and Multimedia Studies at Melrose Elementary will be given priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• John Hopkins Middle, 701 16th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/hopkins-ms; (727) 893-2400

Discovery Night: Oct. 30

Leadership Conservatory for the Arts*

This program encourages students to develop character and leadership skills in a high-level performing and visual arts program. The rigorous core academics are from the Pre-Advanced International Certificate of Education program developed by the University of Cambridge. Students from Sandy Lane Elementary are given priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

• Tarpon Springs Middle, 501 N Florida Ave., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-ms; (727) 943-5511

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Fundamental schools

Fundamental programs provide a structured environment and a “back-to-basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. There is daily homework and a dress code that exceeds that of the school district. Parents are required to attend conferences, monthly meetings and certain school activities as determined by the principal. Unlike other fundamental middle schools, Thurgood Marshall offers arterial bus service. Check with the school for more details. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Clearwater Fundamental Middle, 1660 Palmetto St., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwaterfund-ms; (727) 298-1609

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

• Madeira Beach Fundamental Middle, 591 Tom Stuart Causeway, Madeira Beach; pcsb.org/mb-ms; (727) 547-7697

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

• Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle, 3901 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/marshall-ms; (727) 552-1737

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

Gifted programs

Middle School Centers for Gifted Studies*

All three middle school gifted centers are designed to deliver a challenging and detailed curriculum that promotes creativity, critical and complex thinking. Applicants must meet all state requirements for gifted placement and provide a copy of their individual educational plan upon request. Documentation of eligibility must be submitted to the schools before the application deadline. Students who meet eligibility criteria after the deadline may submit a late application.

• Dunedin Highland Middle, 70 Patricia Ave., Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-ms; (727) 469-4112

Students from North County elementary schools will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

• Morgan Fitzgerald Middle, 6410 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/fitzgerald-ms; (727) 547-4526

Students from Ridgecrest Elementary will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the mid-county application area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

• Thurgood Marshall Fundamental Middle, 3901 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/marshall-ms; (727) 552-1737

Students from Midtown Academy will get priority if they apply to this program. (Applications accepted from the South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

International studies

Cambridge Pre-Advanced International Certificate of Education*

This rigorous program is designed for academically talented students in grades 6-8. The curriculum is written and administered by the University of Cambridge in England. (Applications accepted from the midcounty area only.)

• Pinellas Park Middle, 6940 70th Ave. N, Pinellas Park; pcsb.org/pp-ms; (727) 545-6400

(Applications from mid-county area only)

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

• Tarpon Springs Middle, 501 N Florida Ave., Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-ms; (727) 943-5511

(Applications from North County area only)

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program*

Provides an intellectually challenging environment that encourages critical thinking. Through the 10 attributes of the IB learner profile, the program reflects real life by encouraging learning beyond traditional subjects with meaningful, in-depth inquiries into global issues. Students in the school’s Primary Years program get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• James B. Sanderlin PK-8 IB World School, 2350 22nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/sanderlinib; (727) 552-1700

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

International Baccalaureate Middle Years Program Candidate Schools*

John Hopkins and Largo middle schools are candidates for the International Baccalaureate (IB) Middle Years Programme (MYP) and are pursuing authorization as an IB World School. The program provides an intellectually challenging environment in which students are encouraged to become critical and reflective thinkers in preparation for success in college, careers and citizenship. Its interdisciplinary approach builds connections between subjects, and its global focus fosters the development of communication skills, intercultural understanding and leadership essentials.

• John Hopkins Middle, 701 16th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/hopkins-ms; (727) 893-2400

(Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Oct. 30

• Largo Middle, 155 Eighth Ave. SE, Largo; pcsb.org/largo-ms; (727) 588-4600

(Applications accepted from north and mid-county areas only)

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Academy of Engineering

This program, offered at Azalea and East Lake middle schools, provides students with a curriculum from Project Lead the Way, which is designed to challenge and engage students’ natural curiosity through hands-on experiences and exciting units of study. Students use design process to creatively and critically explore real-world issues and solve problems.

• Azalea Middle, 7855 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/azalea-ms; (727) 893-2606

Students from Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. Elementary get priority when applying to the Azalea program. (Applications accepted from the south and mid-county areas only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

• East Lake Middle School Academy of Engineering, 1200 Silver Eagle Drive, East Lake; pcsb.org/eastlake-ms; (727) 940-7624

(Applications accepted from the North County area only)

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

Center for Advancement of the Sciences and Technology*

CAST offers a rigorous academic program in which engineering is integrated through advanced math, science, world languages and technology classes. Many students participate in science, math and technology competitions. Students who attend Bay Point and Douglas L. Jamerson Jr. elementary schools get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Bay Point Middle, 2151 62nd Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/baypoint-ms; (727) 893-1153

Discovery Night: Nov. 28 (begins at 5:30 p.m.)

Center for Innovation and Digital Learning

The center focuses on gearing lessons to each student’s needs through project-based lessons, interactive online activities and face-to face lessons that encourage critical thinking. All students learn using electronic devices, and families play an important role in the use of technology both in the school and at home. Students who attend Gulf Beaches and Kings Highway elementary schools get priority when applying to this program. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Tyrone Middle, 6421 22nd Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/tyrone-ms; (727) 893-1819

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

HIGH SCHOOL

The arts

Leadership Conservatory for the Arts*

This four-year program creates a discovery zone for developing musicians, dancers and artists, with a course of study that combines leadership skills, performing arts, rigorous academics and technology. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

Pinellas County Center for the Arts (PCCA)*

Students choose a focus on dance, technical production, instrumental music, musical theater, performance theater, visual arts or vocal music. Applicants must complete an audition. Through individual instruction, performances and exhibitions, students are trained to pursue an arts profession and/or continue their studies in college. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Gibbs High, 850 34th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/gibbs-hs; (727) 893-5452

Discovery Night: Nov. 12

Academy of Entertainment Arts

This career and college preparatory academy is designed for students with an interest in the creative fields of cinematography, photography, graphic design, 3D animation, gaming production and digital music development. Courses are taught by instructors who have worked in the creative field. The students will produce real-world work while using industry standard equipment and may earn industry certifications in Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, Premiere, InDesign, Dreamweaver, and Flash. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876, ext. 2097

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

Commercial and digital arts

This program is for creative, career-oriented students interested in taking their existing artistic skills to the next level. Tech High provides a working design studio environment for students to study the entire spectrum of digital art and graphic design. This includes use of Adobe Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign software as well as studying many facets of advertising, illustration, art history, typography, branding and package design, outdoor ads, color theory, logos, posters, billboards, t-shirt design, illustration and more. Students will also create a digital portfolio and have multiple industry certification and internship opportunities. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Automotive

Automotive Manufacturing Technology Center

This program offers two tracks: automotive service technology and manufacturing and production. Academic and technical studies are integrated into all courses. The service technology track prepares students to work in the automotive repair industry, while the manufacturing and production track prepares them for careers in manufacturing industries. Students learn analytical, critical and creative thinking and use the latest technological resources. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

* * *

Construction

Academy of Architecture, Robotics and Construction

Provides students with opportunities to develop real-world skills that can be applied to jobs in architecture, robotics and construction. In architectural design, students receive instruction in computer-assisted drawing and major design concepts. The robotics program gives students hands-on instruction in robots that perform a variety of functions. The construction program focuses on all aspects of building, including masonry, plumbing, carpentry and electrical operations. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Dunedin High, 1651 Pinehurst Road, Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-hs; (727) 469-4100

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

Center for Construction Technologies

Students in grades 9 and 10 explore five aspects of the construction field in a hands-on environment – masonry, carpentry, plumbing, electrical and HVAC. Students in grades 11 and 12 choose a construction major and spend part of their school day attending building construction classes at Pinellas Technical College St. Petersburg, where they can earn certification and pre-apprenticeship hours. (Applications accepted in the South County area only.)

• St. Petersburg High, 2501 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/stpete-hs; (727) 893-1842

Discovery Night: Dec. 11

Construction technology / electrical

The building and construction technology program lets students explore potential careers in construction, entrepreneurships and carpentry. Upon completion, students can enter the construction industry as carpentry helpers or first-year construction workers. Topics also include drywall work, plumbing, blueprints and masonry. The electricity program covers the basics of electricity and circuit wiring. Students will solve problems and develop projects while engaging in hands-on learning. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Culinary arts

The programs at Northeast and Dixie Hollins high schools provide students with hands-on training in the culinary arts and hospitality industry. Students will explore and study worldwide cultures while developing specialized skills in food identification, selection, purchasing and preparation. They also can get certified in culinary work.

Academy of Culinary Arts

(Applications accepted in the South County area only.)

• Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Center for Culinary Arts

(Applications accepted in the mid-county area only.)

• Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876, ext. 2097

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

Jacobson Culinary Arts Academy

In addition to preparing food, students learn about nutrition, marketing, the hospitality industry, restaurant designing, catering, and management. The program features an 11,600-square-foot facility with two teaching kitchens, 48 student cooking stations, a 50-seat teaching kitchen-auditorium, and a 100-seat dining room-restaurant. Upon graduation, students are prepared to pursue advanced culinary training or start careers in the field of food preparation and restaurant management. (Applications accepted from the North County area only.)

• Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

* * *

Education

Exploring Careers & Education in Leadership (ExCEL)

This program focuses on leadership development and career exploration through hands-on learning that students can later apply to real-world situations. Students learn through projects, career shadowing and other opportunities outside the classroom. They participate in honors or Advanced Placement courses in math, science, social studies or language arts, plus electives. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Largo High, 410 Missouri Ave., Largo; excel.pcsb.org; (727) 588-4622

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

Center for Education and Leadership

This program promotes teacher training opportunities and academic rigor by preparing students for academic and career areas requiring postsecondary education. Students will take teaching assisting courses for all four years of high school to explore and develop instructional delivery. They also will spend a minimum of 150 observation hours and participate in focused learning activities. Students may earn college credits as part of the program. (Applications accepted from the mid-county area only.)

• Seminole High, 8401 131st St. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/seminole-hs; (727) 547-7536

Discovery Night: Dec. 12

* * *

Environmental

Academy for Aquatic Management Systems and Environmental Technology

Geared to students with a strong personal commitment to the study of environmental and marine sciences. Offers special training in ecology, environmental sciences, marine biology, agroponics, aquaculture and water resource conservation. The program features an on-campus, 2-acre outdoor classroom. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

* * *

Finance

Academy of Finance

Introduces students to the financial services industry, offering college preparatory courses in computers, economics, finance, insurance, accounting, banking and financial planning. Students work with mentors from the business community in job shadowing and internships, and they staff the on-campus Viking Branch, a real credit union sponsored by Achieva Credit Union. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

* * *

Fundamental programs`

Fundamental programs provide a structured environment and a “back to basics” approach focusing on student responsibility and self-discipline. Parents are required to attend meetings each month and have regular communication with teachers. The curriculum is heavy on homework and there are high expectations for student behavior and cooperation. The dress code is more strict than at other high schools, and a system of demerits requires students to stay on task. (Applications for all three high school fundamental programs are accepted countywide. For details on transportation, visit pcsb.org/choice.

• Boca Ciega High (School-within-a-school program), 924 58th St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/bocaciega-hs; (727) 893-2780

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

• Dunedin High (School-within-a-school program), 1651 Pinehurst Road, Dunedin; pcsb.org/dunedin-hs; (727) 469-4100

Discovery Night: Nov. 28

• Osceola Fundamental High (Schoolwide program), 9751 98th St. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/osceola-hs; (727) 547-7717

Discovery Night: Nov. 5

* * *

International studies

Cambridge Program – Advanced International Certificate of Education (AICE)*

Developed by Cambridge University, the AICE program offers a curriculum with a global perspective, preparing high school students for further education while offering them the opportunity to tailor their studies to their interests, skills and goals. College credit may be available for students who complete the program.

• Clearwater High, 540 S Hercules Ave., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwater-hs; (727) 298-1620. (Applications accepted from mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Oct. 29

• Dixie Hollins High, 4940 62nd St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/dixie-hs; (727) 547-7876. (Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 29

• Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900. (Applications accepted from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

International Baccalaureate (IB) program*

The IB program provides a rigorous college preparatory, liberal arts curriculum. There are six areas of study – language (English), second language (Spanish or French), individuals and societies, experimental sciences, math and the arts. The core of the program is the Theory of Knowledge class, the Extended Essay and a community service component. College credit may be available for students who complete the program.

• Largo High, 410 Missouri Ave., Largo; pcsb.org/largo-hs

(727) 588-3758. (Applications accepted from the mid-county area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 7

• Palm Harbor University High, 1900 Omaha St., Palm Harbor

Phuhs.org; (727) 669-1131. (Applications accepted from North County area only.)

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

• St. Petersburg High, 2501 Fifth Ave. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/stpete-hs; (727) 893-1842. (Applications accepted from South County area only.)

Discovery Night: Dec. 3

Career Academy for International Culture & Commerce

Introduces students to international business with an emphasis on global studies and cultural diversity. Offers courses in information technology, business software applications, accounting, international finance and law. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Clearwater High, 540 S Hercules Ave., Clearwater; pcsb.org/clearwater-hs; (727) 298-1620

Discovery Night: Oct. 29

* * *

Journalism

Center for Journalism and Multimedia

This program, known as CJAM, is designed for students with an interest in journalism and communications. Students focus on real-life journalism experiences, building skills in writing, photography, videography and design. Their work is published in the Spartan News Network newspaper and website. In 2018, SNN received the Silver Crown Award from the Columbia University Scholastic Press Association. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave.S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

* * *

Marine mechanics

The program is designed to prepare students for entry-level employment as marine mechanics and is aligned to meet current industry needs. Students will learn skills in outboard, inboard and personal watercraft service as they navigate the marine repair industry. A marine electrical certification is available. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

Medicine, public safety & law

Center for Wellness and Medical Professions*

Prepares students for careers in the medical field and helps them develop a commitment to personal wellness and the prevention of disease. Students have the opportunity to prepare for college or pursue entry-level medical and wellness jobs after high school. (See the District Application Programs Guide at pcsb.org/choice for information on how your home address affects which program you apply to.)

• Boca Ciega High, 924 58th St. S, Gulfport; pcsb.org/bocaciega-hs; (727) 893-2780

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

• Palm Harbor University High, 1900 Omaha St., Palm Harbor; pcsb.org/phuhs; (727) 669-1131

Discovery Night: Nov. 27

Criminal Justice Academy*

This four-year program is for students focused on careers in law, law enforcement and related fields. Students learn about police operations, court and corrections procedures, civil law and crime scene investigations. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Pinellas Park High, 6305 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/CJA; (727) 538-7410

Discovery Night: Nov. 13

First Responders: National Guard Center for Emergency Management*

Instruction in this four-year program focuses on broad, transferable skills in the first responder fields. Students can earn certification in first aid, CPR, the use of automatic external defibrillators, Homeland Security and the National Incident Management System. After graduation, they will be ready to enter college or the workforce or continue their technical training. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Pinellas Park High, 6305 118th Ave. N, Largo; pcsb.org/pp-hs; (727) 538-7410

Discovery Night: Dec. 10

Nursing

This program provides hands-on, real-world training and 40 clinical hours that can be applied to the 600 clinical hours required in the Licensed Practical Nursing program. Students can go on to nursing programs at Pinellas Technical College, St. Petersburg College and the University of South Florida. Topics include anatomy and physiology, disease prevention, basic patient care and proper use of medical equipment. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

* * *

STEM (science, technology, engineering and math)

Academy of Engineering

The format for this four-year program is provided by Project Lead the Way through Rochester Institute of Technology. It offers an introduction to engineering, aeronautical engineering, computer-integrated manufacturing, digital electronics, principles of biotechnology engineering, civil architecture, and engineering design and development. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• East Lake High, 1300 Silver Eagle Drive, East Lake; pcsb.org/eastlake-hs; (727) 942-5419

Discovery Night: Nov. 14

Academy of Information Technology

Students will develop skills on how to use Microsoft Office, build a computer, program computers, and use Adobe Photoshop and Premiere Pro. Students apply image and web design principles and use the principles of cybersecurity with ethical hacking. There are 2 tracks: digital media technology, where students learn all the principles and basics of digital storytelling and work on the school TV program, and music technology and sound engineering, which gives students the opportunity to learn acoustics and develop skills in critical listening, recording and audio editing. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Northeast High, 5500 16th St. N, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/northeast-hs; (727) 570-3138

Discovery Night: Dec. 6

Business Economics Technology Academy (BETA)*

This program blends business and technological skills with a hands-on curriculum that encourages critical thinking. Students can earn industry certification in their chosen pathway, including business supervision and management, digital media technology, digital design and programming for game simulation. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Gibbs High, 850 34th St. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/gibbs-hs; (727) 893-5452

Discovery Night: Nov. 15

Center for Advanced Technologies (CAT)*

This college preparatory program prepares students for entry into engineering, medicine, science, multimedia, communications and computer science careers. Students experience hands-on projects with robotics, satellite communications and multimedia technologies. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Lakewood High, 1400 54th Ave. S, St. Petersburg; pcsb.org/lakewood-hs; (727) 893-2926

Discovery Night: Dec. 19

Gaming simulation and programming

This program is project-based and focuses on game design, storyboarding, the business side of gaming, programming for single- and multi-user environments, and collaboration. Students will create several games, make digital career portfolios and enjoy classroom visits from industry professionals. Microsoft Tech Associate certifications are available. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave., Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

Institute for Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (ISTEM)*

This program offers a technological and a scholar track, based on student academic profiles. The technological track prepares students for college majors in the IT field. Students focus on one of four strands: computer systems and information technology, game and simulation, web design or digital design. The scholar track integrates STEM into all academic courses, and students focus on one of three fields: cybersecurity, biotechnology or engineering technology. Students in either track have opportunities to earn college credit or industry certifications. (Applications from the North County area only.)

• Countryside High, 3000 State Road 580, Clearwater; pcsb.org/countryside-hs; (727) 725-7956

Discovery Night: Dec. 5

Veterinary Science Academy

Prepares students for careers in veterinary medicine, veterinary day care, grooming and agility, and veterinary technology. Students operate a doggy day care, groom animals and serve as surgical assistants to veterinarians during surgery in the on-campus surgical suite. (Applications accepted countywide.)

• Tarpon Springs High, 1411 Gulf Road, Tarpon Springs; pcsb.org/tarpon-hs; (727) 943-4900

Discovery Night: Nov. 26

Veterinary sciences

Students work with live animals in a hands-on environment. This course also stresses understanding and demonstration of the following elements of the veterinary assisting industry: planning, management, finance, technical and production skills, underlying principles of technology, labor issues, community issues and health, safety and environmental issues. Students who complete the program can sit for the Certified Veterinary Assistant test through the Florida Veterinary Medical Association. (Applications accepted countywide; transportation offered to mid-county students)

• Richard O. Jacobson Technical High, 12611 86th Ave. N, Seminole; pcsb.org/PTHS; (727) 545-6405

Discovery Night: Dec. 4

Peace or War in Cyberspace?

Authors: Anne Speckhard & Ardian Shajkovci

With estimates of 3000 foreign fighters traveling to Syria and Iraq, Jordan had the highest per capita number of foreign fighters. In addition to Abu Musab Zarqawi having been the leader of al Qaeda in Iraq, Jordanians also rose to leadership positions in ISIS. Given the continued online recruitment of Jordanians by ISIS, the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism (ICSVE) ran two Facebook Awareness Campaigns in Jordan using ICSVE’s Breaking the ISIS Brand Counter Narrative videos. Between the campaign and organic activities, one of the counter narrative videos received over 1.7 million views.

Introduction –ISIS and Militant Jihadi Terrorist Recruitment in Jordan

Since the onset of the Syrian conflict in 2011, it is estimated that upwards of 40,000 foreign fighters joined Sunni militant groups such as ISIS and al Nusra in Iraq and Syria. Approximately 11,000 of the estimated 40, 000 are believed to be from the Middle East, with countries such as Jordan, Saudi Arabia, and Tunisia supplying the vast majority of foreign fighters. While estimates differ, Jordan has seen nearly 3,000 men and women join ISIS and other Sunni militant groups in Iraq and Syria over the past years, together with Tunisians and Saudis, rounding out the list of top sources of foreign fighters.[1]According to some estimates, Jordan is ranked as either the first or the second country in the world with the highest number of foreign fighters, on a per capita basis, in the Syrian and the Iraq conflict.[2]Jordanians who joined Jabhat al Nusra the local Syrian arm of al-Qaeda, and later ISIS, often held leadership positions in these groups, advocating for militant jihadi terrorism in the region.[3]In fact, in the first iteration of ISIS, Abu Musab Zarqawi, a Jordanian-born jihadist militant who led al-Qaeda in Iraq, hailed from Zarqa, Jordan.[4]

The drivers of radicalization to violent extremism in Jordan are many. Beginning with a decades-long history of violent extremist and terrorist movements operating in Jordan, and involving Jordanians, alongside the destabilizing and radicalizing factors occurring in the region and globally, once relatively peaceful Jordan has absorbed both its share of terrorist attacks and a growing hub of terrorist groups and their ideologies, with al-Nusra and ISIS operating in Syria and Iraq at its current center. Moreover, the repeated influx of refugees from neighboring conflicts, economic and governance challenges, and Salafi influences migrating into Jordan have all combined to create vulnerabilities and motivations on a psychosocial level that have ideological resonance to terrorist recruitment inside Jordan.[5]Despite the volatile conditions, Jordanian leadership has managed to maintain political stability in the country, and is one of the trusted U.S. and coalition partners against ISIS and the so-called Islamic State. Jordan, however, remains a country of ‘easy recruits’ for terrorist groups like ISIS and al-Qaeda,[6]especially when considering the proximity of the battlegrounds in Syria and Iraq.[7]

Recent Changes in ISIS since its Territorial Defeat

While ISIS has lost most of the territory it once held in Iraq, and much of Syria, some 11,000 ISIS cadres are still believed to be active and operating in Iraq and Syria, though recent research indicates that numbers may actually be upwards of 30, 000.[8]Likewise, ISIS remains a formidable terrorist organization with a brand and dream of creating an Islamic State Caliphate and has also proven itself capable of spreading itself beyond its original territory, namely with ISIS affiliates continuing to recruit for, and control, territories in countries such as Libya, Afghanistan, Egypt, and Algeria.[9]

In addition to kidnappings and insurgent and clandestine type activities in Iraq and Syria,[10]the group also remains focused on orchestrating, inspiring, and carrying out external attacks, which, in part, are carried out to demonstrate the group’s resilience as well as debunk claims and predictions of the group’s ultimate demise. ISIS has inspired or carried out attacks in more than 31 countries that have killed more than 2,000 people outside of Syria and Iraq.[11]For instance, in 2015, ISIS supporters and admirers, inspired by ISIS social media propaganda, were able to carry out one of the deadliest terrorist attacks in the history of modern Tunisia.[12]

Recent militant jihadi activities in Jordan have also given cause for serious concern. In 2016, ISIS terrorists attacked Karak Castle, a popular tourist destination in Jordan, killing 10 and injuring 34. [13]In January 2018, Jordan’s General Intelligence Department (GID) reported to have prevented a major terrorist plot by ISIS involving 17 suspects. Potential targets included civilian, military, and religious facilities.[14]More recently, on August 10th, 2018, a police sergeant was killed in al-Fuheis when a police patrol car was blown up during a music festival in the town. The law enforcement managed to trace the attackers to a house in the city of Salt where they engaged in a shootout with police and ultimately exploded their bomb-rigged hideout rather than be arrested. The attackers were Jordanians. Their affiliation to any known terrorist group remains undisclosed,[15]though some experts in Jordan suggest they were either inspired or directed by ISIS. These represent only a short list of the many terrorist attacks involving Jordan.

Internet Recruiting & Terrorist Activity in Jordan

Compared to other militant jihadist groups, ISIS’ strengths lie in its ability to maximize its reach by betting on innovation and exploiting social media platforms. Its mastery of modern digital tools has enabled it to support its war and state-building efforts during the time it held and controlled significant swaths of territories in Iraq and Syria. Today, given its significant territorial loses, it continues to rely on social media to enable, direct, and inspire terrorist attacks worldwide. The same is now also being used to encourage and facilitate travel to other territories it controls—even still successfully attracting upwards of 100 foreign fighters per month to come to Syria and Iraq while in territorial retreat.[16]ISIS’ propaganda production arm is no longer as prolific, yet the group continues to successfully use the Internet to recruit and orchestrate terrorist attacks. In this regard, the military defeat of ISIS and the so-called Islamic State should not reduce the need and the urgency to counter the online appeal of ISIS and similar violent extremist groups.

In focus testing the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism’s (ICSVE) Breaking the ISIS Brand Counter Narrative videos in Zarqa and Irbid in 2016 and 2017, respectively, with high school and college-age youth (n=54), we found that ISIS still manages to reach out to youth and attempt to attract them into the group. In fact, in the absence of adequate support and resources, many among the youth we spoke to shared how they often turn to the Internet to find answers regarding the claims made by groups like ISIS.[17]For instance, some noted, “If I say I’m bored on Facebook, they [ISIS recruiters] contact me.” Others pointed out how the ISIS recruiters know Islamic scriptures and hadithsbetter than those they are recruiting. Some commented how their parents, teachers, and imams were not open to discussing such topics, specifically, “No one wants to talk to us about these things. They are all worried about the GID.” As a result, the youth we spoke to were both vulnerable to ISIS recruitment due to their Internet activities and for searching answers on the Internet to refute their claims.

Fighting ISIS on Facebook in Jordan

In December of 2017 and July of 2018, respectively, the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism (ICSVE) responded to such concerns in Jordan by promoting two ICSVE-produced counter narrative videos from its Breaking the ISIS Brand Counter Narrative Projectto learn if it was possible to raise public awareness in the vulnerable age group to ISIS recruitment in Jordan and also disrupt ISIS’ online and face-to-face recruitment occurring in social media platforms like Facebook by using video clips produced from interviews of ISIS insiders denouncing the group. (While a full discussion of the ICSVE Breaking the ISIS Brand Counter Narrativevideos is not possible in this limited space, more information about the project can be found here.)

The two ICSVE counter narrative videos that were used in the campaign were Promises of ad-Dawlah to Womenand Rewards of Joining the Islamic State. The former features Laura Passoni, a Belgium woman who left Belgium with her son to join ISIS in Syria after being jilted by her partner. The latter features thirty-three-year old Abu Ghazwan, an Iraqi who, by joining ISIS, hoped to restore rights and dominance to Iraqi Sunnis. In the video, he discusses his involvement with ISIS, namely his role in placing bombs and attacking the enemies of the group. Both ISIS speakers denounce ISIS as un-Islamic, corrupt, and overly brutal, and express their deep regret over ever joining.

The two public safety awareness campaigns in Jordan were run by using Facebook ads. The month-long campaigns served to raise awareness about the dangers of joining violent extremist groups like ISIS as well as to drive online engagement among the citizens of Jordan over Facebook. Facebook was the digital platform of choice as it remains a popular social media communication platform in Jordan. ICSVE research in Jordan also suggested the need to focus on Facebook, as many vulnerable youth have and continue to be contacted by ISIS via Facebook.

According to a 2016 study, around 93 % of Internet users in Jordan use social networks, with Facebook and WhatsApp representing the most used social media platforms. [18]

Source: Ghazal (2016)[19]

According to Arab Social Media Report, 89 % of the internet users in Jordan prefer Facebook (5,300, 000), 71 % WhatsApp, 66% YouTube, 34 % Instagram, and 33% Twitter (See below for a breakdown). [20]

Middle East Internet Users, Population and Facebook Statistics
Country Pop. (2018 Est.) Users in Dec/2000 Internet Usage Dec-31-2017 % Pop. (Penetration) Internet % users Facebook

Dec-31-2017

Bahrain 1, 566, 993 40,000 1,535,653 98.0% 1.0 % 1,100,000
Iran 82, 011, 735 250,000 56,700,000 69.1 % 34.6 % 40,000,000
Iraq 39,339,753 12,500 19,000,000 48.3 % 11.6 % 17,000,000
Israel 8, 452, 841 1,270, 000 6, 740, 287 79.7 % 4.1 % 5, 800, 000
Jordan 9,903,802 127, 300 8,700, 000 87.8 % 5.3 % 5,300, 000
Kuwait 4, 197, 128 150,000 4, 104, 347 97.8 % 2.5 % 3, 100, 000
Lebanon 6, 093, 509 300, 000 5, 546, 494 91.0 % 3.4 % 3, 600, 000
Oman 4, 829, 946 90,000 3, 310, 260 68.5 % 2.0 % 2, 630, 000
Palestine 5, 052, 776 35,000 3, 055, 088 60.5 % 1.9 % 1, 700, 000
Qatar 2, 694, 849 30, 000 2, 644, 580 98.1 % 1.6 % 2, 300, 000
Saudi Arabia 33, 554, 343 200, 000 30, 257, 715 90.2 % 18.4% 18,000,000
Syria 18, 284, 407 30,000 6, 625, 631 33.0 % 3.7 % 4, 900,000
UAE 9, 541, 615 735,000 9, 385, 420 98.4 % 5.7 % 8, 700, 000
Yemen 28, 915, 284 15,000 7, 031, 784 24. 3 % 4.3 % 2, 352,942
Total 254,438,981 3, 284,800 164,037,259 64.5 % 100 % 116, 482,942

Source: Internet World Stats[21]

Results of the Jordanian Facebook Public Awareness Campaigns

Video: Promises of ad-Dawlah to Women Campaign (Run Dec 7 to Dec 31, 2017)

Geographic and Demographic Reach:

In terms of geographic breakdown, our first campaign targeted the following areas in Jordan: Balqa Governorate, Ma’an Governorate, Mafraq Governorate, Zarqa Governorate, Irbid Governorate, Amman Governorate, Ajloun Governorate, Jerash Governorate, and Madaba Governorate. Our sample targeted some of the areas considered as hotbeds of radicalization in Jordan, namely Ma’an, Zarqa, and Irbid Governorates. Amman (538, 826), Irbid (117, 364), and Zarqa (46, 203) governorates achieved the highest reach. Seventy percent of the reached population is male and 30 percent female (See figure 1 for demographic and reach breakdown across two genders).

Table A contains a breakdown of video views by age group and the area targeted and serves to demonstrate reach in the relevant age categories in areas considered as the hotbeds of extremism, namely in Salt, Irbid and Zarqa.

Video Views:

Table B presents data on how much our video content was watched. The campaign generated a total reach of 797, 866, while also leading to 1, 456, 872 impressions and close to 869, 472 video views (See Table B).[1]

Table B presents data on how much our video content was watched. There is a total of 869, 472 video views at 3%, 10 %, 25% (89, 733), 50 % (74, 742), 75% (54,220), 95% (38, 545) and 100 % (8, 924) video watches. As the data indicate, there are a total of 266,164 clicked-to-play shared among 25%, 50%, 75 %, 95%, and 100 % recorded watches. Note, however, that the percentages include those who watched the full length of the video and those who skipped to the end of the video.

The video average watch time is 0:19, calculated as the video total watch time/total number of video plays (this includes replays). This number highlights the potential usefulness of making shortened versions of the videos for complementary ads, as some viewers will only watch very short videos. They may click through ashort version and, once hooked by it, watch the longer version.[22]However, the fact that thousands did watch the entire video may indicate that some will be hooked by the content, while others less so.

The impression score in Table B indicates the total number of times our content was displayed, regardless of whether clicked or not. In other words, the score indicates the number of times our reached target base has been exposed to our video content. The higher the impression score, the more indicative that people are seeing our content, that they are becoming more exposed to our content, and that they are sharing our content.

The impression frequency of 1.83 (Impression/Reach) indicates the average number of times each individual has seen our ad over the period of thirty days. That said, because Facebook ad frequency indicates an average score, in practice, this means that some among our target audience might have been reached a number of times while others only once. Campaigns with high reach naturally have lower frequency rate. Moreover, the relatively low frequency rate of 1.83 suggests that we are not oversaturating out target audience with our content.

The campaign generated a relevance score of 7, calculated on a 1-10 scale. The higher the relevance score, the better in terms of how our audience is responding to our ad. Facebook calculates the relevance score “based on the positive and negative feedback we expect an ad to receive from its target audience.”[23]It is calculated based on a number of factors, such as the positive vs. negative feedback it is expected to receive. For instance, video views, shares, and likes represent positive indicators. Conversely, the number of times our ad is hidden, or when someone clicks “ I don’t want to see this” our ad, represent negative indicators. Five hundred impressions need to be received before a relevance score is generated. This Facebook ad metric is useful to better identify our target audiences and use it for our campaign optimization. That said, the relevance score is used to measure relevance of a campaign and not the quality of the campaign. Put differently, it is generated based on interaction and interest in our campaign. The relatively high relevance score suggests that the ads are generating audience engagement.

Post Reactions:

The Facebook ad also led to a total of 4, 398 post reactions (e.g. Like, love, haha, wow, sad, and angry), comments and shares. For instance, there are 3, 487 post likes, 261 love, and 147 sad reactions. In addition, there are a total of 168 comments and 169 post shares.

Video: Rewards of Islamic State Campaign (run from July 15 to August 15, 2018)

Geographic and Demographic Reach:

The July 2018 campaign targeted the following areas in Jordan: Balqa Governorate, Ma’an Governorate, Karak Governorate, Mafraq Governorate, Tafilah Governorate, Zarqa Governorate, Irbid Governorate, Amman Governorate, Ajloun Governorate, Jerash Governorate, Aqaba Governorate, and Madaba Governorate. Our sample targeted some of the areas considered as hotbeds of radicalization in Jordan, namely Ma’an, Zarqa, and Irbid Governorates. Amman (35, 136), Irbid (5, 792), and Zarqa (2,496) governorates achieved the highest reach. Ninety-six percent of the reached population is male and four percent female (See figure 2 for demographic and reach breakdown across two genders).

Video Views:

This campaign generated a total reach of 48, 432, while also leading to 74, 875 impressions and close to 38, 584 video views. The video views are calculated at 3%, 10 %, 25%, 50 %, 75%, 95%, and 100 % video views (see Table C)

The Facebook ad led to a total of 214 post reactions, (e.g. Like, love, haha, wow, sad, and angry), 45 post comments, and 7 post shares (See Table C). The video average watch time is 0:57, calculated as the video total watch time/total number of video plays (this includes replays). The campaign generated a relevance score of 10, calculated on a 1-10 scale.

Comments for both Campaigns

As discussed above, the videos generated hundreds of comments related to ISIS, the message, and the messaging strategy applied to our counter-narratives. While there were many supportive comments, there were also those attempting to discredit ICSVE’s videos, claiming they were fake, that the defectors were lying, and that they are used to distort Islam. Arguably, some such comments may have been made by innocent individuals who felt the need to defend their religion, which they may have perceived to be under attack in the video clips. Moreover, the comments might also have been from ISIS supporters and recruiters trying to discredit the anti-ISIS messaging contained in the videos. See sample comments below.

“Supportive Category”—comments in support of the video, its message against ISIS, the characters in the video, or the campaign in general.

“It’s called Daesh, not an Islamic State. It is a sect that does not provide the religion of Islam. Its purpose is to distort Islam, even if you look at Islam from the Holy Quran”—Promises of ad-Dawlah

A really painful reality”—Promises of ad-Dawlah She was deceived by these scoundrels because of her bad mental state at the time. But the main reason behind what happened with her was to follow one person and believe what he says without comprehensive knowledge. She was also naive and believed that she will find paradise in the world…The terrorist organization called Daesh is only an extremist group that claims Islam and is in reality expanding geographically and militarily by using naïve ones like this woman…It is very painful to find such criminals who distort the image of Islam in the eyes of people”—Promises of ad-Dawlah). “The truest word Laura has said is that they are not Muslims” –Promises of ad-Dawlah.

“ This isn’t Islam”

“Excellent work for awareness”—Rewards of Joining IS

“ It is necessary to slay, kill, explode and destroy until you win. What religion do you belong?”

“ We really believe you, you are not ignorant[defector]. But you are the enemy of Islam”

Comments in defense of Islam and “Negative Category”—comments expressing dislike towards the video, characters featured in the video, or the campaign in general

“ Those who distort images of Islam are wrong…but there is a big conspiracy against Islam that will be revealed by God”

“ISIS=GID”

“…she is really a lie”—Promises of ad-Dawlah This is all a lie…fabrication and distortion”—Promises of ad-Dawlah (…an American industry distorting the minds of the Arab-Islamic generation to eliminate Islam gradually, there is no God but Allah, Muhammed is the messenger of Allah”—Promises of ad-Dawlah

“America is the godfather of terrorism”

“ The video lies …to eliminate the Sunnis and Sunni cities…fabrication and distortion in a cancerous way”

Conclusion

Law enforcement, intelligence and CVE professionals around the world continue to assess the extent to which the collapse of so-called ISIS Caliphate will affect ISIS’ propaganda machinery and online recruitment efforts. As evidence from the field suggests, violent extremist groups like ISIS continue to thrive online, and may even have stepped up their online recruitment efforts with vulnerable youth to try to demonstrate the group’s continued virulence. In doing so, groups like ISIS attempt to persuade their online recruits to carry out homegrown terrorist attacks in their name. They also continue to “harass, recruit and incite violence” online,[24]and this may actually increase in the future.

In addition, some Jordanian security experts have noted that “ the roots of Jordan’s security problem lie in prevalence of extremist ideology in the country, which is in turn empowered by the frustrations of everyday life by many Jordanians.”[25]As also evidenced during our research in Jordan, online ISIS recruiters are very adept at exploiting such issues. ISIS recruiters “sell” one type of narrative, while ISIS insiders disillusioned with the group’s ability to actually deliver what it is selling may be the most potent force to destroy their terrorist narrative.

Despite takedown policies instituted by social media companies, violent extremist groups continue to operate freely online. While important, once an account has been suspended, there is little that can be done to prevent a user from opening a new, or multiple new accounts. Moreover, the shutdown of extremist content online is heavily reliant on user reporting of extremist content online, which is equally problematic. Likewise, in the case of YouTube, many experts following extremist content online remark that while takedown policies are rapid for English content, Arabic extremist content often remains present for much longer periods of time.

The purpose of this safety ad awareness campaign was to test if vulnerable audiences can be reached through a Facebook awareness campaign and to attempt to raise awareness about the realities of joining extremist groups like ISIS in order to protect potential vulnerable Jordanian recruits from considering joining. Our campaign was successful in driving engagement with our counter narrative materials. In combination, our ads generated a total reach of 808, 035 and close to 908, 056 video views. They also led to thousands of page engagements and hundreds of comments related to our video, ISIS in general, and other contentious socio-political issues that drive and affect violent extremism in Jordan.

While we were able to observe engagement with our counter-narratives, it is far more difficult to observe or report direct cognitive or behavioral changes among those who support violent extremist groups or ideologies. We hope that may in fact be occurring. As some researchers have observed,” It is possible that some of the counter-narrative narrative videos have managed to dissuade individuals from joining or supporting extremist groups, but those users are simply not leaving comments like, ‘Great, [this] video really changed my mind.’”[26]We have only engagement statistics to go by, and in that regard, we were able to observe that the videos can reach and engage the demographics in Jordan who are also vulnerable to being reached online by ISIS propaganda and recruitment efforts.

We will continue to expand our targeting campaigns, including in Jordan, and to drive further engagement on our newly created TheRealJihad.org website and seek support from those who may be willing to act as influencers and interact one- on- one with those who comment thereby magnifying the impact of our counter-narratives.[27]

Ardian Shajkovci, Ph.D.is the Director of Research and a Senior Research Fellow at the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism (ICSVE). He has been collecting interviews with ISIS defectors and studying their trajectories into and out of terrorism as well as training key stakeholders in law enforcement, intelligence, educators, and other countering violent extremism professionals on the use of counter-narrative messaging materials produced by ICSVE both locally and internationally. He has also been studying the use of children as violent actors by groups such as ISIS and how to rehabilitate them. He has conducted fieldwork in Western Europe, the Balkans, Central Asia, Africa, and the Middle East, mostly recently in Jordan and Iraq. He has presented at professional conferences and published on the topic of radicalization and terrorism. He holds a doctorate in Public Policy and Administration, with a focus on Homeland Security Policy, from Walden University. He obtained his M.A. degree in Public Policy and Administration from Northwestern University and a B.A. degree in International Relations and Diplomacy from Dominican University. He is also an adjunct professor teaching counterterrorism and CVE courses at Nichols College .

Endnotes:

first published in our partner ICSVE

Wrap-up of candidates for local, district, state and Congressional seats

Editor’s Note:Over the course of the last three weeks, as part of Siuslaw News’ Nov. 6 election coverage, each of the candidates for positions on the Florence City Council, District 9, Governor and Congressional District 4 participated in a Q&A with the Siuslaw News. Each of those articles appears below, beginning with the Florence City Council and ending with the Congressional race. If you missed any of those articles, you can find them here by scrolling through.

By Chantelle Meyer/Siuslaw News

As part of the Nov. 6 General Election coverage, Siuslaw News reached out to the four candidates running for positions on the Florence City Council.

Florence Mayor Joe Henry is again running unopposed for his two-year position. Three community members, Geraldine Lucio, Maureen Miltenberger and incumbent Woody Woodbury, are in the running for two four-year city council positions, which are currently held by Susy Lacer and Woodbury, who was appointed to the council in January.

All four candidates answered questions about their experiences, reasons for running and plans for the city. In alphabetical order, read an introduction to each person and then see their responses to five questions.

Disclaimer: Siuslaw News is not endorsing any candidate or measure included in this series. Any views or opinions stated are exclusively those of the individuals themselves. Siuslaw News is not responsible for the accuracy or reliability of information submitted by the individuals.

Joe Henry — Position: Florence Mayor

Henry is employed as a mortgage originator. His background includes more than 36 years in business management with two major companies, plus profit and loss responsibility for 350 consumer and mortgage branch offices, with approximately 1,350 employees.

Geraldine Lucio — Position: Florence City Councilor

Lucio is a small business owner who operates Old Town Barbershop. Previously, she worked for USAA and JP Morgan providing internet support and customer service. She then switched gears and attended Avenue Five Institute School of Cosmetology to become a third-generation barber.

Maureen Miltenberger — Position: Florence City Councilor

Miltenberger is retired from over 40 years in the fields of education, program development, program supervision and work with homeless and low-income populations. She taught in Yachats and Guam before leaving in 1978 to work with food banks and gleaning programs. She was the executive director of The Community Action Agency in Lewiston, Idaho, which included six food banks, a weatherization program, The Area Agency on Aging and Head Start. Her work has gone toward breaking the chain of generational dependence on government housing by encouraging self-sufficiency.

Woody Woodbury — Position: Florence City Councilor

Woodbury retired in April from Florence Grocery Outlet, where he worked to provide employment opportunities to people from all walks of life. He was appointed to the Florence City Council in January after former councilor George Lyddon vacated the position.

What are your qualifications in applying for this position?

Henry: I have leadership training and years of experience in all aspects of management in a large corporation, including financial management, human resources, marketing and loss mitigation. The recent successes of our city are perhaps the best testimonial of my ability to work with people of all backgrounds and achieve results. Of course, none of the results would have been possible without the leadership and quality people we have in our city government.

Being Mayor is about being a coach and encouraging high performance people to perform.

Lucio: I’m a successful small business owner and employer, which requires a variety of skills such as financial management, marketing, customer service, leadership and the ability to delegate, as well as communication, negotiation, coaching and problem solving. I know how to manage a budget and I am fiscally cautious.

I’m also a good listener. As a barber, I hear a lot about people’s concerns and what’s going on in their lives. I have the opportunity hear the real issues/concerns that people have. I could use that information to make our community better. I don’t have my own agenda.

Plus, since I am somewhat new to town, I have a fresh approach to issues. I’ll have a new perspective to offer Florence.

Miltenberger: I have years of experience in the development and implementation of regulations, policies and procedures. I have worked with people from all walks of life in a variety of situations. Previously, I was appointed and then elected to the Canby City Council. I am familiar with the operations of our city council as I have attended many council meetings and Planning Commission meetings. I am also the chairperson of the Environmental Management Advisory Committee (EMAC) for the city. I am retired so have the time required to prepare for the council meetings and work sessions.

Woodbury: I’m currently serving as a city councilor for the City of Florence. I’m a successful business owner who recently retired. I served seven years on the Florence Area Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors, including one year as vice president and two years as president. I am also currently a director for Siuslaw Valley Fire and Rescue Board of Directors.

How are you involved in the community?

Henry: I am president and treasurer of Resurrection Lutheran Church, have been mayor of Florence for four years, a board member and treasurer of the Oregon Coast Military Museum, the business manager of Shelter Cove HOA, and a member Florence Elks and Friends of the Florence Events Center.

Lucio: I have attended, sponsored and supported a variety of events and fundraisers for many worthwhile causes here in Florence, such as the Boys and Girls Club, The Salvation Army, Green Carpet Fashion Show, Hair Cuts for Veterans, free haircuts for kids at Crossroads Assembly Church and volunteering at our local Elks Lodge.

More recently, I have been attending city council meetings and meeting with key people in our city, such as the city manager and Florence Area Chamber of Commerce, to get input and perspective for moving forward to solve some of our most pressing issues.

Miltenberger: I am the chairperson of EMAC, the committee that was responsible for educating the community regarding the harm of polystyrene and ultimately getting its sale banned from in the city limits. We currently have a public survey to ascertain how our community feels about banning single use plastic bags.

I am also the chairperson of the Siuslaw Climate Alliance, the group that was responsible for the Earth Day celebration in April of this year. I am a volunteer tutor at Lane Community College in the Adult Basic Education department. I have participated in the women’s marches held in our community as well as organizing the “Never Again” march held in response to our recent school shootings.

Woodbury: I have volunteered for numerous nonprofits over the last 13 years. I also currently serve on the Airport Advisory Committee as an ex-officio member for the Florence City Council. I also have experience with Florence Urban Renewal Agency the Boys and Girls Club of Western Lane County, Florence Food Share, Friends of the Florence Events Center and Habitat for Humanity.

What do you see as the upcoming priorities for your position?

Henry: Priorities in our community are of course housing and continued growth and job creation. Working within the educational system to help develop skilled workers.

Lucio: Property crime/theft; affordable housing; homelessness; promoting small business; illegal camping; expanding the tax base; recruitment and retention of businesses; and keeping Florence affordable.

Miltenberger: The most obvious priority in Florence is the lack of affordable housing. I strongly support all economically viable efforts to increase housing and overall livability in Florence, to attract and keep medical professionals, educators and skilled laborers. I will work for increased activities and facilities, such as a park in Old Town, for our youth. I will also encourage diverse cultural experiences supported or encouraged by our city.

Woodbury: We are a “City in Motion” and I will continue to work to improve city services as well as to improve the quality of life for our citizens.

What do you anticipate as being your biggest challenges?

Henry: Maintaining a non-partisan atmosphere within City Government.

Lucio: Finding a way to work together without becoming polarized, while finding real solutions.

Miltenberger: The biggest challenge I see is working with the council and staff to make sure that all business owners and citizens of Florence feel like they are being equally treated and being served regardless of race, faith, gender or sexual orientation. I would like the city to encourage more public participation in council meetings and work sessions.

Woodbury: Bringing more affordable housing to Florence and working to bring more jobs across all skill levels.

Is there anything you’d like to add?

Henry: The success of the city in the past four years has been a simple matter of getting the right people in the right places, giving them some encouragement and then getting out of the way and letting them excel. One of the things I have worked hard on is keeping people’s agendas — including my own — out of city government and that has paid off and will continue to do so in the future if we remain aware of this critical issue.

Lucio: I will listen, participate and step outside of the box when needed. Getting to know the other council members, putting Florence first and finding ways to work together on key issues will be my priority. I am ready for the challenge. I love Florence.

Miltenberger: I was born in North Bend, grew up in Newport and have chosen to retire in Florence. I feel that as a native Oregonian, and someone who has spent many years in different areas of the coast, I have the best understanding of the needs of citizens living in our remarkable city.

Woodbury: I enjoy serving my community and working with the city’s council and staff as we continue to improve services through proper management of our budget and resources.

By Chantelle Meyer/Siuslaw News

Like its larger neighbor Florence, Dunes City has four candidates running for position on the Dunes City Council. However, each of Dunes City’s candidates are running unopposed for their same positions.

According to Dunes City Recorder Jamie Mills, three of the council’s seven positions are running, along with Mayor Bob Forsythe. These include councilors Sheldon Meyer, Susan Snow and Duke Wells, who each will run for a four-year term. The mayor is a two-year term.

Forsythe was appointed Dunes City mayor on Aug. 25, 2017, after the death of former mayor Rebecca Ruede. He first joined the city council in 2016 after running a write-in campaign.

“A while back, Rebecca asked me to sit on Dunes City Council and I was honored to do so,” Forsythe said in 2017. “I tend to get involved everywhere I live, whether it be a homeowner association or city, mainly because I found that if other people decide what is good for me, I want to at least have a voice in it.”

He previously served as Port of Siuslaw port manager and is a veteran.

Meyer is the council president and has served a number of years on the council, including a stint as acting mayor, before stepping down in 2007. In December 2013, Meyer was appointed to fill a council vacancy and later was elected to the position.

At the time of his return to Dunes City Council, Meyer said he had been watching the progress of the council for some time and was pleased with their ability to work well together.

Snow is the most recent member of the Dunes City Council. She was appointed in December to fill the vacancy created when then-councilor Forsythe stepped into the role of mayor.

Snow has lived in Dunes City full-time since 2016, but she has had family and real estate ties to the area in the past. She also had an extensive career with the U.S. Air Force.

“I like to be involved with the city where I live,” Snow said during the Dec. 13 meeting where she was sworn in. “… I want to keep it a nice, friendly place that people are happy to live in, and that there’s no contention between residents or the cities around us.”

Wells has also served a number of terms on the Dunes City Council. A Siuslaw graduate, he served in the U.S. Air Force and later became a logger in the region. He and his family run Old Cedar Tree Woodworking in Florence.

In a newsletter from 2011, he wrote, “My goal on the Dunes City Council is very simple. It is to help protect the rights of the citizens and the rights of the property owners of Dunes City.”

In 2012, he was instrumental in creating the Volunteer of the Year award for the city’s top volunteer.

Each of these candidates will be on the Dunes City ballot, which Lane County mailed this week.

The Dunes City Council meets the second Wednesday of each month at 6 p.m. at Dunes City Hall, 82877 Spruce St. in Westlake. To view past meetings, visit dunescityhall.com/video-minutes.

By Mark Brennan/Siuslaw News

The race to represent Oregon House of Representatives District Nine is a contest between incumbent Democrat Caddie McKeown and Republican challenger Teri Grier.

McKeown has represented the district since 2012 and Grier has no prior experience as an elected official, working most recently as an instructor at Southwestern Oregon Community College.

The two candidates have provided the Siuslaw News with responses to questions to clarify their priorities if elected on Nov. 6, 2018.

Why are you interested in serving as the representative for Oregon House District Nine?

Grier: I’m running because I don’t think our needs and issues have been well represented in Salem by our current representative. We need someone who will vote for our issues and sponsor legislation that our coastal communities need, not someone who is beholden to their party leadership or the interests of Portland.

McKeown: I’m seeking reelection as your state representative to make sure the South Coast gets our fair share of funding and support for our schools, our economy and our people. I’m committed to protecting and promoting the South Coast because this is my home and the home of my friends, neighbors and loved ones.

What are the most significant challenges facing the House this term?

Grier: Special interests that prevent good work from getting done on the issue of PERS. Until we are able to come to the table and come up with a bipartisan and meaningful solution to PERS, we will not be able to financially solve any long-term issues facing Oregon. Legislators must remember that despite who funded their campaigns, they go to Salem to serve the needs of their constituents first.

McKeown: It’s imperative for the South Coast to be able to generate family wage jobs, fully fund our schools and take care of our veterans and seniors. I’ve dedicated a lifetime of community service to fighting for economic prosperity at every turn. That’s why I’ve fought for $100 million in investments in our port and transportation infrastructure; brought $850,000 to our local shellfish industry and insisted on investments in career and technical education and vocational training for our students.

What issues are you most concerned with at this time?

Grier: We need a realistic approach to PERS. Without a responsible fiscal path on this issue, we will not be able to realistically tackle our other issues like our failing schools or the state of wards managed by DHS (Department of Human Services). These issues and more won’t be able to be solved for the long term unless we bring a realistic solution to PERS.

The beneficiaries of PERS are also at risk and need to receive their just compensation; if we don’t act now, the system may become bankrupt and these people will receive nothing. That is unacceptable. With PERS comes the need for serious economic development in rural Oregon. We need to create opportunities for industries to return, so we can have family-wage jobs back and grow our economy and communities.

McKeown: While our economy is growing in Oregon, that growth isn’t reaching everyone. Over the next four years, I will bring together Democrats and Republicans, urban and rural Oregonians, to tackle the state’s big problems and make sure every Oregonian has the opportunity to thrive.

First, we have to strengthen our schools. I have a plan to expand high-quality preschool in the next two years to an additional 10,000 low-income children, as well as reduce class sizes, require a 180-day school year and expand career and technical education.

For all Oregonians to thrive, we must also expand access to high-quality, affordable health care. I will fight to protect our Medicaid expansion and make sure that every Oregonian, no matter where they live, has access to the care they need.

What are the major policy differences or priorities that separate you from your challenger?

Grier: I’d say the major policy differences are that I believe that Oregonians pay enough taxes and fees. I want my constituents to have more money in their pockets so that they can support their local economies, buy homes and be able to give their children opportunities.

My opponent has regularly created taxes and fees, and supported regulations that have contributed to the poor state of our coastal communities. Cap and Trade is a major example of this, and my opponent is a staunch supporter of this. I stand with our local businesses though, and I know that burdensome regulation will only harm our communities. Oregon’s emissions footprint could be described as minimal at best and harming our businesses won’t help it.

McKeown: I think the most fundamental difference between my opponent and myself is that I’m from here. I was born and raised here and know the unique character of the South Coast; I understand, firsthand, the challenges we face, and I’ve spent my life producing real solutions for my home. I’ve done this by being a collaborator and a team player and I took that approach with me to Salem. I have earned a reputation by being a bi-partisan legislator who gets things done. In three terms in office, I’ve created the Office of Small Business Assistance and the Oregon Shellfish Initiative, increased staff and administrator standards in our long-term care and dementia facilities and passed an historic state-wide transportation package that will improve highway safety, lower emissions and put people to work.

Please share anything else you feel is important for our readers to know about your candidacy.

Grier: I moved to Oregon because I was suffering from a severe case of Valley Fever that nearly killed me. My doctor recommended that I find the cleanest air after my treatments so that my lungs would have a better chance to heal. Oregon quite literally saved my life. My decades of policy experience with rural economic development can be put to use to help and give back to the place that saved me. I want to serve because we deserve better, and I have the experience to do better.

McKeown: I’m running to be your state representative because the people here matter to me. I go to Salem every year to make sure that the South Coast has a strong voice at the table — someone who knows us and can represent our unique way of life. I was born and raised here. I know the struggles of the South Coast, and I also know our potential. It’s why I work so hard in Salem to bring family wage jobs and quality education to the South Coast — because our people are our strongest asset.

By Mark Brennan/Siuslaw News

To provide voters with a closer look at the candidates for Oregon’s Governor and Fourth Congressional District, what follows is a Q&A that primary candidates for those races had with the Siuslaw News.

The race to occupy the Oregon Governor’s Mansion, Mahonia Hall, is officially a contest between four candidates. However only two of these individuals are likely to receive enough support from voters to become Oregon’s next Governor.

Nick Chen is running as the candidate of the Libertarian Party and Patrick Starnes is running as an Independent. Neither candidate has a statewide ground organization, and both have a very limited media presence, with no major television or radio ads airing in the week leading up to the election.

Oregon State Rep. Knute Buehler is the Republican candidate for governor and sitting Democrat Gov. Kate Brown is running for her first full term in the office.

Both Brown and Buehler are polling in the 40th percentiles among voters, with Starnes and Chen trailing far behind.

The political statistics firm Real Clear Politics is calling the race to lead Oregon a “toss-up.”

The 2018 governor’s race is the second time these candidates have competed for the same office, with Buehler being defeated by Brown for the position of Secretary of State in 2015.

Brown then served as secretary of state under former Gov. John Kitzhaber and ascended to the state’s highest office after Kitzhaber’s unexpected resignation in 2015.

Brown won a special election in 2016 to finish the remainder of Kitzhaber’s term and is now running for her first full term as governor.

Brown’s educational background includes a Bachelor of Art degree from the University of Colorado in Environmental Conservation and a J.D. degree from the Northwestern School of Law at Lewis and Clark College, obtained in 1985.

Buehler is serving his second term as the representative from District 54, which includes Coos Bay. He is a graduate of Oregon State University and was the school’s first Rhodes Scholar, attending Merton College in Oxford, England. Buehler then graduated from John Hopkins University in Maryland before beginning a successful medical practice in Bend.

Brown is currently leading Buehler by a few percentage points in polling, 43 to 40 percent, the difference within the statistical margin of error, as the race has tightened over the last month.

Both Brown and Buehler provided responses to questions posed with an eye towards gaining insight into the priorities of the candidates.

Why are you running for governor?

Brown: I first ran for public office to be a voice for the voiceless. And as Oregon’s governor, every day I am fighting to improve the lives of working families.

As governor, I led bipartisan work on transportation, Medicaid funding and ensuring all kids have healthcare. We worked across the aisle to make community college more affordable and put more dollars into our classrooms.

We worked together, urban and rural, to build a better Oregon. When politicians tried to cut Oregonians’ healthcare, I fought back. I protected our coast from offshore drilling.

I made sure every woman can access reproductive healthcare. I have been clear during my time as governor that I will do what I say and say what I do. My record is clear. I will stand up and protect the Oregon that we love.

Buehler: Serving in the legislature and running for governor has given me the chance to listen to and learn from Oregonians all across the state. This has confirmed an important insight for me that Oregonians are unhappy with the performance of our state government and especially its leaders in Salem.

Despite all the good we have going for us, including record revenue in our treasury, our most pressing problems are still getting worse. What we are missing is a government as good, as wise, as innovative and as thrifty as her people.

This is why I am running for governor. To bring moderate, independent leadership to fix the big problems Brown has avoided, ignored or made worse as governor.

What do you feel are the most pressing challenges facing our state?

Brown: Our state faces many challenges, but the most pressing include strengthening our education system and improving our graduation rate, protecting access to high-quality, affordable health care, and increasing affordable housing options in the state.

Buehler: My top priority will be to rescue our students, teachers and public schools from the classroom funding and graduation crisis that has gone on for far too long. The single biggest failure of Gov. Brown is her indifference to fixing our public schools. I have a detailed plan with big important goals to fix it.

The vision is ambitious — but achievable. As governor, I’ll lead Oregon schools from the bottom five to the top five in five years by fixing Oregon’s broken pension system, increasing funding for our classrooms, and making targeted investments in proven programs — such as CTE/STEM and 3rd grade reading.

What issues are you interested in addressing if elected?

Brown: While our economy is growing in Oregon, that growth isn’t reaching everyone. Over the next four years, I will bring together Democrats and Republicans, urban and rural Oregonians, to tackle the state’s big problems and make sure every Oregonian has the opportunity to thrive.

First, we have to strengthen our schools. I have a plan to expand high-quality preschool in the next two years to an additional 10,000 low-income children; reduce class sizes, require a 180-day school year, and expand career and technical education.

For all Oregonians to thrive, we must also expand access to high-quality, affordable health care. I will fight to protect our Medicaid expansion and make sure that every Oregonian, no matter where they live, has access to the care they need.

Buehler: As mentioned above, one of my top priorities is fixing our broken education system and pension program.

Next, we need to regain our status as a national leader in health care and Medicaid delivery, for the sake of the hundreds of thousands of Oregonians who depend on it.

In the past our health care system was known for its compassion and innovation. Today, it is known for scandals, mismanagement and waste. As a physician, I will lead to ensure that every Oregonian has access to high-quality health care.

Third, homelessness is a humanitarian, public health and public safety crisis. I will lead with compassion, and a little tough love to ensure that in Oregon, a tent or a sidewalk is never anyone’s home.

Finally, our rural communities have been left behind and forgotten by leaders in Salem for far too long. Oregon’s rural-urban divide is not an immovable feature of the natural landscape. It is an artificial political divide resulting from choices made every day in Salem by elected officials and unelected government employees. I will be a leader for all of Oregon.

As governor, I will make State government a partner for growing jobs and restoring hope and opportunity in rural Oregon.

How do your positions differ from those of your opponents?

Brown: Sometimes I feel like I’m running against two different people because what candidate Buehler says does not match what Rep. Buehler has done — especially when it comes to health care. As a legislator, Rep. Buehler voted against a bipartisan package to fund Oregon’s Medicaid expansion under the Affordable Care Act.

By voting no, he voted to take away critical health care from 430,000 Oregonians — including 80,000 kids. Rep. Buehler also voted against a plan that would have covered 100 percent of Oregon’s children. That’s not only dead set against Oregon values, it’s cruel.

Buehler: I will challenge the status quo and be a governor for all of Oregon, no matter who you are, where you live, who you love, or how you register to vote. In contrast, Brown has proven that she is unwilling to take on the powerful special interests in her own party that defend a broken system. I will bring moderate, independent leadership to the governorship while working with Democrats, Republicans and Independents to help solve our most pressing issues.

What else is important to know about your candidacy?

Brown: As governor, I brought legislators from both parties together to fight for Oregon families.

We passed a transportation package that will reduce traffic, create 16,000 new jobs and make our roads safer. We passed a first in the nation pay equity and fair scheduling bills.

We worked together to ensure that 430,000 Oregonians have access to affordable health care because everyone should be able to see the doctor when they’re sick.

Buehler: Brown has been in elected office for 30 years and the past four as governor. She has more money than any other governor in Oregon’s history, yet our most pressing problems continue to get worse — teachers are still getting laid off, class sizes are getting bigger and our graduation rates are still third-worst in the nation.

We have a growing homelessness crisis and vulnerable foster kids are not getting the care they need. Brown had her chance to show that she is capable of solving the big problems facing Oregonians.

We need new leadership. I will lead where Kate Brown has failed.

By Mark Brennan/Siuslaw News

DeFazio and Robinson are facing off for the fifth time.

Oregon has five Congressional Districts and Florence is included in District 4. District 4 represents the southern half of Oregon’s coastal counties including Coos, Curry, Douglas, Lane and Linn counties and most of Benton and Josephine counties.

Democrat Rep. Peter DeFazio has represented District 4 since 1987 and is running for re-election this year. He has a Bachelor of Arts degree from Tufts University and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Oregon. He is the ranking member on the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and is running against opponent Art Robinson.

Robinson has a Bachelor of Science degree from the California Institute of Technology and a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of California in San Diego. He is a well-known scientific and medical researcher, having worked with Linus Pauling co-founding the prestigious Institute of Orthomolecular Medicine.

He served as president, director and tenured research professor at the research facility after it was renamed the Linus Pauling Institute in 1971.

Why are you interested in representing Oregon District 4?

DeFazio: Most Oregonians are tired of partisan bickering and gridlock in Washington. And so am I. But I have a fire in my belly and a lot of good ideas about how we can make progress for the American people.

I would like the Congress to work together to improve health care, make investments in job-creating infrastructure programs and make college more affordable. I will work with the Trump White House or anybody else to meet those goals. But when I disagree with the president or my party I will use my voice and my vote to stand up for our Oregon values.

I have built seniority that puts me in position to be the Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee if Democrats win the majority. I will be part of crafting an agenda that makes investments in our roads, bridges, ports and airports and creates jobs and strengthens the economy.

Robinson: I am running because I think I can do a good job. I have been successful in medical research and I have been a successful educator and scientist. Most importantly, I have been successful in the real world. Mr. DeFazio has served in congress for 40 years and he has no real-world experience.

As a scientist I am a problem solver. DeFazio does not want to solve the problems we face, he just wants to figure out how he can benefit from them. All he really cares about is making sure he gets re-elected.

What issues are you most concerned with at this time?

DeFazio: Many Oregonians are one serious health issue away from personal financial crisis. Quality affordable healthcare is the top concern of most Americans and a top priority for Democrats in Congress. It’s time to reduce healthcare costs by expanding coverage, protecting consumers, creating a public option outside of the for-profit insurance industry, and allowing the federal government to negotiate lower drug prices for Medicare recipients.

Robinson: I am really concerned with improving access to medical care. There are estimates that as much as 20 percent of the earnings of real people go to paying for their medical costs and medical care. I have spent a lifetime working in the medical field and know we can make a lot of progress there. The economy has improved under President Trump and we need to take this opportunity to support the president’s initiatives to reform healthcare.

Again, Mr. DeFazio has no interest in providing good health care to people; all he wants to do is figure out a way to secure votes, while continuing to postpone meaningful changes to the healthcare system.

What are the most significant challenges facing the House this term?

DeFazio: If Democrats win the majority in the House, it will be a message from the electorate that they want Congress to uphold its constitutional duty to serve as a check on the Trump administration. As Chairman of the House Transportation Committee with oversight of the General Services Administration, I plan to investigate the president’s conflict of interest as both the lessee and lessor of the Trump Hotel and White House involvement in the siting of a new FBI Headquarters.

It will be a challenge to find common ground legislatively, but I’m hopeful that we can come together in Congress to make a significant investment in our nation’s infrastructure to create good-paying jobs in construction, technology and engineering, and get the country’s economy moving.

I have three bipartisan infrastructure proposals — that are fully paid for and would not increase the deficit — that would invest over $500 billion in the nation’s crumbling roads, bridges, transit systems, ports, harbors, and airports. According to the Council of Economic Advisers, every $1 billion invested in transportation infrastructure creates or sustains 13,000 jobs.

I am also hopeful we can find common ground to reduce healthcare costs by expanding coverage, protecting consumers, creating a public option outside of the for-profit insurance industry, and allowing the federal government to negotiate lower drug prices for Medicare recipients.

Robinson: Electing representatives that support the president. President Trump has done a great job fixing the economy and cutting taxes. But Mr. DeFazio opposes the president, not for his ideas or policies but as a partisan attack on the president.

I think it is very important that we elect representatives that support the president and his policies. Mr. DeFazio has opposed any changes that the president has wanted to make, not because of the policies, but as a way to make a partisan point.

He does this for votes, not because of what he believes.

Provide our readers with the major differences between your opponents and yourself:

DeFazio: I supported the Affordable Care Act and expansion of Medicare to 150,000 people in my district. My opponent opposes expanding Medicare and making health care more affordable.

I support strengthening Social Security by lifting the cap and making all income subject to the federal payroll tax — a waiter shouldn’t pay a higher percentage of his or her salary to Social Security than a CEO of a corporation. My opponent wants to privatize Social Security and let Wall Street gamble with it.

I’ve always supported a woman’s right to choose and access the health care that she needs.

I stand with Planned Parenthood and have opposed efforts to defund this critical service. My opponent has said that he’s “rabidly pro-life” and has said that banning abortion is the most important issue in America.

I believe that the federal government can and should do more to invest in our students and schools by increasing K-12 funding, as well as affordable higher education opportunities. My opponent has consistently said that “the whole public-school system is child abuse” and that he thinks “public schools should be abolished.”

I am actively working in Congress to advance plans and programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, reduce our dependence on fossil fuels, and address the dangers of a changing climate. My opponent believes that climate change is a myth and we should “Burn the coal fields” because we would benefit from the increase in carbon dioxide.

My opponent believes chronic radiation is good for your health.

I don’t.

Robinson: The main difference between Mr. DeFazio and myself, as I have said, is his lack of real-world experience and the fact that he doesn’t really want to solve problems, he wants to benefit from them.

He believes that big government can solve every problem by creating another tax. He has been more concerned with getting re-elected than in addressing the issues that Oregonians care about. He did nothing to save our timber industry when he had the chance.

He got money for the counties and did nothing to keep the industry alive. He did not solve the problem, he figured out how to benefit from the problem.

Every election he has given speeches to fix the VA (Veterans Affairs). He has someone at his office take calls from vets needing help and he helps those individuals that call his office.

The problems our VA Department has could be fixed simply by issuing a medical card for all veterans. That card could be used at any medical facility, anywhere in the country. But he hasn’t done that because he doesn’t want to fix the problem, he just wants to get votes.

Please share anything else you feel is important for our readers to know about this election:

DeFazio: This is the most important election of our lifetime. I hope I have earned your vote for U.S. Representative to return to Congress and continue fighting for our shared priorities and values.

Robinson: We need to elect someone that has a fresh perspective on the problems that we face. It is also important to build on the positive steps made by President Trump and send individuals to the House of Representatives that will work with the president to implement his reform agenda.

I just want to say two words that are very popular across the country: “Term limits.”

There is a point where a congressman becomes unproductive, ineffective and complacent and I believe that Mr. DeFazio has reached that point.

Both Robinson and DeFazio are firm supporters of a strong educational component in the communities they serve. Robinson believes in school choice and home schooling as alternatives to the traditional government centered education program.

DeFazio has taken a different course, embracing the university system by channeling approved congressional pay raises into a scholarship fund for his constituents.